Reduce Shared System Memory on video cards
Hi, this is my first time posting here. I own a Toshiba X305-Q706 and it comes with three video cards: an integrated 9400M G and two 9800M GTX working in SLI. Each card drains a large deal of RAM from my system, in spite of already having independent memory reserves. My system is running on Windows Vista SP1 32-bit (I chose 32-bit for obvious compatibility reasons). My problem is that my computer is supposed to have 4GBs of RAM but only shows a maximum of 1.75GBs available!

I took a few screenshots in order to make explaining easier.
[list]
[*]My system detects the 4GBs installed thanks to Vista SP1, but obviously won't use it all because it's 32-bit.
[img]http://img26.imageshack.us/img26/9100/ramproblemtoshibaforum1.png[/img]

[*]According to the Task Manager and a Vista Sidebar gadget, only 1789MBs are available.
[img]http://img26.imageshack.us/img26/6584/ramproblemtoshibaforum2.png[/img]
[img]http://img5.imageshack.us/img5/5932/ramproblemtoshibaforum3.png[/img]

[*]Here's a back2back comparison of the device manager. Picture 1 is with SLI off and Picture 2 is with SLI on.
[img]http://img17.imageshack.us/img17/8295/ramproblemtoshibaforum4.png[/img][img]http://img24.imageshack.us/img24/8677/ramproblemtoshibaforum5.png[/img]

[*]And here are my two main issues: look at the Shared System Memory on both images. I suspect that my memory issues are rooted there. Now the image for the 9800M GTX only represents one card, but I assume that my computer is reserving the same amount of System shared memory for the other one, which all together make one giant hole in my RAM.
[img]http://img99.imageshack.us/img99/3332/ramproblemtoshibaforum6.png[/img][img]http://img24.imageshack.us/img24/7052/ramproblemtoshibaforum7.png[/img]
[/list]

I recently sent a question to nVidia customer support and they suggested me to download RivaTuner. I never heard of the application but I looked it up after installing it and it appears to be quite handy and useful for tackling my issue. I'm not sure if this program is precisely the solution, but I want to give it a shot. If anybody here knows or has an idea on how to help me out, please show me the way. I can't carry on with such a sham. Please help.
Hi, this is my first time posting here. I own a Toshiba X305-Q706 and it comes with three video cards: an integrated 9400M G and two 9800M GTX working in SLI. Each card drains a large deal of RAM from my system, in spite of already having independent memory reserves. My system is running on Windows Vista SP1 32-bit (I chose 32-bit for obvious compatibility reasons). My problem is that my computer is supposed to have 4GBs of RAM but only shows a maximum of 1.75GBs available!



I took a few screenshots in order to make explaining easier.


  • My system detects the 4GBs installed thanks to Vista SP1, but obviously won't use it all because it's 32-bit.
  • Image



  • According to the Task Manager and a Vista Sidebar gadget, only 1789MBs are available.
  • Image

    Image



  • Here's a back2back comparison of the device manager. Picture 1 is with SLI off and Picture 2 is with SLI on.
  • ImageImage



  • And here are my two main issues: look at the Shared System Memory on both images. I suspect that my memory issues are rooted there. Now the image for the 9800M GTX only represents one card, but I assume that my computer is reserving the same amount of System shared memory for the other one, which all together make one giant hole in my RAM.
  • ImageImage





I recently sent a question to nVidia customer support and they suggested me to download RivaTuner. I never heard of the application but I looked it up after installing it and it appears to be quite handy and useful for tackling my issue. I'm not sure if this program is precisely the solution, but I want to give it a shot. If anybody here knows or has an idea on how to help me out, please show me the way. I can't carry on with such a sham. Please help.

#1
Posted 03/14/2009 09:02 AM   
A 32 bit OS only has the ability to use a maximum of 4gb globally.
Meaning any memory that the video cards have are included in the TOTAL system memory profile.

If you go up to a 64bit OS you can use all the RAM that your integrated GPU [the 9400m] isn't already using for itself.

So your total usable RAM will be 4GB minus what the 9400 pulls for itself. That should give you just under 4GB usable RAM.

Also, what are "the obvious compatibility reasons" you talk about?
A 32 bit OS only has the ability to use a maximum of 4gb globally.

Meaning any memory that the video cards have are included in the TOTAL system memory profile.



If you go up to a 64bit OS you can use all the RAM that your integrated GPU [the 9400m] isn't already using for itself.



So your total usable RAM will be 4GB minus what the 9400 pulls for itself. That should give you just under 4GB usable RAM.



Also, what are "the obvious compatibility reasons" you talk about?

#2
Posted 03/14/2009 09:21 AM   
I think I've misunderstood how XP and Vista 32-bit are limited by 4GBs of memory. The way I understood it was that any computer could only handle up to 4GB of RAM... but what I'm thinking about now is that the computer as a whole can only handle 4GB of memory, as in overall memory from any place and any thing, not just RAM. Is that how it really works?

EDIT: For "compatibility reasons" I meant any application or game that would not run in 64-bit, mainly game.
I think I've misunderstood how XP and Vista 32-bit are limited by 4GBs of memory. The way I understood it was that any computer could only handle up to 4GB of RAM... but what I'm thinking about now is that the computer as a whole can only handle 4GB of memory, as in overall memory from any place and any thing, not just RAM. Is that how it really works?



EDIT: For "compatibility reasons" I meant any application or game that would not run in 64-bit, mainly game.

#3
Posted 03/14/2009 10:43 PM   
Yes. A 32bit OS can only address [use] 4gb of any kind of RAM. Including any memory on a GPU. Even the cache on an HDD is counted in that.

I haven't had any issues with games not working on 64bit. Unless it's a game that requires a DOS subsystem. Then your stuck using XP or below for those games, as vista doesn't use DOS anymore.
Yes. A 32bit OS can only address [use] 4gb of any kind of RAM. Including any memory on a GPU. Even the cache on an HDD is counted in that.



I haven't had any issues with games not working on 64bit. Unless it's a game that requires a DOS subsystem. Then your stuck using XP or below for those games, as vista doesn't use DOS anymore.

#4
Posted 03/14/2009 10:59 PM   
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