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hello and question: 1GB = 822MB ???

Discussion in 'New Member Introductions & Site Assistance' started by permutations, Nov 29, 2012.

  1. permutations
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    permutations New Member

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    My phone is spec'd at 1GB, but four different memory utilities say it has a total RAM capacity of 822MB. Where did the other 202MB go? I really need the full gig!

    My Android tablet also is spec'd at 1GB, and it has 975MB - still not quite 1024MB, but much closer.
  2. FoxKat
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    FoxKat Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    The phone may have a portion partitioned and set aside for the OS. Just like your tablet where it only shows 975MB and not the full 1,024MB.
  3. permutations
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    permutations New Member

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    Any idea how I can find out for sure? I'd like to know exactly where it is and what it's being used for - confirmed.

    I don't think it's honest to advertise a device as having 1GB of memory if only 822MB is available. That's a huge drop.
  4. macpro88
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    macpro88 Super Moderator

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    ^^What Fox said.

    There is a certain amount that is dedicated as certain type of "overhead" reserved just for the system and required apps to keep the system alive. Its partitioned that way to avoid potential memory leaks or "accidentally" closing the processes that would shut the system down.

    Also, you shouldn't care or even pay attention to the RAM, Android does a pretty good job at managing the RAM and will close processes when needed to keep the system and apps you use up and running smoothly. If things get choppy, reboot the phone, like rebooting a computer.

    This article does a decent job at explaining: RAM: What it is, how it's used, and why you shouldn't care | Android Central

    Do some searching on the topic if you dare. There's a lot of info out there.
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  5. permutations
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    permutations New Member

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    It occurs to me that it's probably Verizon bloatware. There is much more bloatware on my phone than on my tablet. I froze the bloatware rather than removing it.
  6. permutations
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    permutations New Member

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    macpro88 - I know how memory management works on the Android, but it's not always enough. I love apps, and I've been running out of memory. My browser starts getting very slow and unstable, and then I become unable to load screenshots in Google Play Store without using a task killer. I finally removed a bunch of apps from my device, and then froze a lot of the bloatware, and that helped. That's why I was downloading the memory managers in the first place.

    The one thing I don't like about this phone is, not enough memory! If it had the full 1GB, it would be enough - that's what burns me. The reason I haven't removed the bloatware is that OTA updates stop working. But I don't really care about OTA updates - I don't want JB. Maybe just to see, I'll try removing some of the bloatware and see if it affects total memory. If so, I'll have my answer.
  7. macpro88
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    macpro88 Super Moderator

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    It does indeed have a full 1GB of RAM, otherwise they would not be able to advertise as such after passing through the FCC. And if it had less than 1GB, it would be reporting with 768MB or slightly less, since memory works in multiples of 64MB

    If you really have that much stuff running and open, then you may be exceeding the physical limitations of the device, which I find hard to do, very hard to do, even when I am doing a lot on my phone mine runs smooth with no issues.

    Also take into consideration that choppiness can also be due to a few apps using high amounts of the CPU as well, not just RAM.

    Found a few other articles if you're interested: Memory Management in Android « Welcome to Mobile World !!!

    Android Memory Usage - eLinux.org
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  8. permutations
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    permutations New Member

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  9. wcjeep
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    wcjeep Member

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    I think in developer options you can limit the amount of back ground processes running. I leave mine set to standard limit. It sounds like you have something big running in the background. Do you have anything set for auto backup? Maybe move the setting to backup on wifi only.
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  10. permutations
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    permutations New Member

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    macpro88 - have you really never run out of memory on your phone? I guess I enjoy apps more than you. I'm a programmer and I like software. I also spent many years as a computer journalist, reviewing hardware and software. To me, it's really fun and I love playing with it. I discovered Tasker recently, and downloaded that and some plug-ins for it, and wrote some really cool scripts. There is some great stuff available for the Droid, and I love this little computer I can carry in my pocket. The Samsung Galaxy S3 has 2GB of memory. If the Razr Maxx HD had 2GB, it would be perfect, in my opinion. Vastly less bloatware would also help quite a bit, though!
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  11. macpro88
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    macpro88 Super Moderator

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    Nope! Never ran out before. And yes, I do use my phone quit a bit and use quit a few apps. But it can also depend on what apps are being used as I am sure we different types of users, and clearly you are a super duper super heavy power user lol I deff get good use out of my phone, but again, we must just be different types of power users.

    And tasker is great, have done the same with that program back in the old Droid X days with Foyo and Gingerbread, where memory management was most deff needed lol

    I would agree that if most phones had that 2GB there would be a difference, but I guess most the apps I use are light memory hogs lol

    If you really do run out of memory from too many apps, I would love to see a daily blog of how you use your phone showing such activity lol
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  12. permutations
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    permutations New Member

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    I'm still googling this topic, and I'm no longer sure that my bloatware theory is the answer. That post in xda-developers said removing bloatware freed RAM, but so does freezing it. I think removing it would just free internal storage, not RAM. So I'm still googling, still trying to figure out what is using that 202MB on my phone.

    The reason that Android memory management doesn't solve everything is because some types of programs are services and can't be killed - like Google+ (and every other Google app on the device), and most (if not all) of the Verizon bloatware are services, too. These never go away. If you try to kill them, they are immediately recreated. Any program that monitors something on the device - monitors data, battery, or memory usage, automates anything to happen on a regular basis - has to be a service. Facebook, Google+, and email apps are services because they periodically check for activity and then notify you. These services are permanent residents in memory and the more of them you use, the less memory you have available to run other apps. I was using an app called Plume for a while, for Twitter and Facebook, until I discovered it was a service using 80MB of RAM. Bye-bye Plume!

    Back to the mystery of the missing 202MB... Isn't this some sort of official Motorola/Verizon forum? That's why I posted the question here. I thought someone from these companies could answer. Someone there knows the answer to this question!
  13. FoxKat
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    FoxKat Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    Well, I have to respectfully disagree with the original post. It was advertised as having 1GB of RAM, but like ANY computer device, RAM is never 100% free and available.

    Definition of RAM:

    RAM

    Random-Access Memory

    Memory where software resides while it is running, along with the data it is using. Both the OS and application software use RAM.

    RAM is a type of memory that is very fast, but is volatile, meaning all information is lost when electric power is removed. For this reason, it is useful only for temporary storage of data that requires fast access.

    A device will typically have RAM and some kind non-volatile memory to store a copy of all software and data that needs to be kept when the device is powered off or that specific software is not running.

    Devices with more RAM can run more complex software and/or more applications at one time.



    So to summarize, RAM is intended to be a holding place for whatever the computer is doing with either the Operating System (think Android), and any applications that are running (think Widgets, drivers, applications for hardware features, etc.), or have run and are on standby (think terminate, stay ready such as GPS, Camera, Facebook, Verizon Backup, etc.)


    Edit; I started this reply when there was only 3 posts, the OP, mine and the OP's reply. I had to run out for a while and when I came back, I saw that the thread had grown and much of what I said here was already very well covered by others, but I decided to hit the send button anyway.
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  14. macpro88
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    macpro88 Super Moderator

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    I guess once you start all that you might as well finish lol

    Sent from my DROID RAZR HD
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  15. FoxKat
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    FoxKat Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    Let's cover the last question first... AFAIK, this is a privately run forum, not in any way affiliated with either Motorola or Verizon (Admin, please correct me if I'm wrong)... As such, information provided here is given by people who know, people who believe they know, people who wish they knew, or people who have no idea about what they are talking about. We are fortunate that the overwhelming majority of those who give advice here on our forums are virtually experts in one or more subjects and know when they're out of their league. We also do have a very few people who are either "official representatives" of one or the other company, and also a very few who are "unofficial" employees giving their best knowledge.

    There is an Official Motorola forum, https://forums.motorola.com/pages/home, as well as an official Verizon forum, Verizon Community - Verizon Community, but I dare to say that often the information you get there is nary a bit better than you'll get at the Verizon stores. What makes the Android community so powerful is that our largest membership in these forums is people just like you who yearn to learn and want to know all they can about their phones. This translates into a huge resource for all who join.

    Onto the other portion of your commentary and "mystery". You have really identified exactly what I and others here have already said. Yes, there is bloatware, and yet there is also a collection of legitimate core processes which require their place in RAM. And as you have identified, some of these processes, although not critical to Android, are designed to be in a TSR (terminate stay ready), state, and if you kill them, they only restart themselves. This is so that when you select an action such as Facebook, or want to connect to a Bluetooth device, or decide to view a PDF file, the computer (i.e. phone), can jump into action as quickly as possible, thereby reducing "lag".
  16. permutations
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    permutations New Member

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    Hi FoxKat - Thanks for explaining about the forum. That clears things up.

    I think you may have misunderstood my question. I'm talking about total RAM, not in-use RAM. I'm a programmer and was a long-time computer journalist. I know what RAM is used for. As you say, it's used for running programs. I'm just wondering why my phone, spec'd as 1GB of RAM, actually has total RAM of 822MB (202MB less than 1GB). My Asus Droid tablet (Transformer Infinity TF700T) is also spec'd as having 1GB of RAM and has actual total RAM of 975MB. They are both running ICS - exact same OS. So on my Motorola phone, 80% of the RAM is usable, and on my Asus tablet, 95% of the RAM is usable.

    For comparison, I just looked at my Windows 7 notebook. It has 8GB RAM with 7.89GB usable, or 98.6%.

    I suppose some small amount of the RAM is needed for overhead, but typically not much. Typically, 95% or more of the RAM is usable. But on my Motorola phone, only 80% is usable. That's really low, and really weird. I'd like to know why.

    I'm going to go post over in xda-developers. Maybe someone over there knows. If I learn anything new, I'll post it.
  17. FoxKat
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    FoxKat Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    Hey Permutations, I appreciate your reply and the clarification. I also appreciate that you are far more knowledgeable than many regarding the subject, so I hope nothing I've said nor will say has any perceived indication otherwise. There is no question that bloat and manufacturer-specific software and hardware can be the culprit here. Motorola may have decided to "hold hostage" a larger portion of the RAM for overhead. There are other possible explanations as well, but I don't think many have really paid much attention to this particular issue. As Macpro88 has said, you are a Power User, and (like me) will push your device to its limits. I have had out of memory situations, but only when running a very large interactive game and at the same time had several multitasking applications running as well, such as Motocast, Dropbox, Box, Facebook, TextFree, etc. When I suffered the OOMEs, I went into the Apps Manage screen, shut down those apps and services that I knew were not critical, and those I knew would not re-start on their own, and then the giant game ran with no problem.

    If you do the same and are still suffering OOMEs, then I would like to know exactly what you are trying to run when these errors surface. I'll try them on my RAZR MAXX and see if I suffer similar issues. Perhaps together we can isolate the issues you are experiencing specifically, and it could be a valuable learning experience for all.
  18. orangechoochoo
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    orangechoochoo New Member

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    This has been enlightning.

    Lastly, I think he wants to know if there is a way to find out what exactly comprises the "overhead". I don't remember him mentioning he was having any particular problem.
  19. FoxKat
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    FoxKat Super Moderator Staff Member Premium Member

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    OK, so perhaps "problem" wasn't the best choice of words, but he mentioned;

    Some would call those issues he's suffering "problems", others...? Anyway, I understand what he wants to know. I think I've done a good job of saying that I am not sure, but there are many possibilities. I did indicate things I know are eating up that RAM, but to the specifics of a brand new phone with NO user-installed apps, and fresh out of the box having a smaller proportion of "available RAM" than another device, I can't speak with authority on it. Perhaps someone else who is not only well versed in the architecture of Motorola smart phones, but as well with Android can speak to this.
  20. sajgel
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    sajgel Member

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    Phones like computer hard drives, they don't come with the FULL capacity. Phone and hard drives are partitioned with the operating system and that takes a good chunk out of use.
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