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Thread: Swapfile location

  1. #1
    BE HAPPY ! ! ! ! ! poptom's Avatar
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    Swapfile location

    I have always used two HDs with the OS on C and apps on D. I use a fixed swapfile right behind the OS on C.

    I'm about to put together another box from accumulated parts and I'm wondering whether the swapfile might be quicker if it's at the front of D. Any thoughts on this?

    Win 98se, 512M RAM. This machine will be used for Photoshop and other graphics stuff.
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    SG Enthusiast Easto's Avatar
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    I've never really known if, and how much of a difference it makes but thats how I have mine setup.

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    Moderator YeOldeStonecat's Avatar
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    If you have separate hard drives...you want it on the fastest drive. If you have a single hard drive that's partitioned, or a RAID setup(same thing)...it makes no difference.
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    Maneater JawZ's Avatar
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    Re: Swapfile location

    Originally posted by poptom
    I have always used two HDs with the OS on C and apps on D. I use a fixed swapfile right behind the OS on C.

    I'm about to put together another box from accumulated parts and I'm wondering whether the swapfile might be quicker if it's at the front of D. Any thoughts on this?

    Win 98se, 512M RAM. This machine will be used for Photoshop and other graphics stuff.
    I believe it will be but I doubt it will be a noticeable difference...just having a clean install of 98se will add to the quickness factor.

    ...formerly the omnipotent UOD

  5. #5
    BE HAPPY ! ! ! ! ! poptom's Avatar
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    Actually, I don't expect to see a noticeable difference. Since I'm starting from scratch with two new disks, I just want to use the most efficient arrangement. I guess I'm asking which would best work concurrently with swapfile activity: OS or app?

    Perhaps it's all theoretical and that both disks will be chattering away in either case.

    On another machine with 512Mb memory, I've noticed that the swapfile is used extensively during a database "repair and compact" operation.
    "Mr President, you have big balls" - Dominica prime minister Eugenia Charles to Ronald Reagan after the invasion of Grenada, 1983

    "We win and they lose. What do you think of that?" - Ronald Reagan, 1977

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    I keep my apps and my OS on the same root partition. I have separate partitions for the data, not program files. In my case I would want it on root as I don't want to run the possibility of accessing the data disk while editing/capturing video (as with burning CD's before BURNProofing, you don't want to do much else when capturing several gigs of video). Once you are booted, your kernel is in memory and you don't do much i/o on its behalf once you're up.

    YOSC called it though, raw spindle speed will give you the best swap performance as the seek range is much smaller than the whole disk
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    Moderator YeOldeStonecat's Avatar
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    Heck with the swapfile...if you have 512 megs (Win9X really doesn't use much more than 320 - 380 megs of RAM anyways, no matter what you have.

    But with over 256 megs of RAM, eliminating swapfile usage with the ConservativeSwapfileUsage=1 under the [396.enh] section of your system.ini file helps quite a bit. Just tells windows to shove more into system ram, and not use the swapfile. Win9X is bad at doing so dynamically.
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  8. #8
    Senior Member Sid's Avatar
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    Photoshop will not load without a swap file. I found this out three days ago when I turned mine off and tried to load photoshop. I set it to 20mb and all was fine.

  9. #9
    Maneater JawZ's Avatar
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    If you really want to know everything about optimizing your swap file...then read from Adrian's Rojak Pot.

    http://www.rojakpot.com/Speed_Demonz...ization_01.htm

    Might as well read about disk cache and chunkfile optimization while you are there.

    http://www.rojakpot.com/Speed_Demonz.htm

    Did I mention that they also have the Definitive BIOS Optimization guide as well.....


    ...formerly the omnipotent UOD

  10. #10
    Elite Member Norm's Avatar
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    Hi Poptorn, I noticed a post by micro in the tweaking forum that may be of interest to you. It deals with the win98 problem of using ram over a certain amount. I believe win98 starts having problems with ram over 384 MB. The tweak mentioned below could help you, especially while using photoshop.

    I suggest reading through the links UOD posted as well, good info I've reread a few times.

    Originally posted by Micro
    This is all old news, and wrong also.

    The Win9x OS can/always has been able to physically address AND USE up to 4gig of memory.

    The ONLY requirement to use over 512meg of memory is that the line "maxfilecache=524288" be included in the [VCache] section of the system.ini file, to stop file name caching from creating problems.

    And if you think it doesn't make a difference, try rerendering a large multilayer drawing in Autocad or complex transform in Photoshop, with .5gig and with 2gig in Win9x and you'll see the difference right away, guaranteed

    One more thing to consider with the placement of the swap file would be to make a new partition of between 500MB and 1GB for the sole purpose of using it for the swap file. Also consider deleting the swap file at every boot to make a new non fragmented one(windows will recreate it when you while it loads).
    A single line in your autoexec.bat file could do that.

    del x:\win386.swp

    Where x is the letter of the drive with the swap file on it.

    With all the info in this thread, you should have a good understanding of what to do, good luck

  11. #11
    Moderator YeOldeStonecat's Avatar
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    Yah the maxfile adjustment was needed for...lesse if I can remember, 768 megs for Win98, and for some reason, I think 512 megs with ME. Might have been visa versa. Anyways, you'd get some out of memory error if you stuffed more RAM in the box without editing that maxfile line in system.ini.

    It does indeed properly recognize all that memory....but won't really "fully use it" past the 320 - 380 meg mark.
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  12. #12
    Regular Member Epyon's Avatar
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    I have 384 megs of ram, would it be better if I just turned off virtural memory?
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    Dr Tweak mnosteele52's Avatar
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    No, NEVER turn off your virtual memory. Some apps need a swap file even if it is very small or they will not function, the tweak is to set you min & max values to the same value so that it does not continously resize itself thereby slowing down your pc.

  14. #14
    BE HAPPY ! ! ! ! ! poptom's Avatar
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    Bump, because there is a lot uf useful info in this thread.

    Here's what I've done:

    Drive 1, C: 40G for OS and apps.

    Drive 2. D: 512M reserved for swapfile, presently fixed at 128M.
    . . . . . . .E: Balance of 60G for storage.

    Both drives are masters and the CD is on a PCI controller card.


    Thanks, everyone, for the help.
    Last edited by poptom; 06-27-02 at 03:43 AM.
    "Mr President, you have big balls" - Dominica prime minister Eugenia Charles to Ronald Reagan after the invasion of Grenada, 1983

    "We win and they lose. What do you think of that?" - Ronald Reagan, 1977

  15. #15
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    The best way to improve swap file ( Virtual Memory ) usage on systems ( W9x/ME ) with more than 64Meg RAM is this:

    DON'T set any min/max parameters . Let Windows handle it!
    Put this entry in the system.ini file under [386enh] .
    ConservativeSwapfileUsage=1
    Check on your swap file occasionally; if you haven't been playing
    games or running intensive apps, the swap file often will be 0 (zero).

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