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How does it feel using 32GB RAM? Has anybody had that experience? And is it really worth it?

asked Jun 19 '10 at 17:03

Stanislav's gravatar image


edited Jun 19 '10 at 17:09

Fogarty's gravatar image

Fogarty ♦♦

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No, it is not worth it. There are very few times when your system will even use 8GB of RAM, let along 32. More RAM doesn't increase speed beyond a certain point. If the program that you use only addresses a max of 8GB of RAM, then 8GB is all you need for optimal results. However, all 32 bit programs address a max of 4GB of ram, and all 64 bit programs usually address 4-6 GB, rarely 8 or higher. So, no. 32GB of RAM is just overkill. Plus, it would cost you a fortune.

answered Jun 19 '10 at 17:07

chadt4's gravatar image


ok thank you! really helped!

(Jun 19 '10 at 17:12) Stanislav Stanislav's gravatar image

No problem. I'm glad I helped.

(Jun 19 '10 at 17:14) chadt4 chadt4's gravatar image

Your facts are all wrong ! A 32bit OS can only address 3 and a bit GB's memory that doesntbmean to say 32 bit programs use max of 4GB's... A 64bit OS can address 128GB's memory. This doesn't mean programs use more memory... The operating system decides how much memory and how much swap file each application uses, the more memory available the more physical memory will b used you can never have "too much memory!"

(Jun 19 '10 at 21:00) Headwards Headwards's gravatar image

Actually, a 32 bit OS can address 4GB (232 bytes) of total "address space". Since device drivers need to be addressed, that memory is taken out of the total. If you have 1.5GB of video memory, you would have 2.5 GB left for everything else, including RAM address space.

64GB OSs can address 264 bytes, or 16777216 TB, way over 128GB. I think you're thinking about Windows Server Datacenter Edition 32-bit, which uses memory paging techniques to see 128GB using smaller "pages". It still can't open a 5GB image in RAM.

Also note that if you put a 32-bit device in a 64-bit system and OS, you'll see problems. For example, I have a 32-bit NIC which therefore requires its address space to be below the 4GB line. Since I have a 64-bit OS and 8GB RAM installed, the nic can't see its own memory as it would be up over the 8GB barrier. Thus I can't use that NIC. These are the "driver problems" that initially plagued 64-bit systems.

(Jun 19 '10 at 23:37) tsilb tsilb's gravatar image

You can address far beyond 4GB of RAM in a 32bit operating system by using PAE, which allows for 36 bit memory addressing rather than 32bit.

This does not get around the limitation that 32bit Windows places on applications, though. All 32bit editions of Windows allow a single process to use a maximum of 2GB of address space (this can be extended to 3GB using a kernel switch, but it's not recommended).

32bit applications on 64bit Windows, if they have the Large Address Aware flag set, can use a maximum of 4GB of address space. If a 32bit application does not have this flag set, it's still limited to 2GB of address space.

I don't remember the limit for 64bit applications on 64bit Windows off hand, but the limit is so insanely high that you would need a system with terabytes of RAM in order to reach it. Basically, a non-issue.

(Jul 29 '10 at 17:26) Leapo Leapo's gravatar image

It seems some have understood the idea that 4GB of RAM does not mean 4GB of free RAM, and that 32-bit OSes do not necessarily have a limitation on RAM. The common belief is that 32-bit processors can only address 232 8-bit bytes because most people don't think about the other types in software development. Unfortunately this rings true for most implementations. However, consider an implementation where the smallest addressable unit is a 32-bit int. At the lowest level, address 0 refers to the first 32-bit int. That's 4x 8-bit bytes with one address. How many 8-bit bytes can your OS/application make use of with a 32-bit address, if the addressable unit is 32 bits in length? This isn't an imaginary situation, either. DSPs commonly have 16 or 32-bit 'bytes', so the memory you buy that has a capacity represented in 8-bit bytes only has 1/4 the number of '32-bit bytes'. This is the reason technical programmers prefer to refer to what's currently a 'byte' as an 'octet'.

(Oct 30 '10 at 01:26) Seb Seb's gravatar image
showing 5 of 6 show all

Yeah 32 gigs of ram is complete overkill (for now, who knows programs in the future could use that much memory but for now) it is a complete waste of money because some motherboards can't even handle 32 gigs of memory so you would be wasting a fortune for something that you can't even use

answered Jun 19 '10 at 19:25

FilipinoPower's gravatar image


edited Oct 30 '10 at 20:37


What are you basing that statement on? I can think of a number of things that would benefit greatly from having that much RAM in a single system. It might be overkill for something like web browsing, but how do we know that's what the OP intends to do with the system (he didn't say)?

If he's doing some extremely hardware intensive work in photoshop, editing HD video in real time, using a large number of virtual machines, loading a large database, or any number of other tasks...that much RAM could very well help things out significantly.

(Jul 29 '10 at 17:30) Leapo Leapo's gravatar image

Yes but if your motherboard doesn't support it then what's the point? (If your motherboard only supports 8 gigs of ram you'd only be able to use 8 gigs.)

(Oct 08 '10 at 04:41) FilipinoPower FilipinoPower's gravatar image

@FilipinoPower: natumpok mo sir! :D

(Nov 27 '11 at 08:37) xedric14 xedric14's gravatar image

I dont know but I would sure love to know. I only have 3 on my laptop and 1 on my netbook which I am using now.

answered Jun 19 '10 at 19:28

Thetechguy4711's gravatar image


answered Jun 19 '10 at 22:48

ageekmom's gravatar image

ageekmom ♦

It's also very dependant upon hardware. A CPU that doesn't support PAE won't be able to use this feature as it is enabled by default in 32-bit MacOSX.

(Oct 30 '10 at 01:50) Seb Seb's gravatar image

i dont see a point in having that much ram unless you are into some heavy duty stuff... servers is but one reason, video editing, animations, CAD, Simulations are but a few... but for the regular user, 8 is more then enough...

answered Jun 19 '10 at 23:05

trueb's gravatar image


"at this point in time" should be added

(Oct 30 '10 at 11:31) trueb trueb's gravatar image

I would feel like I wasted a lot of money. I would have 32gbs of ram that will mean nothing in 5 years because it will have a slower refresh than the ram 5 years from now with same quantity, and even then 32gb would still be useless.

answered Jun 19 '10 at 23:11

blackbird307's gravatar image


edited Jun 19 '10 at 23:12

the more ram you have the more stable your computer will be over time. that is the computer will run long stably between reboots, I reboot every 2 to 2 1/2 months. I have a 64 bit windows 7 ultimate 8Gb Quad core Q6600 desktop. That's why when asked I always say get as much disk space and ram as you can afford. it better to get a slightly slower CPU and more ram, than a faster CPU crippled back a lack of ram.

answered Jul 20 '10 at 14:07

mnymj's gravatar image


edited Jul 20 '10 at 14:10

i think that the only operation system and hardware that can use 32 gigs of ram is mac osx with a mac pro and that supports up to 64 gigs but its still overkill to go with 32 gigs of ram nothing uses that much ram

answered Jun 19 '10 at 19:41

Monkinto's gravatar image


windows 64 can take upto 128GB

(Jul 29 '10 at 17:19) Tim Fontana Tim%20Fontana's gravatar image

Unfortunately, my current iMac only supports 4GB of RAM, do that's what I have.

answered Jun 19 '10 at 21:02

refrwfrwgrfd's gravatar image


edited Jun 19 '10 at 21:02

Do you have any other opinions? If you do please share them with us!

answered Jun 27 '10 at 12:32

Stanislav's gravatar image


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Asked: Jun 19 '10 at 17:03

Seen: 41,897 times

Last updated: Jan 04 '13 at 10:19