The choice of 4,8 or 16 GB of memory is a straightforward budgeting problem: what do you plan to run simultaneously?
- 1.5 -2 GB various web browsers (including always open web mail)
- 1 - 1.5 GB odds and ends
- C# work:
- 2-4 GB: one virtual machine with an old Windows version
- negligible: assorted remote desktop sessions
- OR Java work:
- 3.5 GB Eclipse
- 1 GB Websphere
- 1 GB (transient) Maven
Clearly, my workload fits tightly in 8 GB. With 16 GB I could allow Eclipse to use more memory, or run a second separate VM with a different C# development environment in case of need.