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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am a bit concerned since my windows xp take 700 megs of ram in IDLE... i think this is too much just for the stupid OS doing nothing special, i mean come on, I had windows xp on a old machine with 256 megs of ram and it was taking 50 megs in IDLE, but now it takes 700? It is the same disc that i used years ago.

Specs if needed:
Intel core 2 duo E7200 [email protected],53 GHz
3GB of Ram
XFX ATI radeon 4870 1GB
Realtek HD audio ALC888
Intel DG33BU Motherboard
500 GB segate hard drive
 

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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

It would be very useful if you could post a screenshot of Task Manager - Performance tab.

The memory used by the system and applications is highly dynamic and depends on how much memory you have, what applications are doing, and what they were doing previously during the session. The memory manager will always try to find some use for as much memory as possible, even if only for something of trivial value. Free memory is wasted memory.
 

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Team Manager - Networking , Moderator - Micros
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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

I don't see anything unusual at all. You have 3 gigs of ram and a little more than 2 gigs free. Windows XP would never run on or with 50megs of ram. You may have been confusing the actual amount of free memory on the old XP box and not taking into consideration that the majority was being cached to your swap file.

Just for comparison, I have 57 processes running and am using about 1200MB of memory.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Re: Windows XP ram usage...

I don't see anything unusual at all. You have 3 gigs of ram and a little more than 2 gigs free. Windows XP would never run on or with 50megs of ram. You may have been confusing the actual amount of free memory on the old XP box and not taking into consideration that the majority was being cached to your swap file.

Just for comparison, I have 57 processes running and am using about 1200MB of memory.
Old machine had 256 Megs of ram, windows was taking 50 megs in idle fyi, anyways, how do i disable this caching thing?
 

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Team Manager - Networking , Moderator - Micros
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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

Old machine had 256 Megs of ram, windows was taking 50 megs in idle fyi, anyways, how do i disable this caching thing?
I can tell you that's mathematically impossible. You don't want to disable the caching (using a virtual memory swap file) it's a good thing needed by Windows. Your system is fine.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Re: Windows XP ram usage...

remember the old computers? Whole operating system taking less than 1 MB of ram... good old DOS days. Now a notepad needs 4 megs... a freaking notepad, so just tell me anything i need to know, i dont want an OS that i purchased chew up the ram, newer games will lag like hell because a goddamn 10 year old OS needs almost 1GB of ram idle.
 

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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

:laugh: Yes, I remember. I still have my 5 1/4" DOS floppy disks.

You would have to give me a specific error or problem you're running into before I could offer you a solution. As it stands, you are within the norm for memory usage with Windows XP. You could probably shave a few MBs off the amount of memory you're using now, but it's not going to make a difference. Especially when you still have 2 gigs free. It's like remodeling to make an empty closet bigger.

As operating systems and software evolve, they get more complex and use more processor power and memory. Games are the biggest resource hog. Now, if you are having problems running a game, you have to compare the hardware and memory your system has to what's recommended by the game manufacturer to see if you meet their requirements. If it's an online game, you'd have to investigate your network speeds.

I'm not trying to BS you. If you gave me your computer to repair, I'd give it back and tell you the same thing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 · (Edited)
Re: Windows XP ram usage...

Problem is i dont understand why it takes so much ram for doing absolutley NOTHING.
Quote from this site: System requirements for Windows XP operating systems
At least 64 megabytes (MB) of RAM (128 MB is recommended)

When i had 2GB of ram it took 500 Megs idle, now that i have 3GB, it takes almost double the amount... is maybe the New RAM chip damaged? or are the old ones? Games that require 3 gigs of RAM might not even run because OS is chewing up too much
 

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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

I've never understood how Microsoft calculates their minimum memory requirements, and what they recommend vs. real world are 2 different things. But, I'm sure they take into consideration the use of a swap file. This is where Windows takes some frequently used information from main memory and temporarily places it in a special file on your hard drive. This method is slower than accessing RAM directly and needs to be done more frequently when the computer is low on RAM. The amount of info placed in the swap file will decrease when you add more memory. That's why it's not uncommon to add ram to a computer and find that you're now using more main memory than before the upgrade, but the PC will still run faster.

If you open Task Manager and look under Processes, you'll see a list of all the software and Windows programs that are running in the background. Under the column Memory Usage is the amount of memory that's being used by each program. Add em up, that's where your memory is going. All those little icons in the lower right of your screen are programs that are running in the background as well, and using up memory. Maybe you need some of them, maybe you don't. Even if you leaned out your system to bare bones for memory use, you're only talking about saving maybe an extra 500 mb.
 

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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

As others have said, there is nothing unusual or wrong in the task Manager display. The memory used by the system is by no means a fixed quantity. The memory manager has currently allocated a large amount of memory to the system because there is currently no better use for it. It is being put to good use. When an application requires more memory the system usage will be cut back, drastically if necessary. I have seen this occur many times. The memory manager will always try to allocate memory where it will do the most good to improve performance. It does this very well.

Reducing the memory used by the system, if it could be done, would impair performance. Nothing good would come from it. A large value for the system cache is a good thing, a very good thing. Reducing this would be a bad thing.

Memory management in XP is vastly more complex and sophisticated than you imagine. Microsoft has done an enormous amount of research and testing on the memory management in Windows. The memory manager knows what it is doing, even if most users do not.
 

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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

Hi Nothingspecial,
You have been getting some very good advice form all the guys above. I have chased the same rabbit that you are chasing right now (functions using up my memory). I too remember the old dos days when memory was very expensive and you needed to keep everything not needed from running.

From above, you have 40 processes running. I have 26. Here are some ways to turn off those processes that you don't need.

1. Go to run>msconfig and hit enter. Pick the "startup" tab. Uncheck any items that you don't want to run. 'note...all programmers seem to think that their programs should be loaded into memory at startup so they will be available instantly at a touch of a key. THEY LOAD FINE IF THEY ARE STARTED FROM HARD DRIVE, no need to have them in memory.'
Another place to look is in the startup up folder. That's where some programs load a shortcut to start when you boot the computer. You can either move the shortcut to another folder (like hold or what ever you want to name it) or simply remove the shortcut altogether.

2. Next is to turn off those unneeded services that hide under "scvhost" in the device manager. You can find them here.... Go to run>msconfig and pick the "services" tab. Here you can uncheck the services that you don't want to run.
spunk.funk above mentioned Process Explorer. It is very good at seeing which processes are using the most CPU time. Not mentioned was "autoruns" which is a good tool for turning off unneeded functions "better than the services tab mentioned just above." Both process explorer and autoruns can be downloaded from Microsoft's website. They are free utilities.

Basically, after all my work to reduce the memory use, I can't see much improvement :grin: Guess all those guys above know what they were talking about.:grin:

Have a nice day,
Mack1
 

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Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Re: Windows XP ram usage...

Did everything i could, removed programs from starting up, even removed their services, and guess the result. 700 MB usage idle. Im seriously tired of this and im thinking to downgrade to windows 2000 or hell, even windows 98 because this is utter ******** that it takes so f***ing much for nothing. How am i going to play newer games that need 3 GB of ram minimum when just the damn 10 year old os is taking almost a gig for doing nothing seriously?
 

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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

I think that if I were going to downgrade, I'd go all the way back to 98. I remember how slow bootup was using 2000. I stayed with 98 until XP showed up. One of the improvements in XP was that it would turn the computer over to you before all the background stuff was fully loaded. 2000 would keep you waiting untill everything was loaded and there seemed to be a rest period for the computer.:grin:

If you recall, memory was pretty expensive back in the 98 days. You can get gigabytes now for the price of megabytes at that time. That gives me some piece of mind when I have to upgrade memory.

I very seldom brag on XP, hope not many of my friends see this.

Mack1
 

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Re: Windows XP ram usage...

Your computer is working as it should.
As mentioned previously, the memory usage of the system is not a fixed quantity but is HIGHLY variable. It depends on how much RAM you have, current system activity, and the activity in the recent past (during the current session). On bootup the memory manager will allow the system to use a large quantity of memory because that is currently the best use for it. Let the system processes use whatever they want because nobody else needs it. Better that than let it sit idle. When you run a large application the memory manager will reassign memory as needed. Memory usage by the system will be cut back, to a small fraction of it's current value if necessary. I have seen this happen many times. But it will only do this when necessary. Doing this prematurely would impair performance and give you nothing in return.

I have seen complaints about the system's supposedly excessive memory usage many times before. It is based on a misunderstanding of how the system works. Windows designers are guided by the principle that memory was intended to be used, not sit idle. Free memory is wasted memory. However much RAM you have, the system will always try to use as much of is as possible to improve performance. If you had only 256 MB of RAM the memory manager would give less memory to the system. Not because it was a good thing to do but because it had to.

But you don't have to understand any of this. Most people don't. Use your computer with large games and other applications. You will find that they actually do run, and well.

Very little modern software will run on Windows 2000, let alone Windows 98.
 
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