How do you tell if your Win7 box is using PAE or 4GT technologies

Is there a way to tell whether my Win7 (32-bit) machine is using a PAE or 4GT configuration for large memory support?

Should there be something mentioned in the system control panel to indicate this? I'm just not sure where to look. I have limited access to see certain OS files because this is actually a VM machine.

Who is Participating?
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Launch admin command prompt

type bcdedit

You should get the info from this screen

Did you enable 4GT as mentioned here  ?

Or did you enable PAE as mentioned here  ?
Note the statement that "Windows automatically enables PAE if DEP is enabled on a computer that supports hardware-enabled DEP"

Also a good reference
JonahGroupAuthor Commented:
Thanks for the responses.

I don't actually know if PAE or 4GT are enabled, as I didn't configure the machine. It's a virtual desktop (VM) machine controlled by a sysadmin. What would the output of "bcdedit" look like if I had one of these enabled? I just want to know if either are configured and what it would look like. Here's what it looks like for me:


Windows Boot Manager
identifier              {bootmgr}
device                  partition=C:
description             Windows Boot Manager
locale                  en-US
inherit                 {globalsettings}
default                 {current}
resumeobject            {34e17226-dc1e-11e1-814b-005056821f6d}
displayorder            {current}
toolsdisplayorder       {memdiag}
timeout                 30

Windows Boot Loader
identifier              {current}
device                  partition=C:
path                    \Windows\system32\winload.exe
description             Windows 7
locale                  en-US
inherit                 {bootloadersettings}
recoverysequence        {34e17228-dc1e-11e1-814b-005056821f6d}
recoveryenabled         Yes
osdevice                partition=C:
systemroot              \Windows
resumeobject            {34e17226-dc1e-11e1-814b-005056821f6d}
nx                      OptIn
bootux                  Disabled

Open in new window

Newly released Acronis True Image 2019

In announcing the release of the 15th Anniversary Edition of Acronis True Image 2019, the company revealed that its artificial intelligence-based anti-ransomware technology – stopped more than 200,000 ransomware attacks on 150,000 customers last year.

"To enable 4GT, use the BCDEdit /set command to set the increaseuserva boot entry option to a value between 2048 (2 GB) and 3072 (3 GB). "
What does the boot entry option look like?

Note that PAE is enabled by default "if DEP is enabled on a computer that supports hardware-enabled DEP"
Whereas 4Gt requires a separate step to be enabled.
JonahGroupAuthor Commented:
For 4GT, how do I show the value of "increaseuserva"? If it were set to a value, would it show up as a line in the "bcdedit" output I posted earlier?

And for PAE, how do I know if DEP is enabled on my platform? Is there a place I should look?

JonahGroup-- 4GT.  Yes, you should see a "boot entry option with a value between 2048 (2 GB) and 3072 (3 GB)".  But if not, running bcdedit should show you the value now set.

PAE. DEP settings

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
JonahGroupAuthor Commented:
Great; thanks! So I'm going to increase the points and continue with another question.

Given that PAE is enabled (because in my case DEP happens to be enabled, and 4GT is not), when I see this in the system properties window:

Installed Memory (RAM): 4.00  GB (3.00 GB usable)
System Type: 32-bit Operating System

Does this mean that all 4GB is being used (either my my applictions or Win7)? After all, this was the intent of PAE. Or is there really only 3GB available to use for OS or my applications? I know there are "3GB barrier" issues on 32-bit platforms, but it's confusing to me (based on what I've read) whether PAE actually is allowing me to use the extra 1GB that I have above the 3GB limit.
JonahGroup--With all respect, you should start a new thread for the new question.
Many people will read only the original post and not look for an additional question.

However, maybe this will help
" going into msconfig/ boot/advanced, and untick 'maximum

I did that, rebooted and now 8gb of RAM is shown in system with no
amount usable, as before."

Source Bob H post
This should apply to 4GB memory as well.
JonahGroupAuthor Commented:
Thanks. I am on a 32-bit OS, and the "maximum memory" checkbox was already "unticked". Yet still the system properties window says "3.00 GB usable".

I will open another question, and close this one.

Thanks again.
JonahGroup--You are welcome.
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today
Windows OS

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.