Is the page file to good to be true?

By Anonymous Danny
Feb 6, 2005
  1. Hey hey. Quick querey. How good is the page file? When I read that it just uses cpu memory as RAM memory, i was a bit suspicious. Does page filing exactly use cpu memory as RAM, or are there drawbacks to it? Currently i have 38 or so GBs of memory and have increased page file to a minimum of 512, and couple it with 192 system memory. Is it basically running programs at 704mb RAM now or what? Cuz if page file works as RAM does, what's the point of even upgrading RAM when u can draw from ur hard disk?
  2. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +422


    the Pagefile/swapfile/virtual memory is a file or space on your hd that is allocated to storing things that RAM usually holds. Using it yes it does in effect give you more memory, but its "virtual" since your physical ram isn't increasing.

    But physical ram is MANY times faster than anything you can pull off your harddrive. So that is the reason you want to have more physical ram rather than relying on virtual.
  3. Anonymous Danny

    Anonymous Danny TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 33

    Ah i see. So let's see if I get this straight. In running an application, the speed of the application runs as if it were using 192mb RAM, but the, i guess, quality of how the program runs increases by using a page file? Also, is there any benefit in putting in grossly large amounts for the page file, like just GBs of it, or will that slow the processor down? O, also, when u increase ur paging file, does it automatically get taken out of the free space on the disk drive
    For example if u have 38GBs and increase paging file minimum to 500mb, will ur disk now show only 37.5GBs free?
  4. SNGX1275

    SNGX1275 TS Forces Special Posts: 10,742   +422

    If you have 192 Megs of RAM. And you set your pagefile to 500 megs (in xp perhaps 2k and earlier you can set min and max size). It will take that 500 megs out of your free space on your harddrive.
    Pagefile by itself without some registry settings changed it doesn't exactly perform like one would hope. You'd hope that all 192 of physical ram is used before it starts using hard drive as ram. But in reality it gets mixed up a bit and you may be using 140 real ram and some other amount of hard drive space for ram.
    I think, but don't have anything to back me up, that if you make the pagefile really large, it just further would increase the potential for stuff to go to hard drive space rather than regular ram. In the very least it can cause the data to be spread out physically farther on your hard drive, which would increase the access time to that memory even further.
Topic Status:
Not open for further replies.

Similar Topics

Add your comment to this article

You need to be a member to leave a comment. Join thousands of tech enthusiasts and participate.
TechSpot Account You may also...