Solved To have or not to have Win XP pagefile on a 2GB RAM laptop

November 24, 2013 at 12:16:13
Specs: Windows XP
Which solution gives you a faster laptop, in your oppinion?

To have or not to have a paging file on a 2 GB RAM laptop?

The windows xp I use is minimal, optimised for performance, I use it for browsing and ms office. The kaspersky antivirus was my problem, but after i upgraded from 512 m ram to 2 gb it works fine now.


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November 24, 2013 at 12:46:18
Whatever amount of RAM your laptop has, Windows still needs virtual memory. If you disable it I think you'll soon decide to re-enable it.

In any case, why even consider it? What do you expect to gain?

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November 24, 2013 at 14:52:22

or honestly I would say, a little more speed..
Avoiding the access to a 5.400 rpm hdd... I would suggest it might be a good idea..
But I don't know the drawbacks.
That's why the question.

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November 24, 2013 at 15:15:25
✔ Best Answer
Here is some reading.

HOW TO: Move the Paging File in Windows XP

Black Viper’s Windows XP Super Tweaks

The Page File

How to configure paging files for optimization and recovery in Windows XP

Understanding the Windows Pagefile and Why You Shouldn't Disable It

Take control of the Windows XP pagefile

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November 24, 2013 at 15:42:04
mmm I seem to recall that if you put the swap/page-file on a separate hard drive then there was some benefit. But putting into a separate partition on the same drive as the OS itself - no benefit...

Also 2Gig of RAM over say 1.0 - 1.5Gig was negligible difference overall..; wasn't worth the extra pennies... Way back when I can recall folks saying that 1Gig was more than fine for XP - unless one was really number crunching, or using applications that really hogged memory. And if the latter then if you had two or more open at the same time you might benefit for 2Gig RAM installed;and even then you might find things a little slow with XP/Vista.

Johnw has given some useful references/links...

Incidentally I used to use Kaspersky; found it very good (freebie package) - but over time it has become rather bloated... I now use the M$ security package (antivirus etc. all in one) on my elderly XP systems; and also on my win-7... Which having said I recently tested out Sophos freebie for home use - and it found a couple of things M$ hadn't...? Mal-phlsh or something like and it removed them easily. This on both mac systems and win-xp/7...

I keep M$ updated of course; and now also run a sophos check too...

message edited by trvlr

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November 24, 2013 at 18:25:18
There is a widespread misconception that the pagefile is simply a means of making up for a shortage of memory. If you have enough memory you can turn off the pagefile and performance will be better. Not so. The pagefile was actually designed to optimize the use of RAM, however much you may have. It usually works.

There is also the problem that disabling the pagefile will result in a drastic reduction in the commit limit. With 2 GB RAM that could be a problem. This has nothing to do with how much RAM you have shown as available.

message edited by LMiller7

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November 24, 2013 at 21:05:24
I guess you could always put the pagefile on a ramdrive but you might need more total ram in order to do it right. XP has a built in 'microsoft ram disk controller' you can install but no one seem to know how to set it up:

(You might have to go through disk management.)

There's also some third party software. Here's a couple I found:

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November 25, 2013 at 10:38:36
Just leave it be & let Windows handle it.

If you want to optimize performance, install CCleaner-Slim & use it regularly, install a lightweight AV program, disable all useless startup entries, uninstall useless programs that you no longer use or need, defrag the HDD, etc.

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November 25, 2013 at 15:34:59
Thank you all!

All great answers and the links Johnw gave me were really useful!

In the end, I will just ... let it be.. let the Windows handle it..

But, as Daveincaps said.. a ramdrive, if I had more ram.. No.. maybe for my next laptop, with an SSD to get rid of the HDD.. I hate mechanical parts in storage devices..

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November 25, 2013 at 15:48:46
"In the end, I will just ... let it be.. let the Windows handle it.."
That's what I do.

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