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Dale
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Since: Dec 12, 2006
Posts: 1



PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:59 pm    Post subject: how to Reduce page file usage
Archived from groups: microsoft>public>windowsxp>perform_maintain (more info?)

How do I restrict Windows XP from using the page file?

I have 1.5 GB of RAM, and TaskManager tells me there is over 1 GB of
Physical Memory Available.
All my programs take, at most, 1 GB of memory once loaded (including shared
memory for video card). This info comes summary values in TaskManager; add
memory in use (Installed minus Available) plus PF usage.
This means that I would have half a Gig of spare memory, even if XP left
everything in RAM.

Windows keeps dumping stuff into the page file, even though there is no need
(since there is no shortage of memory). As a result of this behaviour, when
I go to use a previously loaded program that I have not switched to for an
hour, I have to wait half a minute for it to load into RAM from the PF. (It
is a large program.) Sometimes, after waiting for 5 minutes, the program
still is not ready for use. Maybe XP is thrashing, or fighting with itself;
it loads a page, sees there is less than 1 GB of available memory, so it
flushes another page that is also needed by the program... ?
What is the point of me waiting, when there is a ton of spare memory? It
should not be flushing ANY RAM to PF in the first place. I see no value in
the computer trying to keep 1 GB of Available memory at all times.

So I tried using Computer Properties \ Advanced \ Performance \ Settings \
Advanced \ Virtual memory setting to force the page file down to 256 MB.
Yes that's small, but it's not like the computer needs the extra memory
space. I can confirm that C:\pagefile.sys is 268,435,456 bytes.
TaskManager still gives PF Usage at over 500 MB though, and the computer is
still making me wait at least 30 seconds to start using the program again
after an hour delay.

Where is Windows dumping the info to disk, since C:\pagefile.sys is the
correct size?
So, how do I force XP to stop being stupid with the pagefile? I want to
force XP to keep ALL programs in physical RAM, since there is no shortage of
it.

Windows says MS recommends against eliminating the swap file entirely... How
important is that?

Dale
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needlove
External


Since: Jan 08, 2006
Posts: 253



PostPosted: Tue Dec 12, 2006 11:59 pm    Post subject: Re: how to Reduce page file usage [Login to view extended thread Info.]
Archived from groups: per prev. post (more info?)

Not entirely positive about this so you may want to look elsewhere to
verify. Click Start Run type msconfig click ok. Click on system.ini tab and
then highlight [386enh] and then click "new" and add this without quotes:
"ConservativeSwapfileUsage=1". It should force Windows to use physical
memory over virtual when possible.


"Dale" wrote in message

| How do I restrict Windows XP from using the page file?
|
| I have 1.5 GB of RAM, and TaskManager tells me there is over 1 GB of
| Physical Memory Available.
| All my programs take, at most, 1 GB of memory once loaded (including
shared
| memory for video card). This info comes summary values in TaskManager;
add
| memory in use (Installed minus Available) plus PF usage.
| This means that I would have half a Gig of spare memory, even if XP left
| everything in RAM.
|
| Windows keeps dumping stuff into the page file, even though there is no
need
| (since there is no shortage of memory). As a result of this behaviour,
when
| I go to use a previously loaded program that I have not switched to for
an
| hour, I have to wait half a minute for it to load into RAM from the PF.
(It
| is a large program.) Sometimes, after waiting for 5 minutes, the program
| still is not ready for use. Maybe XP is thrashing, or fighting with
itself;
| it loads a page, sees there is less than 1 GB of available memory, so it
| flushes another page that is also needed by the program... ?
| What is the point of me waiting, when there is a ton of spare memory? It
| should not be flushing ANY RAM to PF in the first place. I see no value
in
| the computer trying to keep 1 GB of Available memory at all times.
|
| So I tried using Computer Properties \ Advanced \ Performance \ Settings
\
| Advanced \ Virtual memory setting to force the page file down to 256 MB.
| Yes that's small, but it's not like the computer needs the extra memory
| space. I can confirm that C:\pagefile.sys is 268,435,456 bytes.
| TaskManager still gives PF Usage at over 500 MB though, and the computer
is
| still making me wait at least 30 seconds to start using the program again
| after an hour delay.
|
| Where is Windows dumping the info to disk, since C:\pagefile.sys is the
| correct size?
| So, how do I force XP to stop being stupid with the pagefile? I want to
| force XP to keep ALL programs in physical RAM, since there is no shortage
of
| it.
|
| Windows says MS recommends against eliminating the swap file entirely...
How
| important is that?
|
| Dale
|
|
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gcjc1
External


Since: Jan 30, 2005
Posts: 4684



PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:04 am    Post subject: Re: how to Reduce page file usage [Login to view extended thread Info.]
Archived from groups: per prev. post (more info?)

Dale

You might care to monitor actual page file usage.

A small utility to monitor pagefile usage:
http://www.dougknox.com/xp/utils/xp_pagefilemon.htm

However, graphics and camera related programmes will bump
up page file usage.

--

Hope this helps.

Gerry
~~~~
FCA
Stourport, England

Enquire, plan and execute
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~


"Dale" wrote in message

> How do I restrict Windows XP from using the page file?
>
> I have 1.5 GB of RAM, and TaskManager tells me there is over 1 GB of
> Physical Memory Available.
> All my programs take, at most, 1 GB of memory once loaded (including
> shared
> memory for video card). This info comes summary values in
> TaskManager; add
> memory in use (Installed minus Available) plus PF usage.
> This means that I would have half a Gig of spare memory, even if XP
> left
> everything in RAM.
>
> Windows keeps dumping stuff into the page file, even though there is
> no need
> (since there is no shortage of memory). As a result of this
> behaviour, when
> I go to use a previously loaded program that I have not switched to
> for an
> hour, I have to wait half a minute for it to load into RAM from the
> PF. (It
> is a large program.) Sometimes, after waiting for 5 minutes, the
> program
> still is not ready for use. Maybe XP is thrashing, or fighting with
> itself;
> it loads a page, sees there is less than 1 GB of available memory, so
> it
> flushes another page that is also needed by the program... ?
> What is the point of me waiting, when there is a ton of spare memory?
> It
> should not be flushing ANY RAM to PF in the first place. I see no
> value in
> the computer trying to keep 1 GB of Available memory at all times.
>
> So I tried using Computer Properties \ Advanced \ Performance \
> Settings \
> Advanced \ Virtual memory setting to force the page file down to 256
> MB.
> Yes that's small, but it's not like the computer needs the extra
> memory
> space. I can confirm that C:\pagefile.sys is 268,435,456 bytes.
> TaskManager still gives PF Usage at over 500 MB though, and the
> computer is
> still making me wait at least 30 seconds to start using the program
> again
> after an hour delay.
>
> Where is Windows dumping the info to disk, since C:\pagefile.sys is
> the
> correct size?
> So, how do I force XP to stop being stupid with the pagefile? I want
> to
> force XP to keep ALL programs in physical RAM, since there is no
> shortage of
> it.
>
> Windows says MS recommends against eliminating the swap file
> entirely... How
> important is that?
>
> Dale
>
>
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Ron Martell2
External


Since: Aug 30, 2004
Posts: 4325



PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 6:20 am    Post subject: Re: how to Reduce page file usage [Login to view extended thread Info.]
Archived from groups: per prev. post (more info?)

"Dale" wrote:

>How do I restrict Windows XP from using the page file?
>
>I have 1.5 GB of RAM, and TaskManager tells me there is over 1 GB of
>Physical Memory Available.
>All my programs take, at most, 1 GB of memory once loaded (including shared
>memory for video card). This info comes summary values in TaskManager; add
>memory in use (Installed minus Available) plus PF usage.
>This means that I would have half a Gig of spare memory, even if XP left
>everything in RAM.
>
>Windows keeps dumping stuff into the page file, even though there is no need
>(since there is no shortage of memory). As a result of this behaviour, when
>I go to use a previously loaded program that I have not switched to for an
>hour, I have to wait half a minute for it to load into RAM from the PF. (It
>is a large program.) Sometimes, after waiting for 5 minutes, the program
>still is not ready for use. Maybe XP is thrashing, or fighting with itself;
>it loads a page, sees there is less than 1 GB of available memory, so it
>flushes another page that is also needed by the program... ?
>What is the point of me waiting, when there is a ton of spare memory? It
>should not be flushing ANY RAM to PF in the first place. I see no value in
>the computer trying to keep 1 GB of Available memory at all times.
>
>So I tried using Computer Properties \ Advanced \ Performance \ Settings \
>Advanced \ Virtual memory setting to force the page file down to 256 MB.
>Yes that's small, but it's not like the computer needs the extra memory
>space. I can confirm that C:\pagefile.sys is 268,435,456 bytes.
>TaskManager still gives PF Usage at over 500 MB though, and the computer is
>still making me wait at least 30 seconds to start using the program again
>after an hour delay.
>
>Where is Windows dumping the info to disk, since C:\pagefile.sys is the
>correct size?
>So, how do I force XP to stop being stupid with the pagefile? I want to
>force XP to keep ALL programs in physical RAM, since there is no shortage of
>it.
>
>Windows says MS recommends against eliminating the swap file entirely... How
>important is that?
>

Hi Dale.

Gerry Cornell pointed you in the right direction.

One concept that is hard to appreciate unless it is explained to you
is that Windows reports a lot of "phantom" page file usage. That is
why it is better to make your decisions based on the utility that
Gerry mentioned rather than on what Task Manager reports as PF Usage.

The starting point for all of this has to do with the way memory is
allocated. Various items, such as application programs, device
drivers, and Windows components, issue Memory Allocation Requests to
the operating system. By design, Windows must sufficient memory
address space to all of these requests. However the reality is that
almost everything tends to ask for memory allocations that are larger
than what is actually needed under normal circumstances.

So what Windows does is to allocate RAM only to those portions of the
requests that are actually used, with the unused portions being mapped
to locations in the paging file. Note that this mapping of the
unused portions of memory requests to the paging file does not require
any actual disk activity - all that is necessary is to make
appropriate entries in the memory mapping tables maintained by the
CPU.

Windows Task Manager (and most other Windows reporting functions)
count this mapping of unused requests as usage of the paging file; and
technically they are correct because the memory addresses represented
by that paging file space have been allocated and cannot be used
elsewhere until released.

MVP Bill James' utility (the one Gerry referred you to) on the other
hand only counts the actual valid memory content that has been moved
from RAM to the paging file. This is the true physical usage of the
paging file, and should be a relatively low figure. There is about
50 mb or so of memory content used by Windows and various startup
items that is seldom or never used again but which must remain in
memory in order to preserve integrity. Very often some or all of that
will be moved to the paging file as a routine housekeeping measure.
But anything more than 50 mb or so of actual valid memory content in
the paging file is usually an indicator that your system would benefit
from having more RAM installed.

Just to illustrate the various paging file figures here is the current
data for my own computer:
PF Usage (Task Manager) = 524 mb
Actual usage (Bill James' utility) = 86 mb
Actual physical size of the paging file (c:\pagefile.sys) = 128 mb

The computer presently has 1 gb of RAM installed.

Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada
--
Microsoft MVP (1997 - 2006)
On-Line Help Computer Service
http://onlinehelp.bc.ca
Syberfix Remote Computer Repair

"Anyone who thinks that they are too small to make a difference
has never been in bed with a mosquito."
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needlove
External


Since: Jan 08, 2006
Posts: 253



PostPosted: Wed Dec 13, 2006 3:35 pm    Post subject: Re: how to Reduce page file usage [Login to view extended thread Info.]
Archived from groups: per prev. post (more info?)

Why then does Windows only see the initial size of the pagefile? If I set
the initial size to say 180 MBs and the maximum to 300 MBs then when the
initial size is reached (180 MBs) windows gives me a caution sign and says
it is increasing the size of the virtual memory. That doesn't make sense it
should only increase it when the maximum is reached. I use the Bill James
monitor and it shows my pagefile size at the minimum i have set "188MBs".
What is the point of having a minimum and a maximum if only the minimum is
seen as the actual size?
"Ron Martell" wrote in message

| "Dale" wrote:
|
| >How do I restrict Windows XP from using the page file?
| >
| >I have 1.5 GB of RAM, and TaskManager tells me there is over 1 GB of
| >Physical Memory Available.
| >All my programs take, at most, 1 GB of memory once loaded (including
shared
| >memory for video card). This info comes summary values in TaskManager;
add
| >memory in use (Installed minus Available) plus PF usage.
| >This means that I would have half a Gig of spare memory, even if XP left
| >everything in RAM.
| >
| >Windows keeps dumping stuff into the page file, even though there is no
need
| >(since there is no shortage of memory). As a result of this behaviour,
when
| >I go to use a previously loaded program that I have not switched to for
an
| >hour, I have to wait half a minute for it to load into RAM from the PF.
(It
| >is a large program.) Sometimes, after waiting for 5 minutes, the
program
| >still is not ready for use. Maybe XP is thrashing, or fighting with
itself;
| >it loads a page, sees there is less than 1 GB of available memory, so it
| >flushes another page that is also needed by the program... ?
| >What is the point of me waiting, when there is a ton of spare memory?
It
| >should not be flushing ANY RAM to PF in the first place. I see no value
in
| >the computer trying to keep 1 GB of Available memory at all times.
| >
| >So I tried using Computer Properties \ Advanced \ Performance \ Settings
\
| >Advanced \ Virtual memory setting to force the page file down to 256 MB.
| >Yes that's small, but it's not like the computer needs the extra memory
| >space. I can confirm that C:\pagefile.sys is 268,435,456 bytes.
| >TaskManager still gives PF Usage at over 500 MB though, and the computer
is
| >still making me wait at least 30 seconds to start using the program
again
| >after an hour delay.
| >
| >Where is Windows dumping the info to disk, since C:\pagefile.sys is the
| >correct size?
| >So, how do I force XP to stop being stupid with the pagefile? I want to
| >force XP to keep ALL programs in physical RAM, since there is no
shortage of
| >it.
| >
| >Windows says MS recommends against eliminating the swap file entirely...
How
| >important is that?
| >
|
| Hi Dale.
|
| Gerry Cornell pointed you in the right direction.
|
| One concept that is hard to appreciate unless it is explained to you
| is that Windows reports a lot of "phantom" page file usage. That is
| why it is better to make your decisions based on the utility that
| Gerry mentioned rather than on what Task Manager reports as PF Usage.
|
| The starting point for all of this has to do with the way memory is
| allocated. Various items, such as application programs, device
| drivers, and Windows components, issue Memory Allocation Requests to
| the operating system. By design, Windows must sufficient memory
| address space to all of these requests. However the reality is that
| almost everything tends to ask for memory allocations that are larger
| than what is actually needed under normal circumstances.
|
| So what Windows does is to allocate RAM only to those portions of the
| requests that are actually used, with the unused portions being mapped
| to locations in the paging file. Note that this mapping of the
| unused portions of memory requests to the paging file does not require
| any actual disk activity - all that is necessary is to make
| appropriate entries in the memory mapping tables maintained by the
| CPU.
|
| Windows Task Manager (and most other Windows reporting functions)
| count this mapping of unused requests as usage of the paging file; and
| technically they are correct because the memory addresses represented
| by that paging file space have been allocated and cannot be used
| elsewhere until released.
|
| MVP Bill James' utility (the one Gerry referred you to) on the other
| hand only counts the actual valid memory content that has been moved
| from RAM to the paging file. This is the true physical usage of the
| paging file, and should be a relatively low figure. There is about
| 50 mb or so of memory content used by Windows and various startup
| items that is seldom or never used again but which must remain in
| memory in order to preserve integrity. Very often some or all of that
| will be moved to the paging file as a routine housekeeping measure.
| But anything more than 50 mb or so of actual valid memory content in
| the paging file is usually an indicator that your system would benefit
| from having more RAM installed.
|
| Just to illustrate the various paging file figures here is the current
| data for my own computer:
| PF Usage (Task Manager) = 524 mb
| Actual usage (Bill James' utility) = 86 mb
| Actual physical size of the paging file (c:\pagefile.sys) = 128 mb
|
| The computer presently has 1 gb of RAM installed.
|
| Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada
| --
| Microsoft MVP (1997 - 2006)
| On-Line Help Computer Service
| http://onlinehelp.bc.ca
| Syberfix Remote Computer Repair
|
| "Anyone who thinks that they are too small to make a difference
| has never been in bed with a mosquito."
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