The Issue with Ram and 32-Bit

An explanation to why you can't add more than 4GB of Ram to a 32-Bit System or Operating System

Steve Smith explains why you can't use more than 4GB in 32-Bit systems.

Episode #3-23 released on March 2, 2013

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We have 32bit and 64bit processors, and we have a limited amount of slots in our computers, the question is, should we buy a 32bit operating system, or a 64bit operating system, and the answer is a lot simpler than you may believe.

32bit processors and operating systems can only typically address 2^32 bits of memory, which comes out to 4GB or 4096MB of RAM. This is not a limitation based on the operating system, this a physical inability to address more memory. With PAE or physical address extension implemented you could potentially add more, depending on your operating system of choice, and hardware configuration.

64bit processors and operating systems are also limited in the amount of potential RAM that could be installed, if the operating was configured to allow it to occur. The amount of RAM a 64bit operating system should be able to support is 2^64 or 16.8 Million Terabytes of RAM, however, we will need a lot of advancements, even by today's standard, to be able to produce and use that much RAM.

The configuration of your computer, the size of your graphics card, motherboard and other on board devices will force windows and other operating systems to reserve memory for those devices.

If you have a 64bit processor, and are upgrading, and want to be able to max out your motherboard's available memory slots, you should really buy a 64bit edition of Windows, Linux, etc... since this will allow you to get a bigger bang for your buck. Note: Windows 32bit editions cost the same as the 64bit editions.

Next week, I'll stick an operating system that uses Tor on a watch which will allow anyone to use a computer and go online, anonymously.

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Host : Steve Smith | Music : Jonny Lee Hart | Editor : Steve Smith | Producer : Zed Axis Productions

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