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Denominations#

RAM is sold in the form of "sticks" that come in various fixed sizes, a lot like a hard drive does. Today these sizes are measured in gigabytes (GBs). It can be found to be measured in megabytes (MBs) too, especially in Cloud and virtualised environments.

In general most (physical) desktop computers ship out of the factory with a minimum of 4GB of RAM because that's what most modern operating systems like Windows 10/11 and Linux require, not to mention the software that they run also requires RAM. Generally speaking, therefore, more RAM is better but there is also such a thing as too much RAM.

Here's a very rough idea of the kind of RAM required for a desktop computer being used for different jobs:

Job CPU Cores RAM Graphics Card
Simple web browsing 2 4GB Intergrated (built-in)
Complex, heavy web browsing 2 8GB Integrated (built-in)
Simple gaming 4 8GB Dedicated
Complex gaming 4 16GB - 32GB Dedicated
4K video editing 4 32GB - 64GB Dedicated

These are very general figures. When it comes to "designing" a computer you'll design it for a very particular use case and build out the hardware specifications to match.

When you're deploying Cloud based or virtualised systems you'll have to define how much RAM you want the system to have. This will usually be measured in GBs but you can measure it in MBs too. You'll see GBs as 4GB and the MBs as 0.5GB, which means 512MB.