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Optimising the Swap File

With most resource hungry applications today, the RAM is not enough to hold all its data. Windows uses a portion of the hard disk as RAM, constantly swapping data between the RAM and the hard disk as required. The speed of your hard disk is nearly 1000 times slower than that of your main memory. Inefficient use of the swap file could considerably slow down your system to a very great extent.

One of the best ways to speed up the swap file usage is to create a permanent swap file. In a permanent swap file, the file used for swapping information has a fixed size and location on your hard disk. When a temporary swap file is used, the location and size of the file is determined by the application being used and is not predictable. Also, since a temporary swap file is constantly written to and is not fixed in size, it would be highly fragmented across the partition that holds it.

A better option is to create the swap file on a dedicated partition on your hard disk. By doing this, the swap file will never be fragmented since that partition is only being utilised by the swap file itself. You can configure the swap file size and location from Control Panel > System > Performance > Virtual Memory. The size of the swap file should be around 2.5 times the amount of RAM on the system.