Are you hearing strange noises coming from your computer or feeling like it has suddenly become sluggish? If you’re a Windows user, there’s a good chance that the culprit is your pagefile.sys file.
This file is a critical component of your system and helps ensure that your computer runs smoothly. However, it can also become bloated and take up too much of your system’s valuable storage space.
In this blog post, we’ll explore how to reduce pagefile.sys size and reclaim your computer’s performance and storage space. With the right approach, you’ll be able to make your computer run faster and more efficiently. Keep reading to learn how to get your pagefile.sys size under control!
What is a pagefile.sys file?
The pagefile.sys is an integral part of the Windows operating system, as it serves as a virtual memory extension for the computer’s RAM. When the RAM is insufficient to perform a task, the operating system moves the least-used parts of the RAM to the pagefile.sys, freeing up physical memory for other processes.
Located in the root directory of where the operating system is installed (usually the C: drive), the pagefile.sys can be adjusted manually or disabled entirely by the user, though it should not be deleted or modified improperly as this can result in system instability or data loss.
Why Pagefile.sys is so huge?
The size of the Pagefile.sys can be large for several reasons, including:
Insufficient Physical Memory (RAM)
If your computer does not have enough physical memory to handle the demands of your programs and applications, the operating system will use the Pagefile.sys to store data. This can cause the file to grow larger in size.
Multiple Programs Running
If you have many programs or applications running simultaneously, the operating system may use the Pagefile.sys to store data to free up physical memory. This can cause the file to increase in size as more data is stored in it.
Large Files and Applications
Some applications, such as video editing software or games, may require a lot of memory to run. This can cause the operating system to use the Pagefile.sys file to store data and increase its size.
It could be a newer OS default configuration like Windows 10 automatically manages the file size of pagefile.sys. The size of the Pagefile.sys can be manually adjusted in Windows. If the file size is set to be too large, it can cause the file to take up a lot of space on your hard drive. This will be covered in the later section.
In general, having a larger Pagefile.sys can help improve system performance by allowing the operating system to store more data in virtual memory. However, it is important to ensure that the file size is appropriate for your system and usage patterns to avoid wasting valuable hard drive space.
What is the recommended file size for pagefile.sys?
The recommended size for the pagefile.sys in Windows depends on several factors, including the amount of physical memory (RAM) installed on your computer, the number of running applications, and the type of applications you use.
In general, Microsoft recommends that the pagefile.sys be set to 1.5 times the amount of physical memory installed on your computer. For example, if your computer has 8GB of RAM, the recommended size for the pagefile.sys file would be 12GB (1.5 x 8GB).
However, this is just a general recommendation, and the optimal size for your system may vary based on your specific usage patterns. For example, if you frequently use memory-intensive applications like video editing software or games, you may need a larger pagefile.sys to prevent performance issues.
It is also worth noting that some newer versions of Windows such as Windows 10 and 11 can automatically manage the size of the pagefile.sys , which can help optimize performance without requiring manual adjustments. However, it is still a good idea to monitor the size of the file and adjust it manually if necessary.
Is pagefile.sys safe to delete?
It is not recommended to delete or move the pagefile.sys as it is a critical component of the Windows operating system. This file is used to temporarily store data when RAM is full, helping to prevent system crashes and errors. Removing the pagefile.sys can cause instability or data loss, and Windows will recreate the file the next time the system is restarted, making it an ineffective way to free up disk space. It is possible to adjust the size of the pagefile.sys or move it to a different drive in order to free up disk space.
How to reduce size for pagefile.sys on my Windows 10/11 machine?
However, you can adjust the size of the pagefile.sys or move it to a different drive to free up disk space. To do this, you can follow these steps:
1. Fristly Open the Start menu and search for “Advanced system settings.” Click on “View advanced system settings” in the search results.
2. In the System Properties window that appears, Select on the “Advanced” tab.
3. Go to the “Performance” section, and click on the “Settings” button.
4; Under the Performance Options window that appears, click on the “Advanced” tab.
5. Under the “Virtual memory” section, click on the “Change” button.
6. Uncheck the box next to “Automatically manage paging file size for all drives.”
7. Select the drive containing the pagefile.sys. In this case, it will be the default C: drive
8. You can select either “System managed size” or “Custom size” and specify the desired size. In this case, I will select Custom Size and will require me to define the initial size in ( MB) and the maximum size in (MB)
9. For No Paging File option, it is recommended unless your machine has a huge RAM otherwise it will cause more issues to your system. I will cover more in the next section
10. Click the “Set” button and then “OK” to save the changes.
Lastly, you will need to restart your pc / laptop to ensure that your latest changes to take effect.
What will happened if you select the no paging file option?
If you select the “No paging file” option in Windows, your computer will not use a pagefile.sys to extend its virtual memory. Instead, it will rely solely on physical memory (RAM) to store data and run programs.
While this may seem like a good way to free up disk space, it can cause a number of issues:
- Reduced performance: When your computer runs out of physical memory, it will be unable to allocate additional memory, which can cause programs to slow down or crash.
- System instability: Running without a pagefile.sys file can cause the operating system to become unstable, which can lead to system crashes and other errors.
- Data loss: If your computer runs out of memory while you are working on a program, you may lose unsaved data when the program crashes.
For these reasons, it is generally not recommended to select the “No paging file” option in Windows. Instead, it is recommended to set the pagefile.sys to an appropriate size to ensure optimal system performance and stability.
What is the best recommended initial size and maximum size for pagefile.sys to be configured?
The initial size and maximum size for the pagefile.sys in Windows can be configured based on your computer’s specific needs.
By default, Windows is set to manage the pagefile.sys size automatically, which means that the initial and maximum size of the file is determined by the operating system based on the amount of physical memory installed on your computer. However, you can manually configure the initial and maximum size of the pagefile.sys if you need to.
The initial size of the pagefile.sys should be set to the minimum amount of virtual memory that you expect your computer to require. For example, if you have 8GB of RAM and typically use applications that require 10GB of memory, you should set the initial size of the pagefile.sys to 2GB.
The maximum size of the pagefile.sys should be set to the maximum amount of virtual memory that you expect your computer to require. This will ensure that your computer has enough virtual memory to run multiple programs simultaneously and handle large amounts of data. However, you should be careful not to set the maximum size too high, as this can lead to performance issues.
To reduce the pagefile size, you can set the maximum size to lower than the currently allocated values. In this example below, the current allocated is 7168mb which is considered a huge pagefile file and in order to reduce the pagefile size, you can input the value of maximum size(MB) like 5000mb reduce the number lower than 7168mb
It’s worth noting that you can choose to set both the initial and maximum size to the same value.
I hope this blog post will help you make the most of your computer desktop’s resources. If you have any questions, please feel free to leave a comment below – I’d love to hear from you!