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popov

Paging File details

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Is there any way of viewing what is being actively processed by paging file? Tool or command? Thanks in advance.

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I think that's proprietary info and is controlled by the OS. You COULD search for some old Intel Assembly PDF information files that MIGHT tell "how it works".

A smattering of info (and links) here -

http://www.help2go.com/forum/computer-help/95142-page-file.html

You ARE aware that only those parts of Real Ram are being swapped in/out and will PROBABLY not be a FULL program in Memory unless it FIXES the Page there. So, it's kind of doubtful that any "utility" exists for that.

Why would you want to do that anyway? Something suspicious being "executed" or "hiding" there?

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It keeps working and working all the time, lags computer and task manager shows more than 3/4 ram still free. Also your link doesn't work, maybe I need account there?

Edited by popov
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You need to supply a bit more info, like ...

  • How much RAM? Is it one or two sticks and are they "matched" and operating in dual-channel mode?
  • What are the swap settings in: Control Panel > System > Advanced > Performance > Advanced > Virtual Memory > Change It may be set for a specific size rather than letting the system manage the size.
  • Are the HDD's working correctly? Control Panel > System > Hardware > Device Manager > IDE ATA /ATAPI Controllers double-click on Primary IDE Channel and then on the Advanced Settings tab and see what the Current Transfer Mode is.

Checking the above will help make sure the HDD, RAM and paging are working correctly. However, a lot of people still confuse disk thrashing from normal paging of programs in memory with the completely separate issue of secondary Tasks, Services and Startups which are three different groups of things that might be running additionally to your normal programs. Examples are Antivirus, Windows Update, Disk Indexing, System Restore points, Adobe, Java, Google ( and countless other ) updaters. Any one of them could tie up disk activity, several running simultaneously could create a nightmare. So it is important to first rule them out before making core system adjustments.

Since you're using WinXP, you can of course try ProcMon to watch everything that is happening in a single list. You can screen out known things in realtime by right-clicking them as they occur ( registry access etc ) until you whittle down the list to likely suspects. Another way to do it is with ProcExp which is a task manager view of loaded programs, and if you are watching the screen and notice disk thrashing you might spot a task that goes red for some clues. DiskMon specifically monitors HDD usage and does some logging which is listed by sector, so if you kow the physical location of the pagefile is it might be useful. To locate the physical pagefile ( or any other file ) try DiskView. They also have PageDefrag which might tell you the paging file is badly fragmented and you can set it to be defragged on the next boot. Those are System Internals programs and are all included in the Suite.

EDIT: typo

Edited by CharlotteTheHarlot
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It keeps working and working all the time, lags computer and task manager shows more than 3/4 ram still free. Also your link doesn't work, maybe I need account there?
Per the "link" - wow! It worked when I posted it.

Maybe it's NOT the Paging that's the problem. MAYBE you have a PROGRAM/TASK/SERVICE running eating you "alive". In Task Manager, click the PROCESSES tab, click in the CPU column TWICE to see which PROGRAM is using the CPU. You may be misguided thinking it's all about the RAM/PAGING which gets USED by a running Program(s). -AND/OR- use the first two programs listed by CharlotteTheHarlot, which will give more detailed information. You could very well have a Trojan/Virus instead of a legitimate program that's in "runaway" mode. In addition, CCleaner and/or Spybot will list anything that's RUN/RUNONCE/Startup/(Services) listed in the Registry to give us a clue ("generated" program names may mean you have a "bug").

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It is worth noting that the paging file can be used to store memory pages, but pages stored in the paging file cannot be actively used (thus any memory page access to a page that has been moved from RAM to the paging file must be paged back in and then used). If you have constant paging file access, then you have a program that is causing the paging activity (the memory manager wouldn't be paging things out on it's own with that much RAM free, if that really is the case).

When does this happen, how are you determining it's paging file activity (and not simply disk I/O), and when did this behavior start?

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It keeps working and working all the time, lags computer

probably because your hard drive is fragmented or old

beside if you're on XP and have more than 1 GB memory (yup even if its 1024 + 256 MB)

then disable page file, its more resource hog than anything good or useful

Edited by vinifera
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I would not disable the page file unless you have 2 gb of ram in your system. Memory consumption can easily exceed 1 gb with heavy browsing sessions, multiple applications opened and large excel files. From my personal experience I disabled the page file on an old Athlon xp system with 1 gb of ram and I soon ran into trouble; upgrading to 2 gb of ram solved the problem.

PS: memory utilization at the moment on the above computer is: 1.05gb of ram according to task manager.

Edited by ND22
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Thanks all for answers.

Yes, I have some updaters and antivirus running all the time, but they they still take less than 1/4 of my total memory. Except web browser, antivirus is biggest resource hog, but I'd say that it's still fast compared to competition. There are no hidden background scans, I have configured it in such a way, that every action is on demand. System is configured properly, indexing is disable and prefetcher is on. Paging file is managed by windows and is in 1 fragment. It might be disk thrashing actually, I am not really sure, but for example system using 300 MB's of memory is also using 500 MB's of page file, while I have 1 GB. Hard disk is pretty old, but never had any bad sectors and it's being constantly checked and defragmented. I am still analyzing system with various tools, I'll post results later.

Btw, just to clarify - I don't use any memory managers, I have tested how they work and in fact I want something completely opposite.

Edited by popov
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Do you have MORE THAN ONE antivirus running? BIG NO-NO!!! Thrashing may very well occur because one is checking the other constantly. Try disabling those "updaters" and see what happens.

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WTF dude? That link clearly gives ANOTHER link that then gives ANOTHER link to the SDK. AND that LAST link clearly states that you can go to ANOTHER link to get the COMPLETE ISO -OR- use the Download to SELECTIVELY download what you want!

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=8279

HERE is how you "select" what you want -

http://www.drdobbs.com/windows/xperf-and-the-windows-performance-toolki/227001079

Inside that is a reference to an (apparently) older version -

http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=3138

The process of GETTING it should be the same (v7 versus v7.1).

A smattering of info on usage -

http://windowsitpro.com/systems-management/examining-xperf

P.S. more info about it -

http://social.msdn.microsoft.com/Forums/en-US/wptk_v4/thread/906cdf7a-d093-4895-b000-8eab63ee79ab

LIMITED functionality.

NO WAY will anyone give you something you can get yourself, ESPECIALLY Microsoft Software. Then it becomes... WAREZ!

Try disabling those "updaters" and see what happens.
Did you even TRY that?

BTW, what makes you think that XPERF is going to help your analysis? Don't care to actually troubleshoot by TRYING to disable some actively running programs to see who the CULPRIT is?

Edited by submix8c
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