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Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM

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  #1 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Bob H
 

Posts: n/a
Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
This may be a silly question, but here goes:

The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it should
always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if this
still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed. I'm seeing a lot of
posts from people with 3GB or 4GB of RAM, so it seems to be a pertinent issue.
Taking my specific example, I have 3 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of Page File - so
have a total memory pool of 7 GB - which presumably takes a fair chunk of
system resource to manage, and also is more than a 32 bit system should be
able to cope with anyway.
In short, should that advice be modified.
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  #2 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Richard G. Harper
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
The normal advice for the pagefile (at least that given by folks who
actually know what they're doing, anyway) is to leave it alone. There's no
advantage to artificially making it larger since it will only result in
wasted disk space and no improvement in performance. There's no advantage
in forcing it smaller since that could result in programs crashing due to a
lack of virtual memory for them to use.

The very old and very incorrect "Set the pagefile to 2.5 times memory"
advice doesn't even come from Windows at all - but from Unix based operating
systems.

--
Richard G. Harper [MVP Shell/User] rgharper@gmail.com
* NEW! Catch my blog ... http://msmvps.com/blogs/rgharper/
* PLEASE post all messages and replies in the newsgroups
* The Website - http://rgharper.mvps.org/
* HELP us help YOU ... http://www.dts-l.org/goodpost.htm


"Bob H" <BobH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:E0C013D5-6227-42FC-BC4D-86A4330DA311@microsoft.com...
> This may be a silly question, but here goes:
>
> The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it should
> always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if this
> still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed. I'm seeing a lot of
> posts from people with 3GB or 4GB of RAM, so it seems to be a pertinent
> issue.
> Taking my specific example, I have 3 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of Page File - so
> have a total memory pool of 7 GB - which presumably takes a fair chunk of
> system resource to manage, and also is more than a 32 bit system should be
> able to cope with anyway.
> In short, should that advice be modified.



Reply With Quote
  #3 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Richard Urban
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
As it was with Windows XP, advice is to allow the system to handle the page
file. It can do it more efficiently and intelligently than you or I can.

The only thing I ever do is to place a 2nd pagefile on another drive on the
2nd IDE controller. I find that if the system drive is being used heavily
that this 2nd pagefile gets most of the work.

A 2nd pagefile on the same drive in a separate partition, or on a 2nd hard
drive connected to the same drive controller as the system drive gives you a
net gain of *nothing*.

--


Regards,

Richard Urban
Microsoft MVP Windows Shell/User
(For email, remove the obvious from my address)



"Bob H" <BobH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:E0C013D5-6227-42FC-BC4D-86A4330DA311@microsoft.com...
> This may be a silly question, but here goes:
>
> The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it should
> always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if this
> still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed. I'm seeing a lot of
> posts from people with 3GB or 4GB of RAM, so it seems to be a pertinent
> issue.
> Taking my specific example, I have 3 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of Page File - so
> have a total memory pool of 7 GB - which presumably takes a fair chunk of
> system resource to manage, and also is more than a 32 bit system should be
> able to cope with anyway.
> In short, should that advice be modified.


Reply With Quote
  #4 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Rick Rogers
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
Hi,

It is a silly question, and based on antiquated ideas. The minimum size of
the pagefile (assuming you feel the need to do this manually - there really
is no need to), should be the same as the size of the memory dump your
system is set to create on system failure. This is determined in the
advanced system settings under startup and recovery. Anything smaller and
it won't be created. Anything larger is a waste unless the system
historically uses more virtual memory, and with 3GB of install ram I suspect
that will not be an issue.

--
Best of Luck,

Rick Rogers, aka "Nutcase" - Microsoft MVP
http://mvp.support.microsoft.com/
Windows help - www.rickrogers.org
My thoughts http://rick-mvp.blogspot.com

"Bob H" <BobH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
news:E0C013D5-6227-42FC-BC4D-86A4330DA311@microsoft.com...
> This may be a silly question, but here goes:
>
> The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it should
> always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if this
> still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed. I'm seeing a lot of
> posts from people with 3GB or 4GB of RAM, so it seems to be a pertinent
> issue.
> Taking my specific example, I have 3 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of Page File - so
> have a total memory pool of 7 GB - which presumably takes a fair chunk of
> system resource to manage, and also is more than a 32 bit system should be
> able to cope with anyway.
> In short, should that advice be modified.


Reply With Quote
  #5 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Lord Takyon
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
"Richard G. Harper" <rgharper@email.com> wrote in message
news:u6xK3R8uHHA.3816@TK2MSFTNGP05.phx.gbl...
> The normal advice for the pagefile (at least that given by folks who
> actually know what they're doing, anyway) is to leave it alone. There's
> no advantage to artificially making it larger since it will only result in
> wasted disk space and no improvement in performance. There's no advantage
> in forcing it smaller since that could result in programs crashing due to
> a lack of virtual memory for them to use.
>
> The very old and very incorrect "Set the pagefile to 2.5 times memory"
> advice doesn't even come from Windows at all - but from Unix based
> operating systems.
>
> --
> Richard G. Harper [MVP Shell/User] rgharper@gmail.com
> * NEW! Catch my blog ... http://msmvps.com/blogs/rgharper/
> * PLEASE post all messages and replies in the newsgroups
> * The Website - http://rgharper.mvps.org/
> * HELP us help YOU ... http://www.dts-l.org/goodpost.htm
>
>
> "Bob H" <BobH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
> news:E0C013D5-6227-42FC-BC4D-86A4330DA311@microsoft.com...
>> This may be a silly question, but here goes:
>>
>> The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it should
>> always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if
>> this
>> still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed. I'm seeing a lot
>> of
>> posts from people with 3GB or 4GB of RAM, so it seems to be a pertinent
>> issue.
>> Taking my specific example, I have 3 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of Page File -
>> so
>> have a total memory pool of 7 GB - which presumably takes a fair chunk
>> of
>> system resource to manage, and also is more than a 32 bit system should
>> be
>> able to cope with anyway.
>> In short, should that advice be modified.

>
>



The only trouble I found with allowing Vista to manage the page file is that
it becomes fragmented. I have monitored the page file for a while and Vista
makes some pretty strange choices sometimes, for example it can be sitting
idle and after a while Vista would increase the PF, even if it was at under
20% utilization.

In the end I just observed how much of the PF I could force to be used by
loading up loads of apps, and then set it to that +50%. So far my system
performance has been massively improved.

The only drawback is that each system is different, as are the uses, so any
advice would be nothing more than an avenue you could investigate.

--
Can't think of a sig at the moment.
Read this instead.

Reply With Quote
  #6 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Gerry
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
Richard

An advantage exists if you create a fair size mimimum pagefile on a
drive
before the free disk space reduces below 60%. If you do this you will
gain a contiguous pagefile in the middle of the drive. This helps reduce
free space fragmentation and consequently file fragmentation. Putting
the
pagefile in it's own partition on a second drive has the same affect.
Creating a contiguous pagefile as I suggested will be advantageous where
there is no second drive or where a user does not have a third party
partitioning utility.


--
Regards.

Gerry
~~~~
FCA
Stourport, England
Enquire, plan and execute
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

"Richard Urban" <richardurbanREMOVETHIS@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:%23gAqfy9uHHA.4648@TK2MSFTNGP03.phx.gbl...
> As it was with Windows XP, advice is to allow the system to handle the
> page file. It can do it more efficiently and intelligently than you or
> I can.
>
> The only thing I ever do is to place a 2nd pagefile on another drive
> on the 2nd IDE controller. I find that if the system drive is being
> used heavily that this 2nd pagefile gets most of the work.
>
> A 2nd pagefile on the same drive in a separate partition, or on a 2nd
> hard drive connected to the same drive controller as the system drive
> gives you a net gain of *nothing*.
>
> --
>
>
> Regards,
>
> Richard Urban
> Microsoft MVP Windows Shell/User
> (For email, remove the obvious from my address)
>
>
>
> "Bob H" <BobH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
> news:E0C013D5-6227-42FC-BC4D-86A4330DA311@microsoft.com...
>> This may be a silly question, but here goes:
>>
>> The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it
>> should
>> always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if
>> this
>> still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed. I'm seeing a
>> lot of
>> posts from people with 3GB or 4GB of RAM, so it seems to be a
>> pertinent issue.
>> Taking my specific example, I have 3 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of Page
>> File - so
>> have a total memory pool of 7 GB - which presumably takes a fair
>> chunk of
>> system resource to manage, and also is more than a 32 bit system
>> should be
>> able to cope with anyway.
>> In short, should that advice be modified.

>



Reply With Quote
  #7 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Richard Urban
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
I *make* my pagefile contiguous, wherever I place it. I use PerfectDisk and
do a boot time defrag. Problem solved.

--


Regards,

Richard Urban
Microsoft MVP Windows Shell/User
(For email, remove the obvious from my address)



"Gerry" <gerry@nospam.com> wrote in message
news:OZnLkZ%23uHHA.4404@TK2MSFTNGP02.phx.gbl...
> Richard
>
> An advantage exists if you create a fair size mimimum pagefile on a drive
> before the free disk space reduces below 60%. If you do this you will
> gain a contiguous pagefile in the middle of the drive. This helps reduce
> free space fragmentation and consequently file fragmentation. Putting the
> pagefile in it's own partition on a second drive has the same affect.
> Creating a contiguous pagefile as I suggested will be advantageous where
> there is no second drive or where a user does not have a third party
> partitioning utility.
>
>
> --
> Regards.
>
> Gerry
> ~~~~
> FCA
> Stourport, England
> Enquire, plan and execute
> ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
>
> "Richard Urban" <richardurbanREMOVETHIS@hotmail.com> wrote in message
> news:%23gAqfy9uHHA.4648@TK2MSFTNGP03.phx.gbl...
>> As it was with Windows XP, advice is to allow the system to handle the
>> page file. It can do it more efficiently and intelligently than you or I
>> can.
>>
>> The only thing I ever do is to place a 2nd pagefile on another drive on
>> the 2nd IDE controller. I find that if the system drive is being used
>> heavily that this 2nd pagefile gets most of the work.
>>
>> A 2nd pagefile on the same drive in a separate partition, or on a 2nd
>> hard drive connected to the same drive controller as the system drive
>> gives you a net gain of *nothing*.
>>
>> --
>>
>>
>> Regards,
>>
>> Richard Urban
>> Microsoft MVP Windows Shell/User
>> (For email, remove the obvious from my address)
>>
>>
>>
>> "Bob H" <BobH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
>> news:E0C013D5-6227-42FC-BC4D-86A4330DA311@microsoft.com...
>>> This may be a silly question, but here goes:
>>>
>>> The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it should
>>> always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if
>>> this
>>> still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed. I'm seeing a lot
>>> of
>>> posts from people with 3GB or 4GB of RAM, so it seems to be a pertinent
>>> issue.
>>> Taking my specific example, I have 3 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of Page File -
>>> so
>>> have a total memory pool of 7 GB - which presumably takes a fair chunk
>>> of
>>> system resource to manage, and also is more than a 32 bit system should
>>> be
>>> able to cope with anyway.
>>> In short, should that advice be modified.

>>

>
>


Reply With Quote
  #8 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Richard Urban
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
If you have insufficient RAM in your system, of course the pagefile may
grow. It will have to place the extra entries wherever they fit. Upon a
reboot you again have the system pagefile - in one contiguous chunk, if that
is what you had previously. Then the pagefile will begin to grow again.

The answer is to install more RAM.

In 15 months of using Vista I have never had the pagefile out grow it's
initial setting. I am using 2 gig of RAM.

--


Regards,

Richard Urban
Microsoft MVP Windows Shell/User
(For email, remove the obvious from my address)



"Lord Takyon" <takyon@blueyonder.co.uk> wrote in message
news:uLuAOW%23uHHA.3660@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl...
> "Richard G. Harper" <rgharper@email.com> wrote in message
> news:u6xK3R8uHHA.3816@TK2MSFTNGP05.phx.gbl...
>> The normal advice for the pagefile (at least that given by folks who
>> actually know what they're doing, anyway) is to leave it alone. There's
>> no advantage to artificially making it larger since it will only result
>> in wasted disk space and no improvement in performance. There's no
>> advantage in forcing it smaller since that could result in programs
>> crashing due to a lack of virtual memory for them to use.
>>
>> The very old and very incorrect "Set the pagefile to 2.5 times memory"
>> advice doesn't even come from Windows at all - but from Unix based
>> operating systems.
>>
>> --
>> Richard G. Harper [MVP Shell/User] rgharper@gmail.com
>> * NEW! Catch my blog ... http://msmvps.com/blogs/rgharper/
>> * PLEASE post all messages and replies in the newsgroups
>> * The Website - http://rgharper.mvps.org/
>> * HELP us help YOU ... http://www.dts-l.org/goodpost.htm
>>
>>
>> "Bob H" <BobH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote in message
>> news:E0C013D5-6227-42FC-BC4D-86A4330DA311@microsoft.com...
>>> This may be a silly question, but here goes:
>>>
>>> The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it should
>>> always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if
>>> this
>>> still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed. I'm seeing a lot
>>> of
>>> posts from people with 3GB or 4GB of RAM, so it seems to be a pertinent
>>> issue.
>>> Taking my specific example, I have 3 GB of RAM, and 4 GB of Page File -
>>> so
>>> have a total memory pool of 7 GB - which presumably takes a fair chunk
>>> of
>>> system resource to manage, and also is more than a 32 bit system should
>>> be
>>> able to cope with anyway.
>>> In short, should that advice be modified.

>>
>>

>
>
> The only trouble I found with allowing Vista to manage the page file is
> that it becomes fragmented. I have monitored the page file for a while
> and Vista makes some pretty strange choices sometimes, for example it can
> be sitting idle and after a while Vista would increase the PF, even if it
> was at under 20% utilization.
>
> In the end I just observed how much of the PF I could force to be used by
> loading up loads of apps, and then set it to that +50%. So far my system
> performance has been massively improved.
>
> The only drawback is that each system is different, as are the uses, so
> any advice would be nothing more than an avenue you could investigate.
>
> --
> Can't think of a sig at the moment.
> Read this instead.


Reply With Quote
  #9 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Ken Blake, MVP
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
On Sun, 1 Jul 2007 02:34:16 -0700, Bob H
<BobH@discussions.microsoft.com> wrote:

> This may be a silly question, but here goes:
>
> The normal advice used for the minimum Page File size is that it should
> always be larger than the amount of RAM installed - but I wondered if this
> still made sense when you have a lot of RAM installed.



It's common advice, but it's always been poor advice. Page file
substitutes for real RAM, so the more RAM you have, the less Page file
you need.

In most cases these days, you should probably just accept the default
settings. It often results in somewhat more than you need, but it
otherwise doesn't hurt--especially in these days of very cheap large
hard drives. If you want to manage it yourself, read this article by
the late MVP Alex Nichol: "Virtual Memory in Windows XP" at
http://aumha.org/win5/a/xpvm.htm The article is about Windows XP, but
most of it applies to Vista too.

--
Ken Blake, Microsoft MVP Windows - Shell/User
Please Reply to the Newsgroup
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  #10 (permalink)  
Old 07-01-2007
Lord Takyon
 

Posts: n/a
Re: Vista 32 - Page file size on systems with lots of RAM
"Richard Urban" <richardurbanREMOVETHIS@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:OvupCf%23uHHA.1948@TK2MSFTNGP06.phx.gbl...
> If you have insufficient RAM in your system, of course the pagefile may
> grow. It will have to place the extra entries wherever they fit. Upon a
> reboot you again have the system pagefile - in one contiguous chunk, if
> that is what you had previously. Then the pagefile will begin to grow
> again.
>
> The answer is to install more RAM.
>
> In 15 months of using Vista I have never had the pagefile out grow it's
> initial setting. I am using 2 gig of RAM.
>
> --
>>
>>
>> The only trouble I found with allowing Vista to manage the page file is
>> that it becomes fragmented. I have monitored the page file for a while
>> and Vista makes some pretty strange choices sometimes, for example it can
>> be sitting idle and after a while Vista would increase the PF, even if it
>> was at under 20% utilization.
>>
>> In the end I just observed how much of the PF I could force to be used by
>> loading up loads of apps, and then set it to that +50%. So far my system
>> performance has been massively improved.
>>
>> The only drawback is that each system is different, as are the uses, so
>> any advice would be nothing more than an avenue you could investigate.
>>
>> --
>> Can't think of a sig at the moment.
>> Read this instead.

>



I have 2 Gig of RAM, and the point I was making is the PF would keep on
growing even when not being used anywhere close to capacity. It would also
fragment very badly and this did carry over a reboot.

If mine is left to manage itself it creates a tiny PF initially, then it
will keep adding chunks and these will all be fragmented and NOT be gone
after a reboot. The only way I found of combating this was to either switch
off PF and reboot and switch back on etc, or limit it manually, which I did.

Did you even read the last sentence I typed?


--
Can't think of a sig at the moment.
Read this instead.

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