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Topic: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

  1. #1

    Lightbulb OT: Optimizing Lost RAM


    Recently upgraded and reformatted my machine.

    One of the things I did was stick another gig of RAM in there, raising the total to 2 gigs.

    But I noticed upon reformatting that, even as a bare-bones nothing-else-but-WinXP install, I lose like 400 megs of RAM to... well... to WHAT, exactly, is the very question. To the "dozing" part of Windoze, I fear.

    Obviously some RAM will probably always get sucked up by system resources even when nothing's going on... or maybe not. At least, maybe it doesn't HAVE to...


    What kinds of stuff can I do to try and recover some of that RAM that is probably being poured into useless crap, instead of my music? It might finally be time for me to learn some of those optimization tricks I always see headlines about but never bothered learning... but it seems very daunting, I'm not sure where to start.


  2. #2

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

    Something very wrong here. No way would you lose 400 meg of ram to the OS. I'd check to be sure that gig of ram you installed is being recognized. There is a very specific way you must install ram depending on the system and MB; can't just stick them in any available slot.

  3. #3

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

    That's what I thought.

    I'm positive I installed the stick correctly, but you never know. I've been under a ton of stress lately.

    But I know what I'm doing, so theoretically I should be able to recognize if something has gone awry. I'll have a think on it, come back to it this evening, take a look and see what happens.

    Thanks for the confirmation.

    The OS RAM consumption should be quite minimal, then, as I originally suspected?

  4. #4

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

    Here are the tweaks that I've used: http://videoguys.com/WinXP.html

    This is primarily a video site, but in any case, we're talking about optimizing a PC for real-time media.

    I print the pages out, staple them together, and note what I did and didn't do on each step, so I can reverse everything, if necessary.

    Here's the main clue: if you're not sure about a tweak, don't do it. Mark it as "skipped". Work with what seems safe, reboot and test. Then, if you want to tweak further, do one tweak at a time with the notes at hand so you can reverse it. Then really make sure everything, your network, MIDI, audio, whatever, works before moving on to the next tweak.


  5. #5

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

    On that video site they recommend to set processor sceduling to programs. But for audio apllications it is usually recommended to set this to background tasks in order for eg the ASIO interface and other things to perform well. Just my 2 cents...

  6. #6

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

    Quote Originally Posted by Timo Heil
    On that video site they recommend to set processor sceduling to programs. But for audio apllications it is usually recommended to set this to background tasks in order for eg the ASIO interface and other things to perform well. Just my 2 cents...
    Yes, I'm a bit confuse too, what did you actualy do Jon?...Do you have asio drivers in your system?

  7. #7

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

    Since my system is for Giga, I set it for Services, rather than Applications. I have a system here at work for video. I set it for Applications.


  8. #8

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

    Are you using the built-in graphics unit on the motherboard? If yes, the in-built graphics needs memory, and it might have taken 512Mb of ram. So, the OS will only detect 1536mb Ram. You can change the memory assignment in the bios, when booting up.

  9. #9

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM

    No, I have a Radeon 9700 - so it has its own dedicated memory.

    I'm not sure where all that memory is going to... I'm going to have to fiddle around with it. Maybe I installed or configured something incorrectly when I went through my installation flurry... piling in as many DVD's so I could get back to work ASAP.

    I might've screwed something up. We'll see.

    Thanks for the link, I'll peruse and use as necessary.


  10. #10

    Re: OT: Optimizing Lost RAM


    Do a CTRL / ALT / DEL and look at the processes - see how much memory each process is using - if anything looks too high or there are processes you do not recognize or have suspect names, make sure you don't have malware, trojans, worms or viruses causing you any headaches. Make sure you have a quality antivirus solution and keep it up to date - and check for viruses.

    There are some viruses that can install themselves in places immune to even a hard disk (quick) reformat, like the boot strap, in which case proper anti-virus cleaning is paramount. If all else fails, see if you have another hard drive lying around that you are pretty sure is clean - or buy a cheap one for testing purposes. Since all you did was install XP and nothing else, not much time has been wasted yet on installing all of your programs. If you still have the problem, maybe you have faulty memory or a faulty motherboard?

    Just some suggestions.


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