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  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    I noticed my system with WinXPsp3, P4D, and 4GB of RAM had a pagefile of over 3GB.
    I double checked and noticed that my pagefile system managed and thought that was high but recalled that in the past I had allocated that much space in order to reduce the risk of pagefile fragmentation over time. Ordinarily I wouldn't really care but this system has an annoying habit of crashing in a particular program (the program, not the machine), and always at a specific memory address and in a specific dll file.

    At any rate, I noticed that the 'recommended' size for the file by Windows was over 5GB. ^^!!? That seems just a little high when you consider that the system RAM is already more than 32bit WinXP can handle.

    But, just out of curiosity I changed my pagefile allocation to 500min/500max and rebooted the machine. Now I had a pagefile of 500MB. Figuring I had deleted the setting of a 3.4GB pagefile I once again told Windows to manage my pagefile settings and it went ahead and did so, again making the pagefile 3.4GB and recommending it to be over 5GB.

    What is going on here? That can't be right! I've never seen a system where Windows was recommending pagefiles that high or even setting them over 2GB. I would've thought that the more RAM you had, the less pagefile Windows would need. Especially when you consider that this machine is only used to run a gameserver.

    I'm wondering if this has anything to do with my software instability.

    How to fix??

    TIA

    Rich

  2. #2
    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    Hi Rich,

    The default size of the paging file in WinXP when Windows is set up to manage the page file is 1.5 times the amount of ram on the system and the maximum size is 3 times the amount of ram. So your current pagefile of 3.4 GB is actually less than the default minimum. The maximum single pagefile size that can be set in XP is limited to 4096 MB, which is the amount of ram you have on board. The reason for that limit is the paging file has the same addressing limitation as does ram in a 32 bit OS. If your system managed page file jumped to over 4096 MB, then it could conceivably cause instability (I have not tested this, and I do not know if XP would even attempt to set the size at over 4096).

    You are in the ball park for a system managed pagefile. You can always take control from the system and set up your own min - max of 1.5 - 2 GB, or whatever you would like, but I would not disable the pagefile, as it is a vital component of Windows memory management.

    I am not familiar with how much ram a game server would typically utilize on XP, but if your pagefile is not large enough you should get a virtual memory error message if you were to run low on pagefile space.

    As to crashing in a particular program, have you uninstalled the program and reinstalled it? That may be a corrupt .dll in there.
    Deadeye81

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  3. #3
    Super Moderator BATcher's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich Martin View Post
    What is going on here? That can't be right!

    How to fix??
    As Gerald said, this is well within the range of normal Windows behaviour. If you have a large hard disk, just forget about the page file and let Windows manage/worry about it!
    BATcher

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  4. #4
    New Lounger
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    OK, I'm just trying to figure out why the game server program keeps crashing despite multiple attempts at reinstall. I thought perhaps I had stumbled on some sort of memory leak.
    There's not much else to look at other than the ISP or a malicious attack.

  5. #5
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    Gerald is right about the Page-file allocation sizes, its always been 1.5 x Ram as minimum and 3 x RAM as maximum, some XP systems will not you set past 4095, but most of my recent system builds of XP Pro SP3 in the last few years, happily lets you go beyond this. The page-file needs to have this extra room, so when your using all or most of the RAM running many apps or a game-server, it still has resources to keep going, even though the RAM is nearly depleted.

    This will involve a lot of swaps to disk, as the system tries to keep the current data and high priority processes running, at the expense of dumping the older info to disk.

    You need to be running the task manager and sort the processes list by name, go to View and Select Columns and add in PID, GDI Objects and perhaps the I/O Read & Write bytes, so you can track what is causing the high usage of your machine, and causing the crashes. DO you have any event logs under Application or System to show what errors are being generated? DO you have AV running on the game machine, can you access the internet, is the system fully patched, and has it been defragged?

  6. #6
    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rich Martin View Post
    OK, I'm just trying to figure out why the game server program keeps crashing despite multiple attempts at reinstall. I thought perhaps I had stumbled on some sort of memory leak.
    There's not much else to look at other than the ISP or a malicious attack.
    Also,..some games require a large pagefile.
    Check what others with similar spec have who do alot of gaming.
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    2 Star Lounger
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    Procedure for using a "static" or fixed-sized pagefile (you might want to read this Rich Martin):

    Open Control Panel, go to System, click on Performance tab, and in the "Performance" section, click on its Settings button.
    From the Performance Options dialog box, click on the Advanced tab, and in the "Virtual Memory" section, click on the Change button.
    From the Virtual Memory dialog box, click on Custom Size and set BOTH the Initial Size (MB) and Maximum Size (MB) settings to 2Gb (2048). Then click the "Set" button to make the changes and then click OK to save the changes and you may need to restart the XP computer for the new pagefile settings to take effect.

    I use a static pagefile size on my old XP machine so that Windows won't need to waste time re-sizing the pagefile, saving performance losses.

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