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Selecting my own virtual memory settings.


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#1 Scarlett

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 08:20 AM

Ten Ways to Make Windows Me Run Better March 2, 2001
By Fred Langa



4. Tweak Your System Properties, Part Two


Excerpt from the above.

Next, in My Computer/Properties/Performance/Virtual Memory, select "Let me specify my own memory settings," and set either a fixed-size or fixed-minimum-size swap file so WinMe won't have to spend time calculating, allocating, and de-allocating swapfile space as you use the system. (The payoff: Smoother operation; fewer system "stutters;" fewer long interruptive bursts of hard drive activity. A set-size swapfile also will be permanently defragmented when you run WinMe's own Defrag utility, so your speed gains won't diminish over time.)

If disk space isn't a problem, I suggest you set the "Minimum" virtual memory amount equal to your amount of system RAM, and the "Maximum" amount equal to that shown in "Hard Disk" box. If disk space is a problem, on low RAM systems, set the Min and Max equal to about 2.5 times amount of RAM in system. If that's still too much space to set aside, set Min equal to one-half RAM. Max equal to RAM.

I'd like to apply the above in bold. As I have only 64MB of Ram. When I tried this. I received a warning stating:

~You have chosen to not to let windows manage virtual memory automatically. You may not be able to restart your computer or your system may not perform optimally. Do not continue unless you are sure you need to specify your own virtual memory settings. Are you sure you want to continue?

Should I heed this warning. Or should I go ahead with this ME tweak? And if so. Is my math correct in that the settings would be 160 for both Min and Max? At 2.5 times the RAM (64 MB)
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#2 cowsgonemadd3

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 09:28 AM

I added more to my XP or set the settings higher and yet sometimes I still run out! Only cas' I open to much at one time.

I like his site the stuff he says is very valid and works!

Also I think that error came on mine. Right now I set mine to have high mem. but windows does add it if more is needed. So windows does take care of it for me if it goes above my settings.

#3 Scarlett

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 10:10 AM

So it is ok for me to go ahead with this?
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#4 Scarlett

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Posted 14 December 2004 - 11:51 PM

Thanks CGM3 ...Does anyone else have an opinion on this? Messing around with my system makes me just a little nervous. And I'd like a little more insight.
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#5 TexasAngel67

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 11:25 AM

Scarlett :thumbsup: (Been awhile huh?)

I haven't been around to get to this before and I'm sorry. Please don't worry. :trumpet:
My opinions are as follows:

For starters, I'm not sure I'd follow that tweaking. It's dated March 2001. I don't know why but I'd feel more comfortable with newer information, personally.
Secondly, I trust nobody but Black Viper. That's the site I was using and I had no worries about which ones I selected. I'm sure you remember that I also have WinME.
Finally, the one tweak you are asking about, I'd just leave it to where it was originally. You can see what Black Viper says about virtual memory but for me, I'd leave it where it was.


:flowers: I've missed you. Hope all is well, online and off. Take care and let me know what you think and and what you've decided about your tweaking.

#6 JEservices

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 03:09 PM

Would you mind providing a link to the article?

If you want to do this tweak, it is really up to the answer of this question: Do you have ample free hard drive space?

The reason why I ask about your HD is because this is where your swap file is located.

Virtual memory=swap file + actual RAM

Your swap file is a special file that Windows uses to swap information in and out of RAM. Here is an excerpt of my upcoming hardware tutorial (still in re-writes, so wording may differ slightly from final report)that explains it good:

If you think of RAM as something that is within arm's reach, then you can get a better understanding on how this memory is used. Items (or files, in the case of a computer), can be used faster, when it is in front of you. You can place, use, and move anything that you need. As you start using specific items more often, you move them closer, so that it does not take as long to retrieve. After a while you may have too much stuff and it has become cluttered. You'll have to take some time to clean it up and re-organize it. If you see that you still need more room for the things that you want, then you might place priorities on certain ones. Things you want fast access to, but you don't necessarily use all the time. You might place them behind your back so that they do not use up as much space in front of you. You still have quick access to them, but it does take a little longer to use them and then put them back. A computer does the same thing, but uses a portion of the Hard Drive(HD), as if it was RAM, and saves it as a special file, close to the OS (Operating System).

...

The Operating System manages everything about this special type of file [paging or swap file](except when you change your HD), and will only use what is available as free space on the Hard Drive. If your Hard Drive is nearly full, then the Paging File will be limited. When you clean out the Hard Drive, replace it, or add another one, then there is more free space for the paging file. When adding another HD or replacing your existing one with a larger capacity, you may need to increase your paging file. Search in Window's help for 'increasing paging file' on how to do this.


Before you do this tweak, I would highly recommend that you go to Safe Mode and delete the files in your recycle bin. You may even find it useful to apply the change in Safe Mode as well. When you restart the computer back to normal, you may find that it actually runs a little slower. Use the computer like you normally would for an hour or so, and restart it once again. After that restart, you will see that it is faster. Again-you will only see a benefit if your HD has enough free space for the change.
We are all curious like a cat. We wonder, we ask, we learn.
Please post back when a suggestion works, so that others may learn.

#7 Scarlett

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 04:06 PM

Here it is JE ...

http://www.informationweek.com/story/showA...12803483&pgno=4

Do you have ample free hard drive space?


Not sure. How excactly do I figure that out? ......Does this help?
This old thing has only 64MB of RAM. Local Disc capacity is 1.96GB. As of now I have 408MB free. With 1.56GB used.

Memory: 64.0 MB of RAM

System Resources: 59% free

File System: 32-bit

Virtual Memory: 32-bit

Thanks so much for all your help!! :thumbsup:

Nice work on the tutorial.
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#8 TexasAngel67

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 04:15 PM

That's a low resource level but I'm sure it depends on how long you have been online and how long the computer has been on and running and how much you've opened, ran programs, etc...
Do you use your computer for work, have a lot of programs on it, or is it an older computer that was updated to WinME?
I'm just curious because your numbers differ so greatly compared to mine.
I'm watching this thread to see how ya end up, Scarlett and what people suggest you do.

#9 Scarlett

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 05:13 PM

Older computer - Win 95 updated to ME. Yes it is pretty well loaded up. I just set System Restore Space to min 200MB which brought me up from 200 or so MB free disk space. To what I have now 400 or so. When I disable System Restore and then enable it again flushing it. I can have around 600 or so. I use CCleaner regularly. I always keep Recycle Bin cleaned too. Same goes for my Cache. Like I said it is loaded up though. But I baby it and do maintance continuously. It is a home computer.

Edited by scarlett, 15 December 2004 - 05:24 PM.

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#10 cowsgonemadd3

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 05:22 PM

My 98SE 6 years old is running on 1mb of ram!! LOL

#11 JEservices

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 05:48 PM

You said that you have 408MB free space on you HD. This includes any amount already allocated for the swap file that you currently have. If you want to change the file to 160MB (as your first post), then you should be ok. The reason why it tells you that warning is because ME does not like YOU telling IT what to do. Logistics behind it-thats about it really.

A mentioned before that you should empty the recycle bin in Safe Mode. I was not aware of your free space at the time. You may want to consider defragging in Safe Mode prior to doing this change.

You will be using a greater portion of your HD for it, so you may want to look at how much free space you have after you have rebooted.

Remember, it may take 2 restarts to see a difference. From my estimates, you would be looking at about a 10% in overall speed. Especially when you have multiple applications open.

Now would be a good time to do a benchmark on your computer. Sure you could have yet another application open, but why waste CPU and RAM with it, when that is what you are testing :flowers: ? Here is how to do a manual benchmark. Get some paper and something to write with along with a stopwatch.

1-You want to establish a general speed on your computer. Without making any changes, turn the computer off, just like you normally do. Start your timer as soon as you turn your computer on, and stop it when you are able to click an icon. You may even want to double-click it and stop the timer after it has opened up, and record the time as start-up base time. Open up 2 of your favorite applications and use the timer to see how long they take. Record these times on the paper as well, along with the names of the applications. Finally, shut the computer down, starting the timer when you begin the method, and finishing when the computer has shut down completely. This is your final log (again everything is on paper).

2-Now that you have some base times, it is time to tweak your system. Turn your computer on like normal or Safe Mode, if needed, and apply the needed changes. During this step, you do not have to log any times, because they will not really take effect until you have restarted the computer. When finished, turn the computer off like normal.

3-Here is where you start your timers back up again, so have your paper ready :trumpet:. Turn the computer back on like normal, go through the same steps that you did with the base times, and log it. Open the same applications that you did before, and log those as well. Finally, turn the computer off for one final log time.

4-You may need to start the computer another time for similar testing. After this start, there should be all the difference that the tweak will make.


Out of curiousity, I would like for you to post back the log times. I am sure others would be curious :thumbsup:
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#12 Leurgy

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 07:55 PM

160MB for a swap file is pretty small. It may cause you low disk space errors, especially if you try to install a new program. My advice is to leave it alone. I've tried to manage my own virtual memory but Windows always seems to set it back.

What size is your swap file now? Go to Start>Find and do a search for *.swp and post back. You can safely delete your swap file if you immediately reboot and can possibly free up some disk space that way. Have you cleaned out your windows temp files?

You can also free up some disk space by going into add/remove programs and uninstalling any programs that are rarely or never used.

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#13 JEservices

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 08:33 PM

Welcome to BC Leurgy!!

I am glad to see that you are offering advice shortly after joining. The world (or is it internet, I can never remember), can be a very confusing set of applications working with Operating Systems combined with hardware, ran by people. Some people are more knowledgable then others, but then again, some OSs, applications, and hardware are re-programmed without the users knowledge.

Back to the task at hand.

It is true that 160 MB is a rather small swap file, but it is my understanding(and I could be wrong) that it is at least larger then the one she has currently.

Although I have not personally deleted the swap file and restarted immediately, would you recommend you do this in Safe Mode? Since the Swap file has the lowest of priority in virtual memory, it is possible that it would be considerably slower to turn the computer off. Your thoughts?

Also, what do you think of the crude benchmarking technique? Do you think it will be helpful to Scarlett to see if (whichever technique used) would be a benefit to her computer?
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#14 Leurgy

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 09:24 PM

Thanks for the welcome!

I would imagine her current swap file is considerably larger than 160MB now. That is why I asked her to do a search for it, to find out the size. I do know that it will grow as needed but will not shrink on its own.

I made a mistake here as the swap file cannot be deleted from Windows but must be done in Dos, so safe mode does not really enter into it. Windows rebuilds the swap file on reboot.

I like your "crude" benchmark and have used it myself. It helps to show someone how unnecessary programs running in the background can slow a computer.

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#15 Scarlett

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Posted 15 December 2004 - 10:10 PM

Hi Leurgy and thanks for the input. :thumbsup: Here it is guys.

WIN386.SWP 140MB

And yes Temp Files are cleaned out often enough. Via "CCleaner"

Edited by scarlett, 15 December 2004 - 10:12 PM.

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