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Swap file to 2nd physical HDD?

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Anonymous
February 19, 2005 3:13:37 PM

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

Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -

If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the 2nd
HDD - this speeds up a pc.

Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
swap file ?

Len
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 3:13:38 PM

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

The swap file (pagefile.sys) can be on any partition on any internal hard
drive.

Whether it really speeds up the PC yto have it on a second hard drive
depends on how much you use the swap file. If you have enough RAM, the is
almost no need for a swap file, and even the slowest RAM is a lot faster
than than any hard drive.

However, if you want to "move" it, do NOT use copy&past; that will not work.
Instead, use MyComputer, properties, advanced, performance, settings,
advanced, virtual memory, change. Then set the amount of swap space on each
partition. To "remove" it from C:, highlight C: and then click "no paging
file" near the bottom of the window. Click "set" to apply that change. To
add it to some other partition, highlight that partition and set a finite
min and max size. Click "set" to aplly the change. I suggest that you set
the min and max to the same number, as this prevent fragmentation of the
pagefile. Then, close the windows, and reboot.

"Yabbadoo" <lsdolby@ignore.ntlwor.com> wrote in message
news:R3GRd.307$_5.46@newsfe4-gui.ntli.net...
> Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -
>
> If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the
> 2nd HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>
> Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
> swap file ?
>
> Len
>
>
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 3:13:38 PM

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

Yes, if it is indeed a separate physical drive.
No, if it is a different partition on the same physical drive.

In any case, the improvement will be quite negligible unless your actual RAM
is very low for how you are using the computer.

--
Frank Saunders, MS-MVP, IE/OE
Please respond in Newsgroup. Do not send email
http://www.fjsmjs.com
Protect your PC
http://www.microsoft.com/security/protect/


"Yabbadoo" <lsdolby@ignore.ntlwor.com> wrote in message
news:R3GRd.307$_5.46@newsfe4-gui.ntli.net...
> Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -
>
> If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the
> 2nd HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>
> Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
> swap file ?
>
> Len
>
>
Related resources
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 3:13:38 PM

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

Hi, Len.

Bob Harris told you how to "move" the swap file. My only quibble would be
that I like to check the System Managed Size. But this is one of those
"religious" questions on which expert opinions vary, so I don't want to
start an argument about it. ;^}

Each physical hard drive has a stack of platters that spin on a single
spindle. Do you remember jukeboxes? A typical jukebox has lots of discs
but only a single head with a needle to track the grooves in a record. The
analogy is not perfect, because a computer hard drive has multiple
read/write heads and can access the top and bottom of multiple platters at
the same time. But the multiple heads are all on a single arm assembly and
they all move as a unit. They all must access the same cylinder (same track
number on all platters) at any one time. If you have multiple HDs, then you
have multiple spindles and multiple gangs of heads that can move
independently of the other spindle(s).

If your swap file is on the same spindle as your working program, the heads
must move to the swap file and then back to the program. This is true
whether the swap file is in the same partition or in a different partition
on a different platter, so long as it is on the same spindle using the same
heads. But if the swap file is on the other spindle, those heads can be
writing simultaneously while the main working heads are reading.

As Bob and Frank said, today's HD speeds and RAM sizes make the question
academic for most of us, most of the time. If it's easy to arrange in your
case, do it. If it's a hassle for you, don't bother.

RC
--
R. C. White, CPA
San Marcos, TX
rc@corridor.net
Microsoft Windows MVP

"Yabbadoo" <lsdolby@ignore.ntlwor.com> wrote in message
news:R3GRd.307$_5.46@newsfe4-gui.ntli.net...
> Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -
>
> If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the
> 2nd HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>
> Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
> swap file ?
>
> Len
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 3:13:38 PM

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

If the two drives are IDE drives on the same controller you will not see
much advantagle. If they are on different controllers or are SATA drives
then there would be an occasional gain. With more than 512mb of ram I would
leave the swap file alone and let the system manage it.

--
Colin Barnhorst [MVP Windows - Virtual Machine]
(Reply to the group only unless otherwise requested)
"Yabbadoo" <lsdolby@ignore.ntlwor.com> wrote in message
news:R3GRd.307$_5.46@newsfe4-gui.ntli.net...
> Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -
>
> If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the
> 2nd HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>
> Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
> swap file ?
>
> Len
>
>
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 5:53:28 PM

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

Bob, Frank, thank you. I have 256MB + 512MB chip added (512 chip in first
slot) and no problem.

Take your point that "sufficient" RAM avoids extensive swap-file usage, so I
guess there's little or no benefit for me. However, for those poor souls
who are trying to use XP with only 256MB, this seems to be a short-term
work-around while they save up the pennies to get another RAM chip!

Thanks again, Len.

"Yabbadoo" <lsdolby@ignore.ntlwor.com> wrote in message
news:R3GRd.307$_5.46@newsfe4-gui.ntli.net...
> Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -
>
> If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the
> 2nd HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>
> Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
> swap file ?
>
> Len
>
>
Anonymous
February 19, 2005 7:05:10 PM

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

In news:R3GRd.307$_5.46@newsfe4-gui.ntli.net,
Yabbadoo <lsdolby@ignore.ntlwor.com> typed:

> Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard
> before -
>
> If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from
> C: to
> the 2nd HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>
> Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one
> transfer
> the swap file ?


You've already been told how. Let me address the "whether."

The slowest part of using the page file (or of using any file) is
moving the drive heads to and from it. So with a single drive,
you want the page file close to the other frequently-used files
on the drive, and that should be the partition with Windows on
it.

For the same reason, if you have more than one drive, it's best
to put the page file on the least frequently used drive
(normally, *not* C:) , and on the most-frequently-used partition
on it.

Two points, though:

1. If you do this, you need to keep at least a small portion of
the page file on C:.

2. How much this will help performance depends on how much you
use the page file. Many people running Windows XP these days have
enough RAM to hardly ever use the page file, and the actual
benefit of making this change is very slight.

--
Ken Blake - Microsoft MVP Windows: Shell/User
Please reply to the newsgroup
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 4:38:49 AM

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

Salut/Hi Ken Blake,

le/on Sat, 19 Feb 2005 16:05:10 -0700, tu disais/you said:-

>The slowest part of using the page file (or of using any file) is
>moving the drive heads to and from it. So with a single drive,
>you want the page file close to the other frequently-used files
>on the drive, and that should be the partition with Windows on
>it.

That makes eminent good sense.

>For the same reason, if you have more than one drive, it's best
>to put the page file on the least frequently used drive
>(normally, *not* C:) , and on the most-frequently-used partition
>on it.

Yup, again, that makes excellent sense.

>1. If you do this, you need to keep at least a small portion of
>the page file on C:.

Why?

>use the page file. Many people running Windows XP these days have
>enough RAM to hardly ever use the page file, and the actual
>benefit of making this change is very slight.

I have 512Mb RAM, and often have 4-5 different applications open at the same
time. Apart from the obvious method of messing about with the swap file to
see what happens, is there any simple way of checking any system parameters
to see whether changing the settings would be likely to benefit me? I know
that I often had memory problems when running Win 98 on the same machine.
--
All the Best
Ian Hoare
http://www.souvigne.com
mailbox full to avoid spam. try me at website
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 4:57:56 AM

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

Ian Hoare <ianhoare@angelfire.com> wrote:


>>1. If you do this, you need to keep at least a small portion of
>>the page file on C:.
>
>Why?

Simple reason is because Windows just seems to be happier when there
is one. Windows uses the page file for a variety of different
functions, including the "system failure memory dump". For that item
specifically the swap file must be on the boot drive because what
Windows does is to dump the RAM content to the page file and then
rename it. Much faster than creating a new file.


>
>>use the page file. Many people running Windows XP these days have
>>enough RAM to hardly ever use the page file, and the actual
>>benefit of making this change is very slight.
>
>I have 512Mb RAM, and often have 4-5 different applications open at the same
>time. Apart from the obvious method of messing about with the swap file to
>see what happens, is there any simple way of checking any system parameters
>to see whether changing the settings would be likely to benefit me? I know
>that I often had memory problems when running Win 98 on the same machine.


Get the free Page File usage utility written by MVP Bill James from
http://www.dougknox.com/xp/utils/xp_pagefilemon.htm or from
http://billsway.com/notes_public/WinXP_Tweaks/ and use it to see how
much actual usage is being made of the page file.

This is also the best way to assess the potential benefits from adding
more RAM. Generally an actual page file usage of 40 mb or more on a
regular basis is an indicator that more RAM would have a beneficial
effect on overall performance.

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
February 20, 2005 1:24:25 PM

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

Salut/Hi Ron Martell,

le/on Sun, 20 Feb 2005 01:57:56 GMT, tu disais/you said:-

>Ian Hoare <ianhoare@angelfire.com> wrote:
>
>
>>>1. If you do this, you need to keep at least a small portion of
>>>the page file on C:.
>>
>>Why?
>
>Simple reason is because Windows just seems to be happier when there
>is one.
[snip]

>Windows does is to dump the RAM content to the page file and then
>rename it. Much faster than creating a new file.

Thanks for the explanation, Ron.

>>I have 512Mb RAM, and often have 4-5 different applications open at the same
>>time. Apart from the obvious method of messing about with the swap file to
>>see what happens, is there any simple way of checking any system parameters
>>to see whether changing the settings would be likely to benefit me? I know
>>that I often had memory problems when running Win 98 on the same machine.
>
>
>Get the free Page File usage utility

[snip]
> and use it to see how much actual usage is being made of the page file.

Excellent information. Thanks very much indeed.

--
All the Best
Ian Hoare
http://www.souvigne.com
mailbox full to avoid spam. try me at website
February 20, 2005 1:25:59 PM

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

"Yabbadoo" <lsdolby@ignore.ntlwor.com> wrote in message
news:R3GRd.307$_5.46@newsfe4-gui.ntli.net...
> Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -
>
> If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the
> 2nd HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>
> Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
> swap file ?
>
> Len
>
>
To transfer or change the swap file. Open system properties-
advanced-performance options- advanced- virtual memory and change location
or sizes of page files.

I have not noticed any performance benefits in terms of speed. However as I
have the Windows page file on the second hard drive in it's own partition I
have never had to de-fragment this volume and the main drive hardly ever
needs defragmenting. In addition I have set up separate "Scratch files" to
take care of the huge working files that can be generated when using Adobe
Photoshop.

Richard.
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 1:42:35 PM

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

It's also a good place to put the print spooler, if you use it. You will
not get any benefit from the second drive for the page file if both drives
are IDE using the same IDE controller. You will get some if the drives are
on different controllers (different ribbon cables).

--
Colin Barnhorst [MVP Windows - Virtual Machine]
(Reply to the group only unless otherwise requested)
"Richard" <hawkinsfamily3@DIGITbtinternet.com> wrote in message
news:cv9ojn$lfn$1@sparta.btinternet.com...
>
> "Yabbadoo" <lsdolby@ignore.ntlwor.com> wrote in message
> news:R3GRd.307$_5.46@newsfe4-gui.ntli.net...
>> Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -
>>
>> If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the
>> 2nd HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>>
>> Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
>> swap file ?
>>
>> Len
>>
>>
> To transfer or change the swap file. Open system properties-
> advanced-performance options- advanced- virtual memory and change location
> or sizes of page files.
>
> I have not noticed any performance benefits in terms of speed. However as
> I have the Windows page file on the second hard drive in it's own
> partition I have never had to de-fragment this volume and the main drive
> hardly ever needs defragmenting. In addition I have set up separate
> "Scratch files" to take care of the huge working files that can be
> generated when using Adobe Photoshop.
>
> Richard.
>
>
>
Anonymous
February 20, 2005 5:38:36 PM

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

Yabbadoo wrote:

>Just heard an interesting suggestion I've not seen/heard before -
>
>If a pc has two physical hdd's - transfer the "swap" file from C: to the 2nd
>HDD - this speeds up a pc.
>
>Anyone know of this - and, does it work? If so, How does one transfer the
>swap file ?

See www.aumha.org/win5/a/xpvm.htm

Unless you are decidedly short on RAM, it is unlikely that moving it
will make much difference in practice

--
Alex Nichol MS MVP (Windows Technologies)
Bournemouth, U.K. Alexn@mvps.D8E8L.org (remove the D8 bit)
Anonymous
February 21, 2005 1:17:42 PM

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

Salut/Hi Ron Martell,

Following up on my previous..
le/on Sun, 20 Feb 2005 01:57:56 GMT, tu disais/you said:-


>Get the free Page File usage utility written by MVP Bill James from
>http://www.dougknox.com/xp/utils/xp_pagefilemon.htm or from
>http://billsway.com/notes_public/WinXP_Tweaks/ and use it to see how
>much actual usage is being made of the page file.
>
>This is also the best way to assess the potential benefits from adding
>more RAM. Generally an actual page file usage of 40 mb or more on a
>regular basis is an indicator that more RAM would have a beneficial
>effect on overall performance.

I got the utility, and copied it to its own little subdirectory. I then ran
it, and got the little window with the parameters to be filled in. However,
no matter what I filled in, the program fails to recognise that it isn't
being run for the first time, and doesn't show a window with or without swap
file usage.

Do you or does anyone else know what could be causing this odd behaviour?


--
All the Best
Ian Hoare
http://www.souvigne.com
mailbox full to avoid spam. try me at website
!