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What's in memory, lower that normal (Even for XP)

Last response: in Windows XP
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May 17, 2010 4:00:20 AM

I have 32 bit XP and am aware of the limitation of XP to address more than 4 gigs and how it reserves even more addresses for many system resources, so you pretty much never get more than 3.25 or so, depending on devices installed in the system.

However, my new system (with onboard video, 512 meg) is only showing 2.75 of the 4 in system properties, though Hware monitor, EZ tune and Bios show me 4 gigs (so it does not seem like a bad stick or something). I don't have anything else unusual installed in the system...just 2 HDD's, a DVD...no other PCI cards. But I still show only 2.75 gigs. I am about to put in a new video card (1 gig), and I cannot figure out where the rest of my memory went. The rule of thumb I read while doing searches on the boards here is to subtract video memory plus .25 gigs. If that is correct, I should be showing more like 3.25 gigs? So where did the other 512 megs go?

So I am trying to figure out where I can go to see what resources are being used by what devices because these numbers seem low. I turned off the floppy, parallel, serial, the high precision even monitoring (for vista only?) in bios, that made no difference. If they were using memory, they were obviously too small to matter so I will be turning back on the floppy, just in case.

Any ideas? How can I audit where all the memory is going?

Thanks!

More about : memory lower normal

May 18, 2010 5:08:30 PM

catorres1 said:
I have 32 bit XP and am aware of the limitation of XP to address more than 4 gigs and how it reserves even more addresses for many system resources, so you pretty much never get more than 3.25 or so, depending on devices installed in the system.

However, my new system (with onboard video, 512 meg) is only showing 2.75 of the 4 in system properties, though Hware monitor, EZ tune and Bios show me 4 gigs (so it does not seem like a bad stick or something). I don't have anything else unusual installed in the system...just 2 HDD's, a DVD...no other PCI cards. But I still show only 2.75 gigs. I am about to put in a new video card (1 gig), and I cannot figure out where the rest of my memory went. The rule of thumb I read while doing searches on the boards here is to subtract video memory plus .25 gigs. If that is correct, I should be showing more like 3.25 gigs? So where did the other 512 megs go?

So I am trying to figure out where I can go to see what resources are being used by what devices because these numbers seem low. I turned off the floppy, parallel, serial, the high precision even monitoring (for vista only?) in bios, that made no difference. If they were using memory, they were obviously too small to matter so I will be turning back on the floppy, just in case.

Any ideas? How can I audit where all the memory is going?

Thanks!


In most systems you cannot audit / control where the memory goes, but pushing control alt delete at the same time will bring up task manager, select processes, and it shows you how the memory is being used. Even though 4 GB is installed, XP only can utilize 3GB of it. You need to install Vista or 7 to utilize more than 3 GB. And vista my friend, is the operating system from Hades.
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May 18, 2010 9:27:20 PM

Thanks for the reply! I have looked in the performance manager there, but it is only listing processes and software that is pulling from the 2.75 gigs that are left over if I am not mistaken. It does not list what hardware is using some of that 4 gig installed. I understand that the best I can probably hope for with a 512 meg card is 3.25 gigs, but I am half a gig down on that for some reason, and I cannot figure out why. Surely there is some way to audit where 1.25 gigs of memory addresses are being allocated before programs etc even start to play?
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May 19, 2010 4:36:42 AM

there is a processor monitor that shows everything but you have to install it, I will find out where to get that from Randi. I will try to post you a link tomorrow. I don't know if it will run on XP but I can find out.
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May 19, 2010 3:32:43 PM

That would be awesome, thanks!
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Best solution

May 20, 2010 1:48:34 AM

http:// technet.microsoft.com /en-us/ sysinternals/ bb896653.aspx
take out the spaces of the above link, this forum censors links, this is microsoft process explorer, don't know how much it will help but the IT people I talk to like it quite a bit. It's supplied by microsoft and runs on XP or later systems. Each process has a name which does not explain which piece of hardware the file is running. You have to google the name of each file to decode that information. :ouch: 
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May 20, 2010 4:00:36 AM

Awesome, thanks so much for sending that, I will try it out and see if I can decode what is going on with my system. Thanks for all your help!
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May 26, 2010 11:59:35 PM

Best answer selected by catorres1.
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