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tech.junk at myfairpoint

Dec 1, 2009, 12:54 PM

Post #1 of 17 (1700 views)
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System Memory

If I am reading this correctly my system here is not seeing all 8GB of
memory, though the system bios does.

cat /proc/meminfo

MemTotal: 5581372 kB

MemFree: 4051424 kB

Buffers: 240436 kB

Cached: 645496 kB

SwapCached: 0 kB



Any reason where to check why all the memory?

Thanks
Sean


cfaulkner70 at gmail

Dec 1, 2009, 2:05 PM

Post #2 of 17 (1649 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Do you have 2 or more video cards?

On Tue, Dec 1, 2009 at 2:54 PM, sean <tech.junk [at] myfairpoint> wrote:
> If I am reading this correctly my system here is not seeing all 8GB of
> memory, though the system bios does.
>
> cat /proc/meminfo
>
> MemTotal:        5581372 kB
>
> MemFree:         4051424 kB
>
> Buffers:          240436 kB
>
> Cached:           645496 kB
>
> SwapCached:            0 kB
>
>
>
> Any reason where to check why all the memory?
>
>                Thanks
>                Sean
>
>


1i5t5.duncan at cox

Dec 1, 2009, 3:46 PM

Post #3 of 17 (1650 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

sean posted on Tue, 01 Dec 2009 15:54:36 -0500 as excerpted:

> If I am reading this correctly my system here is not seeing all 8GB of
> memory, though the system bios does.
>
> cat /proc/meminfo
>
> MemTotal: 5581372 kB
>
> MemFree: 4051424 kB
>
> Buffers: 240436 kB
>
> Cached: 645496 kB
>
> SwapCached: 0 kB
>
>
>
> Any reason where to check why all the memory?

No time to detail ATM, but at least some of it may have to do with the
legacy 32-bit PCI device I/O area at the top of 32-bit memory -- that is,
at the top of the 4 gig address space. That takes a chunk of memory
address space, typically a half gig tho it may be a gig or so (but you
seem to have even more missing than that??) for device io use. If your
bios and the kernel aren't setup properly to leave a hole in the physical
memory address space there, the real memory addresses behind the io
addresses will be masked and that memory not available.

Some BIOSs actually count more memory than one has when this hole is
active, counting "thru" the hole, but displacing the real physical memory
up above 4 gig, so 8 gig may appear as 9 or 10 gig. Others do that, but
then subtract the memory hole, so the total returns to normal. Others
may simply skip that area when detecting memory and not show it at all,
so the memory count appears normal, even tho the hole is there.

But if you don't have that hole configured properly, you WILL lose access
to the real memory behind it.

Gotta run...




--
Duncan - List replies preferred. No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master." Richard Stallman


tech.junk at myfairpoint

Dec 1, 2009, 5:26 PM

Post #4 of 17 (1651 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Chris Faulkner wrote:
> Do you have 2 or more video cards?
>

only one video card


tech.junk at myfairpoint

Dec 1, 2009, 6:14 PM

Post #5 of 17 (1646 views)
Permalink
Re: Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Duncan wrote:
>
> But if you don't have that hole configured properly, you WILL lose access
> to the real memory behind it.
>

I forgot to setup for the hole in BIOS.
It looks much better now.

MemTotal: 7649744 kB
MemFree: 6832176 kB
Buffers: 22108 kB
Cached: 299636 kB
SwapCached: 0 kB

Thanks Duncan.


1i5t5.duncan at cox

Dec 1, 2009, 11:06 PM

Post #6 of 17 (1643 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

sean posted on Tue, 01 Dec 2009 21:14:28 -0500 as excerpted:

> Duncan wrote:
>>
>> But if you don't have that hole configured properly, you WILL lose
>> access to the real memory behind it.
>>
>>
> I forgot to setup for the hole in BIOS. It looks much better now.
>
> MemTotal: 7649744 kB
> MemFree: 6832176 kB
> Buffers: 22108 kB
> Cached: 299636 kB
> SwapCached: 0 kB
>
> Thanks Duncan.

Indeed. *MUCH* better! =:^)

And I'm glad you got it without me having to do the whole detailed
explanation, too. =:^)

--
Duncan - List replies preferred. No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master." Richard Stallman


chemoelectric at chemoelectric

Dec 2, 2009, 12:32 AM

Post #7 of 17 (1647 views)
Permalink
Re: Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Duncan <1i5t5.duncan [at] cox> writes:
> And I'm glad you got it without me having to do the whole detailed
> explanation, too. =:^)

You care about these things so the rest of us don't have to. :)


realnc at arcor

Dec 2, 2009, 6:20 AM

Post #8 of 17 (1645 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

On 12/02/2009 04:14 AM, sean wrote:
> Duncan wrote:
>>
>> But if you don't have that hole configured properly, you WILL lose access
>> to the real memory behind it.
>>
>
> I forgot to setup for the hole in BIOS.
> It looks much better now.
>
> MemTotal: 7649744 kB
> MemFree: 6832176 kB
> Buffers: 22108 kB
> Cached: 299636 kB
> SwapCached: 0 kB

You're still missing half a GB though. Is this a 32-bit kernel?


tech.junk at myfairpoint

Dec 2, 2009, 8:28 AM

Post #9 of 17 (1649 views)
Permalink
Re: Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Nikos Chantziaras wrote:

>>
>> MemTotal: 7649744 kB
>> MemFree: 6832176 kB
>> Buffers: 22108 kB
>> Cached: 299636 kB
>> SwapCached: 0 kB
>
> You're still missing half a GB though. Is this a 32-bit kernel?
>

No.
2.6.30-gentoo-r5 #10 SMP Wed Nov 25 16:42:59 EST 2009 x86_64 AMD
Opteron(tm) Processor 246 AuthenticAMD GNU/Linux


realnc at arcor

Dec 2, 2009, 12:20 PM

Post #10 of 17 (1660 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

On 12/02/2009 06:28 PM, sean wrote:
> Nikos Chantziaras wrote:
>
>>>
>>> MemTotal: 7649744 kB
>>> MemFree: 6832176 kB
>>> Buffers: 22108 kB
>>> Cached: 299636 kB
>>> SwapCached: 0 kB
>>
>> You're still missing half a GB though. Is this a 32-bit kernel?
>>
>
> No.
> 2.6.30-gentoo-r5 #10 SMP Wed Nov 25 16:42:59 EST 2009 x86_64 AMD
> Opteron(tm) Processor 246 AuthenticAMD GNU/Linux

If this isn't due to a graphics card using system RAM instead of GPU RAM
(integrated cards do this), then you might want to look whether a BIOS
update is available which might fix this.

Unless of course you don't mind the missing 0.5GB :)


tech.junk at myfairpoint

Dec 2, 2009, 4:13 PM

Post #11 of 17 (1643 views)
Permalink
Re: Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Nikos Chantziaras wrote:
>
> If this isn't due to a graphics card using system RAM instead of GPU RAM
> (integrated cards do this), then you might want to look whether a BIOS
> update is available which might fix this.
>
> Unless of course you don't mind the missing 0.5GB :)
>

My video card is not integrated, and I know there are BIOS updates for
my system, I have just not managed to update it.

Thanks, I have been meaning to look into it.


1i5t5.duncan at cox

Dec 2, 2009, 7:39 PM

Post #12 of 17 (1642 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

sean posted on Wed, 02 Dec 2009 19:13:17 -0500 as excerpted:

> My video card is not integrated, and I know there are BIOS updates for
> my system, I have just not managed to update it.

Just be careful... I managed to fry my BIOS while updating it (due to a
memory stick going bad, thus writing garbage to the flash), a couple
months ago. Had I known the recovery procedure when it happened, I might
have been able to recover it, but due to lack of knowledge, I screwed
that up too.

I ended up on my netbook, ordering a newly flashed BIOS chip for my main
machine over the net from California.... Suffice it to say that I now
know WAYYY more than I ever wanted to know, about recovering from a bad
BIOS flash.

--
Duncan - List replies preferred. No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master." Richard Stallman


raffaele.belardi at st

Dec 3, 2009, 1:21 AM

Post #13 of 17 (1653 views)
Permalink
Re: Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Duncan wrote:
> sean posted on Wed, 02 Dec 2009 19:13:17 -0500 as excerpted:
>
>> My video card is not integrated, and I know there are BIOS updates for
>> my system, I have just not managed to update it.
>
> Just be careful... I managed to fry my BIOS while updating it (due to a
> memory stick going bad, thus writing garbage to the flash), a couple
> months ago. Had I known the recovery procedure when it happened, I might
> have been able to recover it, but due to lack of knowledge, I screwed
> that up too.
>
> I ended up on my netbook, ordering a newly flashed BIOS chip for my main
> machine over the net from California.... Suffice it to say that I now
> know WAYYY more than I ever wanted to know, about recovering from a bad
> BIOS flash.
>

Same here, I had to order a new flash chip when it happened to me. The
recovery procedure you mention is specific to your motherboard model?

raffaele


tech.junk at myfairpoint

Dec 3, 2009, 1:03 PM

Post #14 of 17 (1641 views)
Permalink
Re: Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Raffaele BELARDI wrote:

>> Just be careful... I managed to fry my BIOS while updating it (due to a
>> memory stick going bad, thus writing garbage to the flash), a couple
>> months ago. Had I known the recovery procedure when it happened, I might
>> have been able to recover it, but due to lack of knowledge, I screwed
>> that up too.
>>
>> I ended up on my netbook, ordering a newly flashed BIOS chip for my main
>> machine over the net from California.... Suffice it to say that I now
>> know WAYYY more than I ever wanted to know, about recovering from a bad
>> BIOS flash.
>>
>
> Same here, I had to order a new flash chip when it happened to me. The
> recovery procedure you mention is specific to your motherboard model?
>
> raffaele
>
>

For the reason that both of you mention, in the past I have always
purchased the BIOS chip upgrade for any system I want to make sure will
not be the victim of a meltdown.
Which is why I have not upgraded this system yet again to the latest.


1i5t5.duncan at cox

Dec 3, 2009, 2:17 PM

Post #15 of 17 (1647 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Raffaele BELARDI posted on Thu, 03 Dec 2009 10:21:56 +0100 as excerpted:

> Same here, I had to order a new flash chip when it happened to me. The
> recovery procedure you mention is specific to your motherboard model?

No. It's specific to brands of BIOS. Both AMI BIOS (mine) and Award
BIOS have a recovery procedure, tho the other one (IDR the name) and
vendors such as Dell may not.

http://biosman.com/biosrecovery.html

When it first happened, when I'd try to boot it would do a floppy drive
seek, apparently trying to find that AMIBOOT.ROM file as detailed in the
above. But as I didn't know what I was doing, I used the EPROM-clear
pins on the mobo, thinking I had nothing to lose anyway and hoping to
clear the problem, and lost that. By the time I started looking for BIOS
replacement sites (which I had read about before so I knew they existed)
and came across that info, it wasn't doing a floppy seek either, so
ordering a new chip was pretty much my only option.

This board is EOLed, so no more flashes for it, but I'm going to know
what my BIOS is and have a recovery floppy ready the next time I DO do a
flash.

(That's assuming BIOS hasn't been replaced by EFI or something by then, I
think they have their own recovery procedures... FWIW, I just used the
gdisk ebuild available in bugzilla, to build gdisk, and used it to switch
all my disks over to to GPT partitions. I'm ready for > 2TiB disks now,
AND have the extra reliability of checksummed partition tables as well as
no worries about extended partitions, any more. Plus GPT (and gdisk)
allows naming the partitions, which helps quite a bit in managing them.
GPT was designed for EFI, but works quite well with standard BIOS as
well, as long as you follow the rules. Gentoo's grub 0.97-rWHATEVER has
patches that support it, and it's a kernel option, so I was good to go as
soon as I enabled that and rebuilt/reinstalled my kernel, and merged
gdisk using the bugzilla ebuild. =:^)

FWIW, routers and the like, and various firmware based media players,
etc, often have similar recovery procedures. I was familiar with them,
but wasn't aware they had recovery procedures in general computer BIOS as
well.

--
Duncan - List replies preferred. No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master." Richard Stallman


raffaele.belardi at st

Dec 4, 2009, 12:22 AM

Post #16 of 17 (1644 views)
Permalink
Re: Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Duncan wrote:
> Raffaele BELARDI posted on Thu, 03 Dec 2009 10:21:56 +0100 as excerpted:
>
>> Same here, I had to order a new flash chip when it happened to me. The
>> recovery procedure you mention is specific to your motherboard model?
>
> No. It's specific to brands of BIOS. Both AMI BIOS (mine) and Award
> BIOS have a recovery procedure, tho the other one (IDR the name) and
> vendors such as Dell may not.
>

The other one (mine) is Phoenix. I was about to write that it does not
support recovery, but maybe I'm wrong:

http://www.theeldergeek.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=21209

raf


1i5t5.duncan at cox

Dec 4, 2009, 8:37 AM

Post #17 of 17 (1643 views)
Permalink
Re: System Memory [In reply to]

Raffaele BELARDI posted on Fri, 04 Dec 2009 09:22:50 +0100 as excerpted:

> Duncan wrote:
>>
>> It's specific to brands of BIOS. Both AMI BIOS (mine) and Award
>> BIOS have a recovery procedure, tho the other one (IDR the name) and
>> vendors such as Dell may not.
>>
> The other one (mine) is Phoenix. I was about to write that it does not
> support recovery, but maybe I'm wrong:
>
> http://www.theeldergeek.com/forum/index.php?showtopic=21209

Thanks. So we know that all three of the big guys have recovery, but
some mfrs turn it off for their BIOS versions, for some reason.

Also, until reading that topic, I didn't know that USB based floppy-
drives would work, but they apparently do at least for PhoenixBIOS. I
still have a "real" floppy connector and drive on my machine.

--
Duncan - List replies preferred. No HTML msgs.
"Every nonfree program has a lord, a master --
and if you use the program, he is your master." Richard Stallman

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