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How do I add memory to my dell desk top?

I don't know how to add memory or a memory chip to my dell desktop. How do I start and what wires or cables do I need?

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After determining that you can add RAM and have obtained the correct RAM follow these steps.

Step 1: Power down your laptop. Unplug the power cord and remove the battery.

Step 2: Use an ESD wrist strap or other method to ground yourself. This is important to prevent static electricity from damaging your computer.

Step 3: Check the user manual or service manual for the location of the Memory Access door. On most Dell laptops, it is located on the bottom of your computer.

Step 4: Open the memory access door by removing the two small screws that hold the door in place.

Step 5: Use your fingertips to gently spread the securing clips at either side of the memory module until it pops up.

Step 6: Remove the RAM module from the connector by sliding it backwards from the slot at a 45-degree angle.

Step 7: Align the notch in the bottom of the RAM module with the tab in the connector slot.

Step 8: Slide the module firmly into the slot at a 45-degree angle.

Step 9: Rotate the module downward until the securing clips click into place.

Step 10: Replace the memory access door.

Step 11: Replace the battery and power up the computer to be sure that the RAM is recognized.

Posted on Sep 25, 2009

  • Poncherello Sep 25, 2009

    My bad, I posted the laptop instructions.....I wasn't paying attention. Here are the desktop instructions

    Step 1:Unplug the power cord from the back of your computer. unless you're using the metal case as a grounding source (see Tips below for more on being grounded).

    Step 2: Open the case as shown in your computer manual. In most cases, you don’t even need the manual to show you how to do this. It’s simply a matter of unscrewing one or two screws on the back or bottom of the computer and removing the computer cover.

    Step 3: Locate an empty RAM slot.

    Step 4: Press out the securing clips on either end of the RAM slot.

    Step 5: Line up the notched edge of the RAM module with the tab on the bottom of the RAM slot. The RAM only fits if you line it up correctly so you don’t have to worry about installing it backwards.

    Step 6: Press the module straight down into the slot, applying firm but gentle pressure on both ends of the RAM module until it clicks into place. The securing clips will snap into place.

    Step 7: Replace the cover to your computer and reattach power cords and cables.

    Step 8: Power up the computer. The system should automatically recognize the new memory.

    No Empty RAM slot? If all of your memory banks are full, you may need to replace RAM rather than just install more.
    Step 1: Ground yourself before touching the memory modules.

    Step 2: Gently press apart the securing clips that hold the RAM modules in place. The module will pop up slightly.

    Step 3: Lift the RAM module straight up out of the memory slot.

    Step 4: Proceed as above to install new RAM.


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Download and run a program like Belarc or an older version of Everex (newer one no longer freeware) to find out how much memory you already and what type it is, or contact the company. Don't buy it until you know your computer has room for it and can be upgraded to that size. If you don't have at least windows Vista you won't be able to add more than 2MB RAM and have it work properly.

Posted on Sep 25, 2009


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