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How to make Windows Server 2003 Enterprise Edition see more than 4GB RAM

Issue – After upgrading a server to Windows 2003 Enterprise Edition and adding additional memory, the OS still shows only 4 GB of RAM.

Additional Information – Physical Address Extension (PAE)

In Windows Server 2003, PAE is automatically enabled only if the server is using hot-add memory devices. In this case, you do not have to use the /PAE switch on a system that is configured to use hot-add memory devices. In all other cases, you must use the /PAE switch in the Boot.ini file to take advantage of memory over 4GB.

The newer Dell servers are capable of using hot-add memory devices, but the older servers do not.

If you upgrade an older Dell server and are experiencing the issue above, make the following change to the boot.ini file.

[boot loader]
timeout=30
default=multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)WINDOWS
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)WINDOWS="Windows Server 2003, Enterprise" /fastdetect /PAE

Add the /PAE flag to the end of the boot device. Then reboot the server.

After rebooting the correct amount of memory should be displayed

To summarize, PAE is a function of the Windows 2000 and Windows Server 2003 memory managers that provides more physical memory to a program that requests memory. The program is not aware that any of the memory that it uses resides in the range greater than 4 GB, just as a program is not aware that the memory it has requested is actually in the page file.

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1 Answer

Hi , We are having 2 windows servers with identical configuration, and also we are using the windows 2003 with vendor application, We installed 8 GB of RAM in both server , But I could only 4 GB amount of RAM in one server , I also edit the Boot.ini file with /PAE. I am really great fully to who gave the solution.


Hi

To reply your query in short. If you have any of the following versions of server it would support the maximum RAM upto 4 GB.

Windows Server 2003 R2 Standard Edition
Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition SP1
Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition SP2
Windows Storage Server 2003
Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition
Windows Small Business Server 2003

If you are using : Windows Server 2003, Web Edition
It will support only 2 GB of RAM

For your information to get a complete information about Memory Limits for Windows Releases. Please visit the following site:

(msdn.microsoft.com/en-gb/library/aa366778.aspx)

If you find it useful please do not forget to rate this solution.

Jul 14, 2010 | Microsoft Windows Server 2003 Enterprise...

3 Answers

I have installed 4 GB of RAM but it only shows 3 GB RAM


Any 32bit OS can only read up to 3.5GB of RAM. In order to read additional ram you must have a 64BIT OS.

Sep 27, 2009 | Computers & Internet

1 Answer

I have a Dell PowerEdge 6850 with 64gb ram running Windows 200 ENT x86 SP1, When I installed SP2 the server wants to start in safe mode or Last Known good unless I remove some of the memory.


I assume your are using Windows 2003 Server Enterprise Edition (the last but crucial number is missing in your post!)

The maximum RAM that can used is 32 GB for x86-based computers.
If you want to install more RAM, you have to switch to an Itanium-based processor, which allows you to utilize up to 512 GB.

See the complete list for Hardware Requirements for Windows Server 2003 here.

Aug 12, 2009 | Dell PowerEdge 6850 (PE6850SAPP) Server

1 Answer

Just a tip


If yours is a PC, Windows Vsita 64 bit should recognize 4 GB RAM. Have you tried the 64 bit bootable linux? Try with that. If you see less than 4GB, then you must check your BIOS for some setting which is the setting to share to the graphics memory or some limit.

Jun 03, 2009 | Microsoft Windows® Vista 64-bit Business...

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