I am curious why 32bit Sles10 is defaulting to bigsmp when I install a vm
box with 2cpu and *only* 4096 ram. I would think It merely choose the smp

This is only a curiosity.

Additionally, I am installing my single cpu <4gb vm's with bigsmp to ease
the work when bumping up cpu/ram. Asides from the academic decrease in
performance, any issues? I see none.

fyi, the bigsmp kernel has fixed a problem I had with the default kerenl
and vmware tools.