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Optimal Page File Setting


Nerwin
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I've been doing some research on this and I can't seem to come up with a straight answer. 

 

I know there is controversy when it comes to page file being on an SSD, but these were from early SSD days. I don't think the life expectancy will be hindered much at all on todays SSD drives because of page file

 

Some have said its best to plop the page file on a secondary platter drive like a large one but whats the point when the SSD is built for speed?

 

I have a 128gb Samsung 840 Evo Pro, 2 TB SATA 3 hard drive, 16 gigs of DDR3

 

I don't think my computer will benefit from having a matching page file. 

 

So right now I have my page file set on my SSD to 800mb-2048mb, some have the max set even lower. 

 

I'm just curious, is there any performance gain by doing this besides saving space on the SSD? Should I move the page file or split the page file and put a large one on the 2TB drive? But, because I have 16gigs of ram..I doubt my computer will ever use full 16 gigs unless a program has a memory leak. 

 

What is the best way to go about setting up the page file today? 

Edited by Nerwin
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See here:

http://www.msfn.org/board/topic/174002-windows-7-possible-advisable-to-disable-the-page-file/

It's not like there are any (meaningful) changes in the way Vista and later OS behave (and they were not that much different on 2K/XP).

 

Personally I would set it as fixed size (whatever size you see fit, but a smallish one, like 100-200 Mb or so would be enough to "satisfy" the *need* some programs have of a pagefile being set) anyway 1 Gb is more than enough and "next logical step" would be "size of ram+a few hundreds megabytes", i.e. in your case nearly 17 Gb  :w00t: (in order to have a full dump in case of error) and move it to the "conventional" hard disk, only to be on the safe side with SSD wear (if any).

 

But it is easy, once decided a suitable (minimal) size, run your system one wee with the pagefile set on the SSD, then run it another week with the same pagefile set on the "conventional" disk and see if you can see/feel any difference (I believe there won't be any noticeable).

 

jaclaz

Edited by jaclaz
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Okay..so what I ended up doing was setting the page file on the SSD to 1GB and then created a 17gb page file on my mechanical drive just in case if there was a memory dump for debugging which probably rarely happens. But I have the space, why not use it? 

 

I noticed that Windows was using nearly 20gb of page file on my SSD..so now I have 19gb of more free space. 

 

Hopefully this is the right move. I'm not super worried about SSD life right now because I plan on upgrading to the new 256gb Samsung 850 Pro soon.

Edited by Nerwin
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Okay..so what I ended up doing was setting the page file on the SSD to 1GB and then created a 17gb page file on my mechanical drive just in case if there was a memory dump for debugging which probably rarely happens. But I have the space, why not use it?

Well, I don' think there is a guarantee that in case of crash that page file will be used, then maybe you'd better create a dedicated dump file on the "conventional" hard disk:

http://blogs.msdn.com/b/ntdebugging/archive/2010/04/02/how-to-use-the-dedicateddumpfile-registry-value-to-overcome-space-limitations-on-the-system-drive-when-capturing-a-system-memory-dump.aspx

I noticed that Windows was using nearly 20gb of page file on my SSD..so now I have 19gb of more free space.

That may be due to the effect of the "new" (since Windows 8) "Automatic" setting for the crashdump (if you were running in "system managed" and you did have a "bug check" less than 4 weeks ago or so:

http://blogs.technet.com/b/askcore/archive/2012/09/12/windows-8-and-windows-server-2012-automatic-memory-dump.aspx

jaclaz

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16 gigs of DDR3

 

and you want page file...

 

page file was designed for 9x era, when RAM was small and hard drives were bigger

thus using virtual storage to ease the system and app "load"

 

with 16 GB RAM and SSD, ... Page File is monstrosity to even speak of

 

there is reason why win7 disables PF on SSD's

 

and also winblows uses it terribly, it doesn't clean it up or defragment it, it leaves trash init

which then your magnetic disk grinds to find some shitty small data, for what ?

 

instead loading it all in RAM

Edited by vinifera
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So what would be the best thing to do? 

 

    Disable the pagefile completely and see if you have any issues.  I've got only 8GB of RAM in my main machine, I haven't used a pagefile in years and haven't had any "out of memory" related crashes either.  If you do have issues, try a small (100 MB – 1 GB) pagefile on your SSD.  Definitely keep the pagefile on the SSD.  That's one of the best reasons to have one in the first place.

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So what would be the best thing to do?

The whole point of the thread I pointed you to was that there is no definite answer for that question, there is not a one-size-fits-all solution, because it greatly depends on the individual install and on the programs one runs (a few simply *need* a pagefile, even if of minimal size, in order to run).

What everyone can tell you is that once you have more than 4 Gb of RAM it is extremely unlikely that the pagefile will be actually ever "hit".

Try thinking the other way round.

The minimal specifications for Windows 10:

https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/windows-10-specifications

RAM:

1 gigabyte (GB) for 32-bit or 2 GB for 64-bit

So if you go "by the rules" with a 64 bit machine with 2 Gb:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/2860880

You will have (largest setting by the system) an around 3x2=6+1= 7 Gb pagefie

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/2860880

Now you have more than double that size already in RAM, how much do you think that a pagefile will be hit?

This older article:

https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/kb/889654

expands on methods to experimentally determine the best configuration for a given system/usage.

jaclaz

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I have 3 and never used it

 

some "experts" said you need minimum 1 MB in case of BSOD dumps, well thats BS because winblows will complain of it being too small

 

thing is that only old programs will seatch for PF when your RAM exceeds ~70%

any newer than 2008 won't search it, at least shouldn't

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16 gigs of DDR3

 

and you want page file...

 

page file was designed for 9x era, when RAM was small and hard drives were bigger

thus using virtual storage to ease the system and app "load"

 

with 16 GB RAM and SSD, ... Page File is monstrosity to even speak of

 

there is reason why win7 disables PF on SSD's

 

and also winblows uses it terribly, it doesn't clean it up or defragment it, it leaves trash init

which then your magnetic disk grinds to find some s***ty small data, for what ?

 

instead loading it all in RAM

 

 

^ This.

 

My 2c:

With 16GB of RAM there is no need for a pagefile.

But if we disable it, some stupid programs will start bitching about 'no pagefile found'.

So with 16GB of RAM I create a variable size 16-1024MB pagefile on a ramdisk to keep the stupid programs happy. No pagefiles on physical drives.

 

(The above works for W7, I don't know and don't care about how W10 manages this stuff).

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I don't happen to agree that running without a page file is a good idea (or that assigning it to a RAMDISK is reasonable).  Of course, everyone has different experience.  It's that experience I'd like to know more about.

 

I suggest we talk about specific performance and specific system behavior observations to compare configurations

 

For those suggesting alternate configurations (other than just setting up a fixed page file on the system drive and forgetting it), what exactly is it you feel works better as a result?

 

I've personally run NT in all versions, going all the way back, with a fixed page file created at the time of installation that's fairly large.  I've never seen a downside to doing that.

 

Don't worry about SSD wear-out.  With modern SSDs it's simply not something you need to waste your time doing, assuming you don't have a tiny one (which would be silly nowadays, since big ones no longer cost big bucks).

 

Frankly it seems a bit silly to me to put your page file on a slow drive, when there's a fast one available.  That makes no sense.  With the page file on fast storage the transition into using virtual memory - when that happens - won't seem so abrupt.

 

With a lot of RAM your file system is well-cached.  16 GB used to be a lot of RAM.  It's not really any more.  It's the minimum I'd suggest having if you want to run any Adobe products.  If you do professional work with Adobe software and/or expect to do multitasking, I'd suggest 48 GB or 64 GB - or even more.

 

With Win 10 I'd suggest leaving it as Microsoft sets it during installation, and focus on optimizing other things.

 

-Noel

Edited by NoelC
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... For those suggesting alternate configurations (other than just setting up a fixed page file on the system drive and forgetting it), what exactly is it you feel works better as a result? ...

 

Main point: When Windows (which when tons of free RAM are available shouldn't, but occasionally does anyway) or some stupid program stubbornly insist on using the pagefile, they will do it at RAMming speed, orders of magnitude faster than any SSD or HDD. Thus no stupid unnecessary usage of pagefile will slow the system.

 

Writings are spared to the SSD. Not really critical, but welcomed.

 

Whenever the system is shut down and the ramdisk vanishes, the pagefile is automatically disintegrated. Good for security.

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