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Have 8GB of RAM, XP 32 bit detecting 1.91GB

OrbitzXT

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#1
I know that 32-bit operating systems can only detect up to 4GB and tend to show a little less because some gets reserved for other things, but I installed 32-bit XP on a system with 8GB of RAM, and the General tab of System Properties says I only have 1.91GB, and I see something similar in Task Manager. Running CPU-Z shows I have 4 sticks of 2GB plugged into each slot, and I see the same when I boot up. Why is only one stick out of four being detected, is there something I can do to fix this short of opening up the PC and taking sticks out? The inside of my case is kind of annoying to gain access to.
 

newtekie1

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#2
What are the full system specs?
 

OrbitzXT

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#3
It's the system in my "System Specs" thing on my profile here, but XP 32 bit, not Windows 7 64-bit. For the record, everything was fine with all sticks of RAM earlier in the day when I was still using Windows 7 64-Bit.

Edit: Here's a screenshot of what I'm seeing:

 
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#4
It's probably your video card.
 

OrbitzXT

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#6
yup, the GPU RAM has to be mapped too and XP 32bit only has so many registries.
 
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#7
Yep, it's your video card. Your GTX590 occupies 3GB of addressable RAM. The remaining 1GB is for your sticks of memory, with a bit reserved by Windows for various stuff.

If available memory is an issue, try the 64-bit version of XP (128GB max memory) or get a video card with 1GB or less VRAM.
 
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OrbitzXT

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#8
I see, thanks everyone for the quick and helpful replies.
 

newtekie1

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#9
Yep, it's your video card. Your GTX590 occupies 3GB of addressable RAM. The remaining 1GB is for your sticks of memory, with a bit reserved by Windows for various stuff.

If available memory is an issue, try the 64-bit version of XP (128GB max memory) or get a video card with 1GB or less VRAM.
This, though I believe the video card is only using 1.5GB of RAM since it is an SLI card and the memory is only addressed once, effectively making the 1.5GB per card appear as a single 1.5GB.
 
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#10
Yes, all these "1GB" versions of new cards (now that memory is so cheap, why don't OEMs just make 2GB cards?) are essentially designed for peeps with 32-bit systems.

I gained and extra 4GB of memory space, (on an 8GB 32-bit system giving me access to just 3.5GB) by installing a gigabyte iRAM system and putting the pagefile on it. Windows is executed with the /PAE option.
 

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#11
Windows is executed with the /PAE option.
I wish that feature worked on the Desktop operating systems that same way it does on the server OSes. On some of the 32-bit server OSes enabling PAE allows them to use 64-128GB of RAM.
 
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#13
Yes, all these "1GB" versions of new cards (now that memory is so cheap, why don't OEMs just make 2GB cards?) are essentially designed for peeps with 32-bit systems.

I gained and extra 4GB of memory space, (on an 8GB 32-bit system giving me access to just 3.5GB) by installing a gigabyte iRAM system and putting the pagefile on it. Windows is executed with the /PAE option.
Interesting... so I could use the extra GB of RAM that goes missing in XP 32bit?
 
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#14
So would the problem he is having go away if he ran 64bit of Windows XP? Just wondering.
 
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#15
Oohf. I forgot that PAE >4GB was W2K3 32bit only thing,

Were there and PAE hacks to get XP >4GB? How to PAE in Windows XP - YouTube

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/hardware/gg487503.aspx

I'm not sure of the situation, but perhaps even with a 2GB GPU, XP could still recover a full 4GB workspace? Comments please.
Interesting... so I could use the extra GB of RAM that goes missing in XP 32bit?
Windows XP32 RTM ("SP0") and SP1 could use PAE to address over 4GB. Supposedly, it caused issues with drivers and the feature was killed upon XP32 SP2.

http://support.microsoft.com/kb/888137
http://www.geoffchappell.com/notes/windows/license/memory.htm

The second link is a long but interesting read.
 
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#16
Thanks for the Geoff Chappell link. Nice to read an article written by someone after informing themself and doing some trial tests.