Monthly Archives: October 2017

Common Features with Linux and Windows

Windows and Linux have many common features allowing both operating systems to effective and complete. The following are some of the biggest similarities shared between the two:

Alt + Tab Keys

Microsoft introduced Alt + Tab key feature back with Windows 1.0 in their year 1985. Back then, this feature was called “CoolSwitch” however it was later changed in Windows 95 to “Task Switcher” and for Windows Vista “Windows Flip”. Thanks to the usefulness of this feature, Linux later incorporated a version of their own into their operating system.

Users Account

For both productivity and organization, Linux and Windows give great control with user accounts. Users can create a different account for work, home, play, and also one for administration to make managing their accounts simple. This is a great feature for both operating systems.

Task View

It tends to be always said that one operating system steals features from another. Linux took Alt + Tab from Windows, but Task View began with Linux.

Linux users were given awesome features for window management in 2006 with Compiz. This included the ability to spread any open windows across the screen and switching between them easily with just a click. Something similar was introduced in Windows 10 with the Task View feature. Users can get a quick look using shortcut Windows key + Tab. This feature is indispensable for users with several active apps. 

Cross-Platform

Software availability is one of the larger differences between Linux and Windows. Many commercial games and business apps run on the Windows operating system only. Also, there are many exclusive apps for Linux. However, this exclusiveness no longer matters for many users with cross-platform software.

For the rare instances when an app is found that is available on one platform, an alternative is easily found.

Desktop OS and Server OS

Many people think of Windows as a desktop OS while Linux is more for servers. In fact, these OS can be used for both purposes.

Since the year 2003 Windows Server has been used and has upgrades approximately every 4 years. Windows Server 2016 is Microsoft latest version. Several businesses use this version of Windows Server with great stability.

Additionally, many people use Linux for only writing papers or email and not as a server.

Vulnerabilities with Security

First and foremost, security with Windows is better than what many believe. Also, many people assume Linux is more secure than what it actually is.

Yes, Linux is safer than Microsoft Windows. Additionally, the amount of malware Windows computers receive has reduced in recent years.

With effective antivirus software, both these operating systems share the same amount of security issues.

Whether you’re a Windows user or Linux, you are sure to find needed features.

Is RAM Capacity or RAM Speed Most Important

Rather than investing in a new PC, we always strive for our customers to upgrade their existing PC. Not only do you save money, the amount of e-waste is reduced. So, having some knowledge of computers is needed when you want to save money. RAM is one item we recommend upgrading instead of throwing money away on a new PC.

After having your PC inspected, RAM seems to be the culprit for its sluggishness. But, now what? Does RAM capacity or RAM speed need to be increased?

Reason Computers Need RAM

RAM can be thought of as short-term memory used to store files your processor needs often and quickly. Your PC responds instantly when this space is utilized, instead of many seconds. The few seconds saved makes a computer feel more powered rather than old and worn down.

More RAM is typically needed when your PC struggles opening programs you need. This is due to tasks being unloaded by your PC from fast RAM onto your computer’s hard drive. The hard drive may have lots of storage, however, it has slower speeds.

Capacity for RAM is measured in megabytes, gigabytes, and terabytes. RAM size increase decreases the chance of your PC hard drive being used to store these temporary files. However, once enough RAM is installed in the PC to fit your needs, more RAM added would not be beneficial for speed improvement. In this case, faster RAM than what is already installed may be what’s needed to improve speed. This is true even with the same amount of RAM installed.

RAM’s Speed Metrics

Latency and frequency are metrics used to figure RAM speed.

Megahertz or MHz is how frequency is measured. The bigger the number the better. However, the lower number is better for latency; which is a sequence of numbers, such as 4-4-4-12.

After meeting your needs with RAM capacity, it might be more beneficial to lower the latency and increase frequency rather than adding more RAM.

Which is more important: speed or capacity?

RAM capacity is only beneficial to a certain point. Once there, a demising return is experienced. In general, unless you’re a gamer or demanding user, more than 8GB is not necessary. However, if you’re a gamer or demanding user, having a larger capacity of RAM, no more than 16GB might be needed. Although, this is not always the case. Less latency and more frequency may be needed to make a noticeable difference in your PC.

When it comes down to it, there is no “one answer fits all”. Talking to a computer specialist would be best. Also, keep in mind your PC motherboard has limitations with speed and capacity of RAM.

How Much RAM is Really Needed for Your Gaming Computers

Not long ago, 4GB of RAM worked great for most daily tasks and gaming. Unfortunately, this is no longer the case.

Having too little RAM on a gaming computer, such as 4GB, can cause many of the games you wish to play now, not to run or not run well. For example, 8GB RAM is a required minimum listed for Andromeda. This amount of RAM is needed for most games played today. Even when a minimum requirement of only 4-6GB of RAM is stated, it is recommended to use 8GB to ensure smooth play due to background programs running.

With that said, it is easy to come by 8GB RAM. Much of the pre-built computers ship with an amount of 8GB RAM or more. Furthermore, building your own system, kits for 8GB are affordable.

Higher Amounts of RAM

Is 16GB RAM useful on your gaming computer? What about 32GB? Or, would it be a waste of money? How much is too much?

A robust gaming system should have 16GB RAM installed for it to be considered at a sweet spot. This amount should be plenty to multitask and run all of the today’s games smoothly. If you enjoy or use live streaming often, 16GB should be enough for this also. Streaming and running a game on one of your monitors, while playing music, chatting with others, and anything else you want to do on another monitor, is a list of tasks that would definitely benefit from some headroom with extra RAM.

What about 32GB?

However, what about going even higher with the amount of RAM? Is it too much to install 32GB? Overall, this answer would be yes. One reason only, is why 32GB would be needed for an average user, and that would be for future game readiness. That’s it!

When it comes to gaming specs only, 16GB RAM is more than enough, with many games able to run fine with just 8GB. Framerates basically showed no difference in gaming performance tests performed by TechSpot, when comparing 8GB and 16GB. Tests ran had the games running as well as 65 open tabs on Chrome and basically had identical framerates.

Generally speaking, your computing can be made more enjoyable with more RAM, and 32GB is not advised against. However, much of this RAM would be wasted when you want an improved framerate. Upgrading your graphics card makes a greater difference than upgrading from 8GB RAM to 32GB.

Of course, one answer is not enough for everyone. But, unless you are running many virtual machines at the same time as gaming with graphical settings high, going beyond 16GB is unnecessary. Happy Gaming!

For future reference, make sure to know what to expect when it comes to recognizing the signs of failing RAM in your system.

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