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Windows Thread, Windows XP - help with page file size please in Technical; I'm trying to sort out a friend's XP laptop that is slooooooooow. I've had a go at it with a ...
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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Windows XP - help with page file size please

    I'm trying to sort out a friend's XP laptop that is slooooooooow.

    I've had a go at it with a good selection of anti-spyware tools and ccleaner; defragged it; uninstalled the unnecessary; checked what's running at startup; it's quicker, but still not good.

    Having checked the RAM, I'm not surprised... 192MB

    My next step was to have a look at the Page File, but I'm starting to get out my comfort zone. There's loads of free space on the hard-drive so space isn't an issue.

    Is it better to go for a fixed size Page File or allow for expansion? (I'd have thought the former) I've seen various recommendations for a size 1.5 times RAM - is there a science to this calculation?

    Thanks for any help.

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    mrforgetful's Avatar
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    I just set it to system managed to be honest.

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    contink's Avatar
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    Worth getting pagedefrag from sysinternals and getting that to run on your machine as that can help speed things up a little too...

  4. Thanks to contink from:

    elsiegee40 (4th March 2008)

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    PEO
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    http://www.ccleaner.com/ will clear alot of crap of the system

    pagedefrag can be downloaded from here
    Last edited by PEO; 4th March 2008 at 03:24 PM.

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    elsiegee40 (5th March 2008)

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    cookie_monster's Avatar
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    Unless you can move it to another physical disk it won't make much difference, you could increase the minimum size so the system doesn't have to dynamically increase it when required but i bet you'll hardly notice.

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Will try Pagedefrag - thanks contink

    I've already used ccleaner (see original post) but thanks anyway MrHappy

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    Domino's Avatar
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    theres a few registry hacks that can make a big difference http://downloads.techrepublic.com.co...x?docid=173620

    also run msconfig and take out any unnessecary startup items (persoanlly I remove everything except the system startups - itunes,quicktime,adobeacrobat etc don't really mind not being run at start)

  10. Thanks to Domino from:

    elsiegee40 (4th March 2008)

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Thanks for the suggestion Domino, I shall read and digest!

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    Ryan's Avatar
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    I've always set the pagefile to a fixed size, doesn't seem to help allowing the OS to fiddle with it as it sees fit. Few recent (as in last year) articles in magazines confirmed this with speed tests. Not a biblical increase in speed, but certainly more efficient. *shrugs*

    Edit:
    • Have the initial size be at least 1.5 times bigger than the amount of physical RAM. Do NOT make the Pagefile smaller than the amount of physical RAM you've got installed on your system.
    • Make its initial size as big as the maximum size. Although this will cause the Pagefile to occupy more HD space, we do not want it to start off small, then having to constantly grow on the HD. Writing large files (and the Pagefile is indeed large) to the HD will cause a lot of disk activity that will cause performance degradation. Also, since the Pagefile only grows in increments, you will probably cause Pagefile fragmentation, adding more overhead to the already stressed HD.
    From: http://www.petri.co.il/pagefile_optimization.htm
    Last edited by Ryan; 4th March 2008 at 03:50 PM.

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    @contink - thanks again - that Pagedefrag program is a little gem!

    Link here for anyone else who's interested.

    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/s.../bb897426.aspx

    It's still slow, but with fixed page file size and after running that utility, the slowness is more bearable!

  14. #11

    SYNACK's Avatar
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    Something that speed up my older machine hugely was cleaning out the prefetch cache and altering the prefetch settings in the registry. If the system is taking ages to boot cleaning out the C:\Windows\Prefetch folder and setting the system to only use prefetch on boot files will speed things up.

    There are opinions on the net that this will lower performance however this is not the case in my experience as it cut 3 minutes of the boot time of a 6 year old Windows XP install. It cleaned out all of the prefetch rubbish from programs that I did not even have installed anymore and generated new .pf files for the files that needed to be re cached.

  15. Thanks to SYNACK from:

    elsiegee40 (4th March 2008)

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Thanks SYNACK, I'll give that try
    Last edited by elsiegee40; 4th March 2008 at 09:26 PM.

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    We've recently seen some problmes with SIMS running on machines with 256mb of memory.

    This has happened recently and seems to have occured since the change to latest version of Sophos.

    SIMS had become quite slow (well bl**dy tedious actually) and some machines were reporting low virtual memory, a clue that somthing with the pagefile wasn't quite right (use to be swapfile sometime ago and seems a better name to me).

    All the offending machines had page files of 350mbish i.e. about 1.5 times the mem size.

    Changed the min size to 1000 mb and max to 3000mb and after a restart the difference in SIMS performance was staggering.

    Searching pupils was almost instant, where as previously the search took 20-30 seconds

  18. #14

    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    OK - this is what I've achieved.

    I started with the obvious - viruses (none); spyware(cookies); disk cleanup (plenty); ccleaner (more!); startup entries ( a few); defrag (needed)

    This brought the speed up from unbearable to really slow.

    I then fiddled with the Page File size and after a few attempts settled on 4x RAM (yes, I know... but it seems to suit this machine)
    I finished off with PageDefrag as suggested earlier
    SYNACK's regedit (now using 2 Boot prefetch)
    and another defrag just to leave it completely tidy

    Instead of going to cook dinner while waiting for boot up and then eating it while trying to open OpenOffice.org Writer; it's down to putting the kettle on for the whole lot.

    If this was my machine, I'd dump it; but it isn't. My friend will be well pleased, I think. Thanks guys!

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