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Re: Debian RAM supporting.

> 2. the response above indicates that yes, 4G (and maybe more) RAM can be
> used with 32 bit CPU's and 32 bit OS, with (what I understand to be,
> basically) a software patch to allow access to the memory that lies outside
> the limits of a 32 bit OS, but using that patch has its own problems, and so

Atually, it's been part of the stock Linux kernel for years (probably
already in 2.4).  In Debian, you just need to install the
linux-image-<vers>-686-bigmem rather than linux-image-<vers>-686
package.  That's it.  No known compatibility issue.  The only "problems"
with it is that if you look under the hook, you may feel like it's a bit
of a hack, and also that in some micro benchmarks you may find such
kernels to be marginally slower.  No big deal, really.

I.e. the real factors that will influence your choice will most likely
be elsewhere (e.g. various minor compatibility issues when using a 32bit
userland on top of a 64bit kernel, or the inability to use more than 2GB
in any single application on a 32bit kernel, or the increased memory
pressure in 64bit applications, or the better performance of some
applications in 64bit mode due to the presence of extra registers, ...).


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