Increase Virtual Memory

  1. Open System by clicking the Start button
    , right-clicking Computer, and then clicking Properties.

  2. In the left pane, click Advanced system settings.
    If you're prompted for an administrator password or confirmation, type the password or provide confirmation.

  3. On the Advanced tab, under Performance, click Settings.

  4. Click the Advanced tab, and then, under Virtual memory, click Change.

  5. Clear the Automatically manage paging file size for all drives check box.

  6. Under Drive [Volume Label], click the drive that contains the paging file you want to change.

  7. Click Custom size, type a new size in megabytes in the Initial size (MB) or Maximum size (MB) box, click Set, and then click OK.
Does these step actually increases RAM size ?? Means, If i am having 2 GB RAM, Can i increase RAM to 4 GB with this trick ?? Will i get any problem if i change it ?


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Sorry but no... :) Basically it allows a portion of the hard drive to used as RAM or virtual memory and unless your doing something specific it's best left alone.

Will it increase my system performance ??


Windows Forum Admin
Staff member
Premium Supporter
Will it increase my system performance ??
Debatable... You'll notice that near the bottom of the Advanced system settings box is a recommended amount to set the pagefile to. Making sure you have enough RAM apply the recommended amount both as a starting figure and as a ending figure. Any performance gained will be very small and only in certain situations like gaming for example.


Windows Forum Team
Staff member
Premium Supporter
If your system only has 2 g ram then increasing the page file size will typically lower system performance… its not an exact science but as a rule of thumb, the page file will help a bit with large file transfers (like movies) and low end trickle software like torrents (marginal) but the day to day stuff doesn’t (and shouldn’t) get funnelled into the page file.

Having a large page file will also affect disc performance in a negative way and that’s why people recommend placing your page file on a different drive to the system (c) drive if available because that takes some pressure of the system drive and is most useful when running virtual software like wm-workstation.


Essential Member
Microsoft Community Contributor

It isn't the ram you are increasing but the amount of the hard disk set aside for file swapping.
It's preferable to get your ram to do it since it's much faster.

Some people use to advocate having a lot of ram and no swap file, forcing Windows to use only the ram.

And it used to be recommended that you put the swap file on a separate hard drive or partition then Windows.

But, I really don't know if any of that applies anymore.

The standard used to be to set the swap file to 1.5 times as much as the ram you have installed.

Probably now days it's better to just set it to let Windows handle it.

I think it's unlikely that you will see a real improvement in performance by increasing the size any more.


PS. Interestingly I just checked fragmentation on my C:\ drive.
It is 14% fragmented and the only fragmented file is the page file, which never gets defragmented.

I know the way to fix this is to select, "No Page File" and then defrag the disk.
Once it's done you can reinstate the Page File, again.

PS2. I did the above and my drive now shows 0% fragmentation and the Page File is contiguous, instead of being broken into a number of different drive locations.

I note that Windows set the max page file size to the same as the ram I have 32 Gigabytes on it's own.

It does seem like I'm seeing a slightly snappier performance.
That may just be the power of positive thinking. LOL

PS3. I use Defraggler for drive defragmentation.

Last edited:

Joe S

Excellent Member
XP had a handy little app that did page file defrag at boot. I never saw anything like it for later editions of Windows.

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