I just got the new hardware I ordered from Newegg a few days back. I got 2GB of Corsair RAM and an ASUS EAH3450/DI/256M Radeon HD 3450 video card. Both were on sale for $20 each, after rebates.
The RAM brings me up to 4GB total, of which only 3GB is usable, but that’s still better than 2GB. There’s a thread at Channel 9 about the whole 4GB thing that’s pretty useful, if you can slog through it. I notice that the memory score in my Windows Experience Index went down, from 5.3 to 4.8, after I installed the new RAM. The original 2GB that I had in my machine was Corsair XMS, while the new memory is Corsair Value Select. I guess the cheap new stuff is a little slower than the fancy old stuff.
The new video card gets a 3.5 on the Aero score, and 3.9 on the gaming score. The old card got 4.1 for Aero and 3.7 for gaming. I’m a little confused on how this card can score lower than the old one on Aero, but I guess there’s a reason. I’m going to update the drivers and see if that changes anything.
Overall, I don’t really see any difference in the way the machine’s running now compared to how it was before the new memory and video card. I’m assuming that the extra RAM will help me out in Virtual PC, but I haven’t tried that yet. Ditto for SQL Server. I haven’t really tried anything fancy with SQL on this machine yet, but it’s always good to throw RAM at SQL Server.