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How to get the amount of RAM memory my linux 32 bit sees ? If I use free / top it reports the whole physical memory which exceeds the 32 bit limitations .

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What makes you think that "free" is lying? It's completely legitimate for a 32-bit kernel to have more than 4GB of memory available to it (see, eg, en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_Address_Extension ). Each individual process will probably be limited in the amount of memory it can use, but the system as a whole will have access to the full amount for parcelling out to the individual processes. –  MadHatter Mar 14 '11 at 10:04
    
its worth noting that 32Bit limits you to 4GB not 2GB for ram, PAE allows you to address (and therefore see) more ram but a single process still cant use more than 4gb of ram –  anthonysomerset Mar 14 '11 at 10:06
    
Anthony: thanks, and I have amended the "4GB" figure above in the light of your comment. –  MadHatter Mar 14 '11 at 10:08
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its worth noting that 32Bit limits you to 4GB not 2GB for ram, PAE allows you to address (and therefore see) more ram but a single process still cant use more than 4gb of ram

free/top is probably not lying here, try running

free -m

to see the results in MB rather han bytes or Kb and this may look more like what you think you should be seeing

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free and/or top will show how much memory is available to your system. Even if this is > 4GB on a 32-bit system. PAE (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Physical_Address_Extension) will let your 32-bit machine use up to 64GB of physical RAM, each process however will be limited to 4GB or less.

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