Hey all, I'm a recently graduated student that has been dabbling in Maya 8.5 on my MACPro w/ Tiger for the past year. I've put in 5BG (2x2 slot A, 512MBx512MB slot B) of memory, the 512MB ATI Radeon X1900XT card, and it the 2.33 GHZ Quad Core Processor. Whenever I check the activity monitor, Maya only uses 700MB of real memory, 1.3GB of virtual memory, 400% of my CPU, and is runnin 21 threads whereas other programs, such as After Effects, use what's available and I suspect render more quickly as a result. This has been bugging me for a while, but now it seems I really need a fix. I've made some grass with fur paint effects, and it takes nearly an hour to render just one frame. The grass is a preset effect, with a density of 900000 on a nurbs U 26, V 26, and scaled up 60 or so times. I'm using a mental ray physical sun and sky, emitting photons with raytraced shadows (because I'm making translucent stained glass) to render a fly through of the exterior of a building, that moves into the interior.
So how do you get Maya to stop limiting it's memory usage to less than 2GB? How do you max it out? And is it using all four processors for sure? Does it depend on the renderer I'm using?