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32 bit os with a 64 bit card????

Last response: in Video Games
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Anonymous
January 4, 2010 11:04:59 AM

Hi im a casual gamer and i was thinking about upgrading my ancient radeon X300se to a new sapphire radeon 4550 512mb. But when i was looking into the 4550, i came across a video of someone who was using the 4550 on a 32 bit os

now i too have a 32bit os (windows xp home edition) but this card is 64 bit and on this video the guy mentioned that only half of his ram was being used because of the 32 bit. I read into this and found people saying that 32 bit os can only handle up to 3-4 Gb and that a 64 bit can handle more.

now ive added 2GB Ram onto my 512mb that came with my PC but was wondering whether only half of that would be used because of the clash between the 32bit operating system and the 64bit 4550

(the guy on this video was running with 4GB or ram so maybe he was refering to the 32bit os not being able to run all 4GB but only 2GB?)

all help apreciated :D 
(and yes i do understand that my PC is old and that you only find X300's in pyramids :D  )

More about : bit bit card

Anonymous
January 4, 2010 11:09:25 AM

and my operating specs are
pentium(R) 4 CPU 3.00Ghz
2.50GB or RAM
i use a PCI-E (if thats any help)
January 4, 2010 11:36:45 AM

A 32bit OS can only address 4GB of RAM total. Some space is taken up by various motherboard components, so usually you'll find you actually have about 3.5GB to play with.

What a lot of people don't realise, but it sounds like you do, is that the RAM on your graphics card is counted towards this limit. This means with a 512MB graphics card, you'll only have 3GB of RAM available left. In your case, you're running 2.5GB so that won't matter, but if you were to add on another GB or more of RAM at any point, you'd find only 0.5GB actually being used until you hit the 3.5GB total (3GB RAM + 0.5GB GPU RAM).

Short version - you'll be fine. Get the card and enjoy the huge boost in gaming you'll get. :) 
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Anonymous
January 4, 2010 12:28:59 PM

thanks thats helped alot much appreciated!
October 24, 2012 8:51:28 PM

Confused Stu said:
A 32bit OS can only address 4GB of RAM total. Some space is taken up by various motherboard components, so usually you'll find you actually have about 3.5GB to play with.

What a lot of people don't realise, but it sounds like you do, is that the RAM on your graphics card is counted towards this limit. This means with a 512MB graphics card, you'll only have 3GB of RAM available left. In your case, you're running 2.5GB so that won't matter, but if you were to add on another GB or more of RAM at any point, you'd find only 0.5GB actually being used until you hit the 3.5GB total (3GB RAM + 0.5GB GPU RAM).

Short version - you'll be fine. Get the card and enjoy the huge boost in gaming you'll get. :) 



Hi Confusedstu: I was just going over this thread with a view to upgrading my graphics capability, and have a question: I have been informed that the RAM only counts towards the 3.5 GB limit if it is onboard graphics. If you are installing a separate graphics card, it wouldn't count towards the limit. Is this true, or have I been misinformed?
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