Monday 22 June 2009

Windows 7 RC on Tecra S1 Laptop – Memory Upgraded to 1GB = Wow!

We had installed Windows 7 Release Candidate on an older Toshiba Tecra S1 with 512MB of RAM (previous blog post).

We dropped another 512MB of RAM into the laptop this afternoon.

Here is what the Task Manager looks like with the extra leg room:


The following applications are open:

  • Outlook 2007 minimized to the Tray.
  • Word 2007 with one document minimized.
  • Internet Explorer 8 with 4 tabs open.
  • Windows Live Messenger
  • Windows Live Writer
  • One RDP session to a client SBS 2008.
  • One Windows Explorer connected to a remote Company SharePoint site.

Here is the memory footprint:


That extra 512MB of RAM has impacted the laptop’s performance significantly!

Now that there is virtually no swap file action happening, things move along a lot smoother.

With only 512MB of RAM installed into the laptop, things were grinding away too slowly.

So, a Pentium M laptop of any flavour with 1GB of RAM would work out to be a very good field laptop for our technicians.

Even a power user could use this setup with minimal impact on their performance … depending on what they needed to do of course! ;)

Philip Elder
Microsoft Small Business Specialists
Co-Author: SBS 2008 Blueprint Book

*All Mac on SBS posts will not be written on a Mac until we replace our now missing iMac! (previous blog post)

Windows Live Writer


stryqx said...


I was very impressed with Vista SP1 on a Toshiba Portege R500 with a full complement of 2GB RAM running VMWare Workstation 6.5 to run WinXP SP2 to get to some legacy apps. This PC will be a prime candidate for Windows 7 + XPMode.

The way to determine if you're memory starved is to use Task Manager's Performance tab to compare the Memory gauge value with the first Commit (MB) value. The difference between these two is roughly the amount written out to the pagefile. The second Commit (MB) value is the commit limit - the point at which you'll get out of memory errors. If the difference is high, then you basically need to add that amount of memory to reduce disk trashing due to paging operations.

Philip Elder Cluster MVP said...


The catch with XP Pro Mode is that either Intel's or AMD's hardware virtualiztion is required at the BIOS/motherboard/CPU level.

XP Pro Mode will not run on a non-hardware virtualiztion setup.

As far as I know for Intel chipsets, since we do not sell AMD, only the Centrino Pro and Centrino 2 Pro chipsets on laptops support enabling Intel's virtualization at the BIOS/Motherboard/CPU level.

I know that this S1 Tecra does not support it.

Thanks for the comment,


stryqx said...

Then your MS option for the Tecra is to run Virtual PC 2007 on it.

Although looking at your memory utilisation and commit charge you're going to have to add another 1G to it, otherwise you're back to where you were with 512MB RAM.