I must tell you that I honestly have no clue about hardware! Absolutely no clue! And I have two questions!
I can deal with software, but I needed help from one of the VF gurus to help me with plugging in my PCI-E card! That sort of noob! System Specs set up in my profile, just have a look.
I have a motherboard! Good start! On it is a CPU with a heatsink! Great! It is nice and cool to touch! Good! Next to it is a small heatsink, without a fan, and it is hot enough to put lines on your fingers if you touch it. It is just a small heat sink (about half the size of the CPU - linear, one quarter the size - area) right next to the CPU. Do you want a photo? Any ideas what it is? Do I need to worry about it being so hot? The system works fine, everything else is cool, so I would be tempted to just ignore it. I just became curious, and for someone with my absolute lack of skill, curiosity is dangerous!
I found this out while looking at my RAM. Although my Specs say 32bit, I am about to reinstall with Vista 64bit. Please think along the lines of 64bit OSs. I currently have 4GB of RAM. I use my computer very heavily. Firefox is currently using 523MB of RAM. I sometimes push it up to over a GB of RAM (Internet additct! lol) I use my system for a lot of heavy programming tasks. At the moment, it is early morning. I am currently using 73% available memory. At the middle of the day, that will be 95-100%.
Will I get a noticeable performance increase with 6GB of RAM? I do the occasional game. Low spec games. Old games. Very occasionally, they all run just fine. Or would Windows just continue to fill up my memory, but no noticeable increase in speed for me. I know the increase will never be massive, but I am just wondering whether it would be nothing?
If I do get more RAM, any particular brand? I have seen adverts for Crucial. They have a nice RAM tool. Are they the best?
I also know I need to look up speeds. Do I just look up my CPU and Motherboard speeds, and buy RAM for the lowest, or do I need to multiply things up. It all seems very complicated! What do I need to look up? I would be looking to put in a single matching pair. Would this be alright?
Could I then put my two old 1GB sticks into another computer? It is a fairly modern computer, so I don't think I need to worry about 0, 1, or 2 notch RAM, in a pair.
Are heatsink RAM sticks worth it? Looking at my system, I would say no.
Thank you so much for all your help, and patience with a noob!
P.S. I never overclock things!
P.P.S: Is there some other upgrade that really stands out. I can't really afford an expensive processor or anything like that, but maybe something stands out to your trained eyes!