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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Hardware
Want to upgrade your RAM to maximum? Well maybe not!
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scsijon

Joined: 23 May 2007
Posts: 1263
Location: the australian mallee

PostPosted: Tue 05 Dec 2017, 19:28    Post subject:  Want to upgrade your RAM to maximum? Well maybe not!  

I've been able to test quite a lot of new hardware over the last month or so while helping to do some evalutaions for a hardware replacement program and come across something worth reporting.

Do you wonder why most providers are not fully loading the ram in a 'supped-up' games system or 'Professional" system and discourage you from doing it also?

Well is seems that quite a bit of it relates to the mix of the processor, the motherboard and the chipset used.

If you check the Technical Manual carefully you might just find that there is a paragraph 'hidden' against a tag stating that "This system will only run 64bit software if the Memory (ram) is configured to the maximum" or something similar.

And there is quite a lot of small 32bit and 16bit programs out there that will normally run on a 64bit system, but not if it's locked into the 64bit mode.

And were not just considering one or two brands, but most of them seem to have the same problem. Oh and it's not just an Intel related problem, others also.
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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 12719
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Tue 05 Dec 2017, 20:57    Post subject:  

FWIW, it's been known for a long time that not all 32-bit programs will run in 64-bit Puppies.
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J_D_

Joined: 11 Apr 2014
Posts: 118
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Thu 07 Dec 2017, 00:35    Post subject:  

I am running 32 bit Tahrpup on a laptop that is 64 bit capable. Running 64 bit Windows 7 on a seperate partition. Is there any reason to go with a 64 bit puppy ? Tahrpup is my go to OS. Nothing beats Puppy.
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mostly_lurking

Joined: 25 Jun 2014
Posts: 228

PostPosted: Thu 07 Dec 2017, 11:06    Post subject:  

J_D_ wrote:
I am running 32 bit Tahrpup on a laptop that is 64 bit capable. Running 64 bit Windows 7 on a seperate partition. Is there any reason to go with a 64 bit puppy ?

Perhaps not, if you are satisfied with your current system and you don't want to run some 64bit-only program. 64bit is supposed to have better performance, and support for larger amounts of RAM, but whether such an improvement would actually be noticeable is another question... I guess you could always try out a 64bit Puppy to see if it makes any difference, and consider whether it's worth starting over with a new system.

I'm running a 32bit Puppy (Wary 5.1.2) on a 64bit computer as well, and so far, I've never felt the need to change it. I've used it for years now (carried over from my old Pentium 4 machine) - it's small and simple, and configured the way I want it; I'm comfortable with it. It doesn't have a PAE kernel, so it can't use all of the 4GB of RAM, but that's not a problem for me, either. All my programs are 32bit, including some Windows applications running on Wine, so I wouldn't really get an advantage from using a 64bit system. (And as far as I can tell from various "I can't get Wine to work on a 64bit Puppy" forum threads that have popped up in the past, this stuff seems to work better in a 32bit environment.)
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J_D_

Joined: 11 Apr 2014
Posts: 118
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Thu 07 Dec 2017, 11:49    Post subject:  

mostly_lurking wrote:
J_D_ wrote:
I am running 32 bit Tahrpup on a laptop that is 64 bit capable. Running 64 bit Windows 7 on a seperate partition. Is there any reason to go with a 64 bit puppy ?

Perhaps not, if you are satisfied with your current system and you don't want to run some 64bit-only program. 64bit is supposed to have better performance, and support for larger amounts of RAM, but whether such an improvement would actually be noticeable is another question... I guess you could always try out a 64bit Puppy to see if it makes any difference, and consider whether it's worth starting over with a new system.

I'm running a 32bit Puppy (Wary 5.1.2) on a 64bit computer as well, and so far, I've never felt the need to change it. I've used it for years now (carried over from my old Pentium 4 machine) - it's small and simple, and configured the way I want it; I'm comfortable with it. It doesn't have a PAE kernel, so it can't use all of the 4GB of RAM, but that's not a problem for me, either. All my programs are 32bit, including some Windows applications running on Wine, so I wouldn't really get an advantage from using a 64bit system. (And as far as I can tell from various "I can't get Wine to work on a 64bit Puppy" forum threads that have popped up in the past, this stuff seems to work better in a 32bit environment.)


Thanks. I may do a 64 bit partition. I have 6 gigs of RAM and a 500 gig HD. I also have a 1000 gig HD laying around. Funny thing about that is, I will never use 10% of that. Cold winter day here so I may just play around with that.
I ran a non PAE Pup on my old HP for a long time. I really liked that old laptop. It was fine until the processor lost connection to the board. Not worth fixing, then.
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rockedge


Joined: 11 Apr 2012
Posts: 429
Location: Connecticut, United States

PostPosted: Thu 07 Dec 2017, 12:32    Post subject:  

I like the Xenial and Tahr 64 bit OS's but with Wine on XenialPup64 versions, will not run 32 bit Windows programs. Many attempts to do so but with minimal success so far. For example I like using PhotoFiltre Studio X which is only offered in 32 bit Windows versions as far as I can tell. Runs very well with Wine on most Puppy Tahr, Xenial as well as older versions like Lucid UPUP Raring or Precise 5.7.1.
It will not run at all with Wine in a 64 bit XenialPup.

Though the XenialPup64 I just made with Woof-CE is very fast and stable on a Dell Optiplex 990 64 bit capable 8 gigs of RAM
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bigpup


Joined: 11 Oct 2009
Posts: 9687
Location: Charleston S.C. USA

PostPosted: Thu 07 Dec 2017, 13:12    Post subject:  

rockedge,
You do have the 32 bit compatibility libs sfs loaded?

Xenialpup64 7.5 with Wine 32bit and 32 bit compatibility libs sfs loaded.

Wine is set to default emulate Windows XP.
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bigpup


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Location: Charleston S.C. USA

PostPosted: Thu 07 Dec 2017, 13:29    Post subject:  

Quote:
"This system will only run 64bit software if the Memory (ram) is configured to the maximum" or something similar.

I wonder if that statement is trying to say that it will take a 64 bit OPS to see and use the memory if it is maxed out.

How much total memory are these statements talking about?

Quote:
32-bit Windows has an address space of 4GB. Part of that is used by system BIOSes and graphics memory. With a 256MB graphics card about 3.3-3.5GB of RAM can be addressed and used, assuming you have 4GB fitted. If you fit a graphics card with 1GB of memory only about 2.6-2.8GB of the RAM would be addressable and usable.


Linux kernels have PAE option to get around this 4GB limit in 32bit Linux OPS.
A 32bit Puppy that is labeled PAE can access and use more than 4GB of memory.

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When I was a kid I wanted to be older.... This is not what I expected Shocked
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Mike Walsh


Joined: 28 Jun 2014
Posts: 3230
Location: King's Lynn, UK.

PostPosted: Thu 07 Dec 2017, 19:04    Post subject:  

This business about 16- and 32-bit programs not running on a 64-bit CPU if it's locked into 64-bit mode is news to me, I must admit.

This is why I like the Athlon64 X2 dual-core my old Compaq desktop uses. The Athlon64s were the very first commercially available 64-bit processor, and they were set up in such a way as to automatically switch from 32-bit mode to 64-bit and back again (AMD, at the time, referred to it as 'short' and 'long' mode in their publicity material), depending on what you were trying to run. No mention in the user's manual anywhere about being capable of being locked in this manner.

Perhaps it's a development of newer processors I'm not aware of...

---------------------------------------------------------------------

A quote from the Sept 23rd 2003 article on the PCStats website about the then recently-introduced Athlon64:-

"Ok, so 64-bit processors have 64-bit registers instead of 32, so they are faster, yes? Hmm, there is a catch though. When performing mathematical operations with integers (whole numbers), having a 64-bit register only helps performance if the integers being worked on are numbers larger than 32 bits, which is rather unlikely in current software. (Remember, this was 2003...) If you are adding 2 + 3 or 4,987,606 + 5,000,065 you are still going to need one register for each value and one for the answer, and the system doesn't care whether they are 32-bit or 64-bit registers, because you can only store one value in them at any given time.

When operating on floating point (decimal) numbers, a 64-bit register would seem to give added precision, as it can hold more numbers after the decimal place, but the x86 architecture, on which all current 32-bit Intel and AMD CPUs are based already provides for 64-bit floating point registers (actually 80 bits internally) so no advantage is gained there either. So what's the point? Well, there is one, and it's a good one. Memory.

To access an area in the computer's physical memory (RAM) to store or retrieve data, the processor needs the address of that location, which is an integer number representing one byte of memory storage.

Suddenly, having 64-bit registers makes sense as, while a 32-bit processor can access up to 4.3 billion memory addresses (232) for a total of about 4GB of physical memory, a 64-bit processor could conceivably access over 18 petabytes of physical memory.

This is the one area that clearly shows why 64-bit processors are the future of computing, as demanding applications such as databases have long been scraping on the 4GB memory ceiling, and although Microsoft and Intel have combined to enable servers using the 32-bit Xeon processor and certain versions of Windows 2003 Server to utilize more than 4GB of memory, the amount that can be accessed per-application is still less than 3GB.

If you are a business with a database of a terabyte or more of information, the 64-bit AMD Athlon64 processors look pretty good right now."


Even all those years ago, memory address space was the contentious issue at hand.


Mike.

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rockedge


Joined: 11 Apr 2012
Posts: 429
Location: Connecticut, United States

PostPosted: Fri 08 Dec 2017, 23:40    Post subject:  

Quote:
You do have the 32 bit compatibility libs sfs loaded?


hello bigpup, yes I have the 32 bit compat lib sfs loaded...which 32 bit wine sfs are you using? I think that the wine 32 is missing...I have the 64 bit going but not the 32 bit version.
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Puppyt

Joined: 09 May 2008
Posts: 758
Location: Gatton, Queensland

PostPosted: Sat 09 Dec 2017, 08:35    Post subject:  

Dunno I must have missed something essential at an early stage of PAE / non-PAE architecture, but I have this question regarding RAM utilization. So your non-PAE can't "read" more than 3GB of RAM in your system, leaving the rest... to do what? Does the system use precisely 1.5 sticks of 2GB RAM all the time, or does it float its 3GB requirement over the sticks at random? Does this mean that in a 32-bit Puppy (etc) that you *might* be spreading the load more or less equally over whatever banks of RAM you might have on board, thus possibly improving the overall longevity of the said RAM? Does anyone have a link or a handle on the issue?
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bigpup


Joined: 11 Oct 2009
Posts: 9687
Location: Charleston S.C. USA

PostPosted: Sat 09 Dec 2017, 08:55    Post subject:  

PAE
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_Address_Extension
As I understand it.
A 32 bit operating system can only work with the first 4 GB of memory it sees. Any other memory, above 4GB, will not be used.

A Puppy version with PAE enabled.
The PAE allows it to be able to work with and use more than 4GB of memory up to 64GB.

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When I was a kid I wanted to be older.... This is not what I expected Shocked
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bigpup


Joined: 11 Oct 2009
Posts: 9687
Location: Charleston S.C. USA

PostPosted: Sat 09 Dec 2017, 09:06    Post subject:  

rockedge wrote:
Quote:
You do have the 32 bit compatibility libs sfs loaded?


hello bigpup, yes I have the 32 bit compat lib sfs loaded...which 32 bit wine sfs are you using? I think that the wine 32 is missing...I have the 64 bit going but not the 32 bit version.

I do not think the Wine 64 is totally working for 32bit programs.

In my example I was using the 32bit version of Wine.
Not a Wine SFS but a Wine install from here:
Wine 2.0_V2.0.2
http://www.murga-linux.com/puppy/viewtopic.php?t=88711

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When I was a kid I wanted to be older.... This is not what I expected Shocked
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Puppyt

Joined: 09 May 2008
Posts: 758
Location: Gatton, Queensland

PostPosted: Sat 09 Dec 2017, 20:03    Post subject:  

ah - good call bigpup and thanks for the clarification of PAE and no PAE, the wikipedia link you provided makes interesting reading...

EDIT: and this follow-on link also makes it clearer https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/3_GB_barrier

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J_D_

Joined: 11 Apr 2014
Posts: 118
Location: Indiana

PostPosted: Sat 09 Dec 2017, 23:45    Post subject:  

I tried 64 bit tahrpup on a flashdrive. Faster than 32 bit for sure. Installed it on my Acer and it is clearly smoother and faster than 32. Took a little work to get my wireless printer going but I got it.
I tried it on my older Dells but it does not seem to have drivers for the wireless. Broadcom, I think. No big deal since the 32 bit is fine on them.
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