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Old 02-13-2013, 09:27 PM   #1 (permalink)
og5
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Default How to find out my computer's memory limit?

Hi, I got an old Dell Inspiron 530 from a friend. Online sources say that it has a 4 gb limit which I know to be wrong since the computer currently has 5 gb of ram, with all of it detected and functional by Windows.

A support person I spoke to said it has a limit of "either 8 or 16 gb" but wouldn't give more information without an ID number of some kind which I don't have.

Is there any other way to find out how much ram my machine can take?

Thanks
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Old 02-13-2013, 09:57 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to find out my computer's memory limit?

Little Google never hurts.

Documentation

That says 8GB.
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Old 02-14-2013, 04:12 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to find out my computer's memory limit?

Also it's not just the system, If it's a old system with win XP 32 bit it will only see 3.5 gigs of ram, To see more you will need a 64 bit operating system.

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Old 02-14-2013, 05:22 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to find out my computer's memory limit?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dauntae View Post
Also it's not just the system, If it's a old system with win XP 32 bit it will only see 3.5 gigs of ram, To see more you will need a 64 bit operating system.

Dauntae
Windows XP 32Bit can see and use 4GB of RAM, just the system properties doesn't display this.
Also X86 versions of Windows with the correct compatibility can enable PAE to allow 128GB of RAM to be installed, just anything above the 4GB mark on XP 32Bit can only be used by device drivers and not applications.


As for the original poster
They may have produced a few different motherboards for that model, so I would say open it up and get the motherboard number, then google it for the tech specs, this will give you the limits.
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Old 02-14-2013, 05:58 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to find out my computer's memory limit?

x86 is physically limited to 4. The rest gets addressed to devices.

PAE is for specific Intel x86 CPUs with the instruction set to read a 3 level translation. You also have to have an x86 OS that is capable, which to my knowledge is limited to server OS. If that's the case, might as well use 64bit.
Not only that, it isn't guaranteed consumer apps can address to the extended level to actually use the RAM available. In other words, most programs can see it, but not actually use it. Large Address Aware is great, but really only used to make 32bit apps see over the 3GB limit and not the other way around. Speaking on a consumer level. And according to Microsoft, 32bit apps are still limited to 4GB with or without.
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Old 02-14-2013, 09:19 AM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to find out my computer's memory limit?

That 32 bit app limitation confuses me. I'm on a 64 bit OS; if I have 2 32 bit apps each using up 3 gb of ram, can I run them at the same time? Or is the 4 gb restriction counted for ALL 32 bit apps together?
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Old 02-14-2013, 10:22 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Default Re: How to find out my computer's memory limit?

Each 32bit program can address up to 4GB of RAM itself as long as it's large address aware. 90% of the apps you use today will be 32bit. Most games wont use over 2.5GB even if you tried.

Mainly what we were talking about was the 32bit OS limitation which without all the extra BS we were talking about can't see over 3.5GB of total system RAM. If you have a GPU with 1GB of RAM that will be 3.25GB because your hardware starts addressing unaddressed RAM.
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