having two pagefile.sys on separate drives

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  1. Posts : 115
    Windows 10 Pro 2004
       #1

    having two pagefile.sys on separate drives


    I have two pagefile.sys, first one on my 250GB SSD and second one on my 2TB HDD, I use HDD for games and storing video materials, is it good to have two pagefile.sys?
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  2. Posts : 7,257
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #2

    May be it is remnant from a previous install.

    You can safely remove the pagefile on the non OS drive. Afterwards, make sure that let Windows manage the pagefile is ticked.

    Manage Virtual Memory Pagefile in Windows 10
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  3. Posts : 13,701
    Windows10
       #3

    ashramnavivi said:
    I have two pagefile.sys, first one on my 250GB SSD and second one on my 2TB HDD, I use HDD for games and storing video materials, is it good to have two pagefile.sys?
    Does not do any harm but really better to just have one on SSD as much faster.

    People used to say it was better to have separate pagefiles to avoid writing too much to an SSD but those days are long gone.
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  4. Posts : 7,257
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #4

    cereberus said:
    Does not do any harm but really better to just have one on SSD as much faster.

    People used to say it was better to have separate pagefiles to avoid writing too much to an SSD but those days are long gone.
    They used to obsess over it in XP days.
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  5. Posts : 115
    Windows 10 Pro 2004
    Thread Starter
       #5

    I did, it was not there, I manually put it on my HDD, because while gaming, I used to get crashes to desktop, then I decided to try setting a pagefile.sys on my HDD, because I use it for gaming and playing high-end games such as GTA V, Rainbow Six Siege et cetera, also, I set instant replay to my HDD so it always uses 1-2GB of NVIDIA shadowplay thing in the folder called "Temp", hence I thought I would need pagefile for that process of shadowplay that stores the previous 3-4 minutes into that folder.
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  6. Posts : 7,257
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #6

    GTA 5 is 10 years old now so not really a high end game, even with a 1060.

    I would remove both pagefiles, recreate the C: one and tick let windows manage pagefile. Then reboot. If you still get crashes I would reduce performance levels on GTA if you have them set to high or ultra.
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  7. Posts : 12,487
    Win10 Version 21H2 Pro and Home, Win11 Pro
       #7

    Most recommendations I've seen suggest a large paging/swap file on the largest drive but a 2GB on the same drive as the OS is on, partly because some program installations look for it there.
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  8. Posts : 7,257
    Windows 10 Pro 64-bit
       #8

    I would still let windows manage it. Tweaking the pagefile settings is a bit old hat now.
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  9. Posts : 1,250
    Windows 10 Pro
       #9

    Microsoft had a long standing recommendation for having a pagefile on multiple physical drives. That was valid when written. But it is important to understand the reasoning behind recommendations and not follow them blindly. Old recommendations were often designed to offset the limitations of older technology and may no longer be valid with more modern technology. Such is the case here.

    With 2 or more pagefiles the memory manager could write to which ever pagefile was on the least busy drive. With conventional drives this minimized head movement. With conventional drives head seek time is the #1 performance factor. Of course when reading the memory manager would have to use the pagefile that contained the data. Another use for a second pagefile was that with old CPU's, usually 15+ years old, a single pagefile could not be larger than 4 GB and on a busy server that may not be enough. 2 or more pagefiles mitigated this limitation. Such CPU's are not compatible with Windows 10.

    But all that changes with SSD's. The operational and performance characteristics of an SSD are an almost perfect match for typical pagfile usage. The characteristics of conventional drives could hardly be worse for pagefile usage. For best performance you want the pagefile on the SSD and off conventional drives.

    But with 16 GB RAM this will make little to no difference. The pagefile won't be used enough for it to make much difference.
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  10. Posts : 115
    Windows 10 Pro 2004
    Thread Starter
       #10

    LMiller7 said:
    Microsoft had a long standing recommendation for having a pagefile on multiple physical drives. That was valid when written. But it is important to understand the reasoning behind recommendations and not follow them blindly. Old recommendations were often designed to offset the limitations of older technology and may no longer be valid with more modern technology. Such is the case here.

    With 2 or more pagefiles the memory manager could write to which ever pagefile was on the least busy drive. With conventional drives this minimized head movement. With conventional drives head seek time is the #1 performance factor. Of course when reading the memory manager would have to use the pagefile that contained the data. Another use for a second pagefile was that with old CPU's, usually 15+ years old, a single pagefile could not be larger than 4 GB and on a busy server that may not be enough. 2 or more pagefiles mitigated this limitation. Such CPU's are not compatible with Windows 10.

    But all that changes with SSD's. The operational and performance characteristics of an SSD are an almost perfect match for typical pagfile usage. The characteristics of conventional drives could hardly be worse for pagefile usage. For best performance you want the pagefile on the SSD and off conventional drives.

    But with 16 GB RAM this will make little to no difference. The pagefile won't be used enough for it to make much difference.
    I do have 16GB of DDR4 ram, and I have newer CPU (Ryzen 5 2600)
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