Why does virtual memory need to be 2 x RAM??

  Wak 20:46 01 Mar 2007

Can anyone please explain the reasoning behind the suggested rule that the maximum virtual memory (or Swap file) should be twice the size of your RAM memory??
Surely, if I had 256MB of RAM and set my virtual memory to 512MB and things were running well (considering my personal uses for the computer), then the 512MB is obviously sufficient for the computer's purposes.
If I decided to increase the RAM to 512MB (for better speed performance) then, theoretically, I should need LESS virtual memory and not MORE, so why the need to increase it to 1024MB???
I assume that the virtual memory should only be increased if you start having obvious memory storage problems through opening more programs than usual otherwise it is just taking up extra hard drive space.
Is this rule some kind of insurance policy??
If so, why twice the value and not three or four times??
Any thoughts on the matter??

  Jackcoms 20:48 01 Mar 2007
  Jackcoms 20:50 01 Mar 2007
  woodchip 20:51 01 Mar 2007

I have run with a lot less, It depends what you do with your computer

  SANTOS7 20:55 01 Mar 2007

There are a wide range of thoughts on this, my PC has 512Mb memory my swap file is set to 768Mb it is also located on a seperate partition to my O/S.
Others will say let windows manage your file size.
In a lot of cases you will probably see no diference at all.
It is basically a way of telling your computer that you have more memory than you really have, if your swap file, was say the whole of your HDD files will be written to this and fragment quite easily, If it was a managable size chunk namely your SWAP FILE the files are overwritten and fragmentation is sort of kept to a minimum.
Pending on how much memory you have you can experiment with diferent values to see if it actually makes any diference, or just leave it alone..

  Wak 21:04 01 Mar 2007

Thanks for the quick responses, Folks.
Much obliged.

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