If your Microsoft Vista (or Windows XP) computer is running sluggishly or you just want all the speed you can get and have installed as much Physical Memory as you can, don’t fear, there are still many ways you can increase the responsiveness of your PC. This article will go through the steps on how to increase your Virtual Memory to achieve the speed you need.
What is Virtual Memory?
Temporary storage used by a computer to run programs that need more memory than the computer has.
To increase Virtual Memory you will need to increase the size of your paging file.
What is a Paging file?
A hidden file or files on the hard disk that Windows uses to hold parts of programs and data files that do not fit in memory. The paging file and physical memory, or random access memory (RAM), comprise virtual memory. Windows moves data from the paging file to memory as needed and moves data from memory to the paging file to make room for new data. Also known as a swap file.
Windows supposedly sets the initial minimum size of the paging file at the amount of random access memory (RAM) installed on your computer plus 300 megabytes (MB), and the maximum size at 3 times the amount of RAM installed on your computer.
7 Step Process:
Open System by clicking the Start button Picture of the Start button, clicking Control Panel, clicking System and Maintenance, and then clicking System.
In the left pane, click Advanced system settings. Administrator permission required If you are prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.
On the Advanced tab, under Performance, click Settings.
Click the Advanced tab, and then, under Virtual memory, click Change.
Clear the Automatically manage paging file size for all drives check box.
Under Drive [Volume Label], click the drive that contains the paging file you want to change.
Click Custom size, type a new size in megabytes in the Initial size (MB) or Maximum size (MB) box (set them the same), click Set, and then click OK.
Recommendation: I recommend setting the initial and maximum size to 3 times the amount of RAM you have in your computer (assuming you have plenty of Hard Drive space to spare). Also, you want the initial and maximum size to be the same so that that paging file does not become fragmented.
You will have to restart before the new changes take effect.