XP will Page out programs that are minimised, that is one thing that has never made much sence. I actually just flip through windows as opposed to minimising because of that.
XP has 2 different settings for Cache Right click on "my Computer" and get into System Properties, Advanced tab, Performace button , Advanced tab, Memory Usage. make sure this is set to Programs not System Cache. Still doesnt matter because the system is still going to make use of some cache like it or not. Unconfirmed is the 3 settings seen in my registry for cache? I could not get anyone else to notice/confirm that it never switched back to the original Default number that was there after switched, or if it mattered .
Bring up the Task manager in the Performace tab ,Look at that "commit charge" stuff, it is supposed to clear up our understanding of what is going on , it never does , but then I dont understand it :-) http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commit_charge
The "Page File Usage History" in task manager there does not determine the ammount of usable stuff tossed on disk already, only the virtual allocations.
same link http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commit_charge
The bigger your paging is , the bigger the virtual allocations CAN be made, I am NOT saying to kill it or way undersize it for your needs, but overdoing it encourages them :-)
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/2160852 MS themselves refers us to
here. http://members.shaw.ca/bsanders/Wind...ageFileEtc.htm (link dead) where
explained in human terms was this tidbit.
A common recommendation is to make the page file 1.5 times the size of
the installed RAM. This recommendation makes sense only for computers
with small amounts of RAM (256 MB or less). For example, there is
usually not much point in allocating a page file that is 96 GB if the
computer has 64 GB of RAM. The objective in such RAM rich systems is
to avoid using the pagefile at all by providing sufficient RAM that
all virtual memory can be in RAM all the time. If the virtual memory
in use exceeds the amount of installed RAM, performance will suffer
and having a larger pagefile will not help this situation.
In short, if your not going to use THAT much memory, set the thing to a locked 512M. Many experts chiming in on paging with Enough memory on XP, have indicated that ammount works just fine. If you plan on opening some huge database or need this excessive allocations then plan accordingly.
There are other things, need more experts input.