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Windows 7: Pagefile size on new SSD

22 Dec 2018   #1

Microsoft Windows 7 Professional 64-bit
Pagefile size on new SSD


I have recently done a clean install and have all my drivers and updates done now. I notice that the pagefile is set to the automatic option and is taking up around 32GB.

Should I used the custom option to add in values? My system has 32GB of ram. Would anyone have any recommendations?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Dec 2018   #2

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit sp1

There has been some debate on pagefile size when using SSDs, some suggesting none & others suggesting letting Windows set it automatically. I have 16 GB of RAM & I have the pagefile set at 1 GB.

Do you have a frequent requirement for the use of 32 GB of RAM, with very high RAM usage programs. If so the let Windows set it. If not then just try none or a very small sized one.

The main reason for setting it to zero was that frequent writes to the SSD from the RAM shortened their life, but that has been discounted now as the life of SSDs is now equal to or longer than a HHD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
22 Dec 2018   #3

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

In Windows the pagefile has 3 primary purposes.

1. It increases the commit limit. Commit charge and commit limit is somewhat difficult to explain so will not do so here. Much incorrect information has been published. But all you really need to know is that the commit charge (as shown in Task Manager) cannot exceed the commit limit. If an attempted memory allocation would exceed the limit bad things will happen. This could mean application failure, data loss, and system crashes. Best avoided.

The commit is RAM size plus pagefile size minus a small overhead. With a system managed pagefile it could be as large as 3 times RAM size. Typically with 32 GB RAM that would be more than plenty. But with a sufficiently large workload it may be needed.

2. It optimizes the use of existing RAM. It does this by providing a place to offload from RAM rarely used data. This leaves more RAM for more important purposes, such as larger application working sets and caching. The pagefile usually improves performance.

3. The pagefile is used in the generation of memory dumps. For a full memory dump a pagefile slightly larger than RAM size is needed. But a full memory dump is rarely needed and this is not the default configuration.

The needed size of the pagefile is determined by the workload. The important number is the peak commit charge. Unfortunately Task Manager doesn't show this but other utilities like Process Explorer do. This is a free download from Microsoft. You would need to monitor this over a period of time when the workload is at it's highest. Be sure to include a generous margin for safety, just in case. Contrary to frequent recommendations the memory usage graph is virtually useless for this determination. If the peak commit charge is less than RAM size you technically wouldn't need a pagefile at all. But for the other reasons mentioned it would still be of benefit.

Also understand the size of the pagefile has nothing to do with the drive being an SSD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

24 Dec 2018   #4

Windows 7 HP 64

I agree with Ranger that pagefile isn't important IF you have a lot of memory and you never use it all. Then, as you have 32G of memory and if you only use no more than 16G, you can set a small pagefile or even none.
But if you going to use almost all or all memory for programs, I agree with Miller. You should have the pagefile set to (at least) twice the size of your memory (64G).
It isn't good to have any file that is written or rewritten every time you use the computer as a SSD has a limited write cluster life.

I have a small SSD (128G) for Windows and programs on one partition (85G), Linux on another (43G) and a HDD for Data and it works great.
This is what I have done:

- I have used Kari tutorial to move C:/Users to D:\Users. All trash, like user temporary files are now on the HDD.
- I have relocated the dump files folder to the HDD.
- I have relocated the Windows Temp folder to the HDD.
- Antivirus (that has data file updated daily) and Firefox are installed on the HDD.
- Pagefile is set to none at the SSD and set to twice the memory size on the HDD.
- I don't use hibernate, so it's disabled (powercfg -h off)
- System Restore is set to off. I have a disk image as a backup and I backup my data on a HDD every week.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Dec 2018   #5


I have 16GB RAM, page file size is on automatic and I've never seen page file bigger than 3.5Gb. So 1 of 3 things happen there:
1. OP uses programs that really need a lot of RAM
2. OP didn't set his memory dump file to small, so in case of crash dump file could be many gigs, so large page file

3. Something else is not set up right.
Personally I set dump file to zero, since it's useless waste of space and time, unless computer crashes a lot and my computer never crashed, except few times that I caused it (like setting undervolt too low) but I don't know what OP case is.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Pagefile size on new SSD

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