Virtual memory is a commonly use term in IT, but are you aware of its right usages? A virtual memory is part of the the operating system and it helps you in performing some functions. This article provides information to its readers on what virtual memory is and how they can customize the virtual memory of Windows 10 to improve the performance and efficiency of their desktop operating system. Now lets see the importance of virtual memory and more.
What is virtual memory?
Virtual memory is a technique of memory management. German physicist ‘Fritz Rudolf Guntsch’ is credited with developing the concept of virtual memory in 1956 as part of his doctoral work. He described in it a computer that automatically moves data from primary to secondary memory to avoid running out of data in main memory. This formed the basis of paging or virtual memory. Paging began to show up in commercial computers in the early 1960s.
In the 1960s and early 1970s, computer memory was expensive. The virtual memory allowed software programmes which require a large amount of data to function well without using real data. This became a big motive for all systems to adopt virtual memory.
Following is a simple explanation of virtual memory. RAM (Random Access Memory) is use to run applications when the computer uses, the data in. But when we run large applications or too many applications at the same time, the RAM may become full. At that time Virtual Memory comes to rescue. So the question comes” HOW?” The data in RAM which is not being temporarily used is moved to virtual memory. Virtual memory is located physically on a hard drive or other storage devices. This allows large applications to run faster without depleting the RAM data.
Why is Virtual Memory Required?
The need of virtual memory is important because RAM is more expensive than physical memory. Firstly, it is more cost-effective to use virtual memory than to equip your system with more RAM. This is because virtual memory uses the existing storage space.
The second reason to use virtual memory is that all computer systems have certain limitations (depending on the hardware and software) as to how much RAM can be installed. Virtual memory allows the system to run beyond the RAM capacity.
THE MECHANISM OF VIRTUAL MEMORY
When the operating system is running the applications on the desktop, it stores the location of programme threads and other data at a virtual address, while the data is present in RAM. If later RAM space starts running out due to larger or multiple applications in use, then the data is swapped out of RAM into virtual memory. This work of managing data between physical and virtual memory is done by the computer’s memory manager.
A system with 4 GB RAM will give better performance than a system with 2GB RAM and 2GB Virtual memory because of the performance hit caused by swapping. There can be a potential problem if virtual memory is larger than the RAM. The CPU may spend a large number of its resources swapping data from RAM to virtual memory and vice versa. Thrashing happens that reduces the performance of the programmes which are running in the system and the programmes may come to halt.
One must reduce the number of applications run in a system or need to increase RAM to reduce thrashing.
VIRTUAL MEMORY WINDOWS 10
Windows is the most widely using operating systems in the world, that requires a well efficient virtual memory. Windows 10 by Microsoft has over 1 Billion users, That makes it the most popular desktop OS in the world. It’s share being around 55% among all the operating systems. Especially, in the OS like windows, the virtual memory can be so handy. There are a few ways you can manage your virtual memory on windows. Let us look at one of the basic ways to manage your virtual memory on windows 10.
HOW TO MANAGE VIRTUAL MEMORY ON WINDOWS 10?
Windows 10 users, you just came to know what virtual memory is. The following information about how to custom virtual memory in your Windows 10 system will be useful for you. Moreover, the operating system Microsoft suggests that virtual memory be set at no below than 1.5 times and no more than 3 times the amount of RAM on the computer.
Following are the steps to change virtual memory on windows 10 as per Microsoft:
1)Go to settings.
2)Type ‘performance in the search bar’ and select ‘Adjust the appearance and performance of windows’.
3)A new window will appear. Go to the ‘Advanced’ tab in it.
4)You will see a ‘virtual memory’ section in it.
5)Click on ‘Change’. If the current memory is less than the recommended virtual memory changes it to the recommended one. For this unselect the Automatically manage paging file size for all drives box on this window and click on Custom Size.
6)Then enter the recommended value. And click on ‘OK’ to save changes.
TYPES OF VIRTUAL MEMORY: PAGING AND SEGMENTATION
VIRTUAL MEMORY PAGING- In a system which uses paging, RAM is divided into any number of blocks (the size of the block is generally 4K) which are called pages. These pages are swapped into virtual memory as per requirements of the various process running in the system. This allows little wastage of memory but this may not be so if very large processes requiring a lot of data are being run. Then several pages will be transferred to virtual memory and the wasted data may also be more
VIRTUAL MEMORY SEGMENTATION
The one big advantage of virtual memory segmentation is that the exact amount of data required to be removed from RAM for the proper functioning of processes is swapped into virtual memory leading to no wastage of virtual memory data.
Segmentation allows applications to be split into independent logical address spaces, which can make them easier to share.
But the disadvantage is that the data may get fragmented into many small segments and there will be several small segments to keep tab off. This can cause inefficiency and reduce performance.
MERITS OF VIRTUAL MEMORY
- Virtual memory makes space for running many applications at the same time.
- Also it allows running large applications, which would not be able to run solely on the data provided by RAM.
- Compared to RAM Virtual memory is cost-effective.
- You get more space than actual RAM capacity to run your large applications
DEMERITS OF VIRTUAL MEMORY
- RAM being more expensive also provides better speed than virtual memory.
- There are high chances that virtual memory may reduce the performance of your system.
- Virtual memory can Reduce the overall performance of the system.
- Storage space get reduces is the other demerit.
Technology is getting advancing day by day. It is the era of artificial intelligence and technological expansion. Moreover, in this aspect people are equipping themselves with technological knowledge and updates. There are a few important things that one must know while using an operating system, indeed that can be so handy. Virtual memory is such an aspect in an operating system that will benefit you while performing functions.
A large number are not well aware about the virtual memory and its right usage. However, the usage of virtual memory and its right application will help you very efficiently in your tasks.