Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Windows 8: Never uses all of my memory

  1. #41


    My statements were more general in nature and not specifically for any specific situation. These posts will be read for years to come, mostly by people who are not members of this forum. With 8 GB or less RAM a lowered commit limit is a serious consideration. But with 16 GB RAM many of these things cease to be a real issue. It is unlikely you need a pagefile but it wouldn't be a bad idea to keep a small one for the sake of those applications who might complain if none is present.

    In any event this discussion is far removed from the original topic and has little relevance to it.

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  2. #42


    Newport, South Wales, UK
    Posts : 573
    Windows 10 Pro x64 x2 Windows 10 Enterprise x64, Ubuntu


    I keep a pagefile, even with 32GB of Ram, but then again I do use Photoshop CC products quite a lot, which have been reported to have issues without a Pagefile.

    I've moved the pagefile to a scratch partition on a spinner rather than leave it on my system SSD, but that basically follows my normal Pagefile set-ups - They have always tended to be more efficient if they are on a separate drive from the system due to better use of the SATA Bus
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  3. #43


    Quote Originally Posted by Barman58 View Post
    I keep a pagefile, even with 32GB of Ram, but then again I do use Photoshop CC products quite a lot, which have been reported to have issues without a Pagefile.

    I've moved the pagefile to a scratch partition on a spinner rather than leave it on my system SSD, but that basically follows my normal Pagefile set-ups - They have always tended to be more efficient if they are on a separate drive from the system due to better use of the SATA Bus
    Wouldn't that be a bit counterproductive as far as PF is concerned ? I mean, moving it to a drive much slower although in your case it may be used very little or not at all.
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  4. #44


    Germany/Florida
    Posts : 4,514
    Vista and Win7


    Quote Originally Posted by CountMike View Post
    Quote Originally Posted by Barman58 View Post
    I keep a pagefile, even with 32GB of Ram, but then again I do use Photoshop CC products quite a lot, which have been reported to have issues without a Pagefile.

    I've moved the pagefile to a scratch partition on a spinner rather than leave it on my system SSD, but that basically follows my normal Pagefile set-ups - They have always tended to be more efficient if they are on a separate drive from the system due to better use of the SATA Bus
    Wouldn't that be a bit counterproductive as far as PF is concerned ? I mean, moving it to a drive much slower although in your case it may be used very little or not at all.
    Since it is never used, it does not really matter.
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  5. #45


    Putting the pagefile on a conventional drive would negatively impact performance, IF the situation were such that pagefile performance mattered. If RAM is adequate for the workload it usually doesn't. With all but the heaviest workloads 32 GB RAM is more than adequate.

    Under normal conditions (no memory pressure) the memory manager will copy old data to the pagefile, a little bit at a time. Windows doesn't normally have to wait for disk write operations to complete but can do other things while this is happening. The impact on performance is typically very small, usually below anything that could be measured. But with a large amount of available memory the memory manager probably wouldn't even bother with the pagefile.

    Even if data were written to the pagefile that doesn't mean it will impact performance when it is later needed. When data is written to the pagefile it also remains in memory where it can be quickly accessed if needed. Only in the event that the memory thus used is needed for other purposes would the data be removed from RAM. Windows tries very hard to avoid that situation. But with 32 GB RAM it probably wouldn't have to try very hard.
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  6. #46


    Posts : 1,925
    Windows 8.1 Pro


    Memory usage is probably one of the most misunderstood things about Windows. It's, of course, not helped by the fact that there are so many different kinds of memory reports, and these reports are often deceptive if you don't understand how they are calculated or what they mean.

    First, Windows does try to use as much of your memory as it can at any given time. Although at some points, it simply doesn't have anything to fill memory with so you will see it actually empty. Most of the time, particularly if Windows has been running for a while, you will see that memory is actually being used by caching behind the scenes (this is not always obvious, but its there if you look). This can be disk cache, network cache... memory is also used by the kernel which is not visible in the task list. You see this in the section marked "Paged Pool" and "Non-paged pool". This is typically memory used by drivers and other kernel objects.

    There are also technologies such as SuperFetch, ReadyBoost, and others that allocate memory behind the scenes for caching but don't typically appear in TaskManager.

    Windows will always leave some memory free for "on demand" allocation, so that when an app suddenly needs a big chunk of memory, it's available without it having to first drop pages from the cache or page active pages to disk. Windows will even go so far as to actively prune working sets of infrequently used code (typically startup code that is run once, and the like) and write it to the pagefile to maximize available free ram.

    Another aspect of Windows memory management is that it uses what's known as "page backed executables". What this means is that every application you run is mapped into memory as if it were a mini-pagefile. This allows windows to simply discard pages from memory and reload them (via pagefault, ie when accessed), rather than having to load the code from disk and then write it to a separate pagefile. So even if you have no pagefile, Windows still treats applications as pagefiles.

    All in all, Windows memory management is very complicated.. and the more you mess with it manually, the harder it is for Windows to react to conditions at runtime. In most situations, its best to let Windows manage your memory management. There are exceptions of course, but for most people you will get better performance by letting windows handle it. Trying to outsmart the OS often ends up tying its hands, and you end up with worse performance.
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  7. #47


    Posts : 36
    Windows 8.1 Enterprise x64


    I got 16GB just for the heck of it back in 2011 when DDR3 was going dirt cheap.
    OS barely uses 2GB for itself, rest all depends on the apps you use.
    So most of my RAM is used for caching only.

    Only time i have seen system using 8GB+ RAM is while installing 200 updates in one go on windows 7.
    8.1 is smarter and doesn't eat up RAM even when installing huge chunk of updates.
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  8. #48


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  9. #49


    Posts : 209
    Windows 8.1 (HOME not Pro) 64bit


    hey count,

    just out of curiosity, why do you have an AMD processor? just wondering? (i was under the assumption through all the tests and everything that intel outperforms in so many levels the amd processor) but so i have to ask you..

    on a note of this forum topic post - I have had my Pagefile completely off since i installed windows 8.1 from the beginning.. never had a problem.. I also have 16 gigs of ram.. so maybe thats why..
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  10. #50


    Quote Originally Posted by bassfacer22 View Post
    hey count,

    just out of curiosity, why do you have an AMD processor? just wondering? (i was under the assumption through all the tests and everything that intel outperforms in so many levels the amd processor) but so i have to ask you..

    on a note of this forum topic post - I have had my Pagefile completely off since i installed windows 8.1 from the beginning.. never had a problem.. I also have 16 gigs of ram.. so maybe thats why..
    Yes, I have AMD Phenom II x4 965 BE (Black Edition), it's a bit older technology processor, it's OCed to 4.2GHz but "kills" all of the contemporary Intel processors (Socket 775) and newer technology I3 processors while giving lowest I5 Intels run for their money. When you look at highest segment (newest I5 and I7 vs. FX 8350 and up) AMD has only price advantage while delivering satisfactory but lower performance. Intel prices are still higher when you calculate need for higher priced MBs to get everything out of them.
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