3Gb switch - part 3

I've been investigating the 3GB switch some more and learned a few more
valuable pieces of the puzzle. If you missed the first two installments,
here are the links to them - it's worth reading them first to know what's
going on. Then also search this newsgroup for "3GB" to read more discussion
on the topic. When I get the time, I will officially publish this
installment, but thought this group should know now.
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Probably the most important discovery is that while you can turn the switch
either on or off, you can also set how much memory you want to allocate - it
isn't all or none as I had thought. When I turned it on full bore, I
experienced problems connecting to network drives. Huh, you ask? The error
message reads "Z:\ is not accessible. Insufficient system resources exist
to complete the requested service." So what's this have to do with the
switch? Keep in mind that turning on the 3GB switch "steals" memory away
from the XP operating system and "gives" it the application side. I don't
know if there's something peculiar about my particular computer/network/XP
version, etc., but apparently something doesn't work properly when I steal
the whole GB of memory.
So, what's the secret? In the boot.ini file you can set another switch that
controls the amount of memory allocated to the application. Here's my
boot.ini file as I am now running.
[boot loader]
[operating systems]
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP
Professional 3gb limited" /fastdetect /3gb /userva=3000 /SOS
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP
Professional" /fastdetect /SOS
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP
Professional 3gb" /fastdetect /3gb /SOS
multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP
Professional 4\3gb" /fastdetect 4\3gb /SOS
If you look at the [operating systems] section, you will notice that I have
4 entries - all different. This gives me 4 different boot options if that
option is turned on. (Check the box & set the time.) Take a look at the
part in quotes right after the WINDOWS=. If you read the Microsoft info,
you are lead to believe that the only verbiage that can be there is from a
set list of possible operating systems. Not true - when I did that all the
presented options looked the same. So, customize the list. Now, I haven't
tried totally varying from the list, but what you see here does work.
The first option is the default that I am currently running. Notice the
"/userva=3000" in addition to the "/3gb" at the end - the value is the
amount of RAM that is allocated to the application side. I started at 2.5
gb by setting it to 2560. Here XP worked ok, but I hit the wall with SW.
So I bumped it to 2816 - same story. So then I wondered if maybe the
difference might be just the fact that I enabled the userva switch - nope
setting it to the full 3072 gave me back the XP problems. So, therefore the
3000 value. Where's the exact upper limit? I don't know - haven't had the
time to tweak it closer. Your mileage may vary.
The second line is the "standard" line and is quite valuable to have there
in case something goes wrong - like not installing the XP patch first. The
third line, of course, is the full 3gb allocation. The fourth line is what
Mike Eckstein was told to do with his, but I couldn't get that to make any
difference for me.
So, bottom line is if you are constantly working in the 2.0 - 2.5 Commit
Charge range, as I currently am, and just turning on the 3gb switch causes
other problems, this latest info will probably let you open up enough more
memory to get the job done.
Reply to
Wayne Tiffany
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Thanks Wayne, very helpful. I too, am experiencing slow "connect to network", now I now why. Best Regards, Devon T. Sowell
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Reply to
Devon T. Sowell
It will be interesting to see if these changes stop your errors.
Reply to
Wayne Tiffany
How many SW users out there are using or have tried the 3gb switch? If you tried and stopped, what caused you to turn it back off? Did it generate errors as I found? Have you since tried it with the /userva as described in this thread? Was your desire to use it based on SolidWorks or PhotoWorks, etc?
The reason for these questions is to gather a bit more info from a broader base before I formally write the article.
Reply to
Wayne Tiffany
I haven't used it yet, because I've been too scared by Ed's experience, but I really need to get access to more usable memory. With the way SW files have exploded in size since SW04, I have several parts that are half a GB and a number around 100MB. It's really easy to get above 1GB of memory used where SW starts to get flaky, even though I have 1.5 GB of RAM. I would love to hear from more people who have tried it.
Jerry Steiger Tripod Data Systems "take the garbage out, dear"
Reply to
Jerry Steiger
I wonder if the silence on this question is telling of more opinions such as yours. Too bad Ed put such a scare out because right now I am working on this message while waiting for a drawing view to finish. My peak Commit Charge is at 2,655,616K and still climbing. Obviously without the 3gb switch I would be long dead.
The main thing he mentioned was (and rightfully so) that if you turn on the switch without the SP patch, you will lock yourself out of your hard drive. However, it's not fatal, merely inconvenient - the worst is that you have to remove the drive, install on another machine, modify the boot.ini file, and then put the drive back where it belongs. But, if you follow the suggestion of turning on the boot options, all you have to do is choose another option without the switch parameter.
So, follow the directions, and go at it.
Reply to
Wayne Tiffany
Q1.I remember that Devon reported he was getting much faster saves. is that your experience too? Q2.I run 1.5 gb ram and 1.5 gb page and my system is happy.is there any performance benefit to me using the 3gb switch for small files? i.e. will more SW data be held in ram
Reply to
As far as faster saves, I don't see it. I went back & read through that time period and it still doesn't make any more sense than it did then. Not to say he wasn't seeing it, but just that I haven't and can't explain it.
I wouldn't think so, and just to take a guess, may actually be detrimental in that Windows is told to move out of the way. You might try kicking your page file up to 2.5 as that would take you to the process max of 4gb of addressable memory. On the other hand, I can't explain the faster saves Devon was seeing...
Reply to
Wayne Tiffany
ok what I was thinking is probably flawed free lunch material but... take the case of 2gb ram + 2gb page. as std this would allow about 1.6-1.7 of page before choking and there would be a lot of wasted ram. after the switch win takes 1gb and about 2.6 is available so... now there is 1gb of what used to be addressed in page addressed in what now happens to be ram? so if the 'overflow space' was limited to about 1gb only the space of 3-400mb win reserves for its own use, no matter what, is being used on the physical disk...and SW should run faster ??
Reply to
maybe this is why saves are faster. if the data set is less than 1gb then data is largely written straight from mem to disk, if the data set is v. large then it is largely read from disk, buffered and written to disk?? um well dunno...hope someone can straighten me out on this. cheers all
Reply to

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