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RAM Memory Used?


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I have a Toshiba Satellite with 3gb RAM. I've selected 2gb for windows and 1gb for Mac OS X. If I power off my virtual machine and shut down VMware completely, am I now using 3gb for windows? Or, am I still using the 2gb for windows? How can I tell?

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Do you believe in ghosts? :P


Once a process or application no longer runs, it's no longer in memory. Unless there's a bug (or

!). The memory it was using is immediately freed.


Memory is managed by your Operating System, not by the applications that you run on it, and that's how it should be.

Your virtual machine will not use all the RAM that you've allocated to it until it needs to (just like if it was installed on a real PC with 2GB RAM). If your VM is only using 512MB of RAM, your host OS is free to do what it thinks is best with the remaining 2.5GB.


Leave the Windows Task Manager open on the "Performance" tab and see for yourself.


Start your virtual machine, load it up with stuff so that it uses as much of the 2GB you've allocated to it as possible. Open huge media files in image editors, huge video files and sound files, whatever you can think of to fill up available memory. In OS X you can track memory usage in Activity Monitor. When you get near 2GB, OS X will start paging out to disk and probably feel slower, especially if you try to edit a large media file you have open or even simply alt+tab between running applications.


Then shut it down, and then shut down VMWare, while keeping an eye on memory usage in the Windows Task Manager.

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