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RE: why bother in the year 2002?
Authored by: barrysharp on Oct 17, '02 11:06:11AM

From your swapping activity I would venture to say you're overloading your system and/or you're using programs that employ poor memory management strategies.

I guess it's possible you launch programs that you use infrequently. This means that once they or a portion of them reside in physical memory and they lay dormant they have to be swapped out (paged out in bits and pieces) to make room for other programs you launch.

If you aren't going to use a program for some time then simply quit it and release the valuable memory resources it's consuming back to the system for reuse by other more important and *frequently* used programs you use.

Quitting a program will also protect it from a system crash in that if it's still memory resident or active at the time the system crashes there's danger that some of it's data hasn't made it to disk for permanent safe keeping.

I also think a large fast HD dedicated to scratch files is of benefit as i/o is more likely to find big contiguous chunks of space to speed up data transfers. However, many programs don't provide the option to direct their scratch data to specific HD locations. Yes, there are some exceptions to this such as PS but many still remain that don't offer this.

My experience has told me to avoid swapping like the plague.

Now, as we start having the option of using multi processor machines such as Apple is deploying today in their G4 tower line the question of swapping becomes a little more interesting. With these systems it matters little if swapping is occuring so long as the CPUs aren't being starved because of such action or because of the swappin interferring with outher non-swapping activities. Having a separate HD for swapping may be a more worthwhile endeavor under these circumstances.

Regards... Barry Sharp



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