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Old 2012-10-15, 14:13   Link #21
Asuki-tan Kairin ↓
Join Date: Feb 2004
Location: Fürth (GER)
Age: 36
Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post
The "missing space" on a solid state drive is what's known as spare area. This is space that is set aside by the controller on the SSD to facilitate wear-leveling and other useful algorithms such as TRIM. My Intel 320 SSD is 120GB (which really means 128GB) and it's "missing" 17GB--in Windows the available space on the drive is 111GB.

There's no way to get it back, and even if you could, you wouldn't want it back. SSDs depend on spare area to ensure that the drive is written to evenly so that no NAND cells die prematurely due to uneven writes.
The spare memory is differently sized depending on the "quality" of the SSD. Such space even exists on SDs and MMCs. We use special SD cards at work and really wear them to the limits. What happens when many sectors are dislocated, is that the overall addressing becomes messier. This translates into slower read/write cycles at least for SDs. So technically there is more then storage lost in the process.

Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post

Mentar is also correct in that you absolutely want your swap partition or page file to be on your SSD. Nearly all writes to swap are small random writes, which SSDs excel at and will greatly improve the overall speed and reaction time of your system.
Most modern hdds use cache (some have up to 64MB of it). It doesn't matter if these writes are on a SSD or normal HDD, its always cached (even an SSD does cache such data). So this argument cannot really be counted as an advantage, since it is also true for normal hdds.

Originally Posted by synaesthetic View Post

Edit: And yes, if you have a Windows system, no matter how much RAM you have, even if you have 32GB or 64GB of RAM (though why you'd need this much I have no idea, unless you were running a lot of VMs at once), Windows will still use swap. You can't make it not use swap, and if there's no available swap, your applications will complain by going slow.

It's possible to make a Linux system operate without swap if you have lots of RAM--most Android devices do not have a swap partition, and run everything in RAM without using virtual memory at all. But I wouldn't really recommend doing it, because not all applications may be coded with no swap partition in mind.
You are mixing up things here. Virtual memory is not simply swapped memory as in stored on a disk. Virtual memory is just a way to organize memory using address mapping.

In Windows there will be so called paged and unpaged memory. Unpaged memory is sort of virtual memory that is only limited by addressing of the OS (at least Windows treats unreserved unpaged memory that way.. reserved unpaged memory is a different matter). Paged memory is what applications always use and what is sometimes mistaken as hdd/ssd memory.

But paged memory simply means, that there exists sort of an address mapping scheme that maps the application's virtual address space to the physical address space available to the system.
Major parts of an application actually run directly in unmapped physical memory. Which is not to be confused with reserved unpaged memory (which might simply refer to memory that is not yet mapped but reserved for future usage by the application).

So, no matter if you use a page/swap file or not, the operating system will use the virtual memory architecture anyway. The real question is, what type of physical memory is actually used to map virtual addresses to physical addresses (each such mapping corresponds to a page).

So when actual "paged memory" is mapped to physical RAM, then it is still not written to any disk.
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Old 2012-10-15, 14:59   Link #22
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Join Date: Dec 2008
I've turned off my page file(s) on Windows 7 x64 a long time ago with "just" 8 GB RAM and can only remember one single application (Company of Heroes) that simply refused to start. I'd say turn it off until an app actually complains. Then use the SSD.

Do you actually have any specific apps in mind that would use up your 16 GB?
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