Definitive answer to separate swap file and system restore partitions

Discussion in 'Windows Desktop Systems' started by rbmcgee, Feb 20, 2003.

  1. rbmcgee

    rbmcgee Guest

    Hi all,

    I getting very confused and have searched the archives but can't seem to find a definitive answer. I apologize if my search way flawed.

    - Is there any benefit to putting the swap file on a separate partition (not separate disk) from the WinXP partition?

    - Is there any benefit (or any way for that matter any way) to place the system restore backups on a separate partition?

    - Is there any benefit to putting these files on a separate disk vs. just a separate partition?

    TIA
     
  2. j79zlr

    j79zlr Glaanies script monkey Political User

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    the try advantage is to put the page file (swap file) on a sepereate HDD so the head(s) are dedicated to either writing or paging operations. Not switching back and forth.

    To tell you the truth there is no noticeable performance increase, but theoretically there is. If it is on a different partition this may or may not be the case, if the PF is put on a different platter than the OS then the heads will be able to work independently.
     
  3. daTerminehtor

    daTerminehtor CSM T101

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    Advise against different partition on same drive.

    See here for some leads from, gag... bleh, the source.
     
  4. rbmcgee

    rbmcgee Guest

    daTerminehtor, thanks for the link. Great info - even from M$. They must know.

    As I read through the info, though, I come to a different conclusion than you do.

    From the M$ article:
    Seeems to me that creating a partition, specifically for the swap file, even on the same drive, is the perfect solution.

    Thanks.
     
  5. Nemesis

    Nemesis Guest

    No, your getting confused with jargon. Yes, the M$ article mentions partitions, but it should read as seperate physical hard-drives.

    If however you only have one physical drive, then there will be no benefit other than asthetics.

    ;)
     
  6. rbmcgee

    rbmcgee Guest

    Nemesis

    I'm not sure I am mis-reading the article

    A further quote from the same article:
    M$ seems to acknowledge the existence of separate hard drives as 'separate hard drives'. Up until this quote, they clearly are talking partitions and not separate drives. I would be very surprised if this M$ article was so poorly written that they are using partitions and hard drives interchangably. Notice the words "IF" and "ALSO" in this quote. This seems to acknowledge that everything up until this point was talking about multiple partitions on a single hard drive.

    This would not be a misunderstanding of jargon, this would be a out-and-out mistake. From what source does your claim come from or, is it just generally known fact?
     
  7. Perris Calderon

    Perris Calderon Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    one of the rare cases I believe an ms white paper is wrong.

    ios will be the same nomatter where the pf is loctated, moving the pf off the os partition makes absolutely no sense to me., and the same competition for io exists if the pf is on a differant partiton...plus the head movement will be greater...this translates into mor competition, not less with the pf off the os...counter productive...IMHO

    here's what I believe ms is actuallly documenting...(that's right, I am telling ms they missinterperated their info)

    when the pf is on it's own partition, it is obviously contigous...xp is not capable of making the pf contigous without a second party utility...

    SO THIS IS THE PERFORMANCE GAIN THAT THEY ARE DOCUMENTING, not pf location, but pf contigousness...this is my opinion, and with my benchmarks with computors that are partitioned

    so this is what ms has benchmarked...not a competition for io activity between the os and the pf, as the competition does not change no matter where the pf is located

    this is the only benefit to the pf being apart from the os.

    however, with a second party utility, you can defrag the pf without giving it another partition
    .
    the pf on the same partition as the os if it is contigous is probably the best location for seek times and head movement

    now, to be fair, I have tried this scenario with an abundance of computors that are partitioned, and I can not find a measureable differance in performance, no matter where the pf is located.

    ONCE THE PF IS CONTIGOUS.

    I'm hoping two z comes in here and gives his imput, as he has benchmarked the diferrrances, and will give you actual differnces in pf location if he still has the info available...this info may be differant then my info, and I'd like you to give two z's benchmarks more weight then my philosophical opinion

    1)in any event, make sure you defrag the pf,

    2)make sure you do not make it lower then the default...no matter what you've heard to the contrary

    3)make sure you do not dissable expansion...no matter what you've heard to the contrary.

    Do these things, and your pf will perform as very near as optimum as any pf movement strategy
     
  8. rbmcgee

    rbmcgee Guest

    Let me see if I understand your recommendations, dealer.

    - Unless you're willing/able to place the Swap File on a second hard drive, it is actually worse to put it on separate partition.


    - Since the Swap File would be on the boot partition, this simply means to defrag the boot drive. Standard Operating Procedure.

    Since Windoze uses RAM x 1.5 as the default minimum, your recommendation is to just let Windoze manage that.

    Although many claim to set min. and max at the same level, Windoze defaults to an increased max. size. Your recommendation is to let Windoze set the max.

    Basically, what you're saying it to let Windoze completely handle everything about the Swap File.
     
  9. Perris Calderon

    Perris Calderon Moderator Staff Member Political User

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    - Unless you're willing/able to place the Swap File on a second hard drive, it is actually worse to put it on separate partition.

    this is my opinion and experience...though the white paper you demonstrate indicates otherwise..

    The slowest part of accessing a file on a hard disk is head movement...seeking. If you have only one physical drive then the file is best left where the heads are likely to be the majority of the time...where is most activity is going on?...on drive C:. If you have a second physical drive, in principle it's better to put the file there, as is then less likely that the heads will have moved away from it. If though, you have a modern large size of RAM, actual traffic on the file is probably low, even if programs are rolled out to it, )(inactive), so the point becomes an academic one. If you do put the file on another partition, leave a small amount on C: — an initial size of 2MB with a Maximum of 50 is good here...so it can be used in emergency. Without this, the system is inclined to ignore the settings and or make a very large one instead on C:

    - Since the Swap File would be on the boot partition, this simply means to defrag the boot drive. Standard Operating Procedure

    I don't have the link right now, but I posted a free pagefile defragment utility on the free programs thread...use that to defrag your pf, or perfect disk, or any professional defrag utility that does an off line defrag

    Since Windoze uses RAM x 1.5 as the default minimum, your recommendation is to just let Windoze manage that.

    actually for xp ms recommends a much bigger pf then 1.5...and yes, they know you are likely to have 512 or more of ram...1.5 ram with expansion enabled is the latest information

    1.5 is the figure ms recommends if expansion is enabled, and they admonish anyone from lowering the initial minimum below this...it is not the recommendation if you disable expansion

    Although many claim to set min. and max at the same level, Windoze defaults to an increased max. size. Your recommendation is to let Windoze set the max.

    the people that used to recommend a static pf, (they no longer do by the way) were assuming xp behaved like 95.

    it does not.

    in the NT kernel, once the pf is contiguous, it is impossible for expansion to fragment the original pf

    of course, if the os needs more pf, it will add to the original pf, and that will be apart from it, or fragments.

    however, the additional parts that were necessary are discarded on reboot...in other words, the original pf remains contiguous, fragmentation cannot possibly survive a reboot...no matter what.

    now, if your harddrive is developing bad sectors where the pf is, xp will possibly remap the pagefile, (god this os is good)...this remapping will fragment the pf obviously, however remapping occurs if the pf is static or dynamic

    what the original advice should have said was "make sure your pf is so large it never expands"...but leave expansion enabled in-case your settings are not sufficient


    Basically, what you're saying it to let Windoze completely handle everything about the Swap File.


    unless you get the message that windows wants more vm, or in the case that you have two hard drives

    in the first case, I would set the initial minimum to 2x ram, and leave expansion to the full available, which is 4096
     
  10. rbmcgee

    rbmcgee Guest

    Thanks dealer, lots of information and corrections to my previous understanding.