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Watching TV on a computer Options
Cat
Posted: Friday, October 25, 2013 12:56:23 PM

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I do not have cable but have become addicted to Murdock Mysteries here in Canada after seeing the books. I watch it from the CBC website on my computer. I have found that the sound and picture are not in sync. Is this because my internet speed is not fast enough, my computer is not fast enough, I don't have enough RAM? Is it possible to correct this?

I am running Windows XP using Firefox as a browser.
excaelis
Posted: Friday, October 25, 2013 1:59:25 PM

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Knowing the CBC it's probably a Union thing.
Cat
Posted: Friday, October 25, 2013 3:32:54 PM

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Except now I have to admit that I also watch Elementary and Castle and have the same problem. Sigh.
Romany
Posted: Friday, October 25, 2013 5:49:39 PM
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Hey Cat,

I don't own a TV so if I ever want to watch a show it's always from my computer and sometimes I have the same problem. Doesn't happen often though, and so I've always assumed its just when the system is running slowly.(What I know about computers is terrifyingly little).

But we've lots of whiz-kids on here, so am hoping like mad someone will answer your OP as it might help me too!
JaredTrombley
Posted: Friday, October 25, 2013 7:03:31 PM
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Location: United States, VT
Hi, Cat.

It could definitely have something to do with your internet connection speed. Typically, if it's in the 7 mega-bit - 15 mega-bit range you're good off in that department, but if you have a slower internet connection the problems you described could be occurring. The most likely not excessively technical description of this problem is the sound rendering before the video loads, because obviously video is going to have a harder time loading on a slow connection.

If you have an older computer, you're bound to be lacking on the RAM department, therefore preventing that zip in the load of pages and videos and leaving you open for casual lagging. If you definitely can't afford upgrading that internet connection or getting a more updated computer, try to free up some space for RAM. On older computers I've used the computer sometimes used 80% of its RAM just to play a video on YouTube using a RAM proficient web browser.

Hi, Romany
Once again, I'd say that's probably hiccups caused by a slower internet connection. Without knowing the condition and usual speed of your computers I can't make a very reasonable inference. More information would be helpful from both of you:

-Computer
-Browser (Cat already provided)
-Operating System (Cat already provided)
-Internet connection speed

Then it'd be pretty clear what the problem here is.

(forgive my grammar errors.)

Glad to help,
Jared T.
Cat
Posted: Friday, October 25, 2013 9:40:31 PM

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Thank you Jared,

I am using a PC computer, is that what you needed to know? My internet download speed is 6Mbps.
Tovarish
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 5:23:33 AM
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Don't tell anyone, but I wouldn't even know how to watch a movie or a TV program on the computer.
Romany
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 6:01:13 AM
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Jared,

Thank you for taking the time to respond. Co-incidentally I have just got back from Europe and hadn't had the problem since I've been back. But as I haven't watched more than one or two programmes didn't connect the dots. When I asked one of my house-mates about our connection speed etc. he told me that during my absence they got fed-up with our service provider and we have now switched and no longer have any problems. But it's great to know there is someone out there who can explain things in words of one syllable to a know-nothing such as I!Thanks again.

Tov - I still watch "Thank God You're Here" and "Good News Week" and lots of newer programmes on uTube now I'm here. But if you type in Channel 9 or ABC or whatever, you'll see that you can log right onto the channel and choose to watch whatever is being broadcast, old ones you may have missed etc. on your 'puter. (I also directly stream Triple J radio as I have mentioned before. Great to hear a cheery "G'day"...even if it comes in the middle of the night, our time!)
Tovarish
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 6:22:58 AM
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So melodious, thanks Rom I will give it a go.
JaredTrombley
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 9:54:06 AM
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Location: United States, VT
Cat wrote:
Thank you Jared,

I am using a PC computer, is that what you needed to know? My internet download speed is 6Mbps.


Hello Cat,

In that case, I would suggest utilizing Advance SystemCare 6 for computer cleanup. Every computer needs a nice cleaning from time-to-time, and what SystemCare can do is free up your RAM, organize your files, uninstall unneeded programs, and there's even a nice boost feature that can give your computers performance a little push while its features are activated.

Your internet connection is moderately fast, and definitely not the slowest by high-speed standards. This has opted me to infer it is your computers speed in the way, as you have described something I would call the "Bad-luck Syndrome", where a computer is utilizing so many resources at one time for normally no reason other than the fact you made some bad decisions, such as streaming live video or doing something resource intensive before your viewing period.

So I would suggest downloading Advance SystemCare 6 for free, as it has served me well.

It seems my young age (I am 15), enables me to explain technical stuff in a uncomplicated way, possibly stemming from the fact not so long ago I was computer illiterate and have opted to explain things in a way I would want them to be explained to me.

Regards,
Jared T.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 10:37:14 AM

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Jared T wrote:
Quote:
It seems my young age (I am 15), enables me to explain technical stuff in a uncomplicated way, possibly stemming from the fact not so long ago I was computer illiterate and have opted to explain things in a way I would want them to be explained to me.

Ha! So that's why I don't understand the IT guys at work. It's too long since they were computer-illiterate.
You should get a job translating - 'geek' to English.

PS - I didn't study your grammar thoroughly, but there is nothing in your posts that 'jumped out and bit me'. A few Americanisms, but - what the hell - no-one's perfect!
Hope2
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 11:16:23 AM

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Romany,

Anytime I tried to watch a TV program on the computer, (such as when I missed a show I wanted to see) it tells me I am in the wrong country.

Hey, Jared, welcome! I may need help later with such esoteric functions on the computer as opening the laptop. Whistle

Cat
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 12:57:29 PM

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One website suggested pressing control alt delete and getting into Windows Task Manager and closing all unnecessary "user" programs that were running. I checked each "user" application (vs "system" application) to see if it was necessary. I am not knowledgeable enough to determine most of them but since they weren't taking up much memory I let them be. I did close everything except the browser I was watching (like Yahoo mail) and found the sound and picture a little bit closer, enough to not be as confusing. I think I need to figure out how to stop unnecessary programs from loading at the beginning.

These are the programs that were running per Windows Task Manager:

Recordingmanager.exe (I closed)
explorer.exe
firefox.exe
ctfmon.exe
ReaderAppHelper.exe
realsched.exe
plugin-container.exe

Of course firefox is necessary as that is the browser I use. I'm thinking the others might not be necessary unless I open a program that needs them.

How do I affect the programs that are loaded at startup?
JaredTrombley
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 9:28:46 PM
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Location: United States, VT
Cat wrote:
One website suggested pressing control alt delete and getting into Windows Task Manager and closing all unnecessary "user" programs that were running. I checked each "user" application (vs "system" application) to see if it was necessary. I am not knowledgeable enough to determine most of them but since they weren't taking up much memory I let them be. I did close everything except the browser I was watching (like Yahoo mail) and found the sound and picture a little bit closer, enough to not be as confusing. I think I need to figure out how to stop unnecessary programs from loading at the beginning.

These are the programs that were running per Windows Task Manager:

Recordingmanager.exe (I closed)
explorer.exe
firefox.exe
ctfmon.exe
ReaderAppHelper.exe
realsched.exe
plugin-container.exe

Of course firefox is necessary as that is the browser I use. I'm thinking the others might not be necessary unless I open a program that needs them.

How do I affect the programs that are loaded at startup?


Incidentally, SystemCare 6 offers a program that can allow you to manage your start-up programs. I couldn't seem to find a way to access start-up programs through Windows, but I seem to think I knew a way at one point. I would seriously suggest downloading SystemCare 6 (if you haven't), and no, I'm not an advertiser for SystemCare, it's just it's really helped my computers performance.

I realize I've been using the term "RAM" alot without explaining it:
RAM stands for "Random Access Memory". It's basically what allows you to run multiple programs at the same time. (so if you're watching your movie with another tab on the browser open or something, that'd make it slower. You seem to have figured that out on your own.)

You don't have many programs at all running. On the other-hand, you might have dozens of processes, which really suck up RAM. I'm estimating the FireFox browser would take at least 60K of RAM (quite a bit, in other words.)

Don't bother with closing programs that are running.

Firstly, I'm sure you're aware of the Control Panel on Windows XP. Here's some things you can do to speed up your computer using just what good old Microsoft provides:

-Go to C-Panel

-Switch to Category View (on the left side there's two different "Boxes". (Control Panel) and (See Also)
Go under the Control Panel box to find the Category View link. (I'm being so in-depth just in case
you'd never really changed the Control Panel view.)

-Near the bottom-left of the content page you'll see a pie chart with text beside it saying: "Performance and Maintenance" - This is the best place in Windows XP to get stuff done performance wise.

Now, because I'm so nice, I'll go through what each thing does.

Key:
Hard-Disk: The computer writes information to your hard-disk sort of like a CD.

-Adjust Visual Effects-
Primary Purpose: You can adjust visual effects to speed up computer performance.
How: When clicked upon, you'll see a list of check-boxes. If you choose: "Let Windows choose what's best
for my computer" Windows will optimize visual performance to give you the most speed possible. This may remove
shadows under boxes, and many different visual effects you experience throughout the Windows XP OS.

-Free Up Space On Your Hard-Disk-
This tool is very useful if you have a lot of temporary files you don't need. (chances are, if you haven't
done a disk cleaning up until now, you'll have quite a bit of files you don't need.)
Windows will calculate the amount of free-space you'll get by (for lack of a better term) hypothetically deleting the standard amount of junk, like temporary files and emptying the recycling bin. Temporary files could be files created
by programs temporarily for some purpose. Most likely, that purpose has been served and the file is no longer needed.
That will be the case, and there's normally no harm in going ahead with the disk-cleanup. Speed-wise, you may not
see much of a difference. But this is one of the first steps in elementary computer health.

-Free up space on your hard-disk-
Disk fragmentation, in other words.This is another user-friendly tool.

First, you can analyze and have Windows estimate how much disk usage (basically how hard the hard-disk will
have to work to retrieve information.) you'll have after you defragment. If it looks like it's going to make a
VERY noticeable difference. Meaning you'll go from having a lot of RED (fragmentation) bars to a lot of WHITE (free space) bars, go ahead. It can't hurt. Fragmentation basically means files pertaining to certain programs are placed further along the disk then the program they're attached to, which causes lower performance for the hard-disk.

Try all of this, then get SystemCare (if you haven't) and run RAM management and use it's other features to remove some unnecessary start-up programs. This will decrease your boot (start-up) time. I'd also suggest looking into downloading Boost for free. The free-trial version can analyze your computer and give you the run-down on your computers health, by looking at your boot-time (then giving you the option to remove start-up programs), and programs running, and a bunch of other stuff. It's not as big as Advanced SystemCare, so on a slower internet connection it won't take very long to download and it won't be resource intensive. Finally, I'd ask you to check out "Opera 12" Opera's newest browser. It's the very best for users with slow computers and internet connections. FireFox, unfortunately, isn't. It wouldn't be a bad idea to use FireFox for normal browsing, and maybe try out Opera 12 for watching movies and other intensive activities.

(Alright, so this is bound to have grammar errors. At 150 words per minute, I'm bound to make errors, right?)

Regards,
Jared T.

JaredTrombley
Posted: Saturday, October 26, 2013 9:32:42 PM
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In regards to my previous post.

I neglected to mention you WERE probably looking at the running processes. When I mentioned FireFox probably taking about 60K? Just wanted to make that clarification.
leonAzul
Posted: Sunday, October 27, 2013 4:40:41 PM

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Location: Miami, Florida, United States
Cat wrote:
I do not have cable but have become addicted to Murdock Mysteries here in Canada after seeing the books. I watch it from the CBC website on my computer. I have found that the sound and picture are not in sync. Is this because my internet speed is not fast enough, my computer is not fast enough, I don't have enough RAM? Is it possible to correct this?

I am running Windows XP using Firefox as a browser.

There can be a number of causes for this, but they all amount to the same thing: either the audio or the video part of the stream is not being processed fast enough to keep pace with the pother part.

In general, Windows XP is not capable of dealing with the data rates and decoders that are currently being used. It is over 10 years old, and much has changed since then. Just the same, there are some things that can be done to make it as good as possible.

Processing in general can be greatly facilitated with more RAM (random access memory, that is, the working memory installed in the computer), and, enough free space on the hard disk to accommodate virtual memory and swap files. This is where occasionally defragmenting the main hard drive can have a great effect. If there is not enough open space for the swap files, they become fragmented and very slow, leading to what is sometimes referred to as "disk thrashing" — a general slow-down caused by repeatedly writing and reading to fragmented swap files. A good rule of thumb is to allow about 2 GB of RAM and about 4 GB of free space minimum per core processor.

Upgrading the video processor can help a great deal. An on-board graphics processing unit (GPU) uses some of the computer's RAM rather than having dedicated memory of its own. Many updated GPUs and their driver software are able to share some of the burden of decoding multimedia streams with the main processors (CPUs), making it much easier to keep everything in sync.

Increasing the memory buffer can also give the computer a better shot at sorting things out before the video is displayed. Unfortunately, Flash no longer makes it easy to adjust this. You can try right-clicking on the video frame and changing the amount of local storage to 10 MB and see if that effectively increases the buffer. The result is a delay, but it keeps everything in sync.

The connection speed and latency (the time between the computer requests the next packet and the server responds) can also add to the need for buffering.

Another way to deal with this is to record the stream to hard disk and play it back later. Both Firefox and Google Chrome have several plugins that can manage this so that the pieces are properly synchronized.

Cat
Posted: Wednesday, November 6, 2013 12:13:42 PM

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I am looking into what is involved in upgrading my computer as XP will no longer be supported past next April.

In the meantime, I watched Monday's episodes of Castle and Murdoch Mysteries and the sound is definitely AHEAD of the picture whereas I thought it had been after.

I have started looking into alternatives such as getting a new computer. I was told that an iPad is out because it doesn't run Flash. I think I will wait because I should buy the most recent software possible but Windows 8 hasn't been out long enough to expose all its problems.

I did the defrag but I don't know how much that accomplished since my hard drive is only 47% occupied.

leonAzul wrote: A good rule of thumb is to allow about 2 GB of RAM and about 4 GB of free space minimum per core processor.

Leon, how do I determine what my ratio is? (You are talking to someone who originally learned everything they know about computers on DOS.) Please laugh as I am laughing hysterically right now!

You also wrote: Increasing the memory buffer can also give the computer a better shot at sorting things out before the video is displayed. Unfortunately, Flash no longer makes it easy to adjust this. You can try right-clicking on the video frame and changing the amount of local storage to 10 MB and see if that effectively increases the buffer. The result is a delay, but it keeps everything in sync.

When you say "right-clicking on the video frame" what is the video frame? Is it the actual video picture I'm watching or are you referring to an icon somewhere?

And lastly you said: Another way to deal with this is to record the stream to hard disk and play it back later. Both Firefox and Google Chrome have several plugins that can manage this so that the pieces are properly synchronized.

Would you kindly lead me step-by-step through this process using Firefox? Please d'oh! ?

Thanks everyone for your expertise and help. Cat
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Wednesday, November 6, 2013 4:57:34 PM

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Hi cat - just so you know you are not alone. I have a similar problem at times.
Also the problem of seeing five minutes of a film which then freezes for five minutes, then shows two minutes, then freezes.
I know the second is my internet connection (it says 100MB/s, but I think that is the maximum possible, not the actual).

The only solution I found (besides getting a new computer with more processing power, and personally running a cable from the city out into the hills here) is to do what Leon says at the end.
I record my downloads overnight (an 80-minute film can download and store in anything from half an hour to eight hours, depending on God-knows-what). They play perfectly then.

I've never tried TV.

PS - I don't use Firefox now, but from memory, when you go to the film site and click on "download" you get a pop-up asking you do you want to 'save' or 'run'. When you click on 'save', it will then change to the normal 'save' pop-up menu, like any other file. When you click 'save' in this menu it disappears and a couple of seconds later a green bar will appear showing how fast it is downloading and saying "1% saved" then "2% saved" and so on.
Just leave the computer logged on until the bar gets to "100%" and finishes its virus-check (Firefox automatically scans all downloads, which is good).
Cat
Posted: Wednesday, November 6, 2013 10:09:07 PM

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I didn't find any download option. Maybe because it's TV.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Thursday, November 7, 2013 10:40:59 AM

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Hmmm Think

Well, it was a good try.

It is the same with you-tube, you can watch on-line, but downloading and saving is a pain (and at least some of the systems to do this are illegal).
leonAzul
Posted: Saturday, November 16, 2013 1:35:12 AM

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Location: Miami, Florida, United States
Cat wrote:


leonAzul wrote: A good rule of thumb is to allow about 2 GB of RAM and about 4 GB of free space minimum per core processor.

Leon, how do I determine what my ratio is? (You are talking to someone who originally learned everything they know about computers on DOS.) Please laugh as I am laughing hysterically right now!

This essential parts of a computer haven't changed all that much in the last 20 years, they have just become a little more sophisticated.

The brain of a computer is its central processing unit (CPU). In the last 5 years or so, single chips with several CPUs on them have become much more common. Each CPU on the chip is referred to as a "core" or "core processor". If there is a label on the computer that says "core duo" or "core 2 duo", you have at least 2 processors, and each one requires enough memory (RAM) and swap space on the hard drive to perform effectively. The documentation that came with your computer should tell you how many cores it has.

Cat wrote:

You also wrote: Increasing the memory buffer can also give the computer a better shot at sorting things out before the video is displayed. Unfortunately, Flash no longer makes it easy to adjust this. You can try right-clicking on the video frame and changing the amount of local storage to 10 MB and see if that effectively increases the buffer. The result is a delay, but it keeps everything in sync.

When you say "right-clicking on the video frame" what is the video frame? Is it the actual video picture I'm watching or are you referring to an icon somewhere?


I'm talking about where the video itself appears on the screen.

Cat wrote:

And lastly you said: Another way to deal with this is to record the stream to hard disk and play it back later. Both Firefox and Google Chrome have several plugins that can manage this so that the pieces are properly synchronized.

Would you kindly lead me step-by-step through this process using Firefox? Please d'oh! ?



Please refer to the instructions for Video DownloadHelper™.

Just about everything that appears on YouTube is cleared for download. Anywhere else, let your conscience be your guide.
Whistle

MANJUICEBUBBLES
Posted: Sunday, November 24, 2013 10:27:06 AM

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Probably the best site in the world to watch TV shows is project free tv.

Make sure you're in private browsing mode to avoid pop-ups.

http://www.free-tv-video-online.me/
Cat
Posted: Sunday, November 24, 2013 12:44:06 PM

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I went to the sight but it is a streaming site and I already have that. The website said a downfall is internet speed. So then I'm back to my original issue.

I am going to have to replace my computer. I'm just deciding whether to buy used and get Windows 7 or buy used/new and get Windows 8.

Thanks though.
leonAzul
Posted: Tuesday, December 3, 2013 4:46:28 AM

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Location: Miami, Florida, United States
Cat wrote:
I went to the sight but it is a streaming site and I already have that. The website said a downfall is internet speed. So then I'm back to my original issue.

I am going to have to replace my computer. I'm just deciding whether to buy used and get Windows 7 or buy used/new and get Windows 8.

Thanks though.

The consensus is that as long as you have enough memory and free space for a swap file, Windows 7 runs very well on older hardware, and Windows 8 needs to go back in the oven because it isn't quite done yet.

http://forum.thefreedictionary.com/postst47601_Why-Is-Windows-8-Such-A-Pain-.aspx
jabeen100
Posted: Friday, December 20, 2013 12:29:46 AM
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Thanks guys for all your help. This is really very impressive sharing. I think personally that if we follow these steps one could get much benefited.
Rohit jain
Posted: Friday, December 20, 2013 5:05:15 AM

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thanx for sharing !!!
Cat
Posted: Saturday, June 15, 2019 7:56:20 AM

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Thanks for that. This thread is almost six years old. My TV is not smart. I read now instead.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Saturday, June 15, 2019 5:50:44 PM

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Hi Cat!
I thought you'd gone away.

Quote:
My TV is not smart.

I don't have a TV and I'm not that smart . . .Whistle

I DO like to see QI, though.
Cat
Posted: Saturday, June 15, 2019 6:20:58 PM

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Hi DragOnspeaker! I had gone away. as far as the forum is concerned. It was too stressful for me. I miss the positives of it but I work two jobs right now and am too tired most of the time to keep up. This thread update was sent to my email so here I am. My best to you.
Drag0nspeaker
Posted: Sunday, June 16, 2019 4:05:41 PM

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Cat wrote:
Hi DragOnspeaker! I had gone away. as far as the forum is concerned. It was too stressful for me. I miss the positives of it but I work two jobs right now and am too tired most of the time to keep up. This thread update was sent to my email so here I am. My best to you.

Thanks!
Do well - all the best!
kirilevarma
Posted: Monday, July 29, 2019 4:33:51 PM

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Joined: 10/7/2014
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Location: Salt Lake City, Utah, United States
Tovarish wrote:
Don't tell anyone, but I wouldn't even know how to watch a movie or a TV program on the computer.


Haha! Honesty is refreshing.
Divian Sushi
Posted: Friday, August 9, 2019 9:03:26 PM

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Joined: 8/9/2019
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This is a problem I am having, someone please help me.
mandy789
Posted: Thursday, February 20, 2020 9:14:28 AM
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Joined: 2/20/2020
Posts: 1
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Internet speed has nothing to do with the RAM of your computer. You need to have a good router and PCI card for your PC. If your PC is not able to load multiple programs then upgrading your RAM may help. But internet speed has nothing to do with RAM.
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