Very minor - have 16GB (4 x 4) of RAM, but should I only install 8GB for handmedown PC to parents

I just wonder about this, it’s so petty but I’m curious what people that aren’t me, think. :smile:

I’m giving my parents my old PC and I’ve only installed 2 x 4GB DDR3 modules, when I actually have 4 x 4GB’s for it. My theory is there’s less to go wrong that way, also I’ll have a spare set in the very unlikely situation the installed RAM goes bad.

What do you think? Just throw it all in there for what is a very light user (email/web), or keep some back for a rainy day?


Basic Spec.:

i5-2500k (no O/C)
Win 10 Pro
All put in a cheap but nice’ish looking box




Don’t add what isn’t used. Better to have spare or just sell it IMO.

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8GB is nothing these days. If your parent like to keep open tabs then definitely install 16GB. Also the latest verions of windows actually use that extra ram for caching.


My parents are doing just fine with 4GB of ram. Seriously, you don’t need 16 for a few tabs, especially if you don’t use the crazy ram hungry Chrome. Dual monitor few Firefox tabs and browser windows eat about 4GB…

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I did the exact same thing with my mother and she’s not run into any issues so far. For light use 8GB should be fine.

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It should be fine assuming your parents aren’t power users. Hell, I don’t even use 8 GB most of the time.

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Thanks guys

Oh, I think 8GB should be OK…also she’s a parent, so they don’t often use more than one website at a time :smile: I was using it as a kind of workstation for years and only occasionally did I reach the limit…saying that, I wasn’t using Win10 which probably makes a difference!

Hehe, power users they ain’t…more like powerless users :smile:


I have 16GB in my system and run Linux as the host OS and Windows 10 virtual machine for playing games via PCI Passthrough.

I dedicate 8GB to the VM and both guest and host run perfectly.

In short… 8GB will be plenty for your patents.

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We are stuck with 32bit Windows at work (business critical 16bit legacy application - looking forward to that going later this year). This limits us to 4GB of ram and they seems to perform Ok for basic Web/M$ Office/whatever in Windows 10. Its not perfect, and is becoming more and more a problem. So 8GB will be plenty.

I actually did similar for my parents a few years ago and they seem to be happy. The only feedback I have is replace the boot drive with an SSD if its not as Spinning rust is really slow. I die slightly whenever I have to use a machine with a HDD as a boot drive (its literally wasting my time).

I think Extra ram is useful to have around for the inevitable time you get called out to do family/friends to do IT support. Worst comes to worst you could always add it later not like its a hard upgrade.

In case your nervous tabs galore with 3.5gb ram (I know its says 8gb but look below it):

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I did the same for my brother when he wanted me to build a cheap computer for him. Picked 4G of ram because all he does is basically browser stuff.

I do have to admit that after upgrading to Ryzen and DDR4 I stuck my old 16G’s in his machine and took his 4G. He doesnt pester me as much on how his machine is slow as much I think.

There is always the family IT pestering factor :slight_smile:

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Thanks for posting, seems like the general theme is that 8GB is perfectly fine, it’s good to have it confirmed!

Wow, I actually feel technologically sympathetic for you! Out of interest,

Spinning rust is horrible isn’t it, I help a few older computer users locally and dread those. Feels like my time is being unnecessarily wasted and often suggest an SSD replacement at cost, just to save me time in the future!

All I hope is that I don’t store the spare RAM somewhere and then forget where I put it! :smile:

Very true. I’m the IT guy for friends, family and extended family, not self-appointed either!

People in this thread are claiming 8 Gigs is too low and I’m sitting here with this lol.

I think 4 is more than enough for most people’s web browsing. Especially with an adblocker of some kind. I’d say sell the extra ram and get them an ssd it will make a much bigger difference for them.

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Ha! Doing well! :grinning:

I’ve been comfortable with 16GB for quite some time now (but only for my use), currently using 8GB of that. Just have 2 x Chrome, Firefox and some drawing software open.

Ah, I forgot to mention, I donated my old SSD (Intel 530 Series), so it’s more than quick enough for them I reckon! :slight_smile: