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OK, whats the truth? How much memory can Windows98 really handle?

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Old 09-12-01, 03:17 AM Thread Starter   #1
TUK101
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Question OK, whats the truth? How much memory can Windows98 really handle?


I am pretty sure that I read in some literature pertaining to Windows 98 that it can only handle 384mb of sdram. Now on OC'ers.com I am reading posts everywhere from peaple claiming that it can handle anywhere from only 256mb on up to 2 gig of memory. Now I know that I am running 384 with no problems at all, and my buddy tried running 512 with all kinds of registry errors. And his board is supposed to handle up to a gig. So whats the real truth? Is there some sort of a dl or hack that can be run to get Windows 98 to handle more memory than 384?
Or are there just soem peaple getting really lucky with thier system running more ram than is supposed to be allowed?

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Old 09-12-01, 03:28 AM   #2
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The standard releases of Windows 9x ( 95, 98 ) and Millennium Editions (ME) of the Mircrosoft Windows Operating systems can handle 512 mb of ram without modification or problems. I know this from personal experience and Microsofts knowledge database. To exceed 512 mb of ram you must configure Windows using the following information.

SYMPTOMS
If a computer that is running any of the versions of Windows that are listed above contains more than 512 megabytes (for example, 768 megabytes) of physical memory (RAM), you may experience one or more of the following symptoms:

You may be unable to open an MS-DOS session (or command prompt) while Windows is running. Attempts to do so may generate the following error message:

There is not enough memory available to run this program.
Quit one or more programs, and then try again.


The computer may stop responding (hang) while Windows is starting, or halt and display the following error message:

Insufficient memory to initialize windows. Quit one or more memory-resident programs or remove unnecessary utilities from your Config.sys and Autoexec.bat files, and restart your computer.

CAUSE
The Windows 32-bit protected-mode cache driver (Vcache) determines the maximum cache size based on the amount of RAM that is present when Windows starts. Vcache then reserves enough memory addresses to permit it to access a cache of the maximum size so that it can increase the cache to that size if needed. These addresses are allocated in a range of virtual addresses from 0xC0000000 through 0xFFFFFFFF (3 to 4 gigabytes) known as the system arena.

On computers with large amounts of RAM, the maximum cache size can be large enough that Vcache consumes all of the addresses in the system arena, leaving no virtual memory addresses available for other functions such as opening an MS-DOS prompt (creating a new virtual machine).

WORKAROUND
To work around this problem, use one of the following methods:

* Use the MaxFileCache setting in the System.ini file to reduce the maximum amount of memory that Vcache uses to 512 megabytes (524,288 KB) or less.

* Use the System Configuration utility to limit the amount of memory that Windows uses to 512 megabytes (MB) or less.

* Reduce the amount of memory that is installed in your computer to 512 MB or less

Information taken from Microsoft's knowledge database

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Last edited by UnseenMenace; 09-12-01 at 03:32 AM.
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Old 09-12-01, 10:28 PM Thread Starter   #3
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Quote:
Originally posted by UnseenMenace
The standard releases of Windows 9x ( 95, 98 ) and Millennium Editions (ME) of the Mircrosoft Windows Operating systems can handle 512 mb of ram without modification or problems. I know this from personal experience and Microsofts knowledge database. To exceed 512 mb of ram you must configure Windows using the following information.

SYMPTOMS
If a computer that is running any of the versions of Windows that are listed above contains more than 512 megabytes (for example, 768 megabytes) of physical memory (RAM), you may experience one or more of the following symptoms:

You may be unable to open an MS-DOS session (or command prompt) while Windows is running. Attempts to do so may generate the following error message:

There is not enough memory available to run this program.
Quit one or more programs, and then try again.


The computer may stop responding (hang) while Windows is starting, or halt and display the following error message:

Insufficient memory to initialize windows. Quit one or more memory-resident programs or remove unnecessary utilities from your Config.sys and Autoexec.bat files, and restart your computer.

CAUSE
The Windows 32-bit protected-mode cache driver (Vcache) determines the maximum cache size based on the amount of RAM that is present when Windows starts. Vcache then reserves enough memory addresses to permit it to access a cache of the maximum size so that it can increase the cache to that size if needed. These addresses are allocated in a range of virtual addresses from 0xC0000000 through 0xFFFFFFFF (3 to 4 gigabytes) known as the system arena.

On computers with large amounts of RAM, the maximum cache size can be large enough that Vcache consumes all of the addresses in the system arena, leaving no virtual memory addresses available for other functions such as opening an MS-DOS prompt (creating a new virtual machine).

WORKAROUND
To work around this problem, use one of the following methods:

* Use the MaxFileCache setting in the System.ini file to reduce the maximum amount of memory that Vcache uses to 512 megabytes (524,288 KB) or less.

* Use the System Configuration utility to limit the amount of memory that Windows uses to 512 megabytes (MB) or less.

* Reduce the amount of memory that is installed in your computer to 512 MB or less

Information taken from Microsoft's knowledge database
Well, that pretty much sums that question up in a nutshell. Thanks a lot for shedding some light on the confusion that a lot of peaple have been having. I have seen too many posts on these forums with peaple asking why they are having problems when adding too much ram on their windows 9* OS's. From what I had known in the past, and in my experiences 384 mb's of ram was always a safe bet. Thanks again.

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Old 09-14-01, 03:38 AM   #4
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as a second conformation all that info was correct as far as i know ...although more ram= big ramdrive which is always sweet
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Old 09-14-01, 07:16 AM   #5
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768 is max OS can handle, 256 is what is optimum for day to day operation

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Old 09-14-01, 07:25 AM   #6
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512 is max ofr i815
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Old 09-14-01, 03:57 PM   #7
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512meg of DDR2100 works for me in Win 98SE. I have my Vcache @ 69632kb min and max, chunk block 1024.

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Old 09-14-01, 05:46 PM   #8
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What about XP, i don't have it yet, but plan to upgrade sometime. Since it's all 32bit, does it support more than 512mb? Also does pro support more than home edition?
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Old 09-14-01, 08:32 PM Thread Starter   #9
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Quote:
Originally posted by CrackedSKull
What about XP, i don't have it yet, but plan to upgrade sometime. Since it's all 32bit, does it support more than 512mb? Also does pro support more than home edition?
Im not for positive, but I believe that XP is based on Windows 2000, and Windows 2000 I believe supports up to 2 gig of memory. So XP would most likely do at least that.

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Old 09-14-01, 10:43 PM   #10
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i have 512mb sdram with win98se on my other comp
running fine
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Old 09-15-01, 07:12 PM   #11
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lots of ppl runs 512mb of ram in win98 with no problem
there's this poll once on teh box networks.
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Old 09-18-01, 01:38 AM   #12
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when you get 1gb of ram in win98se/ winme you need to do the work around already posted. I can confirm this.
I ran 256, 512, 768mb, then 1gb worth of ram in a win98se machine.
The max my mb will take is 2gb worth of ram. (4 dimms)
Now I am on Win2k pro with 512mb b/c my hs/fan/peltier takes a slot up, and i sold some ram.
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Old 09-18-01, 02:23 AM   #13
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not a fact.. but the general consensus amongst most people is that 256mb gives you the best all-round performance in win98.

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Old 09-18-01, 02:32 AM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by proze
not a fact.. but the general consensus amongst most people is that 256mb gives you the best all-round performance in win98.
I remmember when people said that about 128MB . . .

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Old 09-18-01, 03:48 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by dimmreaper
I remmember when people said that about 128MB . . .
lol! yeah, tis true.

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Old 09-18-01, 06:21 AM   #16
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yep yep
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