Tweak that actaully works!

  jazzy j 17:17 21 Oct 2005

Putting the pagefile on another hard drive has given my computer a real perfomance boost even though it isn't short on RAM(512MB running XP).

If you want to have a go at doing this, this is what I did:

1. Took an old hard drive(HD) out of another computer. Opened the case of my current computer, put the old HD on a shelf space, attached the EIDE cable (the thin red line indicates pin 1, and look on the HD itself for pin 1) and gave it power via a spare molex connector.

2. Booted up to XP. Went to Control Panel, Performance and Maintenance, Admin Tools, Comp Management, Disk Management. The HD could be seen there. I formated it as a single partition, using NTFS filing system.

3. Went to Control Panel, Performance and Maintenance, System, Advanced tab, Settings under the performance options, Advanced tab, then Virtual Memory 'Change'.

4. From here I put in 766MB paging file for the HD I'd just put in, and no paging file for the C: drive.


  wolfie3000 19:45 22 Oct 2005

sounds interesting iv got a second hard drive on my pc that aint used just for backed up stuff im tempted to try it but have my doubts if it would work on my pc.

  PurplePenny 20:44 22 Oct 2005

How do you calculate how big the paging file should be?

  ade.h 21:50 22 Oct 2005

About 1.5 times RAM, usually, though if you have a lot of RAM, less is okay. That's why jazzy used 766MB with 512MB of RAM.

  Chegs ® 01:27 23 Oct 2005

I have always dispensed with a PF altogether.I have a little vbs file that gives you the max pagefile usage.I ran it and even with gaming/defrag/scans,etc at the end of a days normal computing,I was very surprised to find the most my PF had been used was 50Mbs.I have 1.0Gbs RAM,(was 1.5Gbs when this check was run)and XP was taking upto 3Gbs of my C:\ partition if left to manage PF itself.

Here's a couple of URL's on PF.

click here

click here

  g0slp 08:13 23 Oct 2005

for my further investigations... :-)

Thanky jazzy j.

  smokingbeagle 12:49 23 Oct 2005

Using a different partition on the same hard drive for the PF works as well as jazzy j's tweak.
There tends to be less fragmentation in the partition with Windows.

  PurplePenny 12:51 23 Oct 2005

Thanks Jazzy and ade.h.

  ade.h 14:15 23 Oct 2005

Using a different partition works almost as well, yes. Insomuch as fragmentation of the critical system partition is kept to a minimum. I would expect jazzy's use of a seperate HDD on a seperate channel to provide the best read/write performance though, given that the page file usage will not hold up other disk access. Given the space, it is the ultimate solution.

Unfortunately, some of us use multi-disk RAID arrays and multiple optical drives, so don't have the case room or the connectors for yet another drive! That old 13GB HDD will have to continue to gather dust, I think.

I know Chegs has mentioned his PF-less setup before, and I'd like to get rid of it from a performance standpoint, but I wonder whether at can be removed in any and every system. It obviously works fine for you, Chegs, otherwise you wouldn't use it.

But I have read that some software expects and requires a pagefile to be present. I don't know how accurate that claim was of course. I suspect that this would no longer apply to modern software anyway, given the generous amount of RAM that most of us have now, but there is always the chance that someone has some legacy software to which it does apply. I'd be reticent to try it in search of performance in case it caused other problems.

  sharkfin 16:16 23 Oct 2005

ade.h is right.

Moving the second hard drive to another IDE channel will provide better performance. Have both HD's on the same IDE does nothing wotsoever in performance. You will however, see less fragmentation.

  Chegs ® 17:09 23 Oct 2005

I think one of the URL's I posted earlier carry the VBS file to monitor PF,if they dont,I'm blowed if I can recall where I got this one from.I might just upload it on my site for anyone here,if enough interest is shown.

PF can be disposed of in the vast majority of modern systems(especially with high quantity of RAM)My view on apps that wont run without a PF is,get another one that will.I realise that not all can simply swap to a different app,just as with the higher priced versions of a particular app,there is usually a freeware version that will perform the same task,but not always.

I have mentioned a PF free system previously,and also asked why MS do not offer a configuration option for PF during install.Other OS's do.My reason for dispensing with it,were due to having my OS on a small partition(7.5Gbs)and installing all other apps(that offered the option)to a seperate partition,and I started receiving a warning of low HD space,as the PF was occupying almost half the OS partition.I didn't dispense with it for a performance increase(although the gains are welcome,whatever they are)as again,most modern systems are sufficiently fast already.

My laptop is a very slow(233Mhz CPU)machine,it also only has 96Mbs EDO RAM(and its on 98se)so I wouldn't even consider trying it without any PF,it only has a 4Gb HD,so creating a seperate partition just for PF is also a bit of a non-starter.

The arguments for/against PF's have raged on for a while,its entirely up to an individual as to their PF preferences,I can only pass onto others my experiences and opinions.

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