max memory for 32bit fedora?

Jerry Feldman gaf at
Thu Jul 30 20:57:39 UTC 2009

On 07/27/2009 11:26 AM, Kevin Kempter wrote:
> Hi all;
> whats the max memory (Ram) that 32bit Fedora can actually use?
> I'm getting a laptop with a quad core chip and 8G of ram, can I take full 
> advantage of this with 32bit Fedora or do I need to run x86_64?
As has been pointed out, a 32-bit Linux with a PAE enabled kernel will
address most of your memory, but consider that a 64-bit kernel can
access memory linearly, and PAE is segmented. A 32-bit kernel cannot
take advantage of the 8 additional registers on your x86_64 processor.
IMHO, you are much, much better off with a 64-bit kernel. With a 64-bit
kernel you can run both 32-bit and 64-bit applications. There are very
few reasons that I can think of to use a 32-bit kernel (I'm biased since
I have been 64-bit since the before Dec Alpha was released). Probably
one disadvantage of running a 64-but system is that you need both 64-bit
and 32-bit libraries. But, considering you are getting a quad core chip
and 8MB RAM, it would be quite a waste. If you want a 32-bit Fedora, run
it in a virtual machine. KVM and Virtual Box should run very nicely in
your configuraiton.

Jerry Feldman <gaf at>
Boston Linux and Unix
PGP key id: 537C5846
PGP Key fingerprint: 3D1B 8377 A3C0 A5F2 ECBB  CA3B 4607 4319 537C 5846

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