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  • 4GB RAM only 3 usable?

    i have vista ultimate with sp1 and in system information it says i have installed physicaly 4.00GB installed but then at the bottom it says total physical memory 3.00GB??
    ist that bad? does it mean one of my ram sticks is bad?

  • #2
    Re: 4GB RAM only 3 usable?
    • Do you have a 64 bit processor AND Vista 64-bit edition? You need a 64 bit operating system to see more than about 3.5 gigs of RAM.
    • Is your BIOS set to see more than 4GB of RAM? You might want to twiddle around in your BIOS for any RAM settings.
    • Are your RAM sticks in 1GB increments? If not, then it's unlikely that a fraction of a RAM stick would go bad. Run a RAM test and see what it says
    • Are your RAM sizes mismatched? E.g. 4 x 1GB and 2 x 2GB?
    • Is your boot option set to limit maximum RAM? Look at run >> msconfig >> boot tab >> advanced options >> Maximum Memory check box
    • Read this entire thread and see if any of the suggestions help. The thread is a little long and is actually where many of the previous points were taken from. (I'm really not that smart on my own )
    Wesley David
    LinkedIn | Careers 2.0
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    • #3
      Re: 4GB RAM only 3 usable?

      Hi,

      This topic has been covered a few times in this forum.
      Have a look at the bottom of the page to see other related posts and also have a look at this link for more info:
      http://support.microsoft.com/kb/929605/en-us

      Ta
      Caesar's cipher - 3

      ZKHQ BRX HYHQWXDOOB GHFLSKHU WKLV BRX ZLOO UHDOLVH LW ZDV D ZDVWH RI WLPH!

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      • #4
        Re: 4GB RAM only 3 usable?

        I have a quad core intel duo on a supermicro board with raid 1 and a 1GB video card from nvidia and from what i read its because its 32 bit? and becuase my 1gb video card is using that space?? am i correct on this???

        and is there a fix or my only option is to go to 64 bit? vista??

        my bios sees all the 4gb
        my sticks are 2 of each 2gb
        am at the office so ill check the ms config back home

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        • #5
          Re: 4GB RAM only 3 usable?

          Originally posted by jose789 View Post
          I have a quad core intel duo on a supermicro board with raid 1 and a 1GB video card from nvidia and from what i read its because its 32 bit? and becuase my 1gb video card is using that space?? am i correct on this???

          and is there a fix or my only option is to go to 64 bit? vista??
          Your video card being 1GB does seem to suggest that there is a block of reserved memory that the system keeps for it. I'm not entirely sure about the technicals behind it all, but it does sound familiar. Take a look at this thread, especially post #19.

          Vista 64 bit probably wouldn't help this situation much, however it is the only way to see more than about 3.5 or 3.6 GB or RAM. So if you have 4GB of RAM, Vista can only see about 3.6 GB. Here's my favorite link about that situation. BTW, you can't upgrade to a 64 bit OS. It would be a complete reinstall. If you purchased a computer with Vista on it I'm pretty sure you can't get a 64 bit version unless your OEM has some special deal. Check with them about it. If you purchased Vista retail (Home Premium or Ultimate) then it should have come with 32 and 64 bit discs.
          Wesley David
          LinkedIn | Careers 2.0
          -------------------------------
          Microsoft Certifications: MCSE 2003 | MCSA:Messaging 2003 | MCITP:EA, SA, EST | MCTS: a'plenty | MCDST
          Vendor Neutral Certifications: CWNA
          Blog: www.TheNubbyAdmin.com || Twitter: @Nonapeptide || GTalk, Reader and Google+: [email protected] || Skype: Wesley.Nonapeptide
          Goofy kitten avatar photo from Troy Snow: flickr.com/photos/troysnow/

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          • #6
            Re: 4GB RAM only 3 usable?

            Hmmm. before any attempt to reinstall any x64 bit OS though you need to ensure your Hardware is 64 bit !!!

            Ta
            Caesar's cipher - 3

            ZKHQ BRX HYHQWXDOOB GHFLSKHU WKLV BRX ZLOO UHDOLVH LW ZDV D ZDVWH RI WLPH!

            SFX JNRS FC U6 MNGR

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            • #7
              Re: 4GB RAM only 3 usable?

              yea i know i have to reinstall vistal ultimate completly and i wont becuase of some software i use its not 64bit and yea my hardware is compatable
              but thanks guys
              atleast i know it aint my fault

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              • #8
                Re: 4GB RAM only 3 usable?

                Good posts by Nonapeptide and L4ndy.

                I have 3 machines w/ 4 GB: a non 64-bit capable HT machine w/ AGP, a dual core w/ EMT64 and PCI-X graphics, and a core-duo w/ ??? graphics.

                Here's my take-away re: MS OS's on all these where I'm running dual-boot WXP and W2K3 Std (both 32 bit) on the two older machines and dual boot WXP 32 bit and Vista Ultimate 64 bit (after running Vista Home Premium 32 bit) on the core-duo:

                1) MS plays games w/ memory in its 32 bit OS's. W2K3 offers more usable memory than WXP. I'm close or at 4 GB on all machines w/ 32-bit W2K3 Std.

                2) I believe much of the issue w/ desktop OS's is memory mapping of video. On AGP hardware, minimize the aperture window. Past that, not much you can do. Don't know if video cards with less memory make a difference.

                3) I'm thinking some of this is a PAE issue and that W2K3 32-bit allows PAE to work as advertised (vs. WXP or 32-bit Vista on the same HW). The /3GB switch is fraught with peril so don't think it will fix what ails you.

                4) 64 bit OS's still have compatibility issues so beware before switching -- little VPN support, etc. Vista also has a number of compatibility issues. Since I'm only running 1 Vista instance and it's 64-bit, it's hard to tell where the issues truly lie.

                Good luck.
                Cheers,

                Rick

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                2006-2099 R Valstar. This post is offered "as is" for discussion purposes only with no express or implied warranty of any kind including, but not limited to, correctness or fitness for use. Nothing herein shall be construed as advice. Attempting any activity based on information in this post is done at your own risk.

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