PAE - Physical Address Extension - is an Intel-provided memory address extension that enables processors to expand the number of bits that can be used to address physical memory from 32 bits to 36 bits, through support in the host operating system for applications using the Address Windowing Extensions (AWE) API.
PAE support of up to 64 GB of physical memory for applications running on most 32-bit (IA-32) Intel Pentium Pro and later platforms. Support for PAE is provided under the Microsoft Windows XP, Windows 2000, and Windows Server 2003 operating systems.
Special Windows Hardware Compatibility Test requirements apply to devices supported on these systems.
PAE is supported only on 32-bit versions of the Windows family of operating systems. 64-bit versions of Windows do not support PAE. For information about designing hardware and drivers for 64-bit systems, see 64-bit System Design.