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Windows 7: 6GB RAM installed, only 4GB usable - 64-bit OS

04 Apr 2014   #1
JulieC

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit SP1
 
 
6GB RAM installed, only 4GB usable - 64-bit OS

I've read a number of threads on this topic and have the same problem, but mine seems to be intermittent.

I was recently advised to reseat the memory modules and having done that (about 2 weeks ago) System Properties reported 6.00 GB usable, as expected, and my system was running great.

Yesterday it was back to sluggish, and when I looked at the Properties it again says 6.00 GB (4.00 GB usable).

My system specs are in the drop-down below - any advice would be much appreciated.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
04 Apr 2014   #2
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

Hello Julie C. Welcome to the forum.

Two things stand out: Intermittent, and the fact that re-seating the RAM had a direct effect. It sounds like a connection problem.

You will want to buy a can of compressed air.
With the computer off and taking proper static precautions, remove all the sticks of RAM. Carefully inspect the RAM slots - looking for dust bunnies and/or hair. Use a wooden toothpick and the compressed air to thoroughly clean out the slots.
Also carefully inspect each RAM module. Look for obvious signs of wear, damage, or corrosion on the contacts.

Then put everything back together and test it out.

It would also be a good idea to run Memtest86+ - Advanced Memory Diagnostic Tool on it.
Start the test before you retire for the evening and check it in the morning. Zero errors is the only acceptable result.

Hope that helps!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Apr 2014   #3
ICIT2LOL

Desk1 7 Home Prem / Desk2 10 Pro / Main lap Asus ROG 10 Pro 2 laptop Toshiba 7 Pro Asus P2520 7 & 10
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TVeblen View Post
Hello Julie C. Welcome to the forum.

Two things stand out: Intermittent, and the fact that re-seating the RAM had a direct effect. It sounds like a connection problem.

You will want to buy a can of compressed air.
With the computer off and taking proper static precautions, remove all the sticks of RAM. Carefully inspect the RAM slots - looking for dust bunnies and/or hair. Use a wooden toothpick and the compressed air to thoroughly clean out the slots.
Also carefully inspect each RAM module. Look for obvious signs of wear, damage, or corrosion on the contacts.

Then put everything back together and test it out.

It would also be a good idea to run Memtest86+ - Advanced Memory Diagnostic Tool on it.
Start the test before you retire for the evening and check it in the morning. Zero errors is the only acceptable result.

Hope that helps!
You can also use my little method to clean those slots too

SLOTCLEANING

Now as for the slotsto clean them use a strip of old credit card about 1/2 inch wide nip thecorners off one end - preferably round them offhold a piece of thin lint free clothover the end dab on some form of alcohol - iso propyl alcohol (what we swab theskin with before an injection) is good and GENTLYswipe along the slots.

This can also be donefor the GPU slot/s.

PS I meant to ask are the RAM sticks all the same brand and are they compatible with the motherboard?


Attached Thumbnails
6GB RAM installed, only 4GB usable - 64-bit OS-stick.png  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

06 Apr 2014   #4
JulieC

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit SP1
 
 

Thank you both for your advice.

Soooo, I sent out for a can of compressed air, and what came back was a cannister of "Gaming Gear Duster" Compressed GAS - not what I asked for at all. Says it contains 152A Difluoroethane, so I am not sure if this is suitable for the job or not.

Anyone any thoughts on this please?

Thanks
Julie
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Apr 2014   #5
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

It will work for cleaning, but in all the reviews it says that it leaves a residue behind that has a chemical taste/smell. I would not like that.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Apr 2014   #6
JulieC

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit SP1
 
 

Thanks TV - I don't like the idea of this either - I think it is going back where it came from. What part of Compressed AIR did they not understand I wonder?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Apr 2014   #7
TVeblen

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 64 Bit Home Premium SP1
 
 

It's Gaming air! Very special air for when you are serious. Doesn't it say you have to be wearing skinny jeans to use it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Apr 2014   #8
ICIT2LOL

Desk1 7 Home Prem / Desk2 10 Pro / Main lap Asus ROG 10 Pro 2 laptop Toshiba 7 Pro Asus P2520 7 & 10
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JulieC View Post
Thank you both for your advice.

Soooo, I sent out for a can of compressed air, and what came back was a cannister of "Gaming Gear Duster" Compressed GAS - not what I asked for at all. Says it contains 152A Difluoroethane, so I am not sure if this is suitable for the job or not.

Anyone any thoughts on this please?

Thanks
Julie
Yep Julie TV is on the money it is actually one of the newer refrigerant type gases that are supposed to be non polluting like the old ones were. The stuff works by having it compressed and when the pressure is released it reverts back into a gas and therefore expands forcing out the compressed air which also in part solution also expands and reverts to a gas.
Now as a tip us it in short bursts as prolonged ones will cause a frosting on the parts you are using it on including you, because the expanding gases also become very cold . It is unpleasant to have this happen and I guess if one were stupid enough to produce prolonged exposure could in theory get a frostbitten fingertip.

There are alternative ones with less problems but still with this temperature one I speak of.

For my part I use my method of slot cleaning as it negates this problem with air (never have been a great fan).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Apr 2014   #9
Mellon Head

Win 7 Pro x64/Win 10 Pro x64 dual boot
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JulieC View Post
Thank you both for your advice.

Soooo, I sent out for a can of compressed air, and what came back was a cannister of "Gaming Gear Duster" Compressed GAS - not what I asked for at all. Says it contains 152A Difluoroethane, so I am not sure if this is suitable for the job or not.

Anyone any thoughts on this please?

Thanks
Julie
Hi Julie,

Difluoroethane is pretty common in electronics work, and you'll find it in most cans of compressed "air" that you can buy. It works as a self propellant. In fact, I have a case of the stuff at work. We use it all the time for cleaning electronics with no ill effects.

It will actually do the job for you, no problem. You won't have any problems as long as you hold the can upright so that it doesn't spray liquid along with the air. The liquid evaporates quickly, but can cause problems if the circuit is on. Some cans of air will also leave a residue if the liquid escapes as TV said. However, the residue is usually not a problem.

Sadly, the only way to be sure that your compressed "air" has no propellant in it is to use an air compressor.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Apr 2014   #10
ICIT2LOL

Desk1 7 Home Prem / Desk2 10 Pro / Main lap Asus ROG 10 Pro 2 laptop Toshiba 7 Pro Asus P2520 7 & 10
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Mellon Head View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by JulieC View Post
Thank you both for your advice.

Soooo, I sent out for a can of compressed air, and what came back was a cannister of "Gaming Gear Duster" Compressed GAS - not what I asked for at all. Says it contains 152A Difluoroethane, so I am not sure if this is suitable for the job or not.

Anyone any thoughts on this please?

Thanks
Julie
Hi Julie,

Difluoroethane is pretty common in electronics work, and you'll find it in most cans of compressed "air" that you can buy. It works as a self propellant. In fact, I have a case of the stuff at work. We use it all the time for cleaning electronics with no ill effects.

It will actually do the job for you, no problem. You won't have any problems as long as you hold the can upright so that it doesn't spray liquid along with the air. The liquid evaporates quickly, but can cause problems if the circuit is on. Some cans of air will also leave a residue if the liquid escapes as TV said. However, the residue is usually not a problem.

Sadly, the only way to be sure that your compressed "air" has no propellant in it is to use an air compressor.
Mellon Head is also on the money here and the problem with giving it too long a blast is that it causes the moisture in the air to condense and then freeze only to revert back to water which in a circuit if not switched off and fully discharged can end in a short circuit - which is most undesirable.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 6GB RAM installed, only 4GB usable - 64-bit OS




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