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Side effects of writing 0xffffffff to base registers?

My spec is on perpetual loan to friends, and I have no clue where
it is now :-( so I can't answer my own question

When I write 0xffffffff to an address base register and read it back, the 
device indicates its address space size by leaving 1 bits in the positions it

What effect does this have on the device's address space(s)?  IOW, does 
it continue functioning at the last non -1 value programmed in the base 
register, or does it begin decoding at 0xfffffffb onward?

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For those who do, no explanation is necessary.  
For those who don't, no explanation is possible.