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Switch pagefile from RAID drive to IDE?

post #1 of 10
Thread Starter 
Hey guys, I'm a new member here and this is my first post so i'll try not to leave out any details --if I do please let me know even if you can answer my question without them. Anyways to the point -- my system is this:

AMD Phenom II X6 1090T running at 3.21 GHz
Asus M4A79T Deluxe mobo
8 GB of Kingston HyperX DDR3 1600 RAM
Sapphire 6850 video card
Windows 7 Ultimate

I'm currently running 2 slightly older SATA drives (120x2GB, 7200 RPM) in a RAID 0 config until I can dish out the cash for some new SSDs. I also have a 200GB IDE hard drive hooked up for data storage. I have read that it is helpful to although not totally disable, but decrease the pagefile to around 256 - 512 MB with adequate RAM. I have also read that it can sometimes boost performance to offload the pagefile to another hard disk other than your primary -- but my question is this: Would it really help to offload the pagefile to my IDE hard drive that's only for backup, rather than keep it on my faster RAID 0 drive? I know it would be if my secondary hard drive was just as fast, but I know it's not. Would I still get some performance benefit from it just for the fact that my primary drive won't have to work so much with the PF being on a different drive? I have heard many people say that with 8GB of ram you can just disable the PF, but through my studies to become A+ certified(and i am now) I know that some programs use the PF even when there is enough RAM for whatever reason, so it's not always beneficial to completely disable it. Any input would be greatly appreciated! If you need any more info about my system just ask. Thanks in advance.
post #2 of 10
Welcome, The page file wil be better off on the raid arrage the IDE drive will be very slow
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post #3 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Relevant Wing;12182970 
Welcome, The page file wil be better off on the raid arrage the IDE drive will be very slow

This exactly, the RAID would be way faster.
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post #4 of 10
Thread Starter 
Alrighty, thanks guys! I figured as much but the confirmation is wonderful smile.gif I appreciate the help and speedy reply!
post #5 of 10
I'm gonna buck the trend here - the IDE drive is higher capacity, which may point to it being a newer drive than either of the SATA drives. The interface is really irrelevant (for matching drive families IDE and SATA are pretty much identical, and many early SATA drives such as yours are actually IDE drives with a bridge chip added anyway). The fact that the SATA drives are in RAID is also irrelevant, because pagefile performance is almost exclusively determined by random performance, and RAID does next to nothing to improve that (and can often make it worse). By having the pagefile on the separae drive you remove some of the seeking back and forth that the RAID array would otherwise do, which can help performance a lot.

Many people hear 'IDE' and straight away think 'slow'. But that isn't the case - it is only in recent years that SATA drives have really started pulling away from their older counterparts, and this is due to internal improvements in the drives, not the interface. IDE is fully capable of 133MB/s, and few mechanical drives can better that over SATA interfaces anyway. Let alone your older (and much slower) SATA disks - they wouldn't be coming close to being limited by an IDE bus.

Ultimately it will probably make little difference, as your system should not be paging too often or anything too important with your current RAM setup. But if either system is faster than I would pick the IDE pagefile one by a nose.
post #6 of 10
Too many variables, I,m gunna fence sit................


Not really, Beast your argument is compelling and looking at the drives both being older, the raid is going to spit out data a bit faster than the single but won't random access any faster and the IDE was by that time very optimised for the limited bandwidth on the interface also the raid has lower data density.................

.............Screw it just lose the page file, you do have 8Gigs.biggrin.gif
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post #7 of 10
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doom;12184975 
Too many variables, I,m gunna fence sit................

Wise - there will be very little difference, and any difference will be unnoticable 90% of the time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doom;12184975 
Not really, Beast your argument is compelling and looking at the drives both being older, the raid is going to spit out data a bit faster than the single but won't random access any faster and the IDE was by that time very optimised for the limited bandwidth on the interface also the raid has lower data density.................

The point is that IDE doesn't have limited bandwidth. The last revision of IDE could handle 133MB/s, and SATA could only do 150MB/s. Effectively SATA and IDE can handle the same data rates - especially since no mechanical drive at the time could saturate either interface (and burst rates are meaningless - the chances of the data you want sitting in the drive cache is close to zero, so it can be discounted from a general performance perspective). The higher sequential speeds of the RAID is irrelevant, since it only affects sequential transfers - and the 4K reads that paging does most often will sit on a single drive, and thus the speeds won't be improved upon at all.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Doom;12184975 
.............Screw it just lose the page file, you do have 8Gigs.biggrin.gif

This isn't good advice - as the OP stated, some programs are hard coding to need some pagefile present, even if they don't actually page any data (some versions of photoshop for example, plus some others that I can't remember now off the top of my head). No pagefile can mean they won't run, or even that your system will BSOD as soon as you try. Turning off the file has no performance advantage, so it might as well be left alone.
post #8 of 10
I woulden't bother.... I have 6GB of RAM and upgradeing to 8GB soon.. and I have my Pagefile turned off.

I have no need for it right now
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post #9 of 10
I would place it on the IDE drive.

Why?
-The likely hood of you actually utilizing the page file is slim to none so you might as well allocate that space on your secondary drive rather your array.
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post #10 of 10
@OP

With 8GB of RAM, unless you start running VMs or transferring files back and forth, you're not likely to need your pagefile at all (however, need will not stop Windows from using it if it's there).

The beast is most likely correct in his assertion - the SATA drives are most likely 2-platter units with 60GB per platter, while the PATA drive is likely 2-platters and 100GB per platter. The areal density is higher, so it's likely to perform better if it holds the pagefile.

Note: both SATA and PATA drives are IDE drives, along with SAS and SCSI. IDE = Integrated Drive Electronics and refers to the controller board under the drive. That controller board used to be a full length card in the old days, and the hard drive used to be bolted to it, hence the term "hard card".
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