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General => Open Discussion => Topic started by: matrix2003 on August 25, 2009, 09:50:10 pm

Title: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: matrix2003 on August 25, 2009, 09:50:10 pm
Interesting read here.
It appears that the growing netbook market is keeping things 32 bit.

M$  should have migrated to exclusively 64 bit by now - don't you think?
I thought XP Pro was the start of that movement.  

"...  when consumers pay for a software product in an edition that the manufacturer describes as (vista) Ultimate, they surely have a reasonable expectation
that the software is licensed to do everything that its code is capable of. "     You would think  !!!

http://www.geoffchappell.com/viewer.htm?doc=notes/windows/license/memory.htm
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Henry Blewer on August 25, 2009, 09:59:06 pm
These 32 bit computers are really meant to bring in new computer users. The 32 bit architecture is relatively inexpensive these days. Remember, it took nearly ten years to get 32 bit to be the 'standard'.
3D artists, engineers and gamers are the 'power users' which drive the industry to better, bigger, machines. If everyone was happy with a spreadsheet, computers would still be 8 bit.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: matrix2003 on August 25, 2009, 10:06:51 pm
So as far as power 'home' users go, - Planetside's  next project should include an OS that runs Terragen, PS and supports unlimited memory, overclocking and multiple processors.  

This is going to take a while!  ;D   - Bill .
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: PG on August 26, 2009, 02:57:52 am
Well Microsoft do have a habit of wanting to please the leprous mutants, affectionately named, "home users". Their enforced user security, namby pamby confirmation checks and blind repudiation of progress are a staple of the sheer determined retardation of everyone's favourite logically oblivious thickos, Microsoft.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: neuspadrin on August 26, 2009, 07:41:59 am
People just need to grow a pair and move on to 64bit.  100% of the 32bit apps I run work.  The only apps I ever needed to actually get for 64bit was antivirus and firewall due to needing 64bit protection and needing them to be able to hook into a 64bit os.  Well, and 64bit drivers, which anything built in the past couple years can easily be found.

I didn't read the full article, but no, theres still hardware limits and the PAE and such still has major limitations.  Sure you could give yourself 8gb+ of ram realisitically, but TG2 will still be only able to get 3gb of this, and thats only if the /3gb switch is also enabled, otherwise it still is limited to 2.

All it means is the ability to multitask slightly better.  What 64bit offers is both the ability to multitask AND the ability to have applications runs smoothly because they can use more ram.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Henry Blewer on August 26, 2009, 08:35:16 am
Multitasking well has been a computing goal since 1948. Windows and the assorted stuff for security use up most of this capability on most modern systems. If I had two computers, it would be cool just to run Terragen 2, without an OS, (save and load of course), and on all processor cores. Even my old machine would scream along at rendering without all the tasks/overhead.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: matrix2003 on August 26, 2009, 04:56:16 pm
Hey Kadri!  Welcome aboard.  Guess we were on the same page!  Great minds think alike, so please post here again!
re: http://forums.planetside.co.uk/index.php?topic=7348.0
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Henry Blewer on August 26, 2009, 06:10:53 pm
It was strange to me that this thread topic would be Kadri's first post.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: matrix2003 on August 26, 2009, 06:34:57 pm
The 4GB limit has been a bone of contention with us for a while.  My last two PC purchases were done with Terragen in mind. -EDIT that: exclusively with Terragen in mind.
Sadly,  I too have reached my memory limit, and I am over due for a personal: FDISK, FORMAT, PARTITON, INSTALL,  etc ...

Any savvy techie who reads this stuff, and suffers from our obvious affliction, might pick up on that article as relevant!
Gotta run now.  My favorite TV show is on:    VH1's: POLICE FILES:  How much memory does DOS require Classic?   Commodore still rules!
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: PG on August 26, 2009, 06:42:30 pm
Hmm, that article seems to confuse itself a little. The restrictive registry key this guy found is quite an old one, it does remove the possibility for Windows to detect more than 4GB of RAM but not for marketing purposes or some other megalomania scheme. It's simply because if a program tries to access this much then the processor will simply spit any instructions passed from it as invalid. Mathematically it can't figure out that much. It's like asking a kid who's just learned how to count to ten how many states there are in the USA.
You could possibly launch several programs with access to this much RAM but only if they were each limited to the normal 32bit constraints, i.e. 4GB of RAM.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: matrix2003 on August 26, 2009, 06:54:10 pm
I am an electrician!  Not an IT guy.  I spend a lot of time with "those types",  cause I pull the wire, and they get all the glory.
Why does an entire board of memory slow down an M$ box in 2009? I understand the Bill Gates " no one would ever need more than 64  blah, blah, mentality"   but that was a long time ago.
GOOGLE:  "Dude, Where's My 4 Gigabytes of RAM?"  and watch what comes up!
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: neuspadrin on August 26, 2009, 10:07:52 pm
Personally i wish windows 7 was 64bit only.  Its time to ditch full on 32bit, seriously.  On Vista 64 ive had no issues running 32 bit applications.

Only certain businesses have any purpose for not running 64bit, and well... they dont need the latest and greatest then because obviously they are using something super old.  Either update your code, as its probably about damn well time you did, or keep using windows xp and complaining about vista (even though vista is perfectly good).

If anything couldn't run on 32bit compatibility its too fregin old, update your code or find a newer version, or find a replacement thats probably 100 times better.


sure you can "get" more then 4gb of ram on 32bit through this.... but WHY bother.  Just install 64bit.  Afterall, windows licenses aren't dependent on 32 vs 64, they just are for versions.  So a "32bit vista ultimate" key is also a 64bit vista ultimate key.  Etc etc etc.  All you need to get is the like 5 dollar cd for 64bit os install.  Microsoft does this as a way to encourage people to make the move over to 64bit.

My school only had 32bit media offered to us for the os's we could get cheap (vista ultimate being one of them), and i got ultimate and its key, then i went online and bought the 64bit cd to install it.  wallah.


/sigh... at least we can almost safely assume that windows 7 is the last 32bit microsoft os.  


Oh, and PG had a great way of explaining it with the kid counting.  Kinda works well since its also super easy to count in binary on fingers ;)
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: PG on August 27, 2009, 09:30:11 am
I agree, there are a few of my programs that don't work in 64bit, mainly games. This is due to the way they are designed older games like half life were never designed for scalability so they have a difficult time getting their instructions queued properly. However there are programs out there that can organise instruction chains so all that is left to do is for Microsoft to include one in their next OS. Obviously it's not going to work as well as porting the games to 64bit but let's face it, Valve's not likely to do that anytime soon. Not even in ValveTime (http://developer.valvesoftware.com/wiki/Valve_Time)
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: rcallicotte on August 27, 2009, 10:03:32 am
I've never had any trouble running any games on Windows XP 64, including some of the newest like F.E.A.R., HALF-LIFE, FALLOUT 3.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: neuspadrin on August 27, 2009, 11:56:55 am
yeh what you talking about? half life runs on 64bit.  It might not be a 64bit program, but it works for me.  I have it installed on steam myself.  The original disk might not work, but if you have it on steam it works just fine.

Ive only had trouble running games due to vista (even if in 32bit), not 64bit.  And thats like super super old games i attempted to install where the box only shows system requirements for like win 98 ;).  Thats what vms are for if you truly need to keep playing the old game.

And anything new game works with 64bit for sure, and many often now have 64bit clients that can take full advantage of the 64bit os.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Kadri on August 27, 2009, 01:19:01 pm
Quote from: matrix2003 on August 26, 2009, 04:56:16 pm
Hey Kadri!  Welcome aboard.  Guess we were on the same page!  Great minds think alike, so please post here again!
re: http://forums.planetside.co.uk/index.php?topic=7348.0


Thanks, matrix2003,
İ am lurking for same times here but i am not very used to forums.But from now on it may change.İ have the free version of Terragen 2 and i had the older one to but this one is tough to handle.For now i am more reading(learning) then making nice renders.
This topik was interesting.Would realy know what Planetside thinks of this :)
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Matt on August 29, 2009, 07:52:46 am
Quote from: Kadri on August 27, 2009, 01:19:01 pm
This topik was interesting.Would realy know what Planetside thinks of this :)


There's not much we can do about it - it's not something which we can change in Terragen to take advantage of whatever workarounds the author may or may not be suggesting are available.

Personally I think the author is being a bit harsh on Microsoft. OK, so maybe it's a licensing issue. So what? Microsoft are allowed to license you (or not license you) whatever they like. You can choose which version of the OS you want to buy. The answer is simple: buy the 64-bit version :)

Matt
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Matt on August 29, 2009, 08:04:38 am
Actually, there is one more thing that I was thinking when I read the article. Maybe it's a good thing that Microsoft are more clearly defining the liimits of 32-bit versions compared with 64-bit, because if you have a driver which isn't guaranteed to work with 64-bit then it may also have problems on 32-bit systems that are allowed to use PAE to go beyond 4Gb. I don't understand this stuff in enough detail to really go into it any further, but it seems to me like there may still be enough risks in going beyond 4Gb on 32-bit that you want some kind of easy label for the public. Enter "64-bit". Attaching a label to this and clearly defining limits on the 32-bit version is not necessarily the marketing evil that the author says it is. Try explaining these subtleties to a typical computer buyer - it's easier just to talk in terms of 32-bit vs. 64-bit.

Matt

P.S. I *really* don't know anywhere near as much about this stuff as the author of this article - I just think maybe the aspects of licensing and marketing may not have been considered as fairly as the technical details.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: neuspadrin on August 29, 2009, 09:04:14 am
I think it reall falls down to a computer can very easily become unstable if you put in all the memory hacks on a 32bit os to get your memory, as some people didnt write their drivers very well to support this (not ms fault, hardware vendors)

so to them, its safer to license properly and only give people who would usually need these things the license to use it.

heres one thing microsoft did license you to have (assuming vista, might work xp too duno) : free 64bit version instead of 32bit.  All you need is thee in to installation media, and your license should work 32 or 64bit.  microsoft WANTS people to ditch 32bit, why would they support all these lesser hacks when they want you to just finally go 64 since its VERY stable and can run almost ANYTHING.

the whole point of a 32bit os, is it has 32bits to count in.  This comes out to 4gb in binary, since each bit represents a 1 or a 0.  Sure you can hack it around with software to try to enable it to count more, but those will always have issues.  With a 64bit os you get 64bits, which gives you technically like...16 exabytes of counting or something like that.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Kadri on August 29, 2009, 01:17:53 pm
Thanks for your answer.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: jo on September 22, 2009, 01:33:18 am
Hi,

I think if an app doesn't need access to more than 4 GB RAM (or 3 GB I guess) then it could be better off staying 32 bit. This is because if you go to 64 bit you can end up wasting a lot of memory if you don't watch how data is structured. This can make things slower for various reasons. Interestingly if the 32 bit app is performance critical ( like TG2 ) it may benefit from moving to 64 bit because under 64 bit you have more registers ( very fast places to store data in the processor ) available on x86 chips.

Even if you could access memory beyond 4 GB from a 32 bit app you still need to make sure that there's nothing in your app which is making assumptions about the length of a pointer or the size of blocks of data. Just having Microsoft change their licensing wouldn't make all apps magically work with more than 4 GB of memory. Anyway, the article is really talking about the OS having access to more than 4 GB of RAM and not applications having access to it. I suppose that would mean that you could run more applications using more RAM before paging started, but it wouldn't magically allow 32 bit TG2 to use more than 4 GB.

Regards,

Jo
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Henry Blewer on September 22, 2009, 08:02:29 am
A great many programmers have become lazy with memory allocation. Back in the 8 bit days, every bit of memory was important. Some new compilers don't allocate memory correctly. I some respects it is Microsoft's fault; they did not tell programmers to properly handle memory. Memory became inexpensive, so why bother doing the extra steps?
I think the programmers at Planetside remember the old style programming. 8)
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Cyber-Angel on September 22, 2009, 09:20:46 am
Quote from: njeneb on September 22, 2009, 08:02:29 am
A great many programmers have become lazy with memory allocation. Back in the 8 bit days, every bit of memory was important. Some new compilers don't allocate memory correctly. I some respects it is Microsoft's fault; they did not tell programmers to properly handle memory. Memory became inexpensive, so why bother doing the extra steps?
I think the programmers at Planetside remember the old style programming. 8)


Back in the days of 8bit, the good old days, the days of Centipede and Blue Meanies on the Commodore Vic-20 when the "POKE" command ruled along side the "Load Command" when you loaded programs into memory form cassette tapes.

In those days all the neighborhood kids would come too your house if your system had 1MB of memory which in those days was a lot; one can imagine that when IBM engineers where working on the systems architecture that they released and has been the corner stone of the PC market as we know it today (Remember on software boxes it read "Compatible with IBM and Compatibles" they had too think of an upper memory limit for technical specification reasons.

In the early years of computing when 8bit was the norm it was rear to find a system with more then 512K of memory, the ones there where consisted if memory serves mainly of mainframes: desktops it was rare too find one with more than 512K.

In these early years of which we are specking it is important too note that this is the era in the late seventies and early nineteen eighties before home video came in and with it the so called Beta-Max/ VHS format war. In this time frame, then, desktop computing was limited mainly to the corporate office environment, some hospitals and like environments: some social historians clam that the advent of the desktop (Now personal) computer sounded the death-Neil for the traditional secretarial typing pool.

;D

Regards to you.

Cyber-Angel                           
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: cyphyr on September 22, 2009, 09:36:21 am
Quote from:  Ken Olson, president, chairman and founder of DEC"There is no reason anyone would want a computer in their home."
- Ken Olson, president, chairman and founder of DEC

:)
reminded me of the above
Richard
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Henry Blewer on September 22, 2009, 09:49:10 am
Someone who designed the PC rom for IBM decided no one would ever need more than 640K of ram. This remained standard for many years. Fortunately things changed.
I hated pokeing and peeking. I learned Machine Language, then assembler. Basic was too limited and slow. I programmed for PC's on a Commodore 64, then a 128, and last an Amiga 4000. I really do not have any interest in programming anymore. I do not like C, and assembler has become obsolete. It's too bad, it was fun trying to cram as much function into a routine while using the least amount of ram. (sigh)

Happy rendering everyone!
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Kadri on September 22, 2009, 11:35:40 am
İ tried to run Wing commander 3 in 1994 with a new sounblaster card and new(my first) cd room drive. it was a nightmare. İ remember  memmaker(?). it said 620 K free but the game wanted 630...anyway something like that . This was the time i had to know Dos deeper to run games. Nice and bad memorys  ;D

Kadri.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: rcallicotte on September 22, 2009, 12:30:23 pm
Wing Commander 3 is still my all-time favorite game.  And then maybe Wing Commander 4...or was there a 4?
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: Kadri on September 22, 2009, 12:38:07 pm
Yes there was  ;)  But from there on it was ( for me anyway) downhill for the series. But i liked it much. These days i don't know where the joystick controller is.

Kadri.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: rcallicotte on September 22, 2009, 12:41:00 pm
Thanks Kadri.  It's been so long ago, I forgot.  But, I bet I still have some of the CDs for those games.  Sold my joystick. 
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: matrix2003 on September 22, 2009, 06:18:29 pm
Well much closer in my quest for 64-Bit.  Looked over my son's shoulder during a Windows-7 Professional 64 Bit install last night.  He got the upgrade through his college.  Went in like silk. Only change was to his BIOS, moved the drive to first check for boot, and away we go.  Options to blow out partitions etc.. very slick.
Title: Re: 4GB Memory Limit In 32-Bit Windows
Post by: neuspadrin on September 22, 2009, 06:41:18 pm
Quest on, come to the 64bit side of life.  Its easy :)

Personally the way I go now I don't ever get attached to an install.  I keep a lot of stuff backed up so that I can very easily wipe clean and restart on a new slate after just a little bit of work

Its kinda nice to have freedom :)

Personally I can't wait for Windows 7 to show up on our schools software network share so I can install.  Sadly I don't think they will put the 64bit media up as they never did with my vista ultimate (which is supposed to come with both 32 and 64bit cds), as they never do.  when i asked for one from software distribution last time the lady just stared at me like i was crazy.  So I might need to get the 64bit media, but i can get a key easily :)