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Windows 7 RAM Problem?

By D3CRYPTM4ST3R ยท 20 replies
Dec 18, 2009
  1. Hi,
    I have recently built a computer and intalled windows 7 on it . the Problem is that i have 4 GB 667 Mhz Ram slots (2x2GB) installed , however when i right click COmputer and open properties , I have the following written next to RAM : " 4 GB (Only 3,5 GB usable)" What is exactly the Problem and how do i solve it ? Please note that my Mobo support up to 1333 Mhz and 12 GB RAM.
  2. gbhall

    gbhall TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 2,431   +77

    Unless someone with more knowlege of Win7 corrects me, I would say that is absolutely mormal and nothing to worry about. I do know that in win XP approximately 700Mb is taken up by the OS itself as cache, and you can do nothing about that. Thus anyone with 4Gb of ram only ever saw about 3.2 Gb for application use.

    I hardly think Win7 is any different.
  3. EXCellR8

    EXCellR8 The Conservative Posts: 1,835

    if you are using Win7 32-bit it's going to say that... it's an OS limit and not a motherboard cap. same goes for XP.
  4. compdata

    compdata TechSpot Paladin Posts: 529   +7

    I don't think the responses are entirely accurate (close though). The system hardware reserves a large amount of memory address space for chipset and other IO devices. If you have only a 32Bit OS the max address space is 4Gb so you end up with a conflict where your OS needs to address IO devices and doesn't have enough address space left to use all your RAM. If you have a 64 bit OS then your address space is massive (16.8 million terabyte theoretical max - limited below this by the chip, but doesn't matter for this discussion) and so this doesn't happen.

    Now if you are running 64 bit, then there may be a different issue.

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 54

    That is quite accurate , i have installed win 7 x64 before the x32 and the message never appeared , however i needed to uninsstall the x64 version , because lots of Softwares keep showing the message error like "Install failed , software incompatible with OS " . Another question I have , is there any Kind of limitation that happens to my hardware when i ve chosen to install x32 instead of x64 , What do you guys suggest should i go back to x64 , or x32 would do just fine ?,

    I need quitelots of RAM Power because i use Photoshop and CATIA V5 in my Studies (Sometimes together with Autocad and Solidworks at the same time ) , so 500 MB for the chipset address would be too much for me. What should i do ?
  6. compdata

    compdata TechSpot Paladin Posts: 529   +7

    What applications did you have issues with? I am running Win 7 64 bit and didn't have any issues. Some applications you may need to get different versions for (for the 64 bit OS) but you should be able to download or request the media if needed.

  7. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    Looking at this table: http://kb2.adobe.com/cps/508/cpsid_50853.html#matrix
    You must do a clean install of Windows 7 to use your Adobe products

    Please also read: http://kb2.adobe.com/cps/508/cpsid_50853.html#tech
  8. compdata

    compdata TechSpot Paladin Posts: 529   +7

    To answer your question about what limitations you will have if you stick with the 32bit version:
    1) you will have less RAM available
    2) some applications may run slower (64bit instructions are more efficient at large calculations - ). I read somewhere that photoshop and CAD programs are up to 25% faster (can't seem to find the link now though). I also read somewhere that some add on filters for photoshop may not be compatible with 64 bit photoshop yet though.

    Other then that you really should see much of a difference.

    Take a look at these articles to help you determine.

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 54

    OK then , you guys know what you are doing. i am running a clean win 7 x64 Install right now. Thanx for the advice (I was also considering boosting my RAM to 8 gigs so i guess that wouldn t work anyway on x32 if i have understood correctly). Thanx guys.
  10. compdata

    compdata TechSpot Paladin Posts: 529   +7

    Good luck. If you still have any issues, post back here with details ( version, edition, method of install, etc) of the programs and we can try to help.

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 54

    Thanx so far so good , my problem is only with the cisco vpn client , i downloaded the x64 version but it just wouldn t install. Any suggestions ?
  12. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,524

    From here: http://www.cisco.com/en/US/products/sw/secursw/ps2308/tsd_products_support_series_home.html
    Before getting the next single issue (of which could go on forever :rolleyes: )
    Always check the manufacturers support FAQs. I always do, as my first step to working out why ;)
  13. LNCPapa

    LNCPapa TS Special Forces Posts: 4,247   +448

    We had the same issues with the Cisco VPN client on Win 64-bit - and ended up using their SSL solution which works quite well.
  14. umar

    umar TS Member Posts: 56

    dude is ur windows 7 32 bit or 64 bit .if you are using 32bit windows it shows 3.25GB
    in window xp,vista,windows7 installing 64bit will solve it but no need to worry bro .its no problem
  15. Wth vista 32-bit and SP2 it showed that you had 4gb's,it still wouldn't use it.
  16. umar

    umar TS Member Posts: 56

    hahaha Correct bro i never used vista a friend mi9 told me the in vista 32bit it doesnt shows 4 gb ..please let me know if he is correct or wrong just for knownledge .correct about ur usage comment haha
  17. I ran vista from before SP1 and then it showed 3.25gb's,if i'm not mistaken it was after SP1 that it showed how much ram you had in your machine.
    The main thing is,is that your motherboard see's all the ram.
  18. umar

    umar TS Member Posts: 56

    Thankz for info man i didnt knew that vista allow you to see after updating service pack.

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 54

    Yeah , as i have written before , the problem is that ai sometimes need lots of RAM (In the task manager i have noticed that i sometimes use 3,83 Gigs of the 4 Gigs while i am working ) so 500 Mb or 750 Mb less in ram could mean a big problem for me.

    D3CRYPTM4ST3R TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 54

    Do you mind showing me how you do that ? Because i need a vpn client and havent found anyone reliable and which uses .pcf certificates at the same time ? thanks in advance.
  21. compdata

    compdata TechSpot Paladin Posts: 529   +7

    You do realize that with Vista & Win 7 the "Free RAM" is not the same as it is in XP. Vista and Win7 do a much better job of pre-caching the things you normally use in memory (this is a very good thing) - to save you time when you launch them. This means that more memory is "populated", but a large portion of it is available to be dumped out of memory if needed. I didn't compare directly, but i think Win 7 lists free and available memory separately to highlight this vs Vista which only lists free memory.

    Read this article if you have more questions on this:
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