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Customize Your Paging File Size 

Windows uses a hidden file called a swap file or a page file when there is no more room in RAM to run programs or store data, but it takes up space on your hard drive. By default, the initial paging file is 1.5 times the amount of your RAM. You may want a larger swapfile if you routinely keep a lot of tasks open simultaneously - or a smaller one if you have a hard-drive space crisis. To see the size of your swap drive, look for the file pagefile.sys, typically found in the root directory of the drive that holds the operating system. Note: You'll only be able to see it if you've turned on the XP option for displaying hidden and system files. Windows allows the swap file to shrink and grow, depending on whether it needs more or less memory. To customize the size of your paging file: 

1. Choose Performance and Maintenance from Control Panel. 

2. Choose System from Performance and Maintenance and in the System Properties dialog box that appears, click on the Advanced tab. 

3. Click on Settings in the Performance section. 

4. From the Performance Options dialog box that appears, click on Advanced. 

5. In the Virtual memory section, click on Change, and the Virtual Memory dialog box will appear. It displays the location and minimum and maximum sizes of your paging file. 

6. To change the minimum and maximum size of the paging file, choose the Custom Size radio button, and enter the new initial size and maximum size of the file. Click on Set and reboot. 

7. To let XP manage the size of the file, choose the System managed size radio button, click on Set and reboot. 

8. To run XP without a paging file, choose the No paging file radio button, click on Set and reboot. This is a dangerous option, and could lead to out of memory errors, so it's not a good idea to choose it.

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