Installed ram vs. usable ram?

So I have 32 bit windows and 4gb of ram installed. The computer properties shows "4GB (2.75GB usable). I googled it but found mixed answers. Is there any way to increase usable ram without upgrading to 64bit windows 7?

6 Answers

  • ?
    Lv 5
    8 years ago
    Best answer

    The reason you have less is because, on laptops that don't have a dedicated video card, the video card memory gets partitioned off from the RAM. Dedicated video cards on the other hand have their own memory/RAM cache, so they don't need to use your on board system RAM. Same thing holds true for desktops that have an on board video card... the memory to use that video card gets pulled from your on board RAM cards instead of a dedicated memory cache if you had an external video card connected to the motherboard.

    So 1.25GB was dedicated for the video card to use, and the remaining 2.75GB was dedicated for the processor to use. You really wouldn't want to screw with that or you'll start experiencing poor performance from your video card as you take available RAM away from it.

    The best thing to do is simply upgrade your ram if you can (get two 4GB cards instead of two 2GB cards) but 4GB is a decent amount. I have 1GB and my system runs fast as hell... but then again I'm a repair tech, so I know how to squeeze every drop of performance out of my 10 year old frankenstein'ish laptop. :)

    Source(s): I'm a slave at a big faceless laptop repair center
  • 8 years ago

    64 bit Windows is NOT the whole answer, and there is no way to change the linitation of the 32 bit chipset on the motherboard,

    What is happening is that there is a 32 bit address space for RAM and other motherboard hardware. That means that although theoretically there is 4 GB for RAM, the top addresses get stolen from the RAM and given to PCI-e slots, video hardware, and other motherboard hardware that needs addresses. This leaves somewhere between 2.75 and 3.5 GB of address space left for using RAM - depending on the machine's hardware configuration. This limitation is baked into the chipset that runs your motherboard.

    If the machine uses integrated video with shared memory, the video memory (64 MB - 512 MB) is also stolen from the main RAM space.

    In order to address the full 4 GB of memory, you have to have three things at once: A 64 bit operating system, a 64 bit CPU, and a 64 bit clean motherboard chipset and BIOS. Although you can upgrade Windows to 64 bit, and 'theoretically' upgrade a BIOS, you cannot do a thing about your chipset.

    - Without knowing what make and model laptop you have, nobody can tell you whether it is compatible with 8 GB of RAM or not. Since it shipped with 32 Bit Windows, and you have the 2,75 limitation, it is my guess that it is a 32 bit mobo and you cannot install 8 GB.

    - it is NOT an issue of the integrated graphics taking up 1.25 GB. The graphics may be taking some (typically less than .5 GB) but the real issue is 32-bit

    - Readyboost (which used a USB flash memory card to cache) generally was a dismal failure - it didn't end up boosting anything, partially because it used slow flash memory on a slow USB 2.0 interface.

    For maximizing the speed of your machine, you need to reduce the number of programs, background processes, widgets, helper applications and drivers that are running. Read this post for more tips.

  • 8 years ago

    Nope. 32bit systems can only use around 3gb RAM. Readyboost might give you some in the form of Virtual RAM but this isn't nearly as efficient. Get an upgrade :P

  • 3 years ago

    Do you have a 32-bit working gadget or a sixty 4-bit working gadget? in case you have a sixty 4-bit working gadget, the project is that your BIOS isn't remapping the RAM the place the working gadget can discover it. bypass into the BIOS settings and turn reminiscence remapping *ON*. in case you have a 32-bit working gadget, the project is that the BIOS is remapping RAM the place the working gadget won't be able to discover it. bypass into the BIOS settings and turn reminiscence remapping *OFF*. notice that this could basically get you to approximately 3.5GB or so. 32-bit variations of abode windows won't be able to handle extra effective than 4GB and approximately .3GB to .8GB is used up by technique of alternative mappings.

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  • 8 years ago

    No sadly you can't, I'm also thinking you have a laptop which gives you even less control over your RAM

  • 8 years ago

    No, you need to install 64-bit as far as I am aware.


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