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Changing RAM allowance on 32bit system?

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November 29, 2010 7:59:50 PM

Hi guys,

My Dad just added some more RAM to his computer, taking the total amount to 4GB, however he is using a 32 bit version of Windows 7. He understands that Windows 7 can only support a total of 4GB of RAM, including the amount of RAM from the GFX Card.

He has a 512MB Graphics Card, however under the 'System Score' in My Computer, it says that 2GB of the RAM usage is saved for his GFX card and 2GB is saved for regular RAM.

He seems to think that there is a way to alter the allowances, so he can have 3.5GB of normal RAM and 512MB of video RAM allowance. Is this correct?

He doesn't particularly want to install a 64 bit version of windows.

If you need any more info, just say and I'll do my best.

Many thanks. :) 
a c 347 } Memory
a b $ Windows 7
November 29, 2010 10:02:19 PM

If the 'Graphics Card' GPU is dedicated meaning that you added it separately then it would take hardly any reserved memory.

If your Dad installed the RAM incorrectly: Improperly seated in the DIMM slot, Incompatible with MOBO, Mix-Matched {different Speed, CAS timings, Voltage, etc} the BIOS may have turned it off/disabled to Hardware Reserved.

Therefore, we need the following:
Use CPUz to help identify the components - http://www.cpuid.com/softwares/cpu-z.html

1. Motherboard/MOBO {Mainboard tab} model number e.g. GIGABYTE GA-880GA-UD3H (version 1)
2. Both sets of RAM {SPD tab} part-numbers / prefer a link e.g. http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E168...
3. Either post the following image or ALL of the numbers.

4. Verify the following settings:
a c 347 } Memory
a b $ Windows 7
November 29, 2010 10:19:20 PM

^Ahh we're noticing the 'partition' problems; I ran across that once in 3,000 posts. Yes, it can be an issue.
Related resources
November 30, 2010 2:19:37 PM

I'm gonna go off and install that program on his PC now, and will hopefully come back with the info you need.

Just gonna respond to some of the posts.

Quote:
If your Dad installed the RAM incorrectly: Improperly seated in the DIMM slot, Incompatible with MOBO, Mix-Matched {different Speed, CAS timings, Voltage, etc} the BIOS may have turned it off/disabled to Hardware Reserved.


There's a possibility the timings may be different. The timings on the old RAM were 4-4-4-12 and he was having trouble finding some new sticks with the same timings. The packaging of the new sticks is the same as the old however, but doesn't give info on the timings, so I can't confirm if the timings are different til he gets home from work. Everything else is the same though, I'm pretty sure.

Quote:
first off, the best he can do is 3.25GB of RAM and more than likely he will end up with 3.0GB even as available.


I have told him this! He's stubborn though! :D 

Quote:
was there a previous installation or partition to the HDD in the past.?
or another video card of the same proportion.?


There has been previous Windows installations on the HDD, he regularly wipes it. He's had the same video card installed for a good 2/3 years and he bought this HDD at the same time.
a c 347 } Memory
a b $ Windows 7
November 30, 2010 2:34:27 PM

Before you 'wipe' the drive(s); I requested 3 items 1-3 above. Also, if the RAM is mix-matched the BIOS may easily turn-off the some RAM. Remember CAS is referring to the billionths of a second; someone here equated it to Swiss Atomic Clock. If the Speed, CAS, Voltages etc are off then the BIOS & CPU cannot use what it perceives as 'corrupt' RAM.

Based upon your comments I really would look at the RAM & MOBO compatibility. If you want to reformat then fine, I do know multiple partitions are a problem - so if you have several HDDs then connect (1) one HDD and Clear CMOS; see if that changes anything.

I 'get' stubborn = wasting time & money to get to the same result.
November 30, 2010 2:35:38 PM

1) ASUStek P5N32-E SLI Plus
2) Slots 1 & 2: CM2X 1024-6400 // Slots 3 & 4: CM2X 1024-6400C4
3)
4) Verified, same as your pic!
a c 347 } Memory
a b $ Windows 7
November 30, 2010 2:51:52 PM

There's nothing abnormal, the ~0.75GB is within 32-bit limits. There's no on-board GPU using 'shared' RAM.

Please post this screen -> "it says that 2GB of the RAM usage is saved for his GFX card and 2GB is saved for regular RAM."
November 30, 2010 2:59:33 PM

I presume this is the info he was going off, and I think it was an honest misinterpretation on his behalf.

a c 347 } Memory
a b $ Windows 7
November 30, 2010 4:10:18 PM

The 'Shared system memory' will vary and is slightly less RM 'Standby' -- and is also 'normal' ; if you need more 'In Use' {Apps} the 'Shared system memory' should decrease ~ proportionally. Also, there is NO 'Dedicated System memory' {lost memory} for your 8800GT which is correct. You can look at both screens Resource Monitor & 'System Score' - open a lot of Apps and refresh the 'System Score' report.

Bottom-Line - you're Good; leave it all alone.
November 30, 2010 4:13:54 PM

Excellent. Many thanks for your help guys, much appreciated. :) 
!