I have just started using Windows 7 Enterprise and am using the XP VM quite a bit to use my old applications.
32bit Windows 7 and memory
You don't need 64 bit software for 64 bit windows. Your old stuff will work fine. It's only the device drivers that need to be 64 bit - and almost everything is now supported.
+_1 to what Cougar said.
WRT the graphics card using up main memory. Some cheaper embedded graphics adapters (where the graphics adapter is on the mother board) won't have dedicated memory, it'll use main memory that would otherwise be used for applications. This is common on low end laptops & desktops & small embedded systems. Sometimes in the BIOS you can adjust the amount of memory you dedicate to the graphics adapter. If you've got a separate graphics card with, say 1GB, then that won't take up 1GB of your memory address space. As molgrips said, this is what DMA is for. The card will have a window in the CPU's I/O address space but this will be a lot less than the memory on the card itself.
Besides being able to address a wider memory range there's other advantages with x64 o/s. A subset of an x86 CPU's registers are only available in 64 bit mode. If you're looking at doing a lot of math intensive work (games, video encoding etc) these help. You'd need the app compiled for 64-bit to really make full use of these though.
It looks like you're running 32-bit pass. I'd stick with the 32-bit o/s you have installed.
You may well have compatibility issues with older versions of software too.
Assuming PCI-E, the video card will use memory-mapped I/O but it's not a 1:1 ratio. A chunk of memory - strictly, a chunk of memory addresses - will be allocated for the video card's usage. This isn't typically all of the video card's RAM, it's more like a window. From memory (ho ho!) I think PCI-E takes between 256Mb and 768Mb for its own nefarious purposes, depending on sunspots and the phase of the moon.
(sorry for any duplication there, there's been a few more posts in the hour it took me to write that inbetween doing stuff at work)
Did we check that the OP's new PC actually has a 64 bit CPU?
Still not convinced this is right. Addresses stored in code will take up more space for sure, but how much difference is that going to make? And 1kB of data is still 1024 BYTES regardless of the word size. Do compilers have to use 64 bit words for every data type though? If they did, then 1024 variables of byte type would indeed take up 8KB of RAM.
Well, no. Memory usage isn't going to be doubled across the board. However, when 64-bit data types are used, it's going to add an overhead. Even if it's a couple of hundred meg (I've not looked this up but it feels about right), once you've added into the mix any system DLLs that need to be loaded twice (native 64-bit and 32-bit for compatibility reasons), that's going to be sufficient to remove any advantage you might have gained from that extra half gig.
Plus, as I've said, the real world difference in performance between a 3.5Gb system and a 4Gb system is going to be as close to nowt as makes no odds anyway. You'd have to seriously load the box for it to become an issue.
is that what Commit means?
Committed data is data which has had a page in memory 'committed' to it - ie, it's being used, either actively or passively. This could be RAM or the page file on the disk. A Committed figure which is consistently significantly higher than the available RAM would point towards needing more RAM to avoid performance issues as the OS starts thrashing the page file.
Did we check that the OP's new PC actually has a 64 bit CPU?
I'll be very, very shocked if it isn't. Can you still buy Pentium III's?
64-bit chipset, on the other hand, that could be an issue. It's pretty unlikely on a new system though.
Well, no. Memory usage isn't going to be doubled across the board. However, when 64-bit data types are used, it's going to add an overhead. Even if it's a couple of hundred meg.
I've been using 64-bit since 2005 (first XP x64, then Vista 64, Win7 64 is sat on the shelf waiting to be installed). And I can't say I've noticed this really. Certainly not of the order of a couple of hundred meg that's for sure.
I agree that the extra memory gained from going from 3.5GB accessible on 32-bit to 4GB on 64-bit is not going to make much odds, but if the OP plans to increase memory beyond 4GB, as he said, then he'll need a 64-bit OS.
There is a good summary of the differences here:
I can't say I've noticed this really.
I'm not sure as it's something that would be particularly noticable. But you may well be right, I made that figure up after all. (-: I'd expect it to be more of an issue when you're running more native 64-bit software, and there wasn't exactly a glut of these back in 2005.
There is a good summary of the differences here:
Yeah, that's not bad actually. Good spot.
Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying going 64-bit is inherently a bad idea. I'm saying that doing it for the sole reason of "reclaiming wasted memory" is wooly thinking. There are a number of good reasons for making the move, but that's not one of them.
Plus, as I've said, the real world difference in performance between a 3.5Gb system and a 4Gb system is going to be as close to nowt as makes no odds anyway
Agreed, I do think the OP need not worry about it.
Does commit represent the total memory usage of the OS then? (Including the caching and stuff of course that Windows does because it can)
I'm saying that doing it for the sole reason of "reclaiming wasted memory" is wooly thinking. There are a number of good reasons for making the move, but that's not one of them.
Agreed. But likewise when speccing/buying a new system now, as the OP did, I can't see any reason not to with 64-bit OS unless you have obscure legacy hardware to support.
Thanks for the input. Maybe I'll stick with 32bit for now until I need more memory (the new CPU is 64bit by the way, it's a quad core Intel I5 750).
A final bit of help please. I've spoken to the supplier who say that as I've activated the software they can't replace it with a 64bit version but that I am licensed for 32 or 64 bit use and that I can legitimately download or 'acquire' a 64bit CD and use my license to activate it and in doing so I'd be legally licensed; apparent there rep. says that Microsoft aren't worried where the CD comes from as long as the license in valid. Do this sound right or am I being fobbed off? Having said that I did know someone with a hooky Windows XP installation on which the Genuine Advantage software kept offering to sall them a license to legitamise their copy.
If anyone has an unused 64bit Windows Professional install CD they'd be happy to sell on do let me know.
The last time I rang MS to try an activate a copy of XP with a copied CD and legitimate OEM key, they were arsey and refused.
Dunno if their 'activation' tale is correct or not; if that's their story, perhaps ring again and tell them you haven't activated it yet? It sounds wrong to me, but I'm honestly not sure. Like I said, with Vista, Dell shipped the 32-bit disc but would supply an additional x64 disc on request. I don't see as it's a version exchange, the retail pack comes with both discs. You just need the media.
I can, ah, let you hold on to a copy of my Windows 7 disc for offsite backup purposes if you like, but it's retail rather than OEM so is unlikely to work with your existing key.
they don't care where the cd comes from, it's the bit of paper with the licence key on which has all the value. I'm sure there's somewhere on the MS website where you can download ISO images of the appropriate CD's.
The is a site on MSDN with ISO images but I don't have access to download them.
Cougar, I thought that it was just the license key used that designated a copy OEM or retail etc. Do you think that a retail CD won't work with a OEM key?
If you're happy to sell on a Windows 7 Professional 64 bit CD do let me know, equally if anyone knows of where I can download an iso image that would be useful too. I might stick with 32bit for now but would like the option to upgrade if I need more memory.
Oh well, that sounded too good to be true. Apparently most iso images available online will be retail packages and my OEM key won't work (Cougar's right) so I need to source a 64bit Window 7 Profession OEM CD.
I probably need to stop worrying and enjoy my nice new system which is significantly better than the dual core 2Gb system it replaced, I just can't help feeling narked and the company providing a customisable system an absolutely no warning about the memory limit on 32bit OS systems (and then not helpling resolve it).
I guess that when I do need more memory I'll have to buy an upgrade.
Another question though, my PCI-e seems to have taken about 750Mb for the graphics card (it's a 1Mb unit). If I add a second 1mb graphics card in Crossfire configuration will I loose more system memory?
back to the op
if you only have 2 slots then don't worry about it. 3.5 is way better than 2 which is probably your only alternative unles you go 64bit.
I've got 4 slots and a 16Gb limit (which comes for the mobo/processor/chipset) although apparently 4GB is the recommended configuration for an i5 (something to do with the way the memory works).
I guess that there's no rush but I would like to get hold of an OEM Windows 7 Pro. 64 CD to give me the upgrade option at a later date (and save me the cost of shelling out £100+ for a new one)
something to do with the way the memory works
Dual channel, yes.
they don't care where the cd comes from
They did when I rang them. I (usually) don't just make this stuff up you know. (-:
Wait a minute. I've just reread this.
I've spoken to the supplier who say that as I've activated the software they can't replace it with a 64bit version but that I am licensed for 32 or 64 bit use and that I can legitimately download or 'acquire' a 64bit CD and use my license to activate it and in doing so I'd be legally licensed;
You were told by your supplier to download a hooky copy? Where did you buy it, Honest John's Used Computers? I think I'd be tempted to ring them up and say "how about this, you send me an x64 disc, and I won't tell Microsoft that you're advocating piracy to your customers."
Anyway. I looked it up cos I wasn't sure. Check this out.
... seems they might be right. You only get to change at will if you buy the retail version, otherwise you choose at point of sale. I'm pretty sure this is new with W7.
More reading here.
See the last paragraph in each section. (seems to contradict the diagram but...)
No I actually bought it from an established supplier who, amongst other things, supply education establishments, corporate, reseller etc. (ironically after being put off buying from MESH from folks on here; typical). The claim apparently came from their rep (I assumed from Microsoft. I guess that they were fobbing me off (or at least the guy on the phone was) although I have seen Microsoft's Genuine Advantage software offer to direct a dodgy XP install to a site to buy a licesne for their dodgy copy (so the source didn't appear to matter there). I don't think I shall say who they are just yet but I don't think I shall be buying from them again!
Anyway, I've tried another email and we'll see where that gets us; not very far I suspect. I think I need to just get over it and enjoy what I have and then worry about 64bit if I decide to add more memory (and a decent flatscreen is first on the list, I'm still using an old 17" CRT). It doesn't sound like I'm seriously compromised performance-wise with what I have.
Got this reply from an MVP on Microsoft's own forums, looks like I'm just gong to have to admit defeat and fork out for a new, retail copy when the time comes. It was my fault I suppose but I'm not happy with the lack of information on the supplier's customisation system.
OEM licenses are to be installed by professional system manufacturers only. Under Microsoft's OEM License Agreement, they are not to be sold to end-users under any circumstance, and are to be preinstalled on a computer using the OEM Preinstallation Kit (OPK) before shipment to the customer, and must include at the very least the manufacturer's support contact information. They are, therefore, designed for installation only on a single computer and are not transferable, even if the original computer is no longer in use. This is not usually an issue for users who purchase new computer systems, because most pre-assembled systems ship with a preinstalled operating system. There are few circumstances where Microsoft will allow the transfer of an OEM license from one non-functioning system to another, but the OEM System Builder License Agreement (SBLA), as well as the OEM End User License Agreement (EULA) do not contain any allowance for this, so it is entirely up to Microsoft's discretion, depending on the situation.
So, to be honest, you shouldn't have bought it in the first place unless you know what you were doing.
You will just have to look at this as a loss and move on. Purchase a retail upgrade license Windows 7 and use the OEM license as a qualifying product:
MS Store Prices for Windows 7:
Well this has turned out to be an education, not just 32bit vs 64bit but customer support and Microsoft Licensing! It's probably time to draw it to a close, I made a booboo (although I still think better advice should have been on hand) and I'll have to live with it. I'm a bit old for proper forum speak but I think the usual response is MTFU (although I've been gratefull that folk haven't said it and have offered lots of advice). I've still got a nice system and need to enjoy that.
On a related note, I'm getting all sorts of licensing 'advice' from a MVP Microsoft forum, some of which is rather odd. I've been told essential that OEM licenses are not to be sold to end users under any circumstances (although the clearly are, even Amazon is doing it) and I've bought them before and I'm being advised to purchase a retail upgrade but (and I'm not sure about this) apparently if I transfer my newly acquired retail Windows to a new machine I'll need a second qualifying product (i.e. the new machine needs to be running Windows to validate the upgrade) as the original OEM license is not transferable! Does this make sense to anyone? MVPs aren't, to my knowledge, official spokes people for Microsoft.
So, can I legally buy OEM software with hardware for my own system? Equally if I buy a retail upgrade am I stuck with no legal way to transfer it to a new system since the qualifying OEM license isn't transferable?
Like with most things in life, a little knowledge can be 'dangerous'.
I use to argue with my users, who 'cos they'd managed to install a wireless network at home they thought they 'knew' about IT, amazing as to what they would come out with - and what they thought it should cost...
I'm perplexed at the response from the 'professionals.' You can't buy a licence, fine - but you don't need to because you already have one, n'est-ce pas? You can't transfer it to another PC but again, you're not trying to.
Time was you could buy OEM software along with hardware - a lot of vendors used to sell Windows OEM with a three quid mouse. I don't know if that's still true but I wouldn't be remotely surprised if MS have clamped down on that practice now.
I'm getting told different things from different people in the company, one that I am licensed for 64bit (and should download one) and another that says I'm only licensed for 32bit and can't transfer it; I should have stuck with MESH! In any event they're clear that it's my fault and nothing's going to be done about it so that's that I guess.
The other 'professional' advice (about OEM and the fact that the end user can't buy it,licensing etc.) is coming from an MVP on a Microsoft forum, some sort of licensing expert. The original company are happy to sell me OEM Windows with a harddrive and say it's fine. Who knows who's righ, I certainly don't.
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