Will a core 2 duo processor be able to use all of an 8 GB RAM upgrade with Windows?

Discussion in 'MacBook Pro' started by grastafaram, Dec 28, 2011.

  1. grastafaram macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2009
    #1
    Hi, I am planning on upgrading to 8 GB RAM in order to run Arc GIS on a Windows partition. A friend, that works as an IT, told me that with a core 2 duo processor the most I would be able to actually use would be 3.5 GB. This doesn't really make sense to me, as the 15" 2.53 ghz, mid 2009 MBP I have can take up to 8 GB. Is there any reason I would only be able to use 3.5 GB on the Windows partition?

    Thanks
     
  2. GGJstudios macrumors Westmere

    GGJstudios

    Joined:
    May 16, 2008
    #2
    You can find specs on all Apple products, including maximum RAM:
    • By visiting EveryMac.com: Actual Maximum RAM
    • By using Mactracker
    • By entering your serial number here to find specs for your model. (Be aware that some models can use more RAM than Apple shows. Check EveryMac or MacTracker to verify.)
     
  3. Intell macrumors P6

    Intell

    Joined:
    Jan 24, 2010
    Location:
    Inside
    #3
    Most C2D systems can use 8Gb of ram, you're can. But Windows must be a 64-bit version. A 32-bit version will only be able to use 3.5Gb of the total amount.
     
  4. nicklad, Dec 28, 2011
    Last edited: Dec 28, 2011

    nicklad macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2007
    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    #4
    Only if you install a 32-bit version of Windows will you be limited to a maximum of 4GB of addressable memory. (As discrete graphics memory needs to be addressable, if you have a 512MB there and 4GB of standard memory, you'll only have 3.5GB left over.)

    This is due to Microsoft artificially limiting 32-bit consumer versions of Windows versions as of XP SP2 so that even with PAE, a mechanism to address memory larger than 4GB in size, they're still limited to 4GB.

    Install a 64-bit operating system and you won't have the issue and will be able to use the full 8GB.
     
  5. grastafaram thread starter macrumors member

    Joined:
    Dec 10, 2009
    #5
    Thanks for the speedy reply. So if I want to use all 8 GB of RAM then I have to install a 64 bit version of windows, meaning windows 7 or vista, correct?
     
  6. nicklad macrumors 6502

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2007
    Location:
    Nottingham, UK
    #6
    In practical terms, yes. (In technical reality, there is a 64-bit edition of Windows XP and Server 2003 but you wouldn't want to use them in most circumstances.)
     

Share This Page