Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Anyone still thinking of buying a netbook? Get 2GB of RAM.

Well I was, and I did, and it's still awesome. Despite the fact that apparently tablets are killing netbooks.

Anyway, the point of this post is that when I was getting one, I was wondering whether 1GB of RAM was really enough in this day and age. Out of the sample size of Best Buy and Costco, few netbooks had more than 1GB. So "maybe the manufacturers know best? I don't need 2GB?" Googling "1GB enough" didn't answer my question. So here's my contribution: 1GB is not enough.

I got an Asus Eee PC 1015PE with 1GB of RAM. It was very slow, and I could tell it was accessing the pagefile all the time. After I upgraded it to 2GB, it sped way up. And I saw that upon startup it was already using 700MB of RAM (with Windows 7 Starter). And with Firefox regularly taking 300MB on its own, I knew 1GB wouldn't cut it. These days when I open up Task Manager it's usually in the neighborhood of 1.1GB in use. So modern OS's and browsers have reached that point. Get 2GB.

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