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ssd and swapfile

Configure and optimize you computer for Audio.

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JCJR
KVRian
 
951 posts since 17 Apr, 2005

Postby JCJR; Sun Jun 08, 2014 10:44 am ssd and swapfile

Was reading more trying to learn about ssd for win boot drive on a desktop puter.

Ran across a youtube video advising that if you have 16 GB or more memory, it is good to disable the windows swap file.

That sounds like maybe a good idea because perhaps constant writing to the swap file might prematurely wear the ssd.

But is it really that simple? Would one run into memory conditions where the puter gets in trouble without a swap file? Or maybe it would be fine, and the puter would just reload info from program support files, as quick as from swap file? Dunno.

In case of lots of in memory "dirty" data that hasn't been flushed to file, because the data isn't backed up by files. Program never made files for the data, just lots of memory allocation calls?

With win 7 64 bit, 8 gb memory, can't recall the puter ever crashing or complaining out of memory. The swap file is probably humongous. Unless I disable the security feature "clear swap file at shutdown", it takes a half hour or more to shut down. But with it instructed not to clear the swap file, the puter shuts down in seconds. So that must be a heck of a swap file after running a few weeks.

Just curious what win 7 does to gracefully keep on keeping on, if swap file is disabled?

Was thinking about bumping the puter to 18GB memory and a 1TB ssd. Seems good to disable the swap file unless it would invite problems.
t3toooo
KVRian
 
1491 posts since 24 Dec, 2005

Postby t3toooo; Sun Jun 08, 2014 10:54 am Re: ssd and swapfile

There are so many things that can go wrong on a computer,i wouldn't recommend to disable swap file.
Modern SSDs don't have any problems with it.
Although i would disable hibernation (on Win 7).

Try to read current information about it.
JCJR
KVRian
 
951 posts since 17 Apr, 2005

Postby JCJR; Sun Jun 08, 2014 6:19 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

Thanks t3toooo.
camsr
KVRAF
 
4574 posts since 16 Feb, 2005

Postby camsr; Tue Jun 10, 2014 12:46 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

Don't disable it. It's just asking for problems, basically.
Put that swap file on a separate HDD, don't use an SSD unless you want it to wear out faster.
Clearing the swap file at shutdown should not take a long time. Try disabling unnecessary windows services to see if that speeds it up. Disk fragmentation will slow down the swap if it's not on it's own physical or logical partition.

Really, the swap file was never intended to be run on the same disk drive as everything else. It's the cause of a lot of HDD slowdowns. You can use an SSD, but I don't think they will last as long as a good HDD.
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JCJR
KVRian
 
951 posts since 17 Apr, 2005

Postby JCJR; Tue Jun 10, 2014 2:41 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

Thanks camsr

Yep, when I saw the advice re disabling the swapfile, it didn't sound right. Was thinking that regardless how much RAM one might add, that with a disabled page file, any amount of added RAM would only be postponing the inevitable.

On further reading, as t3toooo said, it appears that a general consensus is that on the recent crop of SSD's with wear leveling, a swap file on the SSD is not to be feared to prematurely wear the drive. On the other hand SSD's are so expensive, one wants to preserve the investment as long as possible.

Small SSD's are so cheap, maybe it wouldn't be stoopid to install a cheap, small "disposable" SSD alongside a big one, dedicated to the swapfile. Just replace the tiny one if it ever wears out.

I read a MS document about paging files, which is apparently current, written after the advent of SSD's and wear-leveling. If remembering correctly, that document alleges that on Win 7, if auto-managed, the max swap file size is determined by either 1.5 X the size of RAM, or 3 GB.

My PC with 8 GB RAM, at this moment shows an 8 GB pagefile.sys. I haven't run a lot of programs since last reboot a week ago, been programming Mac (I keep saying I ain't gonna do that anymore). Maybe the swapfile gets bigger on occasions when I've been running lots of development programs for days on end. Or maybe it never gets any bigger than that. Dunno.

Ever since 2010 or so when purchased the puter, it has run on a boot RAID 1 of two 2TB drives for data redundancy. Had one of the drives fail after a couple of years and the RAID 1 saved my bacon. Dunno if an intel driver raid 1, on intel chipset, would be drastically slower than a single disk. Some references say it isn't supposed to make the puter profoundly slow. Usually the computer would shut down in a couple of minutes, but recently shutdown started taking forever.

The only thing necessary to fix the problem and get fast shutdowns, was to disable the clearing of the swapfile. So it must have actually been taking a half hour to clear the swapfile, which doesn't make any sense if the swapfile grows no bigger than 8 GB. Maybe sometimes the swapfile gets lots bigger. Dunno.

Maybe there is a weird interaction between RAID 1 and clearing the swap file. Dunno if the puter was set to always clear the swap file from day one, or if some system update or antivirus feature turned that on fairly recently. Am pretty sure I never turned on that feature.
UltraJv
KVRAF
 
5938 posts since 30 Dec, 2004, from London uk

Postby UltraJv; Wed Jun 11, 2014 5:06 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

Theres no reason to clear the swapfile. The only reason would be that you ran an app or game a lot but now you don't. The swapfile in that case can clog up after many months. Ive never had to play with it. Let Windows manage it, theres no reason to play with those settings. Windows does an excellent job of self maintainance with default settings. By default, Windows dosnt clear the page file.
JCJR
KVRian
 
951 posts since 17 Apr, 2005

Postby JCJR; Wed Jun 11, 2014 5:48 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

UltraJv wrote:Theres no reason to clear the swapfile. The only reason would be that you ran an app or game a lot but now you don't. The swapfile in that case can clog up after many months. Ive never had to play with it. Let Windows manage it, theres no reason to play with those settings. Windows does an excellent job of self maintainance with default settings. By default, Windows dosnt clear the page file.


Thanks UltraJv

From my reading, many people who experienced slow shutdown and fixed it by disabling the clearing of the swapfile, have no idea how that option got turned on (including me).

I have seen speculations that some security/antivirus programs might turn on that option. Also saw speculations that some windows security updates may turn it on. I have no idea.

Apparently in some cases security information can be hacked out of a swap file, passwords, credit card nums, yadda yadda. So the idea of clearing the swap on each shutdown is to close that possible security hole. Perhaps it makes sense for some users, maybe especially so in biz computers. Dunno. If it takes so long to shut down because of it, I'll take the risk, especially since I never enter secure info into work puters exposed to the web.

The typical complaint about slow shutdown involved with clearing swapfile, reports "a few minutes rather than the normal less than a minute". From my reading, a smaller percentage complain about ridiculous long shutdown times, which can be fixed solely by turning off that option. (It is a registry tweak of one item to enable/disable this feature).
camsr
KVRAF
 
4574 posts since 16 Feb, 2005

Postby camsr; Wed Jun 11, 2014 7:29 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

I think Update uses it between restart to patch.
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audiobot202
KVRian
 
1130 posts since 24 Dec, 2004, from Adelaide, South Australia

Postby audiobot202; Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:01 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

Just a quick note: There was a lengthy wear test done recently on a Samsung SSD 840 250GB TLC SSD, and it went well over the theoretical life of the drive. Running a simulated wear test, they determined that at 10gb writes per day, it lasted for the equivalent of 75 years before accumulating too many errors to be of further use. They also estimated that even with heavy use of 30gb writes per day, it had a theoretical lifespan of 24 years. This is based on two and half months of constant testing of two drives from Samsung and real worl applications vary, but the upshot is that these particular SSDs lasted at least three times longer than expected and in real world use, you'd likely upgrade before the SSD wore out. In other words, much more robust than any HDD.

Find it here:
http://us.hardware.info/reviews/4178/10 ... -20-6-2013
Tracktion is BAAAAAACK !!!
JCJR
KVRian
 
951 posts since 17 Apr, 2005

Postby JCJR; Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:26 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

camsr wrote:I think Update uses it between restart to patch.

Thanks. If that is true, then perhaps if an update goes weird, then the "clear swapfile" setting might sometimes get accidentally "stuck on"?

Maybe windows update wouldn't always remember to turn the setting off again, if something goes wrong during an update/restart?

That sounds as reasonable explanation as any. For all I know. Which isn't much.

BTW, my previous post's last paragraph was even more poorly worded than my average low level of coherency. Was trying to say-- As far as I could find out-- Not all incredibly long shutdown problems are caused by the "clear swapfile" switch. Only a subset of the "incredibly long shutdown" complainers are fixed by simply turning off that switch.

====

Thanks audiobot202, that is an interesting SSD durability test. Have decided on a 1 TB Samsung 840 EVO. One reason, in addition to good reputation-- EVO appears to be the least expensive 1 TB SSD available at this time.

I read that the bigger the drive, the more wear-resistant it ought to be, considering the wear leveling. Assuming that computer A has a small drive, and computer B has a big drive-- If both puters write the same amount of daily data-- The wear leveling would result in fewer writes per cell on the big drive. Or something like that. :)
camsr
KVRAF
 
4574 posts since 16 Feb, 2005

Postby camsr; Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:33 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

If your swap file is on a capacious HDD, ideally it's own partition, not sharing anything, the delete operation is simple and sequential. Fragmentation breaks that speedup. The solution, use a dedicated partition for the swap or use an SSD, clearing the pagefile at shutdown is fine.
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hibidy
KVRAF
 
40976 posts since 20 Dec, 2005

Postby hibidy; Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:47 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

audiobot202 wrote:Just a quick note: There was a lengthy wear test done recently on a Samsung SSD 840 250GB TLC SSD, and it went well over the theoretical life of the drive. Running a simulated wear test, they determined that at 10gb writes per day, it lasted for the equivalent of 75 years before accumulating too many errors to be of further use. They also estimated that even with heavy use of 30gb writes per day, it had a theoretical lifespan of 24 years. This is based on two and half months of constant testing of two drives from Samsung and real worl applications vary, but the upshot is that these particular SSDs lasted at least three times longer than expected and in real world use, you'd likely upgrade before the SSD wore out. In other words, much more robust than any HDD.

Find it here:
http://us.hardware.info/reviews/4178/10 ... -20-6-2013


Hey, thanks for posting that.
hibidy
KVRAF
 
40976 posts since 20 Dec, 2005

Postby hibidy; Wed Jun 11, 2014 8:50 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

In fact, after that info, I'ma get serious about getting a 250 to 500 for my E drive and just using the seagate HD as a backup. This computer is so quiet when the E drive isn't spinning and I'm sure it's far less heat.
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ZenPunkHippy
KVRAF
 
10302 posts since 18 Jun, 2008, from Melbourne, Australia

Postby ZenPunkHippy; Wed Jun 11, 2014 9:30 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

As others have said, I don't think the swap file is anything to worry about.

if you're adding SSDs, check out some of the new PCIe cards that mount 2 SSD drives in a RAID config. Blistering performance ...
hibidy
KVRAF
 
40976 posts since 20 Dec, 2005

Postby hibidy; Wed Jun 11, 2014 10:37 pm Re: ssd and swapfile

ZenPunkHippy wrote:As others have said, I don't think the swap file is anything to worry about.

if you're adding SSDs, check out some of the new PCIe cards that mount 2 SSD drives in a RAID config. Blistering price tag ...


I fixed that for you.
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