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How much RAM does Windows support?

Ever wondered how much ram does your Windows support? If you do, then you have landed on the right page.

The question doesn’t have a single answer. There have been many Windows version since its inception in 1985. The first version of Windows was MS-DOS.

It was CUI (character user interface) environment. With time, GUI environments were released and an exponential increase in processing power was seen.

Each year, new hardware are released to accompany the increasing demand of software tools. There are other popular OS used. They are Linux and OS.

But, for now, we will focus on Windows and how much ram it supports.

 The limitation of 32-bit Windows

32-bit Windows has a serious drawback. It only supports 4 GB of RAM. And, if you are using 32-bit Windows version, you have no option to other than use 4 GB of RAM.

You can remove the limitation by using a non-32 bit Windows.

 Windows 10 — the latest Version

Let’s start with the latest version of Windows — the Windows 10. It has been popular among the masses as it has brought back some of the key features that made it successful. The Windows also saw the entry of Microsoft Edge, a new browser to combat the dominance of Google Chrome.

Windows 10 professional and enterprise version supports a maximum of 2 TB of RAM. Yes, you read it right. 2 TB of awesomeness. But, rarely a normal user needs so much of raw high-performance storage. They are mainly used by servers.

On the other hand, Windows 10 Home supports only 128 GB of RAM. As mentioned above, if you are using a 32-bit version of Windows, you will only get to use 4 GB of RAM.

  • Windows 10 Professional and Enterprise — 2 TB

  • Windows 10 Home — 128 GB

  • 32 GB Windows 10 Version — 4 GB

 Windows 8.1 — the old horse

Windows 8.1 was not well received by the consumers. It was in best interest of Microsoft to phase it out as soon as possible. With the release of Windows 10, they have done just that.512-GB-windows-max-ram-620x315

Windows 8.1 Pro and Enterprise offers the largest support for RAM. You can use 512 GB of RAM with the two version. It is 1/4th of the RAM supported by Windows 10 professional and enterprise version.

Nevertheless, it is an overkill for a general purpose machine. Another key version of Windows 8.1, such as Windows 8.1 RT supports 4 GB of RAM. If you are not using the RT version, you get a support of 128 GB of RAM.

  • Windows 8.1 Pro and Enterprise — 512 GB

  • Windows 8.1 — 128 GB

  • Windows 8.1 RT — 4 GB

  • 32 GB Windows 8.1 version — 4 GB

 Windows 7 — A good step towards the future

Compared to Windows 8.1, Windows 7 was somewhat received well by the consumers. It does have its own problems, but we are not going to discuss it here.

The maximum RAM of 192 GB is supported by Windows 7 Pro, Enterprise, Ultimate. For very basic computers, 2 GB of RAM supported is provided by Windows 7 started edition.

On the other hand, 8 and 16 GB of RAM are supported by Windows 7 home basic and premium respectively.

  • Windows 7 Pro, Enterprise, Ultimate — 192 GB

  • Windows 7 home basic & home premium — 8 GB and 16 GB respectively.

  • Windows 7 Starter Edition — 2 GB

  • Windows 7 32 Bit edition (expect starter edition) — 4 GB

 Windows Vista — The Disaster in the Windows Family.

Windows Vista was liked by few and it doesn’t have any good stories to be told. For the sake of the article completeness, I will list the memory support for the Windows Vista.

Windows Vista RAM support is similar to Windows 7. Windows Vista Business, Enterprise, and Ultimate edition offers 128 GB of RAM support.

Similarly, Windows Vista Starter Edition has only 1 GB of RAM support. The Windows home basic and premium support 8 GB and 16 GB of RAM support respectively.

  • Windows Vista Business, Enterprise, Ultimate — 128 GB

  • Windows Vista home basic & home premium — 8 GB and 16 GB respectively.

  • Windows Vista Starter Edition — 1 GB

  • Windows Vista 32 Bit version — 4 GB(expect starter edition).

 Windows XP — The most popular Windows Ever

Windows XP is very old OS in the Windows Family. It is also the most liked and used OS.

All 32 Bit of Windows XP supports 4 GB of RAM. The 64-bit version of Windows XP offers a support of 128 GB of RAM.

The Windows XP Starter Edition only offers support for 512 MB.

  • Windows XP 32-bit —4 GB

  • Windows XP 64-bit — 128 GB

  • Windows XP Starter Edition — 512 MB

 So, how much RAM you can install?

Even though current or previous Windows offers high RAM support, it is the motherboard/CPU combo that acts as a bottleneck. Most of the motherboards come with 4 slots of RAMs and can maximum support 128 GB of RAM(if each slot is occupied with 32 GB of RAM).

Server motherboard has a different story altogether.

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