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RAM usage

By chumark ·
Even after deleting some unused photo programs, my "Cool Beans" shows continual 100% RAM usage.
Should I be concerned? I would like to "correct" this.

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RAM usage

by TheChas In reply to RAM usage

Yes, there is reason for concern.

First, how much physical RAM do you have?

For W95, 98, &Me, I recommend between 128MB and 384MB.
Less is just not enough.
More than 511MB can cause problems.

For W2K, or XP, 256MB up to what the motherboard will take.

Next, how many programs run at startup?
Check the Icons in the system tray. Do you use those programs all the time?
Disable as many as practical.
Likewise, check task manager (Alt-Ctrl-Del) to see what other programs are running.
Disable as many of those, that you do not need, as possible.

Next, run AdAware from www.lavasoft.de to remove spyware from your PC.

Then, clear up as much hard drive space as practical.
You can safely delete any file in C:\Windows\Temp that is over 2 weeks old.
Use the options in your web browser to clear the temporary internet cache files.

Then, boot into safe mode, and run scandisk and defrag to speed up hard drive operation.

Beyond the above, you may have a memory leak.
Thesecan be very hard to find and fix.
It is usually easier to:
Back up your files;
Format the hard drive
Re-install Windows
Re-install only the programs that you need.

Chas

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by chumark In reply to RAM usage

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by rapidad In reply to RAM usage

To add to CHAS's answer, if you do intend to reformat, consider either nt4.0 or w2k (if you are not a "gamer"). these systems offer a lot of tools to deal with the problem that you describe, and the ability to monitor other aspects of your env. Their drawback is, they are slow (because of file security and a different kernel) or nonresponsive (nt4.0) for some games.

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by chumark In reply to RAM usage

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by JohnGreer In reply to RAM usage

Chas,

Why do you say WinME has problems when using more than 511MB? I have 512MB and am very interested....

John

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by chumark In reply to RAM usage

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by cglrcng In reply to RAM usage

"The Chas" is quite correct that there is an excess RAM bug in Win98 or Win ME, puter begins to do some very strange stuff as you go over that 511MB mark although you may not experience problems @ 512 you def. do at higher amounts like I did @ 640MB. The higher you load it w/RAM (I can load to 3GIG on my mobo's 3 PC133 slots), the worse the problems seem to show. Certainly flew in the face of the old adage of more RAM = More Speed. I used his fix of adding a line below vcache item line (a limiting line)in the System.ini (MaxFile Cache=511000). This limiter worked wonders, I have also played around w/ it a lil (under & over), but limiting to 511000 seems to be the best setting. I also have noticed that the page file sets up differently (smaller or larger) depending on whether I set that vcache limit higher or lower, as long as I allow Windows to manage the page file. I tend to think that is the actual origin or cause of the problems (too large of a set page file), and have started to play recently w/ a set page file and slowly increasing the limit line again to see if the problems return as I increase the size/amount of used vcache/installed RAM.

I realize that this answer doesn't really help the questioner, but am just tryingto help explain to the last answer poster that "The Chas" has something that can/should be explored further.

Any further info Chas?

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by chumark In reply to RAM usage

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by TheChas In reply to RAM usage

For those peers wondering about the 511MB RAM limit for W9X, and Me;

This bug is discussed in Microsoft Knowledge Base Articles 184447 and 253912.
Basically, the core code of all 3 operating systems never imagined having over 500MB of RAM.
(When W95 was written, 540MB was still a respectable sized hard drive!)

From MSKBA 253912
"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)."


While the article mentions over 512MB, I have seen this issue crop up when installed RAM is 512MB.

Note: for those not having any problems, this is VERY configuration dependant.

Just adding another plug-in card, or a software VXD can trigger the bug.

Chas

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by chumark In reply to RAM usage

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