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Punch Card
Posts: 15
Registered: ‎03-27-2008
Location: California
Views: 31,224
Message 1 of 45

T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

I have a T60p, today I upgraded from 2gb to 4gb but unfortunately Windows Vista Ultimate only recognizes 3gb, I was reading about this issue and I found I'm not the only one with this problem, I understood there are "technical" limitations to allocate 4gb, but, it wouldn't be reasonable that Lenovo and all the companies that manufacture computers warn about this issue????? I spent 60 dollars with no reason at all.
Do you know what the documents says about the t60p system? "UP TO 4gb"....incredible right? Since it isn't true....Windows only sees 3gb. I don't even know if it's a chipset problem or Windows problem, but I'm sure nobody is telling the truth when one buys the computer. Why don't they warn about it?????
I like my computer but I'm totally dissapointed with this issue.
Former Administrator
Posts: 8,592
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Message 2 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

Welcome to the forum. Smiley Happy
I realize that the principle point of your post was the desire for Lenovo, and perhaps other manufacturers to amend the marketing practices of stating the specifications of their hardware to take into consideration any limitations imposed by other variables, such as the operating system.
Lenovo already offers this advice and counsel within the shopping process.  When you go to the select a system to customize and purchase, you are presented with radio button selectors for memory, HDD, OS, etc. HERE is an example of the page for a T61p system.   Immediately above each section is a link which says "help me decide".
Perhaps you ordered over the phone, or through some other manner and weren't able to take advantage of this feature that provides the guidance on limitations you are looking for.
There is a good discussion about the underlying technical reasons HERE. 

Message Edited by Mark_Lenovo on 03-27-2008 07:36 PM
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Message 3 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

I just got my new T61 today with 4GB of RAM.  Smiley Happy

There was a warning about the 3GB limit when I placed the order online.

I beleive the T61 is quite capable of using all 4GB, the main problem is Vista 32 bit edition can not.  Personally, I think it is ridiculous that Microsoft did not allow the 32 bit edition to use more than 3GB.  It is obviously possible since they do it in the 32 bit server editions of Windows.

I eventually plan to upgrade my Vista to 64 bit and hope to be able to use all 4GB then.
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Message 4 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

even though both the chipset and windows OS limit addressable memory to 3GB, lenovo are correct in saving that the system accepts up to 4GB.   it does physically accept it even though the only true benefit is in a 5~8% increase in dual-channel performance during memory-intensive tasks.

if you really want to point fingers then point them at the entire industry as the limitation lies in 32-bit processor architecture, not just in operating systems or in manufacturers' advertised specs.   now that there is a better understanding of the limitations of 32-bit industry wide, proper documentation can be readily found.   that still doesn't make it right, it just makes it what it is.

the same growing pains were felt when intel released the 32-bit 80386 processor; the successor to the 16-bit 80286.   at that time (1986) computers weren't nearly as popular and the issue wasn't seen as such a big deal.   many of today's computer users aren't even old enough to remember this issue.   heck, i was only 6 years old and had just started using computers let alone starting to comprehend the complexities of memory addressing (which, admittedly, i didn't Smiley Wink).

we're sure to see the same thing happen when 64-bit architecture reaches its physical limitation unless 128-bit consumer-level processors hit store shelves before the 16.8M TB physical memory limit is reached.   lol Smiley Very Happy

the "memory limitations" and "32 vs 64 bit" sections of this article on wikipedia are a good addition to what mark linked above.

ThinkStation P700      ThinkPad P40 · 600

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Message 5 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

         If the message from Lenovo (I don't know the other manufacturers, I always bougth Thinkpads), would have been clear I wouldn't buy additional memory to my notebook. Think about it. I know you have to defend the brand and it's ok with that but you can't defend some kind of things. Obviously when one knows there is a problem one can find all the information not only on the Lenovo site but all over the net, but the problem is that when one is going to buy a notebook there is not a CLEAR
 message telling you that having 4gb make no sense. I'm not telling you that the technical problem is from Lenovo, probably the guilty is Intel or Microsoft or whatever, but I the message from Lenovo saying "UP TO 4GB" the only thing that makes is to confuse the customer because you can't use 1 GB of these 4 GB.
I worked several years at IBM and I'm engineer....imagine a person that don't know anything about computers nor how Lenovo/IBM works nor "allocation memory problems"....probably they would feel TOTALLY DISAPPOINTED AND FEEL THAT SOMEONE TOOK HIS MONEY OUT OF THE POCKET (like I feel right now).
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Message 6 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

The fact that 32-Bit Windows OS's can only handle up to 3 GB is pretty common knowledge. It has nothing to do with the manufacturer of the PC, chipset, processor, memory, etc. It's solely due to the 32-Bit Windows architecture.

I have a T61 with 4 GB of RAM, and I dual-boot 32-Bit Windows XP and 64-Bit Windows Vista Business. In XP, I have 3 GB, and in Vista 64, I have 4 GB (plus supposedly 1 GB of "Turbo" memory). That's how it is. The machine is 100% 4 GB capable, and in a 64-Bit OS, I get the full 4 GB available. There is no deception or forgotten information on Lenovo's part. For the record, the T61p can't run MacOS X either, in case you tried installing it and then complained Lenovo didn't tell you it couldn't run it.

Memory is cheap, and it makes more sense to put in the 2 GB stick and have it for when you upgrade to a 64-bit version, than it does to get a 1 GB stick, and then have to replace it with a 2 GB stick when you go to 64 bit. Here at my company, we order all our workstations with 4 GB or even 8 GB of RAM even though most machines are on 32-bit Windows and only see 3 GB because when we finalize our 64-bit build we'll be ready.

Your machine has 4 GB of memory in it, and if you upgrade your OS, you'll use all of it. I'm not sure what you want Lenovo to do - they didn't build Windows.

By the way - I'm curious - did you buy your extra 2 GB of RAM from Lenovo? If you didn't, you can't complain they didn't warn you, and if you did, I'm sure you overpaid compared to Crucial or other RAM companies.

Message Edited by mbhockey13 on 03-28-2008 09:32 AM
ThinkPad T61 - ThinkPad T410 - ThinkPad T420 - ThinkPad T430s - ThinkPad T440s - ThinkPad T460s
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Message 7 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

i'm not sure who to blame (other than Intel Smiley Wink ) but i guess i kinda looked at it as one of those things. Whenever they say "up to" it always means ok, maybe i could get that but probably not really.
54Mbps anyone?
500HP 155Mph?
Hehe... well yeah... stupid cars and all that power and i'm limited to 55Mph... geeze..  might as well get a lil scooter.
Anyways.. the 4GB thing has been popping up a lot more lately because we are at that stage of wanting more RAM and just can't use it. People tend to be stuck in their ways but change is the only constant so either change (your way of thinking sometimes) or i guess deal with it.
If you would ever need 4GB in any system then i would assume you should know about computers some what if you need that much power. If someone told you that you need 4GB to watch movies or just whatever reason then ok, you can be mad at them instead Smiley Happy
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Message 8 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

It seems that I wasn't clear....If I buy a computer that says "Up to 4gb" I suppose I can use 4gb. I can decide what for I'm using the computer (watch movies, process information or whatever), that's not the point. The point is that limitations on the usage of the memory are not well communicated (that's a fact, if you see all the forums over internet you will see I'm not the only one who bought extra memory that can't use, so the problem clearly is not the people who buy extra memory but the communication of manufacturers), besides this, I'm happy with my Thinkpad :-), and thanks everyone for the comments.
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Message 9 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

@Sebahuar wrote:

I worked several years at IBM and I'm engineer....imagine a person that don't know anything about computers nor how Lenovo/IBM works nor "allocation memory problems"....probably they would feel TOTALLY DISAPPOINTED AND FEEL THAT SOMEONE TOOK HIS MONEY OUT OF THE POCKET (like I feel right now).

as a former engineer for IBM, you should already know that 32-bit architecture has its limits.   you should also know not to make assumptions about compatibility.

if you are unhappy with your purchase then why not just return the memory and buy a 1GB module instead?   complaining about it doesn't change 32-bit architecture, doesn't change the chipset in your T60p, and doesn't change windows' ability to address a maximum of 3.25GB depending on hardware.   i understand that you're unhappy but please don't lose sight of the fact that you're in full control of the outcome here.   you can return the module or resell it.   otherwise, you can use it in your T60p with the knowledge that you'll also be able to use in a newer thinkpad with a modern chipset and 64-bit OS.

besides, even if you had a T61p, the limitation would be in the 32-bit OS you're using and your blame would then fall on microsoft's shoulders.   the problem then would be trying to convince microsoft of your woes since there are now hundreds of published articles on the limitations of 32-bit architecture.

here are three places where lenovo documents this issue in varying levels of detail:

Overview - Thinkpad T60, T60p:
"256MB, 512MB, 1GB, or 2GB and supports up to 4GB maximum memory
Note: Microsoft Windows XP supports 3GB maximum memory"
(last modified: 2007/10/27)

Legal footnotes popup found next to Total memory text on ordering pages:
"Maximum memory varies depending on model and may require replacement of standard memory with optional maximum memory module. For models with 4GB maximum memory, total accessible memory will be less and will vary depending on the system configuration."

Help me decide popup found on ordering pages next to Total memory above:
"Lenovo recommends 1GB. However, customers may want to consider 2GB to support future needs of newer applications and improve performance of Windows Vista. Please note that customers selecting the Windows XP operating system or any 32bit Vista operating system will not be able to take advantage of memory exceeding 3GB, however, if you upgrade to 4GB memory you will be able to utilize the 4GB of memory if you upgrade to Windows Vista Business at a later date."

note: the last one needs to say "Windows Vista 64-bit" rather than "Windows Vista Business" as even 32-bit SP1 cannot address more than 3GB on a thinkpad even though SP1 will report 4GB installed.

ThinkStation P700      ThinkPad P40 · 600

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Message 10 of 45

Re: T60p 4gb but 3 gb available

Lenovo didn't mislead. The hardware can accept up to 4gb of ram. It is the version of windows (32 bit) that you selected for your hardware that cannot use all of the ram.

T60 2623-D7U, 3 GB Ram. Dual boot XP and Linux Mint.
T400 2765-T7U Windows 7

Registered Linux User #160145

FYI: I am not employed by Lenovo

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