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Page file size increasing - why?

Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
8
#1
Can someone please answer the question as to why the page file on both my home and work computers gradually increases in size to the point where everything slows right down. It usually starts at about 300megs where everything is fine and slowly increases to about 900megs after about a week. Shutting down all applications only reduces it to about 600megs. Why doesn't it go back down to 300megs where it started? Only a reboot will do this. I don't see any processes running which should not be. I have tried altering the PF size, but it makes no difference.
 
W

Wolfeymole

#2
Hi Fuchsia

Welcome to Free PC Help

Have a read of this article and get back to us if this does not resolve the issue.
 

RandyL

Administrator
Joined
Jan 22, 2003
Messages
4,878
Location
USA, Nebraska
PC Experience
Very Experienced
#3
Hi Fuchsia;
I never changed my page or swap file because I never needed to. As such I don't know as much as others here might. But did you check Services and Processes too.

Since something "appears" to be slowing down both your home and work computer and you think it's a page file issue maybe it's an indexing issue such as Office Find Fast.

How much memory do these two computers have by the way.

RandyL
 
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
8
#4
One gig at home and 512megs at work. As I said in my original post, I don't see any services or processes running which should not be, or any excessive CPU utilization.
 

RandyL

Administrator
Joined
Jan 22, 2003
Messages
4,878
Location
USA, Nebraska
PC Experience
Very Experienced
#5
If both your work and home computers are slowing down after being left on for an extended period of time then I would suspect it might be related.

Do you have Microsoft Office on both?
Is the Office Findfast feature enabled?

I'm just trying to figure what's causing the slow down problem. It could be many different things.

RandyL
 
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
8
#6
I use MS Office 2003 at work, but not at home where I use Firefox and Thunderbird. At home I also use Norton IS 2008. No Findfast as far as I am aware.
 
W

Wolfeymole

#7
What is your minimum and maximum settings for the page file at the moment Fushia?

For example mine is set to Custom Size with a minimum set at 768MB up to 1536MB
 

AdvancedSetup

FPCH Long Term Member
Joined
Jan 9, 2008
Messages
819
Location
34° 12' 35" N, 118° 29' 21" W
#8
The reason this happens is because applications request more memory and once it can no longer allocate more physical memory it then request virtual memory. Though once virtual memory increases it does not reduce beyond a minimum setting that it has.

The typical recommendation is to set your swap file to 1 1/2 times the amount of your physical memory for both MIN and MAX

So... if you have 512MB of memory then your swap file for both MIN and MAX should be set to the same 768MB

If you have 1024MB then both MIX and MAX should be set to 1536MB

Give that a try and let us know how it goes. After resetting it and restarting the computer then defrag the drive.
 
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
8
#9
My home PC has 1024MB of RAM and the PF size was set to System Managed Size so I have set the min and max values to 1536MB as you suggest and rebooted. It's gone back down to 312MB now.

A snapshot of the Task Manager before I rebooted can be seen at http://www.fuchsiamagic.com/misc/pf.jpg where the PF size has increased to 2.13GB and the CPU is busy doing something. It dropped back to normal util shortly after this.
 
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
8
#12
Thanks for that. It's a bit heavy but I think I have got the gist of it. By the way, before I set the PF sizes and rebooted last night, a message balloon popped up saying that the page file size was being increased by the system because I was running low on memory. I only had one application (Firefox) running at the time and it had become very slow. I find it difficult to understand what would be using up the memory.
 

Seth

FPCH Long Term Member
Joined
Dec 17, 2007
Messages
2,268
Location
Canada
Operating System
Windows Vista - Home Premium
#13
A program could be causing a memory leak, thus the page file warning. When you're in Task Manager, the Application's tab is fairly useless. You need to click on the processes tab to see the details.

Scroll up and down and keep an eye on whatever process is using more than about 100,000K of memory.

BTW- I usually recommend that the page file be set to System Managed size.
 
Joined
Jan 23, 2008
Messages
8
#15
I have found out about memory leaks now. I and going to try running one program at a time and see which one is causing it. Thanks for all your help.
 

AdvancedSetup

FPCH Long Term Member
Joined
Jan 9, 2008
Messages
819
Location
34° 12' 35" N, 118° 29' 21" W
#16
It would appear that you did not set your MIX / MAX to the desired same size otherwise the system would not have asked or told you it was going to change the size of the swap file.

That message comes when the system is set to manage the size.