Physical memory limits in crash dump files for Windows 10/8/7

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This article quickly reviews Physical Memory Limits in Crash Dump files for Windows 10/8/7 and the Sysinternals RamMap tool, with which the number of physical memory areas on a system can be determined.

Physical memory limits in crash dump files

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All Windows operating systems are configured to collect information about their status in the event of a system crash or shutdown error and save it as crash dump.dmp files. There are three types of discharges that can be detected during a system crash: Full dump, kernel dump, and small dump.

The crash dump format has a limit of 42 (64 bits) and 86 (32 bits) physical address ranges. On some systems, the BIOS memory card may contain more than this number of non-contiguous regions. When a dump file is created on this machine, only the first 42 (64 bit) or 86 (32 bit) memory areas are stored in the file. The kernel and the complete memory dump of a Windows system may not contain all of the system memory.

If you open a dump file created on certain systems using Windows debugging tools (windbg.exe), you may receive an error message :

WARNING : Dump header physical memory block was truncated. Some valid physical pages may be inaccessible.

To avoid the problem, the OEM of the system concerned should change the firmware memory card to ensure that the number of physically contiguous physical memory areas exposed to the operating system does not exceed the above limits, explains KB2510168.

Sysinternale RamMap

The number of physical memory areas on a system can be determined with the Sysinternals RamMap tool. After downloading and running RamMap.exe, click the Physical Zones tab. Counting the number of beaches listed checks the number of physical beaches on a particular system.

RAMMap is an advanced utility for analyzing physical memory usage under Windows Vista and later. It displays usage information in different ways on its different tabs:

  • Use counts : Overview of usage by type and pagination list
  • Process: Working set sizes
  • Priority summary : Prioritized reserve list sizes
  • Physical pages : Use per page for all physical memory
  • Physical areas : Physical memory addresses
  • File summary :
  • File Details: Individual physical pages per file
  • Use RAMMap to understand how Windows manages memory to analyze application memory usage or to answer specific questions about how RAM is allocated.

RAmMap shows how Windows allocates physical memory, how much file data is cached to RAM, or how much RAM is used by the kernel and device drivers.

    1. How to read small Windows dump files created for debug
    2. Machine memory dump collectors in Windows
    3. Physical memory allocation and memory status in Windows

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