ATLast! and Windows 3.x

Windows 3.x is a segmented memory operating system. It requires DOS to start up its 8-bit operating system, and then takes control away from DOS when it's loaded. Once Windows is loaded, it still requires DOS to service most of its functions.

Windows was designed this way to provide backward compatibility and support for the existing installed base of DOS "legacy" applications. Because both DOS and Windows applications are dependent on DOS to service all of their hardware functions, many cross compatibility problems exist, and will sometimes confuse the application or the operating system and cause a crash. Microsoft's' promises that Windows and Windows applications would not require or use any of the DOS 640K memory were never realized.

DOS Applications

DOS applications will always have a 640K limit. This is a limit of the applications themselves, not the operating system. In most cases, DOS applications have less available conventional memory to run under Windows 3.x. This is because the Windows WIN386 kernel loads as a DOS TSR and occupies part of the DOS 640K memory.

Windows Applications

The Windows operating system requires DOS memory and resources to manage XMS extended memory, and to access various hardware functions. This dependency to link to the underlying DOS operating system for Windows application program interface (API) calls only furthers the demand for available DOS memory.

What does ATLast! offer for Windows over MemMaker and other memory managers?

The purpose of all memory managers including the one supplied in DOS and Windows, is to try to recover as much conventional memory as possible through the use of upper, extended and/or expanded memory. All memory managers except ATLast! still use the LOADHIGH technology that RYBS invented in 1984. In addition, all other memory managers except ATLast! require someone to manually run an optimizer program, such as MemMaker, to maximize or re-maximize the memory configuration.

ATLast! provides real-time error correction code to prevent internal problems that occur between software applications and the operating system before they have a chance to crash. Because of this error correction process, the application is never aware that a problem existed, that would otherwise have created the non-reproducible error.

Windows Heap Recovery

Windows HEAP Recovery -- Reduce Windows "Out of Memory" Errors. According to Microsoft, with enough memory, Windows3.x is designed to load and operate up to 2400 separate tasks (applications) concurrently. As we all know, with 8 or even as much as 64 megabytes, Windows is hard pressed to open and operate even four or five applications before generating an "Out of Memory" error.

The "Out of Memory" error is rarely caused by the lack of extended memory. A lack of conventional DOS memory or Windows HEAP resources that manage how extended memory is accessed and used, causes this error. Part of the problem is that during regular operation, Windows discards a great deal of memory that is never recovered during the active boot session. To complicate the problem further, this discarded memory is tracked and stored in one or more of the Windows operating HEAPS, making the memory storage area within the HEAP unavilable to other applications.

ATLast! corrects for some of the Windows operating system waste through a HEAP recovery scheme. Every time Windows itself discards memory and consumes resources to track it, ATLast! immediately forces Windows to recover both the discarded memory and wasted resource space. Although ATLast! does not eliminate "Out of Memory" errors, it does allow Windows to open and operate several more programs and/or documents before an error can occur. Windows discards memory and consumes resources every time the user opens a pop-up box, clicks on an ICON or clicks on a menu bar. Applications that start OK 1st thing in the morning, can get "Out of Memory" messages later in the day (even when megabytes of memory are free). Closing applications does not recover wasted or discarded resources. Windows must be restarted to work.

ATlast! makes Windows put resource memory back in the pool for re-use, so users continue to work without interruption.

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If you are planning a Windows or Windows95 roll-out, installing ATLast! now will save you time and money. Installing ATLast! before Windows will stop reactive fire-fighting support issues and free up the technical staff to do the pro-active work necessary. Upon completion of your Windows installation, ATLast! re-optimizes the new environment. Whether you install ATLast! before or after any Windows, ATLast!'s error correction and automation benefits continue to deliver improved stability which will save countless hours of headaches and many times the cost of ATLast!.

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