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Thread: is it worth having 4GB (3.25GB) on Vista 32 bit?

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    is it worth having 4GB (3.25GB) on Vista 32 bit?

    Alrirght lads and lasses,
    Basicly I am trying to decide whether get another 2 gigs of RAM on my desktop which is running Vista Ultimate 32 bit. I've had this system for about 10 months now, but things are starting to slow down esspecially after running games on 800 x 600, when my normal resolution is 1024 x 868. I've also noticed that sometimes applications I'm running such as Adobe Reader and iTunes sometimes have a black background. This is particularly true when I plug in my iPod, and I have to click on another application like firefox and then click back to iTunes in order for to have a normal background.

    I'm aware of the 3.25 GB limit for RAM being recongnized in Vista 32 bit, but is it really noticable the increase in getting the extra 2 gigs in the 2 empty DIMM slots? I have been tempted to go all out and just upgrade to 64 bit Vista, which would take care of all 4 gigs of the system being found but I also want to keep my data on my hard drive. The only problem is, that I obtained a legal, genuine copy of 32 bit Vista via my old employer who I used to work for last year and used one of their volume licenses. I've had a look around and it looks like I'm stuck unless I do a clean install. Could anyone confirm this, and exactly what I would need to purchase from MS if I decide to upgrade?

    Cheers,

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    Re: is it worth having 4GB (3.25GB) on Vista 32 bit?

    I am sure you'll benefit from the extra memory given the problems you mention.

    I am not convinced from the mention of the screen issue, whether memory is the only issue...

    A good test is - Can you hear lots of disk swapping going on when you switch between multiple already running programs? Yes=buy.

    My only reservation from saying go out and buy now, given the price of memory, would be whether you might want more later (and have to throw some away to make room).

    Doing an upgrade from 32 - 64 bit would seem risky.

    I would strongly recommend keeping your data on a separate partition anyway - you'll curse the fact you didn't if you ever have to do a re-install - guess how I found out...

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    Re: is it worth having 4GB (3.25GB) on Vista 32 bit?

    Thanks for the reply.

    I think I'll go for the 2 gigs in that case, I've already got 2 gigs but I doubt I would need more than that being an average user.

    Yeah, I just did some digging and found out most people in vista are having the same problem. I've followed this guy's instructionsl and it seems to have fixed itself.

    Actually, I might just get a larger drive and just copy all of my files over if I do decide to upgrade I still need to justify the switch, apart from the memory being recongnized so wait and see what 64 bit apps are made

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    Re: is it worth having 4GB (3.25GB) on Vista 32 bit?

    I don't think you will see any benefit from an extra 2Gb ram at the moment. With some games perhaps, but you mention you are only playing in 800x600. I don't think you will benefit much, if any. There was a test done recently (I think it was Toms Hardware) that worked out just how much a difference ram made in XP and Vista. For Vista 1Gb was really good, 2Gb was a small amount better, 4Gb making no real difference. Having a fast USB memory stick with Vista's speed boost did make a good difference when loading stuff, perhaps try that?

    It is a very good idea to keep your data on a separate partition as mentioned above. Aronis Disk Director can help you make an extra partition, resizing the one you currently have.

    Another good option is Acronis True Image. This can take a copy of the current partitions. Then you can perhaps play around with duel booting both Vista 32 and Vista 64 bit. 3 partition in total, one of them data that both OSes can see.

    A good boot manager is OSL2000 if you want to try this. Saves all the hassle other boot managers seem to cause.

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    Re: is it worth having 4GB (3.25GB) on Vista 32 bit?

    You can't make a transition between Vista 32bit and Vista64bit due to pretty fundamental differences in how they work. You'd have to backup your data, wipe the HDD down and reinstall.

    To give you an idea though on memory useage, my system is running 4GB and Vista64bit, my typical memory useage sits at between 35 and 50%, meaning that it's rarely using the extra 2GB of memory. When I'm playing a game and also multi-tasking to the internet (fairly common with MMORPG's), it will jump up to 65% useage.

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    Re: is it worth having 4GB (3.25GB) on Vista 32 bit?

    My Vista Home Premium saw 3710 out of my 4 Gig RAM, but I still went 64-bit as I was able to, but not sure it was vital, because, the little RAm meter in the widget, never put me using more than about 40% of the RAM.

    HTH

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    Re: is it worth having 4GB (3.25GB) on Vista 32 bit?

    Quote Originally Posted by mosherben View Post
    Alrirght lads and lasses,
    Basicly I am trying to decide whether get another 2 gigs of RAM on my desktop which is running Vista Ultimate 32 bit. I've had this system for about 10 months now, but things are starting to slow down esspecially after running games on 800 x 600, when my normal resolution is 1024 x 868. I've also noticed that sometimes applications I'm running such as Adobe Reader and iTunes sometimes have a black background. This is particularly true when I plug in my iPod, and I have to click on another application like firefox and then click back to iTunes in order for to have a normal background.

    I'm aware of the 3.25 GB limit for RAM being recongnized in Vista 32 bit, but is it really noticable the increase in getting the extra 2 gigs in the 2 empty DIMM slots? I have been tempted to go all out and just upgrade to 64 bit Vista, which would take care of all 4 gigs of the system being found but I also want to keep my data on my hard drive. The only problem is, that I obtained a legal, genuine copy of 32 bit Vista via my old employer who I used to work for last year and used one of their volume licenses. I've had a look around and it looks like I'm stuck unless I do a clean install. Could anyone confirm this, and exactly what I would need to purchase from MS if I decide to upgrade?

    Cheers,
    For the record your licence is for Windows Vista, not for 32 bit or 64 bit. Windows will only give you one install medium but just borrow the other from a friend. Or buy it from Microsoft for about £15 or something. I've got both, though only use 32 bit. There's nothing in the licencing about this being dodgy or bent, it's perfectly legitimate.

    Im on 32 bit and using 3.25gb and it runs fast enough for me. The benefits of drivers and stability outweigh the increased performance for now since nothing I can run now taxes my computer significantly.
    Dreaming

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