6 Uses Of Old Ram You Never Thought You Could Have

If I ask you what are the first steps you think of when you see your PC showing signs or lag and slow response?

More often than not, your response would be to upgrade your RAM and or an old hard drive with a new fast SSD.

And that is the perfect line of thinking, provided your PC is not too old.

But if you go through with the upgrade what do you do with the old RAM sticks and old hard drives.

As it happens, this is one of the most frequently asked questions among PC enthusiasts.

In this article, let me give you 6 seriously creative uses of old RA sticks. Using one or more of these methods you should be able to put your old RAM sticks to proper use, thereby reducing e-waste which as you must know already is a serious concern for the environment.

As far as uses of old hard drives are concerned, I have already created an article detailing how you can reuse or recycle old hard drives.

Also Read: 8 Innovative Ways of Reusing Old Hard Drives!

uses of old RAM

RAM Stick Pairing – Still Better Love Story Then Twilight

So the problem with RAMs are specially if you wish to upgrade your RAM modules is, they perform best in pairs. It is also called dual channel memory usage, wherein the matched RAMs are from the same manufacturer with same part numbers running at the same speeds. And if the matching doesn’t happen.

It’s not that your system won’t work. It’s just that you system will only be as faster as your slowest RAM that means you will invariably may need to invest in new matching RAMs.

So what can you do with your old RAM modules? Reuse?, Recycle? ,Let them hit the bin? Or can you find a new purpose for old PC memory?

1. Upgrade Old Machines – One Of The Perfect Uses Of Old RAM

Out of the many uses of old ram this one is the most common route that you can take.

Its quite possible that the system that you are wishing to upgrade has a wise old brother.

If it does you just may hit two birds with one arrow.

In the sense if the older system in your home supports the same compatibility, these older sticks can put in new fire into your old buddy.

Even if you don’t have an old system your neighborhood school probably has one.

Truly it is the best thing you can do.

As a matter of fact, if you have come to this understanding that there it would take little more than you thought to speed up your PC.

And that you are probably better off with a new one.

It would be the best thing you can possibly do today.

But what sort of RAM are you using? And how can you find out if the target machine will accept the modules?

There are several tools online that you can use. The Crucial Advisor Tool selects the target computer’s motherboard and CPU combination. The tool will then advise on the correct RAM modules to install.

Then there is also Crucial System Scanner, an automated version of the above. It’s best to run this on both computers, and look for an overlap in RAM module compatibility.

2. Connect RAM to an Arduino – Perfect Use For Old RAM Sticks

Oh who doesn’t love a DIY project. The brain power used and the rewards received after endless head scratching diagnosis, I mean who doesn’t want that.

So why not investigate how to connect RAM modules to an Arduino for extra storage?.

The video below shows older versions of RAM modules successfully deployed to provide some storage for Aurduino.

Although due to hardware limitations the project isn’t applicable for long term usage.
The RAM sticks in under discussion can offer only 256 KB to the attached Arduino UNO.
But with the latest advents in small computer tech, oh the domains that you can explore.

Granted it will require some in-depth electronics knowledge.

But If you are waiting for some handy project to get your hands dirty in DIY, there’s no better way to do and learn.

Believe me when I say this. It only takes one complete project to make you a semi-expert in electronics.

Here’s your chance.

3. Build a RAM Disk

Now out of the variety of uses of old RAM that you are seeing here.

This should steal your interest.

An awesome way to repurpose older RAMs is to build a RAM disk.

This in its entirety is a device that you can plug old RAM modules into. Quite a few of these have been produced over the course of years with varied levels of success.

ram disk
Image Credit:  Wikimedia Commons

Such an example is the i-RAM, a solid state storage device from Gigabyte.

All you need after you get this bad boy is just install compatible RAMs in it.

Lo and behold you have a RAM disk for yourselves.

If you are into computer stuff you obviously know RAMs don’t work that way. A Ram is basically dead if you take out power from the system.

Well, well. Look at Mr. Smarty Pants over here. With all that knowledge teaching me computers. Good for ya, sister.

As RAM modules are volatile, the i-RAM — and similar devices — feature a battery, to keep data safely stored while the PC is switched off.

If you see it carefully they resemble a PCI-E card.

If you can get hold of one these bad boys, blazing fast storage is yours but beware these things are expensive.

The tech got severe challenge from SSDs that is precisely why these are not produced at large scale.

So physical RAM disks remain something of a curio, but a great destination for old RAM modules!

4. Use Your Old RAM to Create Keychains

This is one of my favorite uses of old RAM.

And it is a lot simpler than it might sound.

Plus they form great gifts for computer geeks.

All you need are some keyrings (I am sure you have them in your house), a protective dust mask, safety goggles, and a handheld rotary tool.

You will find desktop RAM modules to be too long to be used as keychains.

So that’s where the cutting and handheld rotary tools come in.

Laptop RAM should be fine as is.

Watch this video that I found really interesting.



Almost without fail, RAM modules ship with tiny holes in them, perfectly sized for slipping keyrings through.

This means you don’t have to worry about any drilling — just cutting, smoothing the edges, and attaching to your keys.

But my dear human, if you decide to go on and do this DIY please make sure you are wearing protective goggles and hand gloves. Shards from these electrical components is hazardous to say the least.


5. Freecycle Old RAM Modules

If you are get rid of all this non sense kinda guy or gal, another simpler option would be to simply give the modules away. You could use Facebook or Freecycle to tell the world you have some RAM, the type it is, and what devices it would make a suitable expansion for.

Freecycle is the world’s largest network of recyclers who, instead of throwing away, selling or otherwise disposing of their unwanted goods, give it away instead.

You can also drop off the old RAMs to a local thrift store.

What this is good for is in case you don’t wanna make use of the older computer parts. Dropping them off to thrift stores will ensure they will reach hands that are willing to use them at small prices.


6. Don’t Recycle Without Paying

This is without any doubt the most important point of this post.

If you have decided to dispose off your old RAM or any electronic component for that matter, you do so via a reputable organization. A quick online search will reveal who these are, the companies that you need to pay a small fee to for safe disposal.

You don’t want hardware to end up in a landfill, where chemicals can leak over time and cause environmental issues.

electronics recycle


With all these methods at your disposal, I think its time for you get creative and find good use for your old RAM modules.

Let me know what route did you finally decide to go with.



Electronics Engineer | Former Deputy Manager | Self-Taught Digital Marketer.Owner & Admin Of A Network Of Blogs and Global E-Commerce Stores

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