Sign-in / Sign-up
Your question

Can Windows XP support more that 4GB of RAM

Tags:
  • Homebuilt
  • Support
  • Windows 2000
  • Windows Server 2003
  • Windows XP
  • Systems
Last response: in Systems
November 14, 2007 1:59:09 AM

Hi Folks

Was going thru some website and came across the PAE(Physical Address Extension) feature of MS windows which allows a 32 bit OS to recognize more that 4GB of physical memory. Has anybody tried this on Windows XP ??

Here is some more data on this :

http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/system/platform/server/PA...

Initially i thought this was only for windows 2000 but there is a line towards the end of the article which says

"Support for PAE is provided under Windows 2000 and 32-bit versions of Windows XP and Windows Server 2003"

More about : windows support 4gb ram

November 14, 2007 2:37:10 AM

While I have never tried this, I am going to say that it will probably work. I just wonder if it will actually decrease performance in other areas.
November 14, 2007 3:07:55 AM

32 Bit Windows will not support more that 4 gigs of ram...it only supports alittle over 3...WHile 64 Bits of RAm I beleive can support up to 16 or 32...I need to double check thoses numbers.. I kno their far apart:p 

Anyways Thats what I read.:) 
Related resources
November 14, 2007 3:10:15 AM

Give it a go and let us know! :-)
November 14, 2007 3:16:04 AM

Then again, I've heard of issues with PAE and XP. Some programs are known to crash with the PAE enabled. My big question is why would you need that much RAM with XP anyway?
November 14, 2007 3:30:19 AM

Some people Video Edit or like having mutliple running programs...U know :p 

Burning a cd, while extracting an ISO and playing a game that takes alot of Ram like Hl2:) 
a b B Homebuilt system
November 14, 2007 4:10:24 AM

You can not get over 2 on windows XP

"Windows XP Professional and Windows Server 2003 Memory Support. The maximum amount of memory that can be supported on Windows XP Professional and Windows Server 2003 is also 4 GB. However, Windows Server 2003, Enterprise Edition supports 32 GB of physical RAM and Windows Server 2003, Datacenter Edition supports 64 GB of physical RAM using the PAE feature."

With some of the server class OSes you can get more.....but thats gonna cost you....

PAE(Physical Address Extention) is on with DEP(Data Execution Prevention) anyway....i have had it on since my first A64 computer.....

my system with its 8800GTX


With a 4meg PCI video card(can't even do 1280 x 1024 with over 16 bit color :(  )


With both cards in(don't mind speedstep)


So...Whats the point of this?

Why does the 4meg card take 256 megs when the 8800 is in too....Anyone have a surefire reason why it does what it does...

If its all addressable memory it should only loose an extra 4 with both.
It looks right with the 8800GTX but its just a coincident.....
November 14, 2007 4:18:41 AM

I have no technical experience in this, but I've talked to someone who's work had done this before. They had to do this because of a certain in-house architecture encoding program that could not work on 64-bit windows, and they did have issues with other programs when doing this. I believe the problems ranged from programs not recognizing all of the RAM to not working at all.

If you have the money to spare you may just want to get a 64-bit OS and just dual-boot if you still want the 32-bit OS for other compatibility reasons. Vista Ultimate 64-bit supports up to 128gb RAM. Good luck filling that up! =)
November 14, 2007 6:15:42 AM

You can get it to work.MS had it in either the release of XP or SP1.
However it caused a lot of instability in applications that it was taken out again in SP2.
Point is that it's not worth doing it because of the constant crashes.
Better off to go 64bit.
November 14, 2007 9:45:12 AM

PAE has problems with some poorly coded programs. You are probably better off getting a copy of XP64. Give it a try and let us know if it works, or what problems you have.
November 14, 2007 9:51:40 AM

Thanks for all the inputs folks, but I have heard (no personal experience) that there has been a lot of issues with XP64 in terms of compatibility/availability (drivers) and that a lot of applications have to be run in 32 bit compatibility mode which caues a drop in performance? is this true. Or is xp64 as stable and compatible as XP32.
November 14, 2007 10:36:05 AM

atreyu said:
Thanks for all the inputs folks, but I have heard (no personal experience) that there has been a lot of issues with XP64 in terms of compatibility/availability (drivers) and that a lot of applications have to be run in 32 bit compatibility mode which caues a drop in performance? is this true. Or is xp64 as stable and compatible as XP32.
From what I understand that is true, however it is supposed to be getting better. I think you will have a lot less trouble than trying to implement PAE.
airblazer said:
However it caused a lot of instability in applications that it was taken out again in SP2.
I have also heard this, so it may be a moot point anyway.

November 14, 2007 10:41:05 AM

atreyu said:
Thanks for all the inputs folks, but I have heard (no personal experience) that there has been a lot of issues with XP64 in terms of compatibility/availability (drivers) and that a lot of applications have to be run in 32 bit compatibility mode which caues a drop in performance? is this true. Or is xp64 as stable and compatible as XP32.


Nah, no driver and/or very little compatibility issues with XP 64bit. The only driver issue I've had with XP64 was with a Canon MP500 scanner driver. Some applications won't allow you to install on XP64 because the .exe recognizes that it's a 64bit OS, and the only applications that I could not install was some obscure and not very well supported froo-froo print pretty pictures and photos program my wife got from the dollar bin at the local Target. And for any program or application that won't install on XP64 there is another that will install without issue. All the major players have 64bit drivers and/or a flavor of driver or application that works with XP64. OVerall, I think XP64 is more responsive and a much faster OS than XP32 and as someone mentioned you can alway do a dual boot.

Good luck!
November 14, 2007 10:55:25 AM

chunkymonster said:
...froo-froo print pretty pictures and photos program my wife got from the dollar bin at the local Target.
:lol: 
November 14, 2007 11:08:53 AM

atreyu said:
Hi Folks

Was going thru some website and came across the PAE(Physical Address Extension) feature of MS windows which allows a 32 bit OS to recognize more that 4GB of physical memory. Has anybody tried this on Windows XP ??

Here is some more data on this :

http://www.microsoft.com/whdc/system/platform/server/PA...

Initially i thought this was only for windows 2000 but there is a line towards the end of the article which says

"Support for PAE is provided under Windows 2000 and 32-bit versions of Windows XP and Windows Server 2003"


The ability to recognize over 4gb of RAM was removed in XP SP1.
The /PAE swich will do little for you with anything less than 2003 Enterprise Server for current versions of Windows.
November 14, 2007 11:14:50 AM

Toinks... You dont need 8GB in XP... 2GB actually is more than enought.

More RAM is usually designed for servers, hence, use server OS then you can be sure of stability. I believe XP cannot go beyond 4GB I read it somewhere.
November 14, 2007 11:18:42 AM

I heard that there is a command that you can put into windows xp (does not matter what version or sp you are on) and it will read up to 4gb but no more. Now, I am not sure if it is for 32 or 64 or what the command is, but I read something not to long ago that actually said how to do it. You have to enable something.
November 14, 2007 11:28:09 AM

It would seem the money would be bette spent on more cores, not more memory.