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Old 03-07-2010, 10:39 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

I have recently installed Windows 7 on my computer. I have 32 bit so the OS only recognizes 3GB out of the 4GB of ram. I was wondering if there was any way to enable the 4GB of ram without installing windows 64 bit?
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Old 03-07-2010, 10:45 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

No there isn't and if you have the 945 chip set then even the 64 bit os wont be able to use more than 3.25 out of the 4GB of ram.
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Old 03-07-2010, 10:55 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default

Actually there is. But at a cost.

Difference Between 32 Bit (x86) and 64 Bit (x64)

In the read first thread is this. There is talk of enabling PAE. But at the cost of some major speed as enabling PAE can slow your system down. Since you would only gain minimal from it, it might not be worth it.

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Originally Posted by LFCJohnSmith View Post
No there isn't and if you have the 945 chip set then even the 64 bit os wont be able to use more than 3.25 out of the 4GB of ram.
Sorry but that is wrong. It doesnt matter the chipset. If there is a 64 Bit OS installed it will use all RAM installed. The chipset doesnt factor in. the only way that would even come close to being true would be if there was no chipset drivers for Win7. At that point it still wouldnt cause the OS not use use all 4GB of RAM but not to be able to function correctly. It will report 4GB of RAM and be able to use it otherwise.
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Old 03-07-2010, 12:31 PM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

The 945 chipset can only address up to 4GB of memory according to Intel.
Intel 945G Express Chipset - Overview
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Old 03-07-2010, 12:45 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

Even so, the OP would be able to get use of all 4GB of RAM and not the 3.25 that LFC said. So if the OP did install 64 Bit, he would get the 4GB but no more. There is a difference between the chipset not allowing more than 4GB and mistaking the chipset to limit you to what Windows 32 Bit does.
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Old 03-07-2010, 12:58 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

Yeah but Mak I have a 64 bit OS with the 945 chip set and although all 4GB have been recognised only 3.25 are usable or thats what the OS is telling me. So are you saying that my OS can use all of the 4GB RAM even though the chipset is only a 32 bit chipset?
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Old 03-07-2010, 03:20 PM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

Yes that is exactly what i am saying. The OS is not the issue. Any 64 Bit Os can and will use all the RAM that is installed. The chipset is the problem. They do not have proper drivers for 64 Bit and if you read the link that Slay posted that explains it exactly.

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Updated Intel® Graphics WDDM drivers supporting the Intel® 945G Express Chipset are included in the Windows Vista* February CTP build (build 5308). These drivers are only compatible with this build and should not be used with other versions of Windows Vista*.
Right there says it all. The only drivers they have are for a Beta build of Vista. They have not made any drivers for Vista RTM or Win7. So it is not the OS at fault at all. It is completely the drivers. Dont blame the OS for the lack of stuff done by the makers of the hardware/drivers.
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Old 03-07-2010, 10:32 PM   #8 (permalink)
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Default Re: Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

Quote:
Originally Posted by Mak213 View Post
Even so, the OP would be able to get use of all 4GB of RAM and not the 3.25 that LFC said. So if the OP did install 64 Bit, he would get the 4GB but no more. There is a difference between the chipset not allowing more than 4GB and mistaking the chipset to limit you to what Windows 32 Bit does.
the memory address bus is not the same as instruction width

A 64-bit CPU can execute instructions that a 64-bits wide, if a 64-bit OS is used. Then, the CPU runs in 64-bit mode and cannot process 32-bit instructions (hence the WoW 'emulator' to pad 32-bit instructions to 64-bits, so that it can run 32-bit executables)

In the case of Intel systems before socket 1366/1166, the chipset contains the memory controller. Which means that the address bus width depends on the chipset.
If the instruction width is 64-bit, but the memory address width is 32-bit, it can still only address 4GB memory.

Most of Intel's core 2 compatible chipsets have a bigger address bus than 32-bits, enabling them to address more than 4GB when a 64-bit OS is used.

Also, AMD's K8 (Athlon 64) CPU's, with the memory controller integrated, have a 48-bit address bus, which means the memory controller can address a maximum of 2^48 = 281,474,976,710,656 bytes (256 terabytes), even if the OS can make use of a 64-bit memory address (with a limit of 16 exabytes)

If a 32-bit OS is used, it can use a 32-bit memory address width or lower.
If a 64-bit OS is used, it can use a 64-bit memory address width or lower.

Also, the memory address space includes both system memory and video memory.
If you have a 1GB video card, that's 1GB less address space that can be used for system memory.
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Old 03-08-2010, 05:17 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Default Re: Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

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Originally Posted by Apokalipse View Post
the memory address bus is not the same as instruction width

A 64-bit CPU can execute instructions that a 64-bits wide, if a 64-bit OS is used. Then, the CPU runs in 64-bit mode and cannot process 32-bit instructions (hence the WoW 'emulator' to pad 32-bit instructions to 64-bits, so that it can run 32-bit executables)

In the case of Intel systems before socket 1366/1166, the chipset contains the memory controller. Which means that the address bus width depends on the chipset.
If the instruction width is 64-bit, but the memory address width is 32-bit, it can still only address 4GB memory.

Most of Intel's core 2 compatible chipsets have a bigger address bus than 32-bits, enabling them to address more than 4GB when a 64-bit OS is used.

Also, AMD's K8 (Athlon 64) CPU's, with the memory controller integrated, have a 48-bit address bus, which means the memory controller can address a maximum of 2^48 = 281,474,976,710,656 bytes (256 terabytes), even if the OS can make use of a 64-bit memory address (with a limit of 16 exabytes)

If a 32-bit OS is used, it can use a 32-bit memory address width or lower.
If a 64-bit OS is used, it can use a 64-bit memory address width or lower.

Also, the memory address space includes both system memory and video memory.

If you have a 1GB video card, that's 1GB less address space that can be used for system memory.
So does this mean that when you get a graphics card and it says it has X amount of memory, it doesn't actually have it's own memory it just uses the system RAM?


And if your saying that even though I have a chipset that cannot use the full 4GB of RAM but my OS recongnises the RAM how come your saying that I can still use all the RAM even though MY OS which is a 64 bit OS is saying that only 3.25GB of RAM is usable.
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Old 03-08-2010, 07:50 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Default Re: Enable 4GB of RAM on Windows 7 32 Bit

Quote:
Originally Posted by LFCJohnSmith View Post
So does this mean that when you get a graphics card and it says it has X amount of memory, it doesn't actually have it's own memory it just uses the system RAM?
No, it has its own memory.

The system will just use part of the address space for system memory, and part of the address space for video memory.
If the system can address 4GB total, and you have a system with 1GB video memory and 4GB system memory, it will address the 1GB of video memory as well as 3 out of 4GB system memory. 1GB of the system memory won't be usable.


Quote:
Originally Posted by LFCJohnSmith View Post
And if your saying that even though I have a chipset that cannot use the full 4GB of RAM but my OS recongnises the RAM how come your saying that I can still use all the RAM even though MY OS which is a 64 bit OS is saying that only 3.25GB of RAM is usable.
a 64-bit operating system can address up to 64-bit memory addresses if the hardware supports it.

If the hardware only has a 32-bit memory address bus, it will still only be able to address 4GB.
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