Help Me Choose: Memory

Random access memory (RAM) — commonly known as memory — is the temporary storehouse for the data flowing to and from your PC's processor. The more memory you have, the faster your games and other programs will run.

Alienware systems have the raw power to run next-generation multithreaded, graphics-intensive games or multimedia viewing and creation applications. Regardless of your processing needs you need the right amount of memory to help support your computing activities. Systems with more memory can:
  • Deliver better performance and be more responsive
  • Handle more open files and applications at once
  • Open larger files or load more game data (maps, textures, etc.)

Typically, 4GB of memory is a good minimum starting point for a gaming PC’s memory loadout. 4GB can enable systems to play most games at acceptable frame rates provided you have a sufficiently powerful graphics card. Stepping up to 16GB of memory will enable performance at higher settings for more intensive games and programs.

How much RAM can my Alienware hold?
Most editions of the Windows 7 and Windows 8 operating system (OS) are 64 bit. The RAM limit for Home Premium and Consumer versions is 16GB. If you are running a 32-bit operating system (OS), such as Windows XP, Vista 32 or Windows 7 32-bit edition, you have a limit of 4GB of memory. To go beyond to 32GB you will need the Professional versions of Windows.

What is a DIMM?
A DIMM — or dual inline memory module — is a series of random access memory chips mounted on a small circuit board. DIMMs are installed in sockets on your Alienware's motherboard.

What does "1600MHz" mean?
The speed of the memory you purchase or add to your Alienware is measured in megahertz. Most Alienwares have start with 1600MHz memory speed capability, which is very efficient in handling modern gaming applications. Maximum memory speed is limited by the Memory Speed supported by the processor.