Windows and the virtual memory

How much memory is used?

Some yield tests

Advices and conclusions

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Juan Herrerķas Rey

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How much memory is "sufficient"?

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In the world of the computers, the doubt always seems to be in if buying a mike Intel or AMD, if it will be a Pentium III or an Athlon, a Celeron or a K6-2, and to how many MHz it will work. When it goes over to the paragraph of the memory, most of the buyers accepts the quantity that brings the system for defect... what can be a big error.

Module of memory PC100 in format DIMM, to way to introduce in his socket

We will never say the sufficient thing: on having bought a computer, the most important thing is that it is balanced; 800 MHz nothing for only 32 MB of memory RAM, or a card 3D of high scale for a small monitor and of bad quality. And since we will try to demonstrate, the quantity of memory of the PC is one of the factors that more it can affect to the yield.

Certainly, this article will center on Windows 95 and 98, since the most used operating systems are with difference. The results are perfectly applicable to Linux, "except" for his biggest stability and better use of the memory; as for Windows NT 4 and 2000, they act of form similar to Linux, although they consume between 16 and 40 more MB of memory that the "domestic" Windows.


Windows and the virtual memory

Of course, all the more programs let's use and more complexes are, more memory we will need; this sure that it will not surprise anybody, but what yes is possible that he surprises is the big quantity of memory that is used only to start the operating system. Observe the following information:

Loaded programs Used RAM
Windows 95 only 21 MB
Windows 98 only 27 MB
Only Windows 98, after several months of functioning and diverse programs facilities 35 MB
Windows 98, Microsoft Word 97 and Internet Explorer 4 46 MB
Windows 98 and AutoCAD 14 (with a simple drawing in 2D) 55 MB

Impressed? Since it can see, only the load of the operating system can consume ALL the memory with which some computers of low scale sell. Also, Windows 98 uses more memory than Windows 95 owed between other topics to his integration with Microsoft Internet Explorer... something of what perhaps Bill Gates repents now, seen his problems with the courts. To stop complicating the topic, both Windows tends to increase his size and his memory consumption as we are installing programs... or simply as the time happens, without installing anything.

Despite this, the fact is that the computers keep on working when the memory RAM becomes exhausted them, something that would be impossible if it was not for the so called "virtual memory", that it is not but space of the hard disk that is used as if it was a memory RAM.

Nevertheless, this virtual memory has several disadvantages; the principal one is his speed, since it is much slower than the RAM. While the speed of access to the RAM measures itself in nanoseconds (ns, 0,000000001 it sets off of a second), that of the hard disks measures herself in milliseconds; that is to say, that is taken almost a million times more in gaining access to a fact that finds on the hard disk than to one of the RAM.

Also, the band is also very low; for example, in a computer with memory PC100 every second there can be transmitted 800 MB of information that are in the above mentioned memory, while no current hard disk reaches even 40 Mb / century For not speaking about the considerable noise that any hard disks organize, his high consumption, and the most important thing: the hard fact and not seldom been sorry of the scarce stability of Windows when really we overload the "file of exchange" (the one that stores the information of the virtual memory).

For all this, the ideal thing is to need the least possible the virtual memory, and for that obviously it is necessary to have the biggest quantity of memory possible RAM.


How much memory is used?

The utility Monitor of the system of Windows

They exist infinity of methods to determine it; one of the best is the Monitor of the system, one of the utilities included in Windows that, if he has settled, will find in the folder Accessories-> Hardware of the system. Also, it has the advantage of which we can form it so that it shows us the size of the file of exchange in use and an infinity of other information, and he does not consume too much memory himself.

Also we might use programs of diagnosis of the PC more complexes, like excellent Sandra 2000 that can find in our discharge section.


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