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Windows 7: The 32 Bit OS RAM and VRAM Conundrum

11 Nov 2011   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 Bit Edition
 
 
The 32 Bit OS RAM and VRAM Conundrum

So here's my problem; I just installed 2 more GB of RAM to make the grand total 4. All well and good till there. I see that 3.49 GB is usable. That's understandable too because it's a 32 bit operating system. Subsequently however, I recalled that my graphics card had 1GB of video memory. So shouldn't mu usable RAM be 3GB? I ask this because I don't want my graphics memory to be compromised in any way. Is there a tool to check memory allocation between different devices? Can someone explain to me how this works.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
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11 Nov 2011   #2

Window 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

Depends on the video card / hardware. The system doesn't necessarily need to map in texture memory, just display memory and most low-end video cards don't allocate that much memory.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Nov 2011   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 Bit Edition
 
 
Graphics Card

Well, you can see my system specs. What do you reckon?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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11 Nov 2011   #4

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

Your video card had 1GB of GDDR5 memory, which is graphics double data rate RAM. It won't take from your system RAM and is strictly for graphics use which the CPU can't or won't render.

To see what is using RAM, Start type in resmon, Enter. Choose Memory tab and you can scroll throught the lists and see what and how much memory is used and free.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Nov 2011   #5

Windows 7 HP / Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote:
So shouldn't mu usable RAM be 3GB? I ask this because I don't want my graphics memory to be compromised in any way.
Simply put, it isn't compromised in any way.

3.49 GB is usable actually refers to the amount of system memory available for Windows.

The 1GB of memory on your video card remains as a separate entity and is unaffected.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Nov 2011   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 Bit Edition
 
 

That's good to here. But shouldn't it be compromised theoretically. I'm not saying I'm not happy about it. Just wondering.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Nov 2011   #7

Window 7 Home Premium 64-bit
 
 

This is also a i3 core, which is 64-bit capable so memory is mapped different then on a true 32-bit (with or without PAE)

The missing 512MB of memory might be allocated to video in the BIOS. Disable the onboard video and de-allocate RAM away for onboard video.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Nov 2011   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate SP1 (64 bit), Windows XP SP3, Linux Mint 16 MATE (64 bit)
 
 

The OS needs some RAM to run the various Windows services.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Nov 2011   #9

Windows 7 Home Premium 32 Bit Edition
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Tae Song View Post
This is also a i3 core, which is 64-bit capable so memory is mapped different then on a true 32-bit (with or without PAE)

The missing 512MB of memory might be allocated to video in the BIOS. Disable the onboard video and de-allocate RAM away for onboard video.
Sorry if this is a stupid question but how does one go about doing that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Nov 2011   #10

Windows 7 Professional SP1 32-bit
 
 

People often think that a videocard takes away as much system RAM as it has RAM of its own. That's a common misconception.

The way it really works is that the videocard reserves a memory range (below the 4GB limit) to map regions of its own onboard RAM into, so the system can access it as needed. When another part of the video RAM is needed, the card simply maps out the current region and maps in the new one.

That's the reason you don't see a full GB being reserved and unusable for Windows. This is perfectly normal.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 The 32 Bit OS RAM and VRAM Conundrum





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