We often hear about Pagefile. It is an important component of Windows. This article explains how to change pagefile size, location and how to disable it.
Pagefile.sys is one of the mysterious parts of Windows to the normal users. We rarely touch this component to modify it. But, Sometimes, To troubleshoot a few critical problems, users are often suggested to modify pagefile size or disable it. To break all of these puzzles, go through this article.
What is Pagefile?
When Windows runs on low memory, it uses a small portion of the hard drive to function smoothly. To do it, Windows creates a file named pagefile.sys and stores less important memory bits into it. As a result, Windows can use it as virtual memory. Random access memory (RAM) and pagefile swap data between themselves continuously.
Pagefile is very important for your PC. It helps to make sure that you have free available RAM so that you can do tasks smoothly. But, If there was no pagefile.sys, it would not be possible.
Where can you find the pagefile?
Your curious mind may ask you where the pagefile is located. By default, it should be on the local disk C which is your system drive. Your system drive is where you have installed Windows. The usual location of the page file is C:pagefile.sys.
How to View it?
You may have searched in C drive and haven’t seen it! In fact, The pagefile.sys is a hidden file. So, You will have to do following things to view it.
- At first, Open the start menu.
- Then, Type hidden folder. You should see Show hidden files and folder. If yes, hit enter.
- Now, On the View tab, uncheck “Hide protected operating system files (Recommended).”
- After that, Go to local disk C. You should easily see the pagefile.sys.
For some users, this file exists on every drive if someone modified the settings.
Why You May Want to Modify It
When it comes to modifying pagefile, it doesn’t mean any internal changes. It just means the change of its location and size and the way to disable it. The main reason behind modifying it is disk space problem. Some users don’t have enough disk space. They may want to reduce its size or completely disable it. Again, A few users may have SSD as the system drive. They may want to change pagefile’s location to have free space in system drive.
In a few cases, Users may want to modify it to troubleshoot critical windows problems.
How to Change Pagefile Size, Location or Disable It
You can modify the pagefile size, location or even disable only if you have the administrative rights on your computer. So, Before getting started, make sure, you are an admin of your Windows PC.
How to Change Pagefile Size:
Changing the size of the pagefile is really easy. It’s not a big deal. In fact, Windows should manage its size automatically. But, If you still like to modify it, go through these steps.
- At first, Open start menu, type systempropertiesadvanced and hit enter. It will open Advanced System settings.
- Then, From there, Go to Settings under the performance section. There you will see another Advanced tab. Go there and click on Change. It will open the virtual memory window.
- There, Choose a drive where pagefile is located and mark custom size. If the option is grayed, uncheck “Automatically manage paging file size for all drives.”
- Now, Set your initial and maximum pagefile size in MB.
These are the instructions to change the pagefile size on Windows 10.
What should be the Pagefile Size?
The answer is difficult. Windows 10 automatically manages pagefile. So, It ensures the size what actually you need. But, In the old days, there was a rule that pagefile size or virtual memory size should be 1.5x or 2x more than total physical memory (RAM). As modern Windows manages it automatically, you should not increase or decrease the size until there is any necessity.
How to Change Pagefile Location:
You can change the pagefile location very easily. To do it, follow these things.
- At first, Open virtual memory Window like before.
- There, Select the disk drive where the pagefile exists and mark No paging file.
- Now, Select another drive where you want to store the pagefile, and then click on System managed size or custom size.
- Set the pagefile size if you have chosen custom size.
By this way, you can change the pagefile location. You can only change the drive where you want to store it. But, You can’t place it in any folder.
How to Disable Pagefile:
Some users face low disk space problem. So, They may like to disable the pagefile as it may take a significant amount of disk space. Though disk space is not a problem these days. Hard disks are cheaper and SSD prices are going down. In fact, You should not disable it until there is an emergency condition. By the way, To disable pagefile, follow these steps.
- First of all, Open the virtual memory window like before.
- Then, Select the drives where pagefile exists and mark No paging file.
From now, your PC will no longer use your hard drive for pagefile.sys.
Hopefully, This article will help you a lot. If you have anything relavent to share, let us know in the comment box.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do I change the location of my pagefile in Windows 10?
How do I change the location of my page file?
Under “Advanced” tab, “Virtual Memory” section, click “Change…” These are the actual settings. Uncheck “Automatically manage paging file size for all drives” and you can change these settings. Highlight the drive you want it on, and select either a fixed size or system managed size, and then click “Set”.
Is it OK to disable paging file?
Disabling the Pagefile Can Lead to System Problems The big problem with disabling your pagefile is that once you’ve exhausted the available RAM, your apps are going to start crashing, since there’s no virtual memory for Windows to allocate—and worst case, your actual system will crash or become very unstable.
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