To begin with, I have knowledge about the functioning of computers, and when I refer to a memory leak, I am describing a situation where data is stored in the memory either intentionally or unintentionally, but it is not deleted even after the program has been closed, resulting in memory wastage.
Here’s my issue
After turning on my computer, which is running on Windows 10 build 17134, I noticed that 40% of the memory was being used, which seemed normal. Since I have 16 GB of RAM, 6.9 GB was expected to be in use. However, upon checking the Task Manager’s Details tab, I noticed that the memory usage of all the running processes added up to only 1.5 GB, which is much lower than the 6.9 GB being shown as the total memory usage. I am wondering if this is a result of a 5.4 GB memory leak or something else.
Some have suggested that outdated graphics card drivers may be causing the problem, but I am unable to update them as that causes my graphics card to stop working. I have already disabled most of the startup programs and third-party services, leaving only Avast Antivirus, Rainmeter, NVIDIA nView, and Hamachi’s service running.
The problem I was having has improved but not been entirely resolved
After my computer updated, I noticed that the memory usage upon booting up was 2 GB, which was much better than the 6.9 GB in the previous conditions with the same startup programs and settings. Even with my memory-intensive browser, Vivaldi, with only one tab open (StackExchange), the memory usage is around 3.3 GB.
Despite discussing this issue in the comments, I am still unsure why the memory usages in the Task Manager’s “Details” tab do not add up, and I am aware that this is not due to a memory leak or a problem with Windows itself. It seems like Microsoft should have addressed this issue. I am still trying to figure out if I am looking at the wrong information in the Task Manager or if there is some other explanation for this. If there is any additional information required, please.
What is a Memory Leak?
A memory leak occurs when a program fails to release memory it has allocated, even if the program is no longer using the memory. This can cause the program to consume more and more memory over time, which can eventually lead to performance issues and crashes. Memory leaks can be caused by a variety of factors, including programming errors, software bugs, and hardware issues.
Memory leaks can be difficult to detect and diagnose, as they often occur gradually over time. Symptoms of a memory leak can include slow performance, high memory usage, and crashes or freezes. If you suspect that your computer has a memory leak, there are several steps you can take to diagnose and fix the issue.
Diagnosing a Memory Leak
The first step in diagnosing a memory leak is to monitor your computer’s memory usage over time. You can do this using the Windows Task Manager, which provides real-time information about your computer’s performance and resource usage.
To open the Task Manager, press Ctrl+Shift+Esc or right-click on the taskbar and select “Task Manager” from the context menu. Once the Task Manager is open, click on the “Performance” tab to view your computer’s memory usage.
If you notice that your computer’s memory usage is consistently high, even when you are not running any programs, this may be a sign of a memory leak. You can use the Task Manager’s “Details” tab to identify which programs are using the most memory. Look for any programs that are using an unusually large amount of memory, as these may be the source of the memory leak.
Fixing a Memory Leak
Fixing a memory leak can be a complex process, as it often involves identifying and fixing bugs or programming errors in the affected software. In some cases, updating the software to the latest version may help to resolve the issue.
If you are unable to identify the source of the memory leak, you may need to seek assistance from a professional computer technician or software developer. They can help you diagnose and fix the issue, and may be able to provide additional guidance on how to prevent memory leaks from occurring in the future.
Preventing Memory Leaks
Preventing memory leaks is often easier than fixing them. Here are some tips for preventing memory leaks from occurring on your computer:
1. Keep your software up-to-date: Software updates often include bug fixes and performance improvements that can help to prevent memory leaks.
2. Use a reliable antivirus program: Malware and viruses can cause memory leaks by consuming large amounts of memory. Using a reliable antivirus program can help to prevent these types of issues.
3. Avoid running too many programs at once: Running too many programs at once can cause your computer to run out of memory, which can lead to performance issues and memory leaks.
4. Monitor your computer’s performance: Keep an eye on your computer’s performance and resource usage, and take action if you notice any unusual behavior or performance issues.
Memory leaks can be a frustrating and difficult issue to diagnose and fix. However, by monitoring your computer’s performance and taking steps to prevent memory leaks from occurring, you can help to keep your computer running smoothly and avoid performance issues and crashes. If you suspect that your computer has a memory leak, don’t hesitate to seek assistance from a professional computer technician or software developer.
Windows 10 is known to use a significant amount of RAM. Additionally, you might want to consider investigating Windows Superfetch. This feature uses some of your available RAM to preload frequently used applications in order to speed up their launch times. If you experience slow app launches, you might want to turn off Superfetch.
Furthermore, Windows 10 has a tendency to release RAM from inactive background apps when you have low memory available.