RAM – Random Access Memory
RAM is where your PC stores data used to run programs, images that are actively being used (web content & images being viewed or edited), and other frequently accessed data. If your PC does not have enough RAM to deal with the programs that you are trying to use on your computer, it will use space on the hard drive to store the data. This area of the hard drive is know as the “swap file”. The problem with using the swap file is simple to understand – it is many times slower to access the data than data stored in RAM…so your PC slows down to a crawl.
RAM is a fairly economical upgrade to your PC, stretching your older PC’s abilities and usability.
Graphics Card (Display Adapter) Upgrading
The video card in your older PC often lacks the ability to efficiently display media intensive content on the internet or High Definition movies. This is made obvious by jerky motion when displaying a video clip or while playing games. If you have upgraded to a newer monitor, you might not be getting the full resolution that your new monitor is able to display. An older graphics card just is not able to work at higher display resolutions.
Hard Drive Upgrades
Your hard drive is where your PC stores all of it’s information. If your hard drive is making clicking or loud whirring sounds, it might be ready to die. New hard drives are far faster than an older model. A newer model can improve the speed of your computer by lessening the amount of time waiting for data to be read from (or written to) the hard drive.
Another consideration is simply having enough space to store all of the photos, videos, music and documents you have collected on your PC. You may choose to add another hard drive to most desktops, or to replace the hard drive in your computer with a larger hard drive. This is usually the only solution for a laptop who’s hard drive is overfilled