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/3gb switch on windows server 2003 and exchange standard 2003

Posted on 2006-07-09
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Last Modified: 2008-03-06
I have a server that has 1GB of ram and is currently running windows server 2003 standard as well as exchange 2003 standard edition.  I want to increase the amount of ram either to 2Gb or 3GB and am confused about the /3gb switch
Should this switch be used?
is it supported on windows server 2003 standard ( i have seen conflicting answers)?
is it necesarry to use the switch...The server is also a domain controller, i saw in one MS article that it should not be used on domain controllers that also run exhcnage.
thanks
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Question by:jduawa
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by:Sembee
Sembee earned 400 total points
ID: 17068605
The /3gb switch is supported on Windows 2003 standard edition.
It is not supported on Windows 2000 standard or SBS (any edition).

If you have seen an article that says it should not be used, it would help if you posted the article.
This article states that it can be used. http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?kbid=308356

Simon.
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by:cvanhoudt
cvanhoudt earned 100 total points
ID: 17068641
Probably this is the article jduawa refers to:
http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=815372
It quotes "For Exchange Server computers which are at the same time Active Directory Domain Controllers or Global Catalog servers we also do not recommend setting the /3GB switch in boot.ini."

Cheers,
Kris
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by:jduawa
ID: 17068708
kris you are right...that was the article i saw and on the bottom it says nothing about standard edition of server 2003
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by:jduawa
ID: 17068712
simon the article you posted states
"Caution Microsoft supports using the /3GB switch in Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition in a production environment for use by Active Directory. For other applications, Microsoft supports using the /3GB switch in Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition in a production environment only if the application vendor has tested in this environment and if the vendor is willing to support the customer who is using this functionality. Microsoft Exchange Server 2003 and Microsoft SQL Server 2000 are supported in production using this functionality. Contact your application vendor regarding their application. The /3GB switch can cause some applications to have problems that are related to address dependencies or to a reduction in kernel space. Except in the cases described earlier, the /3GB switch in Windows Server 2003, Standard Edition is only for development and testing purposes.

"
this server is also running symantec antivirus corporate edition as a backup to the main SAVCE server to deploy updates to clients, does this mean the switch should not be used on that machine
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Sembee earned 400 total points
ID: 17068718
As the server is running Exchange, you should go with the recommendations for an Exchange server.
The article posted above from Kris, states that you shouldn't make the /3gb setting. Therefore I wouldn't make the setting. If you can spin Exchange out to its own machine, then things become different.

Simon.
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