View Full Version : Win98 SE can only see 256 MB mem?

25th Jul 2002, 14:08
I've been copying songs from cassettes to the hard drive, and then from there to CDs. Even after closing almost every program with alt-ctrl-del, the computer eventually acts as though it runs out of memory, while copying from the cassette (not the burning to CDs). The hard drive light stays on, and the computer gets very slow, and either ignores my instructions, or takes a very long time to execute them...all of this while the HD light stays on. I don't have a problem burning. Rebooting after every 3rd or 4th song to clear the mem before it gets to this point seems to help for a short while, but eventually, I have the same problem again. I even have to split long songs into 2 or 3 files, and then copy and paste them together in an editor. I have 512 MB DDR, and couldn't understand what the problem is. The techs at computer stores I called said that 512 DDR should be enough for anything. Then yesterday, I was told that WIN 98 can only work with 256 MB, and not DDR. Is this true? Do I have to break down and buy another more recent OS just to use my 512 DDR? Is there a less expensive and less troublesome solution? Anyway, I don't care much for Win ME. Do I need to get it anyway, or would something else work better for recording? Whatever it is, it needs to be compatible with Thief, which goes without saying, of course. :) I read somewhere that some OSes don't work well with games.

25th Jul 2002, 15:56
There should be no problem with Win98 and DDR memory. My motherboard uses DDR, and I have compatibility for installing Win98, WinNT, WinME, WinXP, etc.

You may want to change your windows settings dealing with memory management. You want to have so much virtual memory depending on how much ram you have. (don't know the relation)

Anyhow, take your comp to a place that knows what they're doing, and you should be fine. ;)

25th Jul 2002, 16:06
I've got Win98 and 320MB of RAM.

25th Jul 2002, 16:30
Thanks, guys. I appreciate it. You've given me hope :). I was hoping that a setting change would be helpful and the lesser of two evils (as opposed to installing a different OS). Thanks a lot.

25th Jul 2002, 16:59
384mgs RAM, although it's PC-133? My only problem is...even though it was set in the BIOS for large HDD (can't remember the initials right now L something???) and shows properly (9+gigs on each Drive partition, have it in four) whenever I go to install a new game...all it shows open on any of the drives I've used...is good old 2gigs available??? LOL Microslush...bah :( I thought WIN98se was supposed to fix that glich and the Large HDD setting? Then when that amount is reached..is it going to cause me a problem when it exceeds that amount? Wondering, wondering????

As far as your virtual mem...just go into control panel/system/performance/virtualmem and set it to 1x your RAM amount since you have so much actual RAM already... :) Anything else someone will need to guide you. As long as your MB was made to use DDR...you should be fine for that part :) Good Luck and Good Hunting!

26th Jul 2002, 19:58
Did you change your HD too ? Windows 98 has to be "partitioned" on anything over 40 gigs (?).

27th Jul 2002, 16:25
Thanks, New Horizon. I am not familiar with that, but I'll look into it. I appreciate it.

Howie, no, I didn't change hard drives. I am using the same ones...a 12 GB, and a 37GB.

Thanks, everyone for the suggestions. I changed virtual mem to 512. It was 1800 and 50 something. After I did that, available mem shot up to 89%, and I noticed that I can record longer songs without trouble. So far :). I don't understand why that helped. I put ConservativeSwapFile (or whatever it's called) to 1(?) a few months ago, so shouldn't that tell Windows to use all mem first before the swap file?

27th Jul 2002, 21:04
1800 and 50? Do you have 2 physical hard drives or 2 drives in partitions on the same physical drive?

If multiple page files are defined on different drives, I've been told it will first try to use the page file on the 2nd drive. Since that was overly low at only 50 (MBs), this may have been the problem. I don't know if Windows can separate the pages for the same process across multiple page files. If you have 512MB real RAM, 1800MB was way too big for the page file (on C:?). If you have multiple page files, they should be on different *physical* hard drives, not on different drives in different partitions on the same physical drive. The recommendation is that the total of all page files on all drives be 1.5 times of installed RAM. However, I usually make sure each page file is at least 1.0 times my RAM, so if I have 2 page files then I have 2.0 times for virtual memory.

See http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;Q253912 about configuring Windows 98/ME to *NOT* use more than 512MB of memory even if you physically have more than that installed. Presumably the MaxFileCache setting wasn't down at 256MB and that what was limiting you.

28th Jul 2002, 05:31
No, sorry I didn't make myself clear, Vanguard. I meant that one swap file was 1,85?. I just couldn't remember the last digit. That was the number that Windows came up with when the "Let Windows manage my virtual memory settings" was selected. And it was also the amount of space available on the C: drive. And thanks a lot for the link. I'll check it out right now.

28th Jul 2002, 05:48
If you have 512 MB of system RAM, I would've thought Windows would've used something close to 768 MB (512 MB x 1.5) for the page file size. 185x MB is more than double that.

"And it was also the amount of space available on the C: drive."
You definitely don't want your page file to consume ALL of your free disk space. Windows itself requires the availability of temporary disk space either in the TEMP directory, for log files, temp files in other directories that exist only when a process is running, etc. You can't let the page (swap) file suck up all free disk space.

You might want to back off from 185x MB to something more typical, like 768 MB. What happens if you set it to, say, 512 MB, exit to DOS and delete the page file (win386.swp for Windows 98, I think), reboot to use that new value of 512 MB, reset virtual memory to let Windows automatically recompute what it likes, and reboot? What is the page file size then?

28th Jul 2002, 06:22
I just now tried to delete the win386.swp in a DOS window, and it told me that access was denied. I guess I would need to change an attribute. But if it is read only, then how can Windows write to it? Maybe I don't need to delete it anyway. The current size (after I changed it to 512 MB a couple of posts ago) is 191 MB, which was also chosen by Windows as the minimum before all of this started. (I changed only the maximum to 512). Do you think I should try to delete it anyway? Or do I not need to? Thanks. :)

28th Jul 2002, 06:58
Set your swap file to the same size minimum and maximum for best performance.

28th Jul 2002, 08:22
Set your VM as Leatherman says. But run PCPITSTOP and they will give you a reccomendation, also check the VCACHE, I think you should have that data from the last problem you had a month or two ago.

WIN will take all available memory and reserve it if you don't cut it off.

About 1 to 2 X your RAM is the best setting for VM. The swap file cannot be deleted. It is in use when the puter is running.

If you defrag, set the VM to 0000 and run the defrag from SAFE.

On Win as the boot runs when the "starting Windows" comes up hit the F8 and you will go to Safe mode.

This info is in the TIDBITS Archive, I think.