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extended memory specification (XMS)

The Extended Memory Specifications (XMS), also referred to as Extended Memory Area (EMA), refer to the addressing range of main memories above 1 MB, i.e. above the Expanded Memory Specification (EMS).

This area could only be addressed by processors starting with the 80286. Older processors such as the 8086 and 8088 can only address 1 megabyte (MB), with 640 kilobytes (KB) of conventional memory and 384 KB of Reserved Memory.

Memory Areas of a Main Memory

Memory Areas of a Main Memory

Because RAM memory area addressing was limited to 1 MB for the DOS operating system, DOS programs do not automatically have access to the extended memory area (XMS). Windows from 3.x and OS/2 take XMS into account and therefore do not require special device drivers for the extended memory. XMS was developed by the companies AST Research, Intel Corporation, Lotus and Microsoft.

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Englisch: extended memory specification - XMS
Updated at: 30.11.2011
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