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Windows 7: Paging to SSD drive

22 Nov 2009   #1
HPF

Windows 7
 
 
Paging to SSD drive

I bought a Netbook with one 150GB/5400 rpm and one 4 GB/SSD. XP was pre-installed on the SSD drive, I had to install Windows 7 on the platter drive.

I want to put the SSD to good use. If I use it for paging, will the performance degrade over time? The SSD is probably a Gen.1 drive so it doesn't support TRIM. Do Windows 7 erase the paging file and allocate a new one at boot-up?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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22 Nov 2009   #2
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by HPF View Post
I bought a Netbook with one 150GB/5400 rpm and one 4 GB/SSD. XP was pre-installed on the SSD drive, I had to install Windows 7 on the platter drive.

I want to put the SSD to good use. If I use it for paging, will the performance degrade over time? The SSD is probably a Gen.1 drive so it doesn't support TRIM. Do Windows 7 erase the paging file and allocate a new one at boot-up?
I'd say that if you want to best utilize the SSD drive, then use it to install your applications onto. That will give you the most bang for the buck. And then you won't have to worry about the drive really slowing down...since 98% of the time it will be spent "reading" the applications. Plus, when the app is installed on the SSD, it will launch much faster and thus you will really see the performance benefit...which you would not really see with it just running the page file.
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22 Nov 2009   #3
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Win7 does support Trim. But if your SSDs firmware does not support it, then it`s useless. I agree with pparks, install something that is mostly being read. Page files are no good candidates. Don`t expect any wonders though. Those little SSDs they install in the netbooks are no top performers.
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22 Nov 2009   #4
Qdos

 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Don`t expect any wonders though. Those little SSDs they install in the netbooks are no top performers.
It's worth testing all the same, but I agree the quality of the generic SSD's simply isn't up to the quality of the after-market offerings by Intel, OCZ, Samsung etc.
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22 Nov 2009   #5
HPF

Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Page files are no good candidates.
There are certainly different opinions on that
Engineering Windows 7 : Support and Q&A for Solid-State Drives
Scroll down to "Should the pagefile be placed on SSDs?"

If HDD is defragmentet, big program files will be read in sequential reads so if not used for pagefile I would rather use if for user generated files like emails, pictures etc. as I think that will give a more "snappy" feeling.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Those little SSDs they install in the netbooks are no top performers.
Not compared to the new fast SSD G2 drives from Intel, but still faster compared to platter drives, especially on random reads and small files. With XP installed on the SSD the netbook booted in about 25 seconds. Windows 7 use 45 seconds, but is way smoother than XP which started to stutter after a few minutes. So far I'm very impressed with how well Windows 7 run on this Atom based netbook.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Nov 2009   #6
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Page files are OK - provided you have Trim. But you don`t have that. Therefore read-only files are probably a better bet.
I use an OCZ Vertex with Trim for Win7 and an Intel x18M without Trim for Vista. They both work well, but they are also still very new.
In any case, make sure you align it properly and make sure no defrag is going on. I recommend the OCZ forum. There is a lot of info on the intrinsic details of SSDs.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Nov 2009   #7
MacGyvr

Windows 7 Ultimate RTM (Technet)
 
 

Remember that a SSD has a defined end of life. It can only be written to a finite number of times before it fails. You don't want to configure it as a drive that is constantly being written to, such as in the case of a paging file.
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23 Nov 2009   #8
HPF

Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Page files are OK - provided you have Trim.
Come to think of it, TRIM may not be relevant at all because pagefile.sys is always in use by the OS and not likely to change from the RAMx1.5 size that was allocated to start with?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Nov 2009   #9
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by HPF View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
Page files are OK - provided you have Trim.
Come to think of it, TRIM may not be relevant at all because pagefile.sys is always in use by the OS and not likely to change from the RAMx1.5 size that was allocated to start with?

Although your observation is correct, you forgot the fact that this page file is being constantly updated by superfetch depending on what you run. It is only static if you run nothing but the things that happen to be in cache.
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