With the advent of multiple processes grouped together to comprise one application like IE8 and Chrome uses processes for each tab/group-of-tabs, I'm seeing an effect that I hadn't seen since Windows 3.x.
After returning from lunch, ALT+TAB'ing to one of these applications, and then changing tab inside them, yields a painfully slow gradual redraw of the page, down the screen, a line at a time. It's like the 8-bit computing era where the 'loading screen' would be loaded from tape.
While this happens, the mouse is frozen, the disk is thrashing its head off and I just have to wait - up to 30 seconds - to regain control.
I fully understand that some apps may get swapped out , even preemptively, but surely an application draws its' window contents with graphics and text functions straight-to-the-screen (or off-screen composition). Is there a bitmap for all application window contents, persisted to disk when the app is swapped out? It sure feels like it.
I'm using a Dell Latitude D810 with 1.25gb of RAM, Windows XP Pro SP3, usually running just Outlook 2003, Chrome or IE8, Visual Studio 2008. Everything is perfectly usable until I come back from lunch.
What can I do to reduce/avoid this issue?