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1G vs. 512 - noticeable performance difference?

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  • Windows XP
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September 14, 2004 11:49:46 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

Hi:

I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G for a while, but
don't know if there are noticeable performance improvement, such as faster
boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several applications.

Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point me to where I can
find some benchmark reports?

The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word, Excel, PPT at the
same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video playback and
editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use. There are
additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are running
consistently.

The current performance is not so bad though.

Thanks in advance.


--
Business executive who believes technology but don't want to be messed
around.

More about : 512 noticeable performance difference

Anonymous
September 14, 2004 11:49:47 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

Boot up will be slower because there will be more RAM to
test, if you have a reduction of swap file use you will get
a performance improvement. Other than the slightly slower
boot, everything else should be no worse and it could be
better. But the money might better be spent on a faster CPU
or faster graphics.


--
The people think the Constitution protects their rights;
But government sees it as an obstacle to be overcome.


"xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote in message
news:uOnQnsemEHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
| Hi:
|
| I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G
for a while, but
| don't know if there are noticeable performance
improvement, such as faster
| boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several
applications.
|
| Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point
me to where I can
| find some benchmark reports?
|
| The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word,
Excel, PPT at the
| same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video
playback and
| editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use.
There are
| additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are
running
| consistently.
|
| The current performance is not so bad though.
|
| Thanks in advance.
|
|
| --
| Business executive who believes technology but don't want
to be messed
| around.
|
|
Anonymous
September 14, 2004 11:49:47 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

I share my main computer with my wife and we generally are both logged
on using fast user switching to move between accounts. I found that
with 640MB of memory we were fairly frequently getting swap file paging
since a number of programs were loaded twice, once for each of us. This
got worse if any of the kids also logged into their accounts. Since
going to 1GB of memory, working with multiple users has been pleasant!
Related resources
Anonymous
September 14, 2004 11:49:47 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

"xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote:

>Hi:
>
>I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G for a while, but
>don't know if there are noticeable performance improvement, such as faster
>boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several applications.
>
>Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point me to where I can
>find some benchmark reports?
>
>The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word, Excel, PPT at the
>same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video playback and
>editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use. There are
>additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are running
>consistently.
>
>The current performance is not so bad though.
>
>Thanks in advance.

Adding more memory can noticeably improve performance only if the
added memory results in reduced usage of the virtual memory paging
file. Therefore if the paging file is not currently being used to any
significant extent then adding more memory will not provide a
significant improvement.

Unfortunately there is no ready way of determing actual paging file
usage provided with Windows XP - it does not have an equivalent to the
'Memory Manager - Swap File In Use" reporting provided by the System
Monitor utility in Windows 95/98/Me.

There is a free utility that you can download and run which will
provide this information for you. It was written by MVP Bill James and
you can get if from
http://www.dougknox.com/xp/utils/xp_pagefilemon.htm or from
http://billsway.com/notes_public/WinXP_Tweaks/

If that utility shows actual page file usage of 50 mb or more on a
regular basis then that is indicative of fairly significant paging
file activity. Adding more RAM will reduce or even eliminate entirely
this activity thereby improving performance.

This apples regardless of how much or how little RAM is currently
installed in the computer, at least up to the 4 gb RAM maximum for
Windows XP.

Hope this explains the situation.

Good luck


Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada
--
Microsoft MVP
On-Line Help Computer Service
http://onlinehelp.bc.ca

"The reason computer chips are so small is computers don't eat much."
September 14, 2004 12:16:32 PM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

Hi:

Thanks for your kind advise.

The VGA is 128MB and CPU is 2.5G, which I think should be fine for the time
being :-)

I am curious about adding more RAMs (as it is not expensive now) to XP pro
will improve even more.

Thanks again.


--
Business executive who believes technology but don't want to be messed
around.
"Jim Macklin" <p51mustang[threeX12]@xxxhotmail.calm>
???????:o VFrX1emEHA.3340@TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...
> Boot up will be slower because there will be more RAM to
> test, if you have a reduction of swap file use you will get
> a performance improvement. Other than the slightly slower
> boot, everything else should be no worse and it could be
> better. But the money might better be spent on a faster CPU
> or faster graphics.
>
>
> --
> The people think the Constitution protects their rights;
> But government sees it as an obstacle to be overcome.
>
>
> "xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote in message
> news:uOnQnsemEHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
> | Hi:
> |
> | I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G
> for a while, but
> | don't know if there are noticeable performance
> improvement, such as faster
> | boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several
> applications.
> |
> | Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point
> me to where I can
> | find some benchmark reports?
> |
> | The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word,
> Excel, PPT at the
> | same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video
> playback and
> | editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use.
> There are
> | additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are
> running
> | consistently.
> |
> | The current performance is not so bad though.
> |
> | Thanks in advance.
> |
> |
> | --
> | Business executive who believes technology but don't want
> to be messed
> | around.
> |
> |
>
>
Anonymous
September 14, 2004 12:16:33 PM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

I'm not against your adding more RAM, the few seconds longer
it will take to boo up only happens once in a day, the time
you may save will happen with each swap file access that
doesn't happen. Some programs will require that virtual
memory still be enabled, but if you have enough RAM, very
little disk access will be actually used. It all depends on
which programs you use and how you use them.


--
The people think the Constitution protects their rights;
But government sees it as an obstacle to be overcome.


"xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote in message
news:%23Qshl7emEHA.3896@TK2MSFTNGP15.phx.gbl...
| Hi:
|
| Thanks for your kind advise.
|
| The VGA is 128MB and CPU is 2.5G, which I think should be
fine for the time
| being :-)
|
| I am curious about adding more RAMs (as it is not
expensive now) to XP pro
| will improve even more.
|
| Thanks again.
|
|
| --
| Business executive who believes technology but don't want
to be messed
| around.
| "Jim Macklin" <p51mustang[threeX12]@xxxhotmail.calm>
| ???????:o VFrX1emEHA.3340@TK2MSFTNGP14.phx.gbl...
| > Boot up will be slower because there will be more RAM to
| > test, if you have a reduction of swap file use you will
get
| > a performance improvement. Other than the slightly
slower
| > boot, everything else should be no worse and it could be
| > better. But the money might better be spent on a faster
CPU
| > or faster graphics.
| >
| >
| > --
| > The people think the Constitution protects their rights;
| > But government sees it as an obstacle to be overcome.
| >
| >
| > "xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote in message
| > news:uOnQnsemEHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
| > | Hi:
| > |
| > | I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB
to 1G
| > for a while, but
| > | don't know if there are noticeable performance
| > improvement, such as faster
| > | boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on
several
| > applications.
| > |
| > | Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or
point
| > me to where I can
| > | find some benchmark reports?
| > |
| > | The common tasks are office applications (sometime
Word,
| > Excel, PPT at the
| > | same time), also certain level of audio, image, and
video
| > playback and
| > | editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy
use.
| > There are
| > | additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that
are
| > running
| > | consistently.
| > |
| > | The current performance is not so bad though.
| > |
| > | Thanks in advance.
| > |
| > |
| > | --
| > | Business executive who believes technology but don't
want
| > to be messed
| > | around.
| > |
| > |
| >
| >
|
|
Anonymous
September 14, 2004 1:24:31 PM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

I've just gone the other way from 1 Gig to 512 due to one chip developing a
minor fault. Similar usage and to be honest I haven't noticed any
difference.
I think this dual channel stuff is such a small advantage most people
couldn't pick the difference.

"xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote in message
news:uOnQnsemEHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
> Hi:
>
> I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G for a while,
> but
> don't know if there are noticeable performance improvement, such as faster
> boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several applications.
>
> Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point me to where I
> can
> find some benchmark reports?
>
> The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word, Excel, PPT at the
> same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video playback and
> editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use. There are
> additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are running
> consistently.
>
> The current performance is not so bad though.
>
> Thanks in advance.
>
>
> --
> Business executive who believes technology but don't want to be messed
> around.
>
Anonymous
September 14, 2004 10:36:38 PM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

I had 512 Meg and upgraded to 1Gig in order to process large digital images.
The software I was using tried to keep the orignial image file and the
in-progress image file as bit-maps. Whever the sum of these files, plus
system background stuff, exceeded the RAM, then the pagefile was
automatically used, and the editting operating slowed dramatically.

But, except for this one application, I have noticed no difference in XP
performance with extra RAM. Booting is slower, if the RAM is tested during
the booting process. However, on my motherboard that is optional.


"xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote in message
news:uOnQnsemEHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
> Hi:
>
> I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G for a while,
> but
> don't know if there are noticeable performance improvement, such as faster
> boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several applications.
>
> Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point me to where I
> can
> find some benchmark reports?
>
> The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word, Excel, PPT at the
> same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video playback and
> editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use. There are
> additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are running
> consistently.
>
> The current performance is not so bad though.
>
> Thanks in advance.
>
>
> --
> Business executive who believes technology but don't want to be messed
> around.
>
September 15, 2004 12:09:11 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

Dear all:


Thank you all for the advises and detailed information about my question.

I guess the underlying issue is about the swapping file size, (which I have
long forgot, ha ha ha) and it's difficult to tell under current Windows.

So, I guess I would take the advise from Ron to use the utility and to find
out the current and the max. possible amount of page file size and the
determine RAM might be needed.

It also appears that adding additional memory may eliminate the use of page
file, which may also improve performance.

I guess I've got the picture and the rest will depend on my little
experiment.

Thanks again for the kind advises from all.
--
Business executive who believes technology but don't want to be messed
around.


"Ron Martell" <ron.martell@gmail.com>
???????:0i7dk0dqiacv0ojq6ksf4322h6icjt705g@4ax.com...
> "xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote:
>
>>Hi:
>>
>>I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G for a while,
>>but
>>don't know if there are noticeable performance improvement, such as faster
>>boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several applications.
>>
>>Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point me to where I
>>can
>>find some benchmark reports?
>>
>>The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word, Excel, PPT at the
>>same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video playback and
>>editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use. There are
>>additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are running
>>consistently.
>>
>>The current performance is not so bad though.
>>
>>Thanks in advance.
>
> Adding more memory can noticeably improve performance only if the
> added memory results in reduced usage of the virtual memory paging
> file. Therefore if the paging file is not currently being used to any
> significant extent then adding more memory will not provide a
> significant improvement.
>
> Unfortunately there is no ready way of determing actual paging file
> usage provided with Windows XP - it does not have an equivalent to the
> 'Memory Manager - Swap File In Use" reporting provided by the System
> Monitor utility in Windows 95/98/Me.
>
> There is a free utility that you can download and run which will
> provide this information for you. It was written by MVP Bill James and
> you can get if from
> http://www.dougknox.com/xp/utils/xp_pagefilemon.htm or from
> http://billsway.com/notes_public/WinXP_Tweaks/
>
> If that utility shows actual page file usage of 50 mb or more on a
> regular basis then that is indicative of fairly significant paging
> file activity. Adding more RAM will reduce or even eliminate entirely
> this activity thereby improving performance.
>
> This apples regardless of how much or how little RAM is currently
> installed in the computer, at least up to the 4 gb RAM maximum for
> Windows XP.
>
> Hope this explains the situation.
>
> Good luck
>
>
> Ron Martell Duncan B.C. Canada
> --
> Microsoft MVP
> On-Line Help Computer Service
> http://onlinehelp.bc.ca
>
> "The reason computer chips are so small is computers don't eat much."
Anonymous
September 15, 2004 4:55:02 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

That all depends on how you use your computer. If you do multimedia
editing or gaming, you WILL notice the difference, but if you just
browse the internet, listen to music, and watch videos, you aren't going
to see a difference. Dual Channel offers quite a performance difference
if you are able to take advantage of the improved bandwidth.

----
Nathan McNulty


yeloduke wrote:
> I've just gone the other way from 1 Gig to 512 due to one chip developing a
> minor fault. Similar usage and to be honest I haven't noticed any
> difference.
> I think this dual channel stuff is such a small advantage most people
> couldn't pick the difference.
>
> "xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote in message
> news:uOnQnsemEHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
>
>>Hi:
>>
>>I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G for a while,
>>but
>>don't know if there are noticeable performance improvement, such as faster
>>boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several applications.
>>
>>Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point me to where I
>>can
>>find some benchmark reports?
>>
>>The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word, Excel, PPT at the
>>same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video playback and
>>editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use. There are
>>additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are running
>>consistently.
>>
>>The current performance is not so bad though.
>>
>>Thanks in advance.
>>
>>
>>--
>>Business executive who believes technology but don't want to be messed
>>around.
>>
>
>
>
Anonymous
September 15, 2004 4:57:23 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

Honestly, I would not spend the money (even though it is very cheap) as
you probably won't notice any difference. The only way you would notice
a difference would be under these two circumstances:

1) You have a dual channel motherboard that is only using one slot. Two
512 MB chips will increase system performance a bit.

2) You do video/image editing or other high demanding applications.
Gaming would probably not be affected, but may with some of the newer
games and even more so in the future.

----
Nathan McNulty


Jim Macklin wrote:
> I'm not against your adding more RAM, the few seconds longer
> it will take to boo up only happens once in a day, the time
> you may save will happen with each swap file access that
> doesn't happen. Some programs will require that virtual
> memory still be enabled, but if you have enough RAM, very
> little disk access will be actually used. It all depends on
> which programs you use and how you use them.
>
>
Anonymous
September 16, 2004 12:15:10 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

Nathan McNulty wrote:

> Honestly, I would not spend the money (even though it is very cheap) as
> you probably won't notice any difference. The only way you would notice
> a difference would be under these two circumstances:
>
> 1) You have a dual channel motherboard that is only using one slot. Two
> 512 MB chips will increase system performance a bit.
>
> 2) You do video/image editing or other high demanding applications.
> Gaming would probably not be affected, but may with some of the newer
> games and even more so in the future.
>

Actually an older game, Morrowind, does better with 1 GB of memory over
512 MB in some cases. Using 512 MB of memory or less will sometimes
lock up the game because the memory usage goes over 700 MB and the
"thrashing" kills it. Moving up to 1 GB is supposed to fix it.


> ----
> Nathan McNulty
>
>
> Jim Macklin wrote:
>
>> I'm not against your adding more RAM, the few seconds longer it will
>> take to boo up only happens once in a day, the time you may save will
>> happen with each swap file access that doesn't happen. Some programs
>> will require that virtual memory still be enabled, but if you have
>> enough RAM, very little disk access will be actually used. It all
>> depends on which programs you use and how you use them.
>>
>>
Anonymous
September 16, 2004 12:15:11 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

I consider Morrowind a newer game, and most of the gaming part depends
on what video card you have. The lower end the video card the more it
is going to utilize the system memory. I have never had a problem with
Morrowind and 512 MB of RAM though :|

----
Nathan McNulty


Michael W. Ryder wrote:
> Nathan McNulty wrote:
>
>> Honestly, I would not spend the money (even though it is very cheap)
>> as you probably won't notice any difference. The only way you would
>> notice a difference would be under these two circumstances:
>>
>> 1) You have a dual channel motherboard that is only using one slot.
>> Two 512 MB chips will increase system performance a bit.
>>
>> 2) You do video/image editing or other high demanding applications.
>> Gaming would probably not be affected, but may with some of the newer
>> games and even more so in the future.
>>
>
> Actually an older game, Morrowind, does better with 1 GB of memory over
> 512 MB in some cases. Using 512 MB of memory or less will sometimes
> lock up the game because the memory usage goes over 700 MB and the
> "thrashing" kills it. Moving up to 1 GB is supposed to fix it.
>
>
>> ----
>> Nathan McNulty
>>
>>
>> Jim Macklin wrote:
>>
>>> I'm not against your adding more RAM, the few seconds longer it will
>>> take to boo up only happens once in a day, the time you may save will
>>> happen with each swap file access that doesn't happen. Some programs
>>> will require that virtual memory still be enabled, but if you have
>>> enough RAM, very little disk access will be actually used. It all
>>> depends on which programs you use and how you use them.
>>>
>>>
Anonymous
September 16, 2004 2:10:22 AM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

Nathan McNulty wrote:

> I consider Morrowind a newer game, and most of the gaming part depends
> on what video card you have. The lower end the video card the more it
> is going to utilize the system memory. I have never had a problem with
> Morrowind and 512 MB of RAM though :|
>

Morrowind is over 1 year old so I consider it to be an older game as
opposed to Doom3 and and the others on the horizon. I am running an ATI
Radeon 9700 which was top of the line. The memory problem usually
showed up when doing a lot of "fast" travel (guild guides, boats,
spells, etc.). I could usually tell when it was going to crash as it
started noticeably slowing down. Looking at memory usage showed that it
had gone from using around 200 MB to over 500 MB at that time.


> ----
> Nathan McNulty
>
>
> Michael W. Ryder wrote:
>
>> Nathan McNulty wrote:
>>
>>> Honestly, I would not spend the money (even though it is very cheap)
>>> as you probably won't notice any difference. The only way you would
>>> notice a difference would be under these two circumstances:
>>>
>>> 1) You have a dual channel motherboard that is only using one slot.
>>> Two 512 MB chips will increase system performance a bit.
>>>
>>> 2) You do video/image editing or other high demanding applications.
>>> Gaming would probably not be affected, but may with some of the newer
>>> games and even more so in the future.
>>>
>>
>> Actually an older game, Morrowind, does better with 1 GB of memory
>> over 512 MB in some cases. Using 512 MB of memory or less will
>> sometimes lock up the game because the memory usage goes over 700 MB
>> and the "thrashing" kills it. Moving up to 1 GB is supposed to fix it.
>>
>>
>>> ----
>>> Nathan McNulty
>>>
>>>
>>> Jim Macklin wrote:
>>>
>>>> I'm not against your adding more RAM, the few seconds longer it will
>>>> take to boo up only happens once in a day, the time you may save
>>>> will happen with each swap file access that doesn't happen. Some
>>>> programs will require that virtual memory still be enabled, but if
>>>> you have enough RAM, very little disk access will be actually used.
>>>> It all depends on which programs you use and how you use them.
>>>>
>>>>
September 17, 2004 10:53:24 PM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

Hi:

After a costly $500 experiment for improving some unknown performance and
experienced a few days of nightmare, my desktop is finally back to the old
working stage.

If you are interested, read my post - Windows XP SP2 failed to load after
hardware upgrade.

So far under normal use, I can "see and feel" a bit of faster during loading
and login.

Have not felt any differences on opening some applications (Outlook 2003
still slow as it has always been) and have yet to test on multimedia, game,
and image files.

For virtual memory, I am setting to let system managed size, which is 1534MB
now.

Anyway, thanks for the advises from all of you :) 



--
Business executive who believes technology but don't want to be messed
around.


"Bob Harris" <rharris270[SPAM]@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:%232$4uOrmEHA.2372@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
>I had 512 Meg and upgraded to 1Gig in order to process large digital
>images. The software I was using tried to keep the orignial image file and
>the in-progress image file as bit-maps. Whever the sum of these files,
>plus system background stuff, exceeded the RAM, then the pagefile was
>automatically used, and the editting operating slowed dramatically.
>
> But, except for this one application, I have noticed no difference in XP
> performance with extra RAM. Booting is slower, if the RAM is tested
> during the booting process. However, on my motherboard that is optional.
>
>
> "xfile" <cou-cou@remove.msn.com> wrote in message
> news:uOnQnsemEHA.3900@TK2MSFTNGP10.phx.gbl...
>> Hi:
>>
>> I've been thinking about upgrading memory from 512MB to 1G for a while,
>> but
>> don't know if there are noticeable performance improvement, such as
>> faster
>> boot up, program opening, multi-tasking works on several applications.
>>
>> Can anyone kindly share your real life experience or point me to where I
>> can
>> find some benchmark reports?
>>
>> The common tasks are office applications (sometime Word, Excel, PPT at
>> the
>> same time), also certain level of audio, image, and video playback and
>> editing, web programming, and games, but not heavy use. There are
>> additional Windows services, such as IIS Admin that are running
>> consistently.
>>
>> The current performance is not so bad though.
>>
>> Thanks in advance.
>>
>>
>> --
>> Business executive who believes technology but don't want to be messed
>> around.
>>
>
>
Anonymous
September 17, 2004 10:53:25 PM

Archived from groups: microsoft.public.windowsxp.hardware (More info?)

One thing I did, which seems to help, is to create a partition for the swap
space and another for the browser cache. I don't know that it's a huge
delta, but it's cheap and easy.

--
KC6ETE Dave's Engineering Page, www.dvanhorn.org
Microcontroller Consultant, specializing in Atmel AVR
!