O.T. RAM uce in XP OS

I have installed 2GB of RAM in XP and tried every tweak I could find but it won't use more than about 500 MB of RAM. I even read once that XP can't use more than 500MB. Can anyone steer me to information to improve the situation? Sam


It will use as much as it is available for the different applications... the rest is used as disk cache. The problem would be if it reports that only 512 MB are visible... but if it says 2GB then it is all ok.


If XP only sees 500MB, then there maybe a compatibility problem.

You can use crucial.com to check how much RAM your PC can handle, if you know the make/model or motherboard.

Just a thought.


XP is capable of handling up to 3GB of ram.



The 32-bit version caps out at 3 GB. The 64-bit version theoretically 128 GB, if I remember correctly. Have you looked at the system setup (BIOS settings) and saved them? Or it could be that you are using incompatible memory. Another poster suggested checking compatibility at crucial.com. I have done this many times and it works very well. I have only had one system that wasn't in their database. They also have a system scan tool available. I have never tried it though. I have made numerous purchases there and have not had any trouble.

I would try the BIOS settings first. For me it's usually something simple like that. Good luck!

J Grim


HP offers a discussion of memory usage by Windows XP. Note that the vast majority of XP users have the 32-bit version (not the 64-bit version). Basically:

- In theory, 32-bit WinXP supports up to 4 GB of RAM

- In practice, the amount of available RAM is always less than 4 GB

- Typically, available RAM is between 3.0 and 3.4 GB, so it can in fact exceed 3 GB

- Your graphics card can have a particular impact on available RAM

- As an example, I have a 32-bit WinXP system with 4 GB installed, of which 3.25 GB are available

Edited: 20 May 2010, 1:16 p.m.

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