Sunday, April 30, 2006

Memory

Friday night, I upgraded to 2 GB RAM, and reduced my pagefile size to 4 MB. It seems to have made a nice difference so far in performance for certain tasks—opening a group of a dozen or so browser tabs in NetCaptor or Firefox used to bog things down grinding at the hard drive, but now it seems to go pretty easily. Photoshop also loads faster, it seems. It doesn't seem to really affect game performance, which is what I would have expected would have gotten the most obvious boost, but it's only been a couple days; maybe it will end up being a more noticeable boost later on.

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

I might be going out on a limb here but doesn't your gaming depend more heavily on your video rendering processor. If that is your bottle-neck, which it in all likelihood is, why would you expect memory to make a difference? Assuming that you didn't upgrade from 512MB.

Luke said...

I really didn't notice a game speed boost when I went from 1GB to 3GB. But, yeah, otherwise things were ever-so-slightly zippier.

Travis said...

Well, first of all, I think that just about everyone's bottleneck is their hard drive. Besides getting an unacceptably loud 10,000 RPM hard drive, there's not a lot I can do at the moment about that. But, getting additional memory can help reduce the dependence on the hard drive and pagefile somewhat, which should improve performance overall in certain cases, and I'm certain that's what's happening to me. When running games, I do tend to need to page a lot of stuff out to disk, and I don't need to do that anymore.

My video card (Radeon X800 XT PE) is almost certainly not the bottleneck; it's much newer than the processor (Pentium IV 3.0GHz), and the processor wasn't even top-of-the-line when I bought it about three years ago. I definitely need to build a new machine later this year, now that processors are improving again after being relatively stalled for so long, but that's a lot more effort than just flip tab, flip tab, push really hard, repeat. I just want to wait until the newest multi-core technologies have stabilized a little bit and there are good recommendations on what to buy.

I think that this was intended to be my Longhorn and Half-Life 2 PC. At least it survived long enough to be my Half-Life 2 PC, after upgrading the video card...

Travis said...

Also, 32-bit Windows programs, with very few exceptions, can't access more than 2 GB of memory. I knew I didn't want to upgrade to more than that.

Lincoln said...

You won't see a speed boost in games unless your previous memory condition had your system paging to the hard drive regularly. Therefore, any gaming speed boosts as a result of a memory upgrade will be either INCREDIBLY HUGE or nonexistant.

ianonymous said...

and here is another example of "Spomey knows best". Tell me, are you capable of taking a comment which could be construed as negative (even when it probably isn't) without defense and justification?

Lincoln is dead on here, and managed to put it more succinctly than the other guy.

ajonymous said...

so, are you going to pitch another hissy fit for us now?

Lincoln said...

Yeah, I know how to spit it.

Also, I'm lovin' ajonymous.

Travis said...

Are you capable of taking a comment which could be construed as pathetic defense (even when it probably isn't) without complaining about it?

I don't claim to know much of anything about hardware. CS 230 was something like eleven years ago, and in true form for a CS class, we barely covered practical topics. Someone, perhaps you, said that it's probably my video card that I should upgrade. I said that I don't think it is, gave a short explanation why, and then elaborated on why I chose to add more memory. Would you have preferred that I reply "NUH-UH, IS NOT!"?

I can try to make that a little more hissy if necessary; let me know.

ianonymous said...

I love you Spomey!

Travis said...

<3