Doesn't appear all physical RAM is being used...?


I recently installed Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit on a HP Pavilion m7470n. Previously, the operating system for the m7470n was Windows Media Center 32-bit.

I upgraded the RAM on the m7470n (long before I installed Windows 7 Ultimate) about a year ago from 2G to 4G. I believe from when I first did the RAM upgrade when the m7470n was running Windows Media Center, Windows was not apparently not showing all physical RAM.

At this time, with the m7470n running Windows 7 Ultimate, Windows 7 System Information reports:

Installed Physical Memory (RAM) 4.00 GB
Total Physical Memory 3.19 GB
Available Physical Memory 2.25 GB
Total Virtual Memory 6.37 GB
Available Virtual Memory 5.40 GB
Page File Space 3.19 GB
Page File C:\pagefile.sys

If I'm understanding this correctly(?), Windows seems to know there's 4G of RAM, but is only able to access 3.19G of RAM...?

I've read that this can be caused by limitations of the motherboard? I don't know how to determine if this is a limitation of my motherboard... can someone direct me to how I can determine if this is, in fact, a limitation imposed by my motherboard?

If this is not a limitation imposed by my motherboard, is there some way I can get Windows to utilize all 4G of RAM?

Also... related question. I was thinking of buying a 16G flash drive for ReadyBoost, but from what I've read online it's my impression that because I had 4G or RAM (well, sort of...) that Windows ReadyBoost would be of little, or no help in improving performance. Is this a matter upon which there is a strong consensus, or is there substantive disagreement on this matter?

Even if ReadyBoost wouldn't help under usual operating conditions, could ReadyBoost improve my performance if, and when, I might be running several applications at the same time? ... like, perhaps a couple virtual machines? Or, would it still not likely increase performance?

I do have a second hard drive (well, sort of...) on the m7470n... a removable HP personal media drive. I believe the read/write times on it are slow (Windows already said it's not suitable for ReadyBoost), but could relocating the page file on the personal media drive help improve performance? What would the read/write times on the personal media drive have to be in order for it to be helpful to relocate the page file there? ... are these relevant read/write times relative to the system hard drive? Or,... is relocation of the page file not helpful unless the second hard drive is on a different controller anyway?

Any insights would be appreciated.


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More about doesn physical used
  1. As your PC uses ATI Radeon Xpress 200 chipset, the missing memory is being used to provide by the integrated video card.

    Readyboost was a good idea, but is now more of a gimmick.

    If you want better performance, replace the hdd with a SSD.
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