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WinXP Page File

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July 2, 2003 6:30:12 PM

I have not had an opportunity to sit down and look through WinXP up to this point. I am running WinME right now. I plan to build out a new system with XP very soon. I got to thinking about general recommendations of the WinME (and earlier Windows OS) page file and how it should be set up. The rule was always to set it manually, take the number 512 and subtract the amount of ram from that number (so expample... 512 - 256megs of ram = 256) and set your page file min and max to this number. So for the example you would set it to 256 min and 256 max. Along with this it was always recommended to set the system.ini so that windows would use up the entire first page file before creating any secondary page files. Now that most systems have 512 memory or more, does anyone know the recommendations on page file settings? Also, does XP have the same options on setting the page file for the most part? Just curious because I have always been told that windows doesn't handle paging well when set to automatic.

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July 3, 2003 7:27:32 AM

There are almost as many opinions on the 'Net about how to set the paging file in Windows as there are users, IMHO. Most of these opinions are just that -- opinions, with one user swearing by a particular method, while the next user contradicts the first. And so on, and so forth. Etc.

Whether or not the opinions are based on fact is usually a secondary consideration. Wars are not usually fought for logical reasons.

Because of this, nearly anything on the subject that someone posts in this thread (such as myself) will be hammered by the next umpteen (pick a number, say ... forty!) people who feel a need to give their opinion (not to mention the lone user who'll dig up this thread a year from now and add yet another post), so you'll end up just having to choose between them.

But :wink: , in the interests of science, I'll paint a bull's eye on my back, and take the heat, just to get your questions answered. Afterwards, if you are still confused; don't blame me ... it means you probably came back here and read the other forty posts.

Here's the truth. There is NO hard-and-fast rule to determine the optimal size of the paging file in Windows. There never was, and there probably never will be. It's an Internet Urban Legend. It's like Sasquatch ... some people claim to have found the hairy beast, but the smart money is on betting that it's a hoax.

In all versions of Windows, the proper method to ascertain the best size for the paging file, for your computer, should be to <i>first</i> consider the system configuration, the programs that are to be installed, and the normal usage of the system during day-to-day operations.

1.) System Configuration.

Low-memory systems normally require a larger paging file than computers with higher amounts of physical memory.

In Win9x, I would consider any computer with 32MB of RAM or less a low-memory system. In Win2K, the same applies to a computer with 64MB or less. In Windows XP, 128MB or less.

This is not entirely based on the minimum system requirements for the operating systems, but personal experience using many machines that contained varying amounts of RAM.

2.) Programs.

First, there are a few things you need to understand about the paging file, and why Windows requires virtual memory.

All 32-bit Windows versions, including Win9x, WinNT, Win2K and WinXP (apart from Win2K/WinXP AS and DC) can address up to 4GB of RAM. A program instruction on an Intel 386 or later CPU can also address up to 4GB of memory, using its full 32 bits, which commonly exceeds the amount of physical RAM in a system. So the hardware provides for programs to operate in terms of as much as they wish of this full 4GB space as virtual memory, with only those parts of the program and data which are <i>currently active</i> being loaded into the physical memory.

Programs will often "ask" for an allocation of space for virtual memory pages that can be enormous; sometimes hundreds of megabytes (this varies from program to program). All of these addresses have to be assigned somewhere by the system, and without a paging file, all the addresses would have to be assigned to the physical memory, effectively locking it out from other programs.

This is why a paging file is necessary, and should not be disabled, even with systems that appear to have more than adequate amounts of available physical memory.

3.) Normal System Usage.

Not all computers are the same. Some computers are used for basic functions, such as checking e-mail, chatting, and a certain amount of web browsing. Other systems may be entirely different, with users running memory-intensive programs that require a great deal of RAM, such as modern games, video-editing and graphic arts programs, and engineering tools such as CAD/CAM. These higher-powered systems not only need more physical memory, but may often open very large files, sometimes unexpectedly, which forces the operating system to request and need more potential space for the virtual memory pages.

Because of these issues, the smart way to determine the paging file size for an individual system is to monitor the usage of the file. In the Win9x, use the <A HREF="http://www.cravenplan.co.uk/ram.htm" target="_new">System Monitor Memory Manager</A> to determine the average size of your swap file, and set this as the minimum. The upper limit should be at least twice the size of the minimum needed for normal, daily usage, or left open.

For Windows 2000: <A HREF="http://www.comptechdoc.org/os/windows/win2k/win2kperfor..." target="_new">System Performance Monitoring</A>

For Window XP, create a <A HREF="http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=305610" target="_new">System Monitor Counter</A>, specifically for the paging file.

Normally, Windows will create a swap or paging file that is 1.5 x the amount of physical memory. In Win2K and WinXP, Windows memory management is much improved, and with most systems, no user intervention is necessary. These versions of Windows will use the physical memory before accessing the paging file.

In Win9x, an alteration of the system.ini file is required so that Windows will access the physical memory <i>before</i> using the swap file. It's not, as you may have thought, to keep Windows from creating a second paging file before using up the first. Unless you deliberately (and manually) create multiple paging files, Windows creates one file, and one only.

The line that is added to the [386enh] section of the system.ini file in Win9x is: ConservativeSwapfileUsage=1.

It is not necessary to add this line to the system.ini file in Win2K or WinXP.

Win9x/ME can go up to 512MB of RAM before requiring an adjustment to the vcache (disk cache) to use more RAM, which is also edited in the system.ini file.

I would say, with a single-drive system, that it is in your best interests to leave the memory management to Windows. If you feel the need to adjust the size of the paging file, use a System Monitor Counter or the Memory Manager to judge the minimum amount, and leave the maximum size open-ended, to allow for potential growth.

With a dual-drive system, moving the paging file to the first partition of the slaved drive can offer some performance benefits. This will allow Windows to read and write in parallel instead of "paging" the data over a common bus interface.

In this situation, it is best to leave a small 2MB paging file on the system partition, and move the bulk of the file over to the separate drive. WinXP requires a 2MB file to boot safely ... so if the slaved drive ever failed, the operating system could still boot without errors.

And that's all I have to say on the subject. :lol: 

Toey

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July 8, 2003 6:26:05 PM

Hey thanks Toejam! I will check into that link you supplied but I think you have pretty much talked me into leaving my WinXP page file alone. I was mistaken about that system.ini change and what exactly it was doing. That makes more sense to me now.

I only have one follow up question if you have time and check back in... If I am only running a single IDE drive with 2 partitions, will it make a performance difference if I move the page file to the second partition? I will leave a small file on the first (OS) partition. Since it is all running off of the same IDE cable I didn't think it would hurt performance to move it over to the second partition.

What do you think?

Thanks....
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July 8, 2003 10:31:39 PM

Quote:
I only have one follow up question if you have time and check back in... If I am only running a single IDE drive with 2 partitions, will it make a performance difference if I move the page file to the second partition? I will leave a small file on the first (OS) partition. Since it is all running off of the same IDE cable I didn't think it would hurt performance to move it over to the second partition.

What do you think?

While it's a common tweak to improve performance in Windows by spreading the page file across multiple physical disks (and to free up space in the boot partition), don't confuse hard drives with partitions. You should not create page files on multiple partitions on the <i>same hard drive</i>. This kind of set-up can significantly degrade system performance because when Windows writes to these page files, the disk arm of the hard drive is forced to swing back and forth across the disk rather than being able to stay in the general area of a single page file.

Next ...

Moving the paging file to the second partition will actually <i>decrease</i> system performance.

The first partition on a hard drive is created on the outer, leading edge, and this is the fastest part of the drive. This is because the read/write heads don't have to travel (seek) as far to locate the sectors that contain data.

Moving the paging file closer to the end of the drive will <i>increase</i> the effective seek/access time, which is exactly what you are trying to avoid. System and program files that wind up at the far end of the drive take longer to access, and are transferred at a slower rate, which translates into a less-responsive system.

*(As a side note, this is yet another reason that I do not advocate installing an operating system in a single, large partition that contains all the free space on a hard drive, regardless of the file system.)

An example:

Let's take a typical IBM 120GB 120GXP hard drive. On the outer edge, the transfer rate is roughly 50MBPS. But it's less than half that, or 20MBPS, at the inner tracks. This is because the linear velocity of the discs are faster at the outer tracks. If you've ever been on a merry-go-round, this will make perfect sense. You move much faster when standing at the outer edge, compared to being in the center.

Faster linear velocity means that more data passes under the read/write heads per unit time. This is another way of saying higher data transfer rate (which is simply another way of saying "faster").

With this in mind, where would <i>you</i> prefer for the paging file to be located?

With a single drive system, I believe that your best bet is to leave the paging file in the boot partition. You can certainly adjust the <i>size</i> to accommodate the actual usage of the file by the system, but I'd leave the location of the file alone, unless you intend to install a second drive.

It's interesting to note that Win2K and WinXP will automatically select the fastest paging file available, so if you install a second hard drive, purchasing a larger drive with a faster rotation speed, and placing the file on the first partition of <i>that</i> drive will be the best way to increase performance in this area.

Toey

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July 9, 2003 9:31:21 PM

I have to applaud ToeJam for his incredible knowledge of swap files. I would just like to add: creating a seperate partition used only for a swap file isn't a completely bad thing. The main reason being that the paging file cannot become fragmented within the rest of the data. If you were to mix the paging file with your operating system partition, it could because a mess if you weren't constantly defragging. Imagine how much that arm would jump back and fourth if your swap file was randomly scattered accross the drive.

Most versions of Linux (SuSe and RedHat for sure) create a seperate partition for the swap space, but the outer rotational speed is also compelling. Just another small battle in the war for optimal performance.

<font color=red>Proudly supporting the AMD/Nvidia minority</font color=red>
July 9, 2003 10:43:00 PM

Just a comment, since I'm here!

There's nothing wrong with creating a partition dedicated for the paging file for minimal fragmentation, but in Win2K and WinXP, this is so rarely an issue that I don't usually advise a user to go to these lengths.

This is especially applicable when running WinXP. The operating system is memory-intensive, so most knowledgeable users who intend to run the OS on a desktop usually install at least 512MB of RAM, and often much more.

With 512MB of RAM, Windows will create a paging file of 768/1536 by default.

That's a heck of a lot of potential space for any virtual memory pages. You'll probably need a bigger file for workstations that are running memory-intensive applications, but even then, it's still just <i>potential</i> space, since a standard workstation with WinXP should be running with at least a gigabyte of RAM (if the company budget is allocated by cheapskates, who nevertheless like all that new eye candy), or with dual-processors, 2GB of RAM, and 3GB page file (for the engineer who'd like to finish his design within the calender year.)

This means that the average size of the file that Windows creates is not only large enough for most applications, but until the physical memory is exhausted ... the page file doesn't even get touched.

But does it get scattered over the disk?

Oh, yes.

But hey, it's Windows, so there's more than one way to skin the ole' cat. :lol: 

If creating the dedicated partition is too much "work" for the user (and you know exactly what I mean, I'm sure) ... then the first work-around is to just temporarily delete the page file after installing all the apps, reboot into Safe Mode, and defrag the boot partition. Then you reboot again, recreate the file, and defrag once more.

You'll end up with a contiguous file, located right after the data on the disk, and no file fragmentation. It won't be exactly on the very edge of the disk, but it's close enough that only a benchmarking tool could notice the difference.

Or ...

You can install a third-party defragmenting utility that can move and defragment the file before Windows loads.

The last idea would be my personal preference, since the Windows defragmenting utility already lacks a whole slew of features, and should be replaced if the user wants decent performance. And with the NTFS file system, having a utility that can not only defragment the paging file, but the MFT, metadata, hibernate files, the boot files, and system files that were in use when the GUI was loaded, well ... that's worth it's weight in gold.

Setting up the dedicated partition when the system is new is a worthwhile option to consider. But if a user has already partitioned, formatted, installed the OS, and installed five or six games, Office, etc, ... then unless they are familiar with repartitioning from the command line (such as with Ranish), or have something like Partition Magic, so the data can be saved during the exercise ... starting over from scratch, just so the file can be in a single partition, (considering how often it is actually accessed, which is rarely), well ... that sounds like overkill, just for performance's sake.

If it <i>really</i> enhanced the system performance, say, in a truly major way ... then I'd be all for it. But it just doesn't make enough of a difference with high-memory desktop systems, IMHO, to justify the work involved. (And if you have to buy additional programs to create the partition ... the expense.)

And so, my opinion would be ... either create the dedicated partition from the start, or just settle for a good third-party defragmentation program like Diskeeper or PerfectDisk to occasionally defragment the file, (and everything else, too).

What's your take on it, Ryan? You think it's worth the trouble after the system is already set up and running?

???

Check you later, dudes ... :wink:

Toey

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July 10, 2003 1:18:05 PM

Wow, thanks. Ok, I think I am learning. I will make sure not to make multiple page files over several partitions on a single drive. I have heard of dedicated partitions for the swap file but I have not tried that before.

I am thinking of the partition creation screen that comes up when you install WinXP. When you talk about creating a dedicated partition, would you make your first partition, say 3 gig (assuming a gig of ram) and that would be 'c'? And then make a second partition for the OS that would be 'd'. I give them drive letters in this way because you mentioned keeping the swap file on the first partition. So to make it as fast as possible you would want the dedicated partition on 'c' correct? Do you then run into problems with having your OS installed on the 'd' partition since many programs assume 'c' for the OS? Or would you recommend installing the OS to 'c' and creating a second 'd' partition of 3 gigs or so for the swap file?

If I am too confused you can give up hehe....
July 10, 2003 1:34:02 PM

definitely put the OS on C

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jlanka (. .)
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July 10, 2003 10:05:58 PM

Ah, yes ... more information! To get started with today's post: :lol: 

Microsoft recommends trying to avoid having the paging file on the same hard drive that contains the system files.

<A HREF="http://www.microsoft.com/technet/treeview/default.asp?u..." target="_new">Managing your computer's performance</A>

A website quote:

Quote:
<i>Since the paging file and operating system files are by default located on the same drive, concurrent access to both locations is impossible. One or the other has to wait, slowing down overall system performance.</i>

However, in reality, creating a dedicated partition for the page file really makes little difference in terms of performance. IMHO, it's just an extra complication when installing Windows. It's not that you <i>can't</i>, it's that the effort is rather pointless. It boils down to user preference.

That's point number one, which is further explained by:

Point number two ---

Since the paging file is going to actually be accessed <i>very rarely</i> in a system with sufficient physical memory for all the installed programs, again, I think creating the dedicated partition is just extra effort for little gain.

There are only three reasons for creating such a partition. The first is to minimize file fragmentation. But the file has to be accessed regularly for this to occur ... fragmentation of the file just doesn't happen if it never gets used. The second to is free up space in the boot partition, which can be useful if you are imaging the boot partition and don't wish to take a snap shot of a large, basically inert file. The third is for a slight gain in performance, but this <i>only</i> comes into play if there is more than one hard drive in the system ... and in your situation, this reason isn't applicable.

In other words, if you created the dedicated partition, the location of the partition wouldn't actually make a great deal of difference. (I know that might sound like a contradictory statement, after the illustration of the IBM hard drive in a previous post)! But the position of the partition/file on the hard drive would <i>only</i> be important if the file was accessed frequently by Windows, and in my experience, that happens so rarely with high-memory systems running Win2K and WinXP as to be a negligible concern.

So ... could the dedicated partition be (C:) ? Sure. (D:) ? No problem. (E:) ? Why not?

You can put it wherever your heart desires ... Windows just isn't going to use it often enough to matter. Just don't split the file up between partitions on a single drive.

Okay, now, additional info:

If the (C:)  partition happened to be dedicated to the page file, and Windows was installed into (D:) , the programs that you wish to use would not automatically try to install themselves into (C:) . You've only seen that because you've always had Windows on (C:) !

Programs must cooperate with the Windows Installer Service, and in this situation, would automatically choose the drive letter where Windows is located.

Oh, and by the way ... I just can't see a reason for such a large partition (3GB) for the page file with anything except a workstation.

On every single desktop I have built to date (which includes high performance gaming systems), I've used a standard setting of 768/1536MB for the page file. I expect the user to customize these setting, based on the programs installed (which determines the size of the file, which is in turn based on the virtual memory pages needed.) *See my first post in this thread for discovering the size of the file needed on a regular basis.

If the user intends to use programs that open and manipulate large files (such as audio and video editors), once they have determined just how large the page file should be to accommodate these programs, <i>then</i> they should make an adjustment.

(Note: If the partitions are already created, including a dedicated partition for the page file, using a program like Partition Magic to resize the dedicated partition might be a good idea, to protect any previously installed data.)

If none of these types of programs are to be used, the standard settings I've predetermined is going to be sufficient for almost any other type of application. I qualify this statement with "almost", because once the user walks out of my shop with the system, only the good Lord knows what they might do with it at a later date!

And so ... there are really two important things for you to consider. 1.) The kind of applications you are going to install. 2.) Keeping the file contiguous, whether this means a dedicated partition, or forcing Windows to recreate the file after the data is installed on the boot partition, or using a third-party utility to do this for you.

Example:

I'm sitting in front of a system with a 1.2GHz Duron, 512MB of RAM, and a 768MB/1536MB page file. The system has two hard drives, so the page file is on the fastest partition on the slaved drive (logically, the first partition.)

The system is obviously nothing special, not in terms of speed, although it has a couple of WD 120GB drives which are a nice addition.

Occasionally I like to use the computer for light video editing. This means I might work with .AVI files that are fairly large, sometimes a gigabyte or so in size. I like to download multiple .MPEG files, convert them to .AVI, and dub them together into one large file.

While the page file is certainly available, it has never been accessed. Not once. Nada.

This means that the principle reason that I moved the file from the boot partition really doesn't have anything to do with the system performance, per say. In reality, it was only so that the imaging program I use (Drive Image) doesn't copy the file when I back up the boot partition that contains the operating system files. That cuts an entire CD-R disk (and a little more) out of the backed up set of CD's.

Is the first partition on the slaved drive dedicated to the page file?

No.

As long as the file doesn't get accessed, there aren't any fragmentation issues to consider. I <i>could</i> have created a dedicated partition -- certainly, but I just didn't bother. If I want to image the partition that currently contains the page file, I temporarily remove it, and after the imaging is finished, put it back. The whole process is just one image and three reboots from start to finish.

You can do it differently, but that's entirely up to you. In the long run, it depends on how you wish to manage the system.

To sum up, if you are looking for the best performance, there <i>are</i> three things you can do for the computer before installing the new OS. One, install a second, fast hard drive, so you can have some additional options. Two, install additional memory. You'll get more of a performance increase when working with memory-intensive programs with more RAM than anything you can do with the page file. Three, do some reading about how to tweak the operating system before the installation, so you can customize it for the greatest, overall performance.

A couple of good places to start that recommended reading:

<A HREF="http://www.kellys-korner-xp.com/xp.htm" target="_new">Kelly's WinXP Korner</A>

<A HREF="http://www.theeldergeek.com/index.htm" target="_new">The Elder Geek on WinXP</A>

<A HREF="http://www.dougknox.com/" target="_new">Doug's Windows 95-98-Me-XP Tweaks and Tips</A>

<A HREF="http://snakefoot.fateback.com/tweak/winnt/services.html" target="_new">Snakefoot's WinNT, Win2k, WinXP Services</A>

<A HREF="http://www.tweakxp.com/tweakxp/" target="_new">TweakXP.com</A>

If you wish, with a valid e-mail address in hand, I could send you my current WinXP Favorites folder, which contains over 300 links to various places, from troubleshooting to tweaking. It could save you a great deal of searching in the days to come.

Finally, here is something that you might find interesting.

If I was to set up a new computer with a single hard drive, my standard partitioning scheme would be as follows:

Active, primary partition 0 (including the page file): 5GB.
Logical Drive 1 (partition 1, in an extended partition): 7GB
Logical Drive 2 (partition 2): The rest of the free space on the drive.

Why?

1.) WinXP doesn't need a great deal of free space for the installation. And most programs do not need or require being installed into the boot partition in order to run correctly. And if you ever decide to use an imaging program to back up the boot partition, having those third-party programs installed elsewhere would make your back up a quick, painless exercise.

Let's face it ... backing up is often a tedious chore, and probably the most overlooked aspect of computing that users habitually neglect (besides buying a decent PSU.) Speeding up the process would encourage you to back up more often. And if the system ever suffers a problem, such as data corruption from something like a virus, popping in an image could have you back up and running in a relatively short span of time (compared to formatting, and starting over, right from the beginning.)

Saving your data is never a bad idea.

2.) Because of this, I'd use the second partition on the drive (partition 1) as the area where all programs are installed. You won't be backing up this partition nearly as often once all your preferred applications are in place, and 7GB-10GB is sufficient room for many, many programs.

3.) This means you have dedicated somewhere in the neighborhood of 12-14GB for everything that is running on the system. And the rest of that free space (partition 2) is yours, for whatever personal files you wish to store.

Instead of worrying about the page file placement, this might be something more up your alley, I think, if you are looking for higher performance AND might like the idea of an easy method of saving your data. Imagine never having to install Windows again ... just one time, and that's the end of it.

Example:

I installed an Elcard video codec the other day that was a poorly written piece of junk. Uninstalling it left 156 errors and abandoned keys in the Registry, empty Control Panel folders, and wiped out my LAN connection! Normally, this would have called for some tedious Registry editing, reinstalling the NIC card driver, and perhaps even a repair of Windows to fix all the problems (and the repair would have necessitated reinstalling 46 hotfixes and security patches). Not my idea of fun. But ... I take the time to image my boot partition once a week, which takes about 20 minutes, tops, just because I'm somewhat anal about verifying the data. (Don't bother with the verification, and that time is cut in half.) Once my e-mail and Favorites were quickly copied to a folder on another partition, I installed the image of the boot partition back on (C:) , and ten minutes later, Windows was once more in perfect condition.

It sure beats working.

Later ...

Toey

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July 11, 2003 5:16:09 AM

Hey Toey!
Would you please like to send me your "Favourites" folder.
My e-mail address is <A HREF="mailto:mubashar_ibm@hotmail.com">mubashar_ibm@hotmail.com</A>

Thanks!
________________________________________________________
Mubashar

<b><font color=red><i>"All delays are dangerous in war."</b></font color=red></i>
July 11, 2003 7:22:27 AM

Damn! you know your stuff!...May I hav a copy of your favourites folder? email= caimbeul@vodafone.net

Give a lazy man an easy job and he'll find an easier way of doing it.
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XP2100+, 1Gb RAM, ASUS A7N8X, 64Mb Ti4200.
July 11, 2003 1:29:56 PM

Oh man, you have some amazing information. Thanks so much. I would really appreciate a copy of your favorites. My email is spoondigity@hotmail.com

This really clears up a lot of questions for me and also opens up a lot of considerations I had not thought out. I have copied your texts and I know I will be reading them again several times over.

Amazingly enough, I don't think I have any more questions! At least right now hehe.

Thanks again.
July 11, 2003 11:47:47 PM

Links are on the way, fellas.

No questions today?

Well, then, I'll just eat some pizza and hot chicken wings, relax, and watch the XXX DVD.

So there.

:lol:  :lol:  :lol: 

Toey

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July 20, 2003 8:10:52 PM

Heya Toey,
That was one heck of a post..phew..

Here is my question. U said it wud be a good idea to setup the SWAP file in the First partition on the second drive. I have 2 drives. And i use Dual-Boot. XP Home on C-Drive of my Master Drive and 98SE on C-Drive of my Slave Drive.

I was thinking - if i create a Partition in my second (slave) disk drive at the very beginning and make it a Extended DOS partition instead of Primary DOS Partition, this partition wud be given the last Drive Letter, right? To make it more clear, lets say I have 3 partitions on my second (slave) disk drive - C, D and E. Now i resize my C Drive and create empty space at the very beginning of the disk, format it and make it a Extended DOS Partition. Now this drive shud be named as F: right??

So virtually, F-Drive which i intend to use as the SWAP file drive for XP will be at the beginning of the slave disk and i still cud use my C-Drive on the slave Drive with out any problems.

So this wud work right?

And, BTW, do send me a copy of ur Favourited folder too :smile: . My e-mail is abu_30@hotmail.com

<b>thinking of a good sig. till then...</b>
July 21, 2003 12:07:58 AM

Hi, Mask ...

You are about to get yourself in trouble, sir. Because what you are considering just won't work, IMHO ... not without reinstalling Windows 98SE. This is something you would have had to do before installing any operating systems.

First off, an extended partition cannot be given a drive letter.

Second, there can only be one extended partition per disk.

On the slaved disk in question, you mentioned already having three partitions. If <i>all three are primary DOS partitions</i>, then you can make an extended partition out of the free space borrowed from the (C:)  partition, and then create a logical drive out of all the free space in the extended partition. The logical drive can be used for your purpose, since it <i>can</i> be given a drive letter.

Or, you could just create a fourth primary partition out of the free space. But there's a limitation to this, too ... only four primary DOS partitions are allowed per disk in Windows.

But here's the final nail in the coffin. Once the partition is created (regardless of being primary or a logical drive), you are going to run into some real difficulty forcing the third-party utility you will be using to place the partition at the <i>top</i> of the hard drive.

On other words, what you'll be looking at actually doing is resizing the first partition on the disk for the paging file ... where Windows 98 is already installed.

All of this seems unnecessarily complicated to me, and I have feeling that you'll discover, once you've tried it, that it wasn't worth the effort. Not to mention that you'll probably end up without a boot loader menu, and have to reinstall Win98 and then edit the boot.ini file to get back into WinXP.

What I would suggest is just leaving the paging file on the (C:)  partition that already contains Windows 98. Then you might like the idea of sharing the file between the two operating systems. Take a look at the middle of this page:

<A HREF="http://web.ukonline.co.uk/cook/dualshare.htm" target="_new">SHARING PAGING FILE IN A DUAL BOOT SETUP</A>

Toey

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July 21, 2003 6:02:12 AM

AAhhh.. i screwed with my question...

What i shud have told u is, of the three drives - C, D and E, C is Primary DOS and D & E are logical drives in extended DOS. Logical Drive - thts the word i shud have used.

Anyways, a friend of mine had left 4GB of space at the beginning of the drive to install Linux, but since he did not install Linux, he formatted it under FAT32 as a Logical Drive in Extended Partition. THat drive was assigned the last Drive letter.

(lets forget about Win98 on my second drive for the moment and the need to reinstall it. Suppose i have a Unformatted Hard Disk and i leave some free space at the beginning of the drive, then create the Primary DOS, and then create two Logical Drives in Extended Partition. This way I have Free Space at the beginning of the disk, Next comes the C Drive (Pri DOS), then come the D and E drives (both logical drives in the extended partition). Now if i format the free space to FAT32 and make it a Logical drive in Extended DOS, it wud be named as Drive F, right???)

In ur earlier post u said i might get a little better performance if i put the swap file in the first drive/partition on my second disk as there wud be less head movement and hence lesser access time to the Swap File. So, what i was thiking is, if i put the XP Swap file on the F Drive (which is <b>physically</b> at the very beginning of the second disk), theoritically i shud get a better performance right?

THe only 2 reasons why i wud want to do something as crazy as this is :
1. I have loads and loads of time on my hand
2. not to mess up my C Drive of the second disk. I want Win 98SE and every other program that i may install to be installed in my C Drive.

I hope my questions are more clearly put now.

<b>still</b> thinking of a good siggy. till then...
July 21, 2003 6:08:08 AM

Quote:
What I would suggest is just leaving the paging file on the (C:)  partition that already contains Windows 98. Then you might like the idea of sharing the file between the two operating systems.

Nice reading thru the link. I might try that sometime. but i dont use Win98 that often now-a-days :smile:

<b>still</b> thinking of a good siggy. till then...<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by theMask on 07/21/03 12:09 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
July 21, 2003 9:23:58 AM

Yep ... your question makes more sense now! :lol: 

Yes, having the paging file in that particular partition will give better performance. However, whether or not it will be assigned the drive letter you prefer depends on when the partition is created, and what devices are detected.

For instance, let's say that you are within Win98, and the C, D, and E partitions are reserved with these drive letters. Then you use the third-party utility to create the last partition. Since Windows will automatically use the next available drive letter, that should be F ... unless, of course, you have optical drives that have already been assigned drive letters. If you have two of them, the next open drive letter should be H.

And so, you might have to manually reassign the drive letters of the optical drives to accommodate the <i>availablity</i> of F, before the free space is used to make the partition. If you catch my drift.

The only other thing I might mention is that four GB is a ton of space to allocate for the paging file. You might want to go with slightly less, just to avoid wasted space. If you think you really might need that much ... that's fine. It's your dime, so to speak. But I can't imagine many situations with a desktop system that will need more than 2GB. If you are already running WinXP, then I'm assuming that you have at least 512MB of physical RAM, and if that's the case, the file will be accessed so infrequently (if at all) that you must look at whatever space you allocate as a loss.

Of course, you could always use the space later on for something else, like another OS, or for a place to store disk images, side-by-side with the paging file. Just because the space is 4GB, doesn't mean the paging file itself must be 4GB. Remember, the only reason that people really create separate partitions for the file is to eliminate fragmentation, but you've got to actually have some sort of file access from the OS for that to happen. Within Win98, the file WILL be accessed regularly, but not from within WinXP.

With that in mind ... you make the call.

Later ...

Toey

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July 21, 2003 12:04:30 PM

Quote:
And so, you might have to manually reassign the drive letters of the optical drives to accommodate the availablity of F, before the free space is used to make the partition. If you catch my drift.

I certainly cath the drift. Anyways i dont think that wud be a problem as i intend to use this drive only for Swap File Allocation. Whatever the Drive letter, i just have to give the correct path.

I am thinking of allocating 1GB as a seperate Drive for the Swap File. Like u guessed i have 512MB RAM so even in Win 98 i dont think Windows wud call for the swap file often.

<b>still</b> thinking of a good sig. till then...
July 21, 2003 12:04:35 PM

Quote:
And so, you might have to manually reassign the drive letters of the optical drives to accommodate the availablity of F, before the free space is used to make the partition. If you catch my drift.


I certainly catch the drift. Anyways i dont think that wud be a problem as i intend to use this drive only for Swap File Allocation. Whatever the Drive letter, i just have to give the correct path.

I am thinking of allocating 1GB as a seperate Drive for the Swap File. Like u guessed i have 512MB RAM so even in Win 98 i dont think Windows wud call for the swap file often.

<b>still</b> thinking of a good sig. till then...
July 26, 2003 9:23:39 PM

Hey Toey,

Just read this thread and I'd appreciate it very much if you would send me the links.

This is my email address: romarica@freenet.de

<b><font color=blue>VAGABOND<font color=blue></b>

<b><font color=blue>veni,vidi, and ended up in THGC<font color=blue></b>
July 26, 2003 11:54:50 PM

Wow, amazing. Thats a lot to take in, but its really good stuff to know. Thanks for the info Toey. :)  I as well would also like a copy of your Favorites folder. Richard.jr1@excite.com
July 27, 2003 1:07:19 AM

Quote:
Wow, amazing. Thats a lot to take in, but its really good stuff to know. Thanks for the info Toey. :)  I as well would also like a copy of your Favorites folder. Richard.jr1@excite.com

The links are on their way to both you and vagabond. I hope you get some use out of them.

BTW, if you think that was a lot to take in, imagine <i>typing</i> it. (BIG :lol:  )

But sharing information is the only way for all of us to have a good computing experience, and that's the best reason I can think of to be a member of THGC. I'm glad that you guys are a part of it.

Later ...

Toey

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July 27, 2003 6:50:12 AM

Geez Toey!!!

How long did it take you to compile all these links???

That's what makes THGC so informative.

Many THANKXXXX!!! :o )

<b><font color=blue>VAGABOND<font color=blue></b>

<b><font color=blue>veni,vidi, and ended up in THGC<font color=blue></b>
July 27, 2003 7:00:07 AM

Hey Starion15,

Just got Toey's links and I'm still on the first URL!!!



<b><font color=blue>VAGABOND<font color=blue></b>

<b><font color=blue>veni,vidi, and ended up in THGC<font color=blue></b>
July 27, 2003 7:02:37 AM

Hey toey, if your not burnt out on sending that fav folder.

here is my addy ... would save alot of time playing catch up on what i used use. and as i recalled we did have the same sites to read a few years ago. and me becoming and old man with a memory loss these days would find that very useful. 300 huh :smile:

Thanks.

wolveryne38@hotmail.com
July 27, 2003 8:20:52 AM

It could have been worse ... because all I sent was two of the folders. I've actually got 28 Favorite subdirectories that contain over 3000 links, because my interests are fairly diverse. (And you never know what you'll need when helping someone troubleshoot a problem). But I figured that 500 links oughta keep you fellows busy for a while, so the two folders should suffice. Right?

I did finally throw out a few of the DOS and Windows 3.x links, since very few people are still running the operating systems as anything except a hobby. :lol: 

Toey

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July 27, 2003 8:27:33 AM

Hey Toey,

Actually I wouldn't mind having the DOS links. I still do a bit in DOS when I can't get the system to run right.

That's one thing I miss in XP.

<b><font color=blue>VAGABOND<font color=blue></b>

<b><font color=blue>veni,vidi, and ended up in THGC<font color=blue></b>
July 27, 2003 9:46:30 AM

I did throw out quite a few, since some of the older links were dead, but I'll gladly send you what I've got left!

Toey

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July 27, 2003 9:54:46 AM

Thanks Toey!

<b><font color=blue>VAGABOND<font color=blue></b>

<b><font color=blue>veni,vidi, and ended up in THGC<font color=blue></b>
July 27, 2003 7:30:17 PM

Those were some amazing posts man, lots of respect/props

don't suppose you could email me your favorites too :p 
- namek0@hotmail.com

(you're the man)

It's all good ^_^
August 4, 2003 4:17:14 AM

Hey Toejam, almost every time I revisit the community here, I see one of your posts and am pleased with the knowledge you share. Therefore, I too would appreciate receiving your favorites (or some of them). Thanks in advance and thanks for your consistently good posts!
korins2@hotmail.com
August 4, 2003 1:43:30 PM

I'll be happy to send them, but your mailbox appears to be unavailable.

Toey

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August 4, 2003 10:52:42 PM

Oh, I'm stupid. My real address is vway2@hotmail.com
Thanks again!
!