virtual mem settings

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diggerbarnz
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2005/04/13 23:32:29 (permalink)

virtual mem settings

What should the virtual memory settings be if I have 1 gig of ram?

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    jopatou
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/04/13 23:51:34 (permalink)
    Hi,

    standard is 1.5 to 2 times your physical memory. So 1.5 to 2 Gig in your case.

    I'm not at my DAW right now so I'm not sure by if I remeber correctly mine is set to 1563 (or something close to that), can't quite recall where I got that "exact" figure but it had to do with some calculation of some kind...

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    #2
    JakeLight
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/04/14 01:32:14 (permalink)
    I have 1 gig with XP. I turn virtual memory off, and have never looked back. Even with as many as 8 instance of Plugsounds ultimate sound bank running, I never went beyond 600-700 megs used.

    Jake
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    #3
    pwal
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/04/14 05:39:34 (permalink)
    tip: if setting vm manually, set the min & max sizes the same - then windows doesn't resize on the fly...

    p
    #4
    techead
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/04/14 07:45:19 (permalink)
    Here is an article online with everything about RAM, virtual memory, and pagefiles. It speaks of how to set the limits of the pagefile according to how much RAM and some general rules of thumb. It also discusses defragmenting the pagefile so it is more quickly accessible.

    I quick Google search will yield a lot of conflicting opinions. You should pay particular attention to articles like this one that come from a deep technical source.

    http://members.shaw.ca/bsanders/WindowsGeneralWeb/RAMVirtualMemoryPageFileEtc.htm

    Here is another good article with tweaking considerations and a brief explanation why running without a paging file is a bad idea:

    http://www.petri.co.il/pagefile_optimization.htm
    post edited by techead - 2005/04/14 07:50:41
    #5
    techead
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/04/14 07:56:10 (permalink)
    You cannot turn off virtual memory, but you can disable the use of the paging file. However, disabling the paging file may have some other ramifications on applications that request a large amount of memory upon startup yet don't really use all of that memory. Virtual memory is ALWAYS in effect--it is what allows Windows to show an application that there is 2GB of memory available even though there may only be 256MB of physical RAM and it is a foundation of x86 processors. All modern operating systems (including Windows XP and Linux) operate with Virtual Memory always on--whether or not there is a pagefile (or in Linux a swap partition).

    If you have huge amounts of RAM (1GB or more) you might not see the effects of a missing pagefile, but for any machine with less than 1GB of RAM it will probably cause problems.
    #6
    techead
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/04/14 08:01:28 (permalink)
    Yeah, a lot of documentation says 1.5 times the physical RAM count for the low end and 2 times or 3 times the physical RAM count for the high end. However, there are file-system size limits and it is not practical to have multi-gigabyte paging files.

    Some say to set the lower and upper pagefile limits to the same value so Windows won't attempt to increase the pagefile size. This may work well as long as there is a sufficient amount of pagefile available.

    It is also good practice to place the pagefile on its own partition on a physically separate hard drive (or on a hardware RAID0 drive) to get better speed when it is in use.

    It is also good practice to ensure the pagefile is not externally fragmented on a disk.
    #7
    sinc
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/19 07:20:42 (permalink)
    After lots of research and experimentation, I put this together.

    Let me know if you see any errors/ommissions in it.
    #8
    Vuzz13
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/19 11:40:09 (permalink)
    Very nice research and article sinc.....good job

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    #9
    techead
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/19 23:11:57 (permalink)
    Excellent resource you've put together. Everything you've written in that paper jives well with what I have learned in my own research. Very nice.

    Don't know if you use Cakewalk's Project5 software or not, but this material is equally applicable to that audio environment as well. We have been building an end-user run Project5 Wiki and stuffing it full of information. Would you mind if we linked to your article from our Wiki or even imported its entire text into our Wiki database?

    Again, very nice paper.

    -Techead
    #10
    sinc
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/19 23:22:53 (permalink)
    Would you mind if we linked to your article from our Wiki or even imported its entire text into our Wiki database?

    Sure, no problem.

    Thanks, guys.
    post edited by sinc - 2005/06/19 23:30:53
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    techead
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/20 00:16:43 (permalink)
    Richard, thanks again for letting me post this to the Project5 Wiki. Here is the link if you'd like to see it: http://p5.sonarama.com/p5/index.php/Pagefile_Settings

    -Techead
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    jm24
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/20 09:31:19 (permalink)
    Monday Morn

    ORIGINAL:
    After lots of research and experimentation, I put this together.

    Let me know if you see any errors/ommissions in it.



    Thank you for consolidating this information. Lots of old w98 tweaks are obviously outdated.

    I did not read that one should disable the pagefile for the audio data drive.

    I have done this, and have disabled system restore for the audio data drive, and for the samples drive.

    The system drive has both enabled.

    Any problems with these actions?

    J
    #13
    jm24
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/20 09:35:12 (permalink)

    ORIGINAL: jm24

    Monday Morn

    ORIGINAL:
    After lots of research and experimentation, I put this together.

    Let me know if you see any errors/ommissions in it.



    I did not read that one should disable the pagefile for the audio data drive.

    J


    Reading again I find this:

    "Another option is to use multiple partitions on multiple discs. In this case, the multiple partitions can all be used simultaneously, similar to a RAID0 striping disc array. If you do this, just make sure you aren't using a mixture of very fast and very slow drives, and of course, make sure you do NOT use your Audio drive for this purpose. "

    This is the default for windows.

    So the recommedation is to disable the pagefile for the audio drive?

    J
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    kp
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/20 09:43:33 (permalink)
    'Fraid to say sinc, but there's just so many factual mistakes in your article, it's really painful to read.
    #15
    techead
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/20 11:36:29 (permalink)
    ORIGINAL: kp
    'Fraid to say sinc, but there's just so many factual mistakes in your article, it's really painful to read.

    Please be more helpful and point out the "factual mistakes", Kevin. We would greatly appreciate it.
    #16
    sinc
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/20 23:00:40 (permalink)

    So the recommedation is to disable the pagefile for the audio drive?

    Yep. You got it.

    Of course, as I was saying, this is a relatively minor optimization. In the grand scheme of things, if you're looking to optimizations like this to fix a recurring problem with your DAW, you're probably better off looking to a REAL fix (e.g., adding more RAM). But yeah, keeping the pagefile off your audio disc can help sometimes.

    The main point of the paper is that, with XP, turning the pagefile off does much more harm than good, and should not be done, even though it may have helped in earlier versions of the operating system (or in other operating systems).
    post edited by sinc - 2005/06/20 23:04:31
    #17
    sinc
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/20 23:05:44 (permalink)
    ORIGINAL: techead

    ORIGINAL: kp
    'Fraid to say sinc, but there's just so many factual mistakes in your article, it's really painful to read.

    Please be more helpful and point out the "factual mistakes", Kevin. We would greatly appreciate it.

    I agree. That criticism is not helpful at all. I know I need to revise the part about recommended pagefile settings - the "1.5x RAM rule" isn't that great. But, if it's not too painful for you, could you let me in on at least a couple of these numerous factual errors you're talking about? I (and many others) would appreciate it.
    #18
    sinc
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    RE: virtual mem settings 2005/06/22 08:47:03 (permalink)
    I have received feedback on the paper from Windows XP experts, who most strongly assure me that there is no need to have the pagefile larger than available RAM. There are many references on the web that state performance will degrade unless all available RAM can be mapped to a spot in virtual memory, but these references are mistaken. The 1.5x RAM rule is also bad, since it can dictate incredibly large pagefile sizes for systems with lots of RAM. For most systems, this ends up being nothing more than a waste of disc space.

    The truth of the matter is that the pagefile only needs to be large enough that it never gets expanded during normal usage. The maximum pagefile size should always be set to something larger than the minimum, to allow this expansion if it is required. But other than that, the minimum pagefile should be determined only by the needs of your system. They still recommend that the minimum be set to 100MB, or larger on systems with small amounts of RAM (total of RAM+pagefile should be at least 500MB). They also recommend that the maximum should never be set lower than about 700MB, as a basic rule-of-thumb. Larger is better if you ever work with graphics or other memory-intensive applications.

    I have revised the paper accordingly, including instructions on how to determine the best minimum size for your system.
    #19
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