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I have a standard desktop computer with a standard single SATA drive.

I'm experiencing a lot of lags in some applications, probably because of the disk (queue is often > 10).

Is there a way to reduce I/O priority of some existing non important process (in the same manner I can lower the CPU priority of these processes) ?

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A good question - unfortunately I don't know the answer. My way to solve the disk queue problem was buying an SSD ;) –  Robert Jun 8 '12 at 10:11
    
here, where I work, it's very very very hard to get hardware. Not for its cost, but for the processes of buying. Plus the wish of standardized hardware. :( –  Steve B Jun 8 '12 at 10:46

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I/O prioritization is new in Vista; which version are you running? The TaskManager process priority will also affect I/O priority: Low priority processes (threads) will have their I/O requests executed after all other I/O requests are finished.

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Win 7 & win 2K8 R2 –  Steve B Jun 8 '12 at 12:02
    
@SteveB: In that case, high-priority threads also have high I/O priority. But it sounds like you already tried modifying the priorities, so this probably won't yield further benefits. Robert is right: SSD's have made software hacks utterly redundant. –  MSalters Jun 8 '12 at 12:09
    
I feel you are right. SSD is the solution. Unfortunately, as I said, getting hardware here is far from possible. I'll spread some seed. Maybe of them will grow up, and the next desktop generation will have ssd by default. –  Steve B Jun 8 '12 at 12:14
    
A little late to the party but taking this a step further, even a Low process priority doesn't make any appreciable difference on my system, however Background priority does actually force that app the back of the disk I/O queue. This priority can be set via Process Explorer and other similar tools –  Basic Jan 7 at 23:17

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