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Windows 7: Pagefile on an SSD - is that a yes or a no?

06 Mar 2015   #1
ish4d0w

Microsoft® Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
 
 
Pagefile on an SSD - is that a yes or a no?

Hi

So there's pretty controversial information on this on the internet and I know we have the best experts here so I'd like to ask you...

Should I turn off pagefile on an SSD?

(is it bad for the SSD if I leave it on? how about disabling it completely /eg: not moving it to an other drive/)


Thanks, reps (reputation points) will be sent to everyone who replies (as long as I can send reps, sometimes it doesn't let me)


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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06 Mar 2015   #2
DavidE

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64
 
 

If you don't have a pagefile on the [C] drive you won't get a dump file for a BSOD, if you ever need it.
I have my pagefiles on the SSD and set them to 1 GB min 4 GB max. They have always stayed at 1 GB.
Some programs may not work correctly if there is no pagefile.
Some people prefer to move the pagefile to a spinner, guess they believe the SSD will last longer, or maybe they have a space issue with a small SSD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Mar 2015   #3
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ish4d0w View Post
Hi

So there's pretty controversial information on this on the internet and I know we have the best experts here so I'd like to ask you...

Should I turn off pagefile on an SSD?

(is it bad for the SSD if I leave it on? how about disabling it completely /eg: not moving it to an other drive/)
You may as well be asking about the best defragmentation program, the best anti-virus program, or religion.

Few minds are changed per 100,000 words on the subject.

Do what you want. If it causes you problems, do something else.

Adjust for the placebo effect.

Adjust to accommodate your pre-conceived notions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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06 Mar 2015   #4
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

If you have 4GB of RAM or more, the pagefile will hardly ever be used. It can be anywhere and there will be little or no performance impact. I sized mine down to 2GBs (I have 8GB of RAM) and kept it on the SSD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Mar 2015   #5
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

The function of the page file that uses the most space is when it functions as virtual RAM when the installed RAM's capacity has been exceeded. Virtual RAM is HDD or SSD space that is used to accommodate the overflow when the amount RAM needed by the system exceeds what is installed. That was a huge issue back when installed RAM was typically measured in MBs. Even now, most people rarely use more than 4GB of RAM; even gamers rarely use more than 8GB of RAM. Some multitaskers and people who use RAM intensive programs such as 3D CAD, intensive use of Photoshop, intensive video editing and rendering, etc. are possible exceptions to the rule. In theory, one could eliminate the page file if they have more RAM installed than they expect to ever use but, as DavidE pointed out, there are some programs that use it and Windows uses it for stashing error data, such as when a BSOD occurs. For the latter reason, M$ recommends setting the maximum page file size to no less than 800MB.

The issue with the page file came about with the earliest SSDs, which were typically much smaller than what are affordably available today. In order to fit the OS on those tiny things, many tricks were employed, such as reducing the page file or moving it to a separate spinner. Many of those tricks, such as eliminating the hyberfil.sys file (used for hibernation) also were used to reduce the number of writes to a SSD to avoid wearing it out due to the finite write capacity of a SSD (we have learned since then that SSDs are much more durable than we had originally thought).

I set the page file on the 128GB SSD in my desktop machine (my daily driver) to 800MB and it has been working just fine for two years now. I didn't bother to do so on the SSDs I put in two of my notebooks (I haven't even fired up my recently acquired one yet) and I haven't had a problem with them, either. With today's SSDs, page file size and the number writes made to them are pretty much non-issues so the choice whether to reduce the page file or relocate is your personal choice. I recommend to most people not to bother since it is then one less thing to bother with when setting up a SSD.
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06 Mar 2015   #6
DavidE

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64
 
 

Something else to consider if moving the pagefile from the [C] drive to some other partition.
The pagefile is a System file and that may cause a backup imaging program to include that partition when creating a backup image.
I expect the built in Windows backup utility would do this, and that might mean LARGE backup images.
Macrium and Acronis allow including specific partitions in a backup, and don't force a user to include other partitions not wanted.
I tried the W7 built in utility years ago, didn't like it and quit using it.
I had no control of what it included, and the backup image file size was too large for me.

ignatzatsonic probably has the best advice in post #3 with
Quote:
Do what you want. If it causes you problems, do something else.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Mar 2015   #7
maxseven

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)
 
 

I am anal as heck and for my very first SSD installation I set-up a RAM disk for temporary files and of course the other tweaks (ottomh e.g. turning off Defrag and Superfetch and etc.). I did just let Windows manage my page file and it's at 8GB for this 8GB RAM "everyday use" PC, which seems sorta high to me but...

This was over 5 years ago and Intel's SSD Toolbox tells me I still have ~95% life estimated remaining in the SSD. I'm happy.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Mar 2015   #8
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by maxseven View Post
I am anal as heck and for my very first SSD installation I set-up a RAM disk for temporary files and of course the other tweaks (ottomh e.g. turning off Defrag and Superfetch and etc.). I did just let Windows manage my page file and it's at 8GB for this 8GB RAM "everyday use" PC, which seems sorta high to me but...

This was over 5 years ago and Intel's SSD Toolbox tells me I still have ~95% life estimated remaining in the SSD. I'm happy.
What you did may have been a nice occupation but counterproductive in parts. Turning Superfetch off slows your system down, a RAM disk is pretty useless but leaving the pagefile at 8GB serves no purpose unless you get BSODs and want the dumps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Mar 2015   #9
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by maxseven View Post
I am anal as heck and for my very first SSD installation I set-up a RAM disk for temporary files and of course the other tweaks (ottomh e.g. turning off Defrag and Superfetch and etc.). I did just let Windows manage my page file and it's at 8GB for this 8GB RAM "everyday use" PC, which seems sorta high to me but...

This was over 5 years ago and Intel's SSD Toolbox tells me I still have ~95% life estimated remaining in the SSD. I'm happy.
What you did may have been a nice occupation but counterproductive in parts. Turning Superfetch off slows your system down, a RAM disk is pretty useless but leaving the pagefile at 8GB serves no purpose unless you get BSODs and want the dumps.

PS - those toolbox programs are pretty useless too. I had a SSD with 98% of life and the next day the controller died. All they do is check the amount of spare nands but have no real clue about the rest of the device.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
06 Mar 2015   #10
Lady Fitzgerald

Win 7 Ultimate 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
...PS - those toolbox programs are pretty useless too. I had a SSD with 98% of life and the next day the controller died. All they do is check the amount of spare nands but have no real clue about the rest of the device.
True, all they do is check how many writes have been made (and often report that figure) against what the manufacturer says the NAND is capable of (some manufacturers are more "honest" than others) to get a percentage of life left. Many will compare that to operating time to guesstimate the number of years and/or days of life is left. They can't predict sudden failure do something like the controller going belly up. Still, I wouldn't consider those utilities to be useless as long as one understands what they are for and their limitations are. Also, some will do secure erase for you, manually perform TRIM (handy if you are running an OS that doesn't perform TRIM), check performance benchmarks, etc., all of which have their uses.

That said, I rarely run Samsung's utility because I don't need to and because it will still continue to run in the background even after I close it (I have to go into task manager to end the process).
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 Pagefile on an SSD - is that a yes or a no?




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