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  1.    22 Aug 2017 #1
    Join Date : Jul 2017
    Posts : 9
    Windows 10

    Windows 10 refuses to use all of my RAM


    I have 16 GB installed, Windows sees all of them, but when I have 4 GB left it refuses to use any more. Instead Chrome gets "no memory" errors and Windows crashes apps. It's consistently 4 GB it never uses, they're listed as "available" in Task Manager, about 50/50 free and standby.

    Any ideas why this is?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  2.    23 Aug 2017 #2
    Join Date : Jan 2015
    UK, Midlands
    Posts : 10,971
    Win 10 Pro (1703)

    Hi, see these posts (there will be more of this kind) and see if any of the ideas help:
    Unable to Use All RAM installed. Solved - Windows 10 Forums
    Since Windows 10 not all of my RAM is usable. Solved - Windows 10 Forums
    Windows 10 64 Bit only 4GB Ram Usable? Solved - Windows 10 Forums
    Win 10 Not using all RAM Solved - Windows 10 Forums

    Regarding programs crashing, have you changed any settings related to your page file?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  3.    23 Aug 2017 #3
    Join Date : Jul 2017
    Posts : 9
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    My memory is all usable as windows sees it, so no different "usable" size.

    Yes, I've disabled the page file as I have more than enough memory and an SSD - consequently the modified memory has grown a bit as it's usually flushed to the disk.

    I think i've found out it may be because Windows doesn't release standby memory, when it's suppose to. If I force release it in RamMap it's perfectly OK with me, using the rest of the memory, but it will refuse an allocation if the available memory is in standby. Any ideas why this is?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  4.    23 Aug 2017 #4
    Join Date : Oct 2014
    Posts : 758
    Windows 7

    Your problem has nothing to do with standby memory. In fact it has nothing to do with RAM usage at all. The problem is that the commit charge is approaching the commmit limit. That is what the error message means. Post a screenshot of Tas Manager Performance tab showing memory info. This will provide an overview of the memory situation.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  5.    24 Aug 2017 #5
    Join Date : Jul 2017
    Posts : 9
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    I've made a screenshot from the performance tab of the task manager, including one with a program made to exhaust memory - which crashed due to no more memory when it should still have ~4GB.

    Click image for larger version. 

Name:	taskmngr.png 
Views:	17 
Size:	55.2 KB 
ID:	150252
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  6.    24 Aug 2017 #6
    Join Date : Oct 2014
    Posts : 758
    Windows 7

    As I mentioned before the problem is caused by the commit charge approaching the commit limit. It has NOTHING to do with RAM usage. Windows doesn't even have an error for low available RAM.

    It would appear that the lack of a pagefile is causing the problem. I would recommend a pagefile of at least 8 GB, preferably 16 GB, even better would be to set it as system managed. The pagefile does not work like you think it does.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  7.    24 Aug 2017 #7
    Join Date : Jul 2017
    Posts : 9
    Windows 10
    Thread Starter

    Quote Originally Posted by LMiller7 View Post
    As I mentioned before the problem is caused by the commit charge approaching the commit limit. It has NOTHING to do with RAM usage. Windows doesn't even have an error for low available RAM.

    It would appear that the lack of a pagefile is causing the problem. I would recommend a pagefile of at least 8 GB, preferably 16 GB, even better would be to set it as system managed. The pagefile does not work like you think it does.
    That's exactly why I'm asking - if I knew how and why, I wouldn't need any help.

    So what you're saying is, it's impossible for me to use all of my RAM without a pagefile?
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  8.    24 Aug 2017 #8
    Join Date : Oct 2014
    Posts : 758
    Windows 7

    Quote Originally Posted by thecokeguy View Post
    That's exactly why I'm asking - if I knew how and why, I wouldn't need any help.

    So what you're saying is, it's impossible for me to use all of my RAM without a pagefile?
    You are misinterpreting the graph. Task Manager shows 4.6 GB RAM available but the larger part of this is on the standby list. This is very much misunderstood. It acts as a kind of cache and is a major contributor to good performance. But while it is doing that it is also considered as available memory for immediate use by any application that needs it. It is better than free memory. Free memory is like keeping cash in a jar at home. It does nobody any good until it is used. Standby memory is like money in a high interest savings account that can be immediately withdrawn at any time without penalty. In this case the interest is performance. Remember this is only an analogy to illustrate how things work. Don't take the analogy too far.

    Windows memory manager tries very hard to maintain a reasonable balance between in use memory and the standby list in an attempt to maximize performance. This is VERY complex. You don't ever want the graph to show 100% usage. That would mean there is nothing on the standby list and that would be death to performance.

    Only the section of the graph to the far right is that evil free memory. In this case it appears to be less than 2 GB. Windows tries very hard to keep this small, zero being the optimum value. But under real world conditions this often isn't possible. On my 8 GB system this is often zero but with more memory that becomes more difficult to achieve.

    The commit limit is for practical purposes RAM size plus pagefile size. With no pagefile it will be somewhat less than RAM size. Windows will never allow the commit charge to exceed this limit. When the limit would be exceeded by a memory allocation you will get the out of memory error. This effectively limits your workload. This limit can occur even when there is plenty of available or even free memory. This does not mean that Windows is in some way holding memory back. That isn't the problem.

    Bottom line is you need a pagefile.
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  9.    24 Aug 2017 #9
    Join Date : Oct 2013
    A Finnish expat in Germany
    Posts : 12,953
    Windows 10 Pro

    Quote Originally Posted by LMiller7 View Post
    You are misinterpreting the graph. Task Manager shows 4.6 GB RAM available but the larger part of this is on the standby list. This is very much misunderstood. It acts as a kind of cache and is a major contributor to good performance. But while it is doing that it is also considered as available memory for immediate use by any application that needs it. It is better than free memory. Free memory is like keeping cash in a jar at home. It does nobody any good until it is used. Standby memory is like money in a high interest savings account that can be immediately withdrawn at any time without penalty. In this case the interest is performance. Remember this is only an analogy to illustrate how things work. Don't take the analogy too far.
    Only an analogy but absolutely the best I've ever heard to explain this. Excellent, went straight to my OneNote notebook "Quotes to remember"!
      My ComputerSystem Spec
  10.    24 Aug 2017 #10
    Join Date : Aug 2014
    Forever West
    Posts : 3,922
    Win10 Home and Pro, Win10 Insider Preview, Win7 Home, Linux Mint

    Quote Originally Posted by Kari View Post
    Only an analogy but absolutely the best I've ever heard to explain this. Excellent, went straight to my OneNote notebook "Quotes to remember"!
    Ditto!!!!
      My ComputerSystem Spec

 
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