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Windows 7: Hardware Reserved Memory Issue (2.5gb Usable out of 8gb) WIN 7 32bit

28 May 2013   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit.
Hardware Reserved Memory Issue (2.5gb Usable out of 8gb) WIN 7 32bit


Processor : Intel(R) Core(TM)2 Duo CPU E8400 @ 3.00GHz, 3000 Mhz, 2 Core(s), 2 Logical Processor(s)
BIOS Version/Date: Phoenix Technologies, LTD 6.00 PG, 1/22/2008
Installed Physical Memory (RAM): 8.00 GB
Adapter Description: NVIDIA GeForce 9800 GT
Adapter RAM: 512.00 MB (536,870,912 bytes)
Motherboard: nForce 680i SLI SPP/ nForce 680i SLI MCP

Hello I've been searching these forums and all over the web for an answer but have found no solutions. I've got 8gb of DDR2 Ram installed and only 2.5gbs of that is available.

I've attempted to activate PAE but that is no go. I've reinstalled each ram alone so see if it were the sticks themselves and still no good. The only update for the Bios is 5 years old and I had to do a system restore when I attempted to update it. I can't find much info on Nvidia SLI so I'm stumped.

I run with Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit and I do know that a certain percentage will be reserved but 5gbs of ram being held is ridiculous. My video card only takes up 512mb so that doesn't seem to be the issue.

Any insight would be greatly appreciated!

My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2013   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate 32-Bit & Windows 7 Ultimate 64-Bit

Hi Erriiieeee welcome to SevenForums

The reason you're seeing 2.5GBs is due to your 32-bit OS version of Windows 7 Home Premium . 32-bit OSes dont see anything past 2.5GBs . If you want to see 8GBs you would need 64-bit version of Windows . That would need to be a reinstallation of Windows 7 not an upgrade .

Take a look at the link below to achieve the best solution

Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7

Tip   Tip
Please look at Step 1 and 2 in the above tutorial . If you need a 64-bit version of your Windows 7 Home Premium
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2013   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit.

Thank you for the prompt reply. I understand that 32bit only see's a certain amount of Ram however I currently have 2 video cards linked up. When I take one of them off then my usable ram jumps up to 2.75gb.

I know 32bit has it's limitations but I think it's max is 4gb rather than 2.5gb. Downloading the 64bit version now.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

28 May 2013   #4

Windows 7 Ultimate 32-Bit & Windows 7 Ultimate 64-Bit

Did you check to see if your bios is current ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2013   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 32bit.

I haven't updated it since I've gotten this PC but I haven't been able to find an update for it. My bios is Phoenix Awards 6.0p. Phoenix website just directs me to an application that requires you to buy it in order to find updates and google has turned no results up for one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2013   #6

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

A BIOS update would have to come from the motherboard manufacturer unless this is an OEM board in which you would need to obtain it from them. But that is unlikely to do any good.

A 32 bit OS has a maximum 4 GB address space. But not all of this is available to access RAM as it must be shared with memory mapped hardware which must have priority. The amount of space left varies with the hardware you have but will usually be somewhere between 3 and 3.5 GB, with 3.25 being typical. But it can be less. Sometimes much less. Some older motherboards took the easy way out and simply limited RAM to 2 GB.

If system RAM is used by the video system that value will be further reduced. Subtract .5 GB from 3.25 GB typical case and you have 2.75 GB RAM accessible. So in the typical case you are not far off at all. And your case may not be typical.

The only way to access (nearly) all of the 4 GB RAM is a 64 bit OS. That would of course be reduced if system RAM was used by the video system.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2013   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate 32-Bit & Windows 7 Ultimate 64-Bit


To see if there is a recent BIOS update . Go to the Dells website click on Drivers and Downloads on the bottom of the website under Support. On the next page you could either input the Service Tag number or click on Choose from a list of all Dell products .
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 May 2013   #8
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

There is no 25 solutions for your problem. You need a 64bit version of Windows - full stop.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Hardware Reserved Memory Issue (2.5gb Usable out of 8gb) WIN 7 32bit

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