So I've googled around and tried a lot of stuff to fix this and none of it has worked. Half my RAM is hardware reserved, and I do some image processing of large collections of images, so I need that RAM.

Right now I'm running Windows 7 Home Premium on the following system:

  • Motherboard: MSI Z97S SLI Krait Edition
  • CPU: Intel Core i7-4790K @ 4.00 GHz
  • GPU: Nvidia GeForce GTX 980
  • RAM: G.SKILL Ripjaws X Series 32 GB (4 x 8 GB) 240-Pin DDR3 SDRAM DDR3 1600 (PC3 12800) Desktop Memory Model F3-1600C9Q-32GXM

I checked my motherboard's user manual before buying the RAM and it should be compatible.

I've tried going in to advanced boot options under msconfig and looking at maximum memory, and checked on unchecked I have the problem.

I have the latest BIOS updates through MSI.

The BIOS is seeing all 32 GB, as is Resource Monitor and Nvidia's Geforce Experience.

I really don't know what is up. Other posts have had people ask to see screenshots of the resource monitor and the Device Manager's resource by connections window with Memory expanded, so both of those are here:

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  • Can you test adding sticks individually and seeing the results in Windows? EG, If you have only 2x8GB added, if it sets 8GB to being hardware reserved?
    – Jonno
    Jan 29, 2016 at 17:54
  • 3
    @Entaras : an upgrade to Windows® 10 would be able to solve the licence problem. Jan 30, 2016 at 10:20
  • 1
    Sorry for the completely gratuitous comment but man that's a sweet machine. Jan 30, 2016 at 11:50
  • 1
    @TobiaTesan : because it wouldn’t be free. Jan 30, 2016 at 11:56
  • 1
    @TobiaTesan: I guess people forget that MS sell Windows in boxes in stores because they assume that it always comes free with your PC.
    – slebetman
    Jan 31, 2016 at 0:01

1 Answer 1


You need a higher edition of Windows, professional or above. Windows 7 Home Premium is limited to 16 GB. This is not a hardware limit but a limit enforced by the operating system.

From Memory Limits for Windows and Windows Server Releases

Version              Limit on X86   Limit on X64
Windows 7 Ultimate      4 GB          192 GB  
Windows 7 Enterprise    4 GB          192 GB  
Windows 7 Professional  4 GB          192 GB  
Windows 7 Home Premium  4 GB          16 GB
Windows 7 Home Basic    4 GB          8 GB
Windows 7 Starter       2 GB          N/A

Alternatively just click that button to get your free* upgrade to Windows 10, where:

Version              Limit on X86   Limit on X64
Windows 10 Home          4 GB          128 GB

*except where not free


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