In his Sept. 25 lead story, associate editor Stuart Johnston reported that the 32-bit version of Windows Vista provides users with “only 3GB of memory, a limitation that the 64-bit edition doesn’t have.”
Other 32-bit operating systems have similar memory constraints, but Stuart pointed out that 64-bit versions of Vista can address 8GB to 128GB of RAM, depending on the edition (Home Basic, Business, Enterprise, or Ultimate).
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Several subscribers commented that the total amount of addressable RAM on 32-bit systems is 4GB, not 3GB. Reader K. Boriskin explains it this way:
- “The various versions [of Windows] reported 3GB because that’s all that was available to the user. The rest is used internally for housekeeping, which certainly makes it supported. That has been fixed with [32-bit] Vista SP1, which now reports all installed memory up to 4GB.
“See, for a start, [Microsoft Knowledge Base] article 946003.”
Password-cracking utility sets off false alarms
Contributing editor Ryan Russell’s Sept. 25 column in our paid content reviewed the free Cain & Abel utility. This program is designed to find and reveal all the passwords that are stored on a PC’s hard disk, which can be useful to legitimate admins as well as nefarious intruders.
It’s understandable that such a program would trigger alerts from your antivirus application. Unfortunately, several readers begged off downloading the program as a result of such antivirus alerts. Brett Shand writes:
- “FYI, Cain & Abel is producing a hit with Avast AV for [the] Win32:Oliga Trojan. It’s probably a false positive, and the forums have a reassuring reply from the coders that the program can be whitelisted. But I’m not game, especially for this type of software.”
In a future Perimeter Scan column, Ryan will examine in greater detail the issue of antivirus false positives. Stay tuned!
| Readers K. Boriskin and Brett Shand will each receive a gift certificate for a book, CD, or DVD of their choice for sending tips we printed. Send us your tips via the Windows Secrets contact page.|
The Known Issues column brings you readers’ comments on our recent articles. Dennis O’Reilly is technical editor of WindowsSecrets.com.