Windows XP memory tweak guide @ TechSpot

By on December 29, 2005, 2:24 PM
Itís been a long time since we posted our initial Windows XP memory guide, and given the advancements in PC hardware and the increased system requirements of applications nowadays, it was about time the guide got an update.

There are several components to the Windows memory subsystem. For the most part this guide will be targeting the Hard Drive, CPU, and RAM, optimally configuring these along the way, and clearing up many of the placebos surrounding memory management in XP.



Read the complete memory tweaking guide here.




User Comments: 25

Got something to say? Post a comment
kangaruffian said:
Tools that keeps windoze runnig shoothly :)[url]http://www.oo-software.com/en/products/ooclevercache/
/url][url]http://www.oo-software.com/en/products/oodefrag/
/url][url]http://www.v-com.com/product/Fix-It_Utilities_Ho
e.html[/url]and so on..
Chamot said:
That was a nice guide. I actually had not noticed Techspot had a driver database by the way.
asphix said:
wow! that had a lot of great information I didnt know before. Thanks! I would like to see more of these done by you guys, this was incredibly impressive and user friendly!
Arcanum said:
Thank you Thomas for demystifying alot of settings around which myths were built.It's unbeliveable how people tend to believe that some of these things work, although no one ever prooved a performance increase, or really explained why it should even work (exploring DLLs and looking in Microsoft database should make it clear if something works, but people often disregard that).Finally a guide which actually explains with facts what works and what doesn't and what everything actually does, I know a lot of people have been waiting for this!Great job on the guide!Techspot guides will always remain no. 1 in my book, the sheer amount of the effort that goes in them to make sure everything written is supported by facts, easy to understand and use, proffesionalism etc. , and this is just another addition.Regards and kudos to everyone involved in this guide!
MonkeyMan said:
This is awesome, about time, thanks man!!!!!1
Rhianntp said:
I ran across this guide by chance while looking at the Neowin web site. Very useful and easy to follow. Thanks guys! TechSpot is now bookmarked in my favorites :)
mtyson8 said:
Great guide. I will use it. However, in the paging file section I was confused. The top half says to look at commit charge, divide by 1024, and add at least 50MB for your minimum paging file. The bottom half says dont use any formulas in setting you min paging file.The top half again says to allocate 1000mb min and 1500mb max to the drive in which you have XP installed. Leave other drives with no paging file. The bottom half says to put paging file on extra drives(if it is as fast) and take it off the drive in which you have windows XP installed!...Which is it?
Mictlantecuhtli said:
The guide suggests to disable the memory dump completely. That way you won't be able to post minidumps to the forums in order to determine what went wrong if/when there's a BSOD.
---agissi--- said:
Great guide guys, thanks a lot!
K9-Cop said:
mtyson8: The guide says to allocate 1000mb min and 1500mb max for testing purposes only. The idea is if the most resource intensive situation your computer could be in is to be running a game with Microsoft Word running in the background, create that scenario with the min and max set at those values. Then check the peak commit charge value, divide it by 1024 and add a 50MB buffer and set it as your minimum paging file size. You should then set max to something significantly higher. When the guide says not to use a formula, its referring to formulas such as "set paging file equal to the amount of ram on your computer multiplied by 1.5" for example. Those formulas are not unique to your situation, whereas finding a typical max value by looking at the peak commit charge value is unique.Also, not to advertise a different site, I check out techspot daily, but [url]http://www.tweakguides.com[/url] is an excellent site. You should check out the TweakGuides Tweaking Companion as it is a fairly detailed resource for everything Windows XP, from installation to optimization.
ThomasNews said:
I'll have a look at that section so, see if I can rephrase it any better.Part of the confusion no doubt rests with the fact that I wanted to cover several different methods for setting it up rather than just using 1. As said above, if you disable the memory dumps you'll have less info for troubleshooting while I see on another site someone bemoaning not covering the "disable page file completely" option. Hate to see the comments if I only covered 1 way to sdet the page file ;) (BTW - I'm using this account due to some wierdness with my admin account)
Masque said:
I'm on this one....just rebuilt the machine, traded some IDE for SATA and upped to 2GB of Ram....now to see how I can best tweak. :)
mtyson8 said:
So, for sure, if i have two drives, a C:80GB and a D:40GB and XP is loaded on C: you suggest I put the paging file on D:?I also have 2048MB 400MHz ram. Should I just go with what recommended? And by changing ram from 1024 to 2048 windows will automatically update the recommended allocated size?
PUTALE said:
very nice article. Very informative and easy to follow. I sure will take the advantages of some of the advices. thanks.
Mictlantecuhtli said:
I've disabled pagefile(s) completely, and so far no matter which game I've played or what applications I've had running, I haven't run out of 2 GB of RAM.
PanicX said:
[b]Originally posted by mtyson8:[/b][quote]So, for sure, if i have two drives, a C:80GB and a D:40GB and XP is loaded on C: you suggest I put the paging file on D:?I also have 2048MB 400MHz ram. Should I just go with what recommended? And by changing ram from 1024 to 2048 windows will automatically update the recommended allocated size?[/quote]I believe the idea of putting the pagefile on a seperate drive is to help distribute the read/write load on your hard drives. Basically you need to determine which drive is accessed more often and set the page file on the other, so that paging operations won't slow down the most busy drive. In most cases, your system drive will be the busiest, making it ideal to use your "D:" drive. However if your "D:" drive is slow or perhaps hosting a database, then you'd want to keep the paging file on the "C:" drive.
otmakus said:
[b]Originally posted by Mictlantecuhtli:[/b][quote]The guide suggests to disable the memory dump completely. That way you won't be able to post minidumps to the forums in order to determine what went wrong if/when there's a BSOD.[/quote]LOL, I had exactly the same thing in mind when I read that part of the guide. Enabling the Small memory dump option is better for most of us I guess, I know it's better for me. I've got out of a very frustrating error thanks to the memory dump being examined by someone from Techspot.
brownpaper said:
Be careful if you choose to enable large system cache. You can get hard drive corruption if you enable it with ATI or Nvidia drivers on certain configurations. It happened to me before when I enabled it.
eisbaer said:
Indeed a very extensive article ... and most certainly, it is worthwhile to re-iterate that whenever you start changing settings in the registry or other important files, be sure to back them up beforehand ...
MonkeyMan said:
In light of every post made so far, I'll sum this up and say, "Good job Techspot, we love you." lol.
Fly said:
^I agree. But seriously, your tweaks make xp even better. :)
boril said:
[b]Originally posted by Rhianntp:[/b][quote]I ran across this guide by chance while looking at the Neowin web site. Very useful and easy to follow. Thanks guys! TechSpot is now bookmarked in my favorites :)[/quote]me too ;) I thought I know everything about memory tweaking :) I was wrong :P The most important is that this guide broke to pieces some of myth tweaks.[Edited by boril on 2006-01-01 01:47:59]
ThomasNews said:
Updating the guide at the moment with an amended section of the minidump :) Thanks.
Race said:
I'm not sure I would go as far as to delete the 'Always Unload DLL' entry. It's still a benefit as far as Windows Explorer is concerned.........I would think.
MaXtor said:
Great article. A lot of good ideas. My xp machine is running better than ever. Those registry tweaks were top notch! Thanks.
Load all comments...

Add New Comment

TechSpot Members
Login or sign up for free,
it takes about 30 seconds.
You may also...
Get complete access to the TechSpot community. Join thousands of technology enthusiasts that contribute and share knowledge in our forum. Get a private inbox, upload your own photo gallery and more.