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How to overcome the 4,095 MB paging file size limit in Windows
Article ID: 237740 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q237740
When you set the paging file size in Windows, the documentation states that the largest paging file that you can select is 4,095 megabytes (MB). This limit is imposed by the page mapping that we use on x86 processors. These processors cannot handle more pages per page file. This is the limit set per volume; you can actually create paging files this large on one or more drives if you need a larger paging file. If extra drives or volumes are not available, you can create multiple paging files on a single drive by placing them in separate folders.
Notes To create a larger page file, you must load the Physical Address Extension (PAE) kernel. In Windows Server 2003, PAE is automatically enabled when the server is using Hot Add Memory devices. Alternatively, you can force the PAE kernel by adding the /PAE switch in the Boot.ini file.
To get a complete memory dump from computers that have 4 GB RAM or more, it is still necessary to use the /MAXMEM switch in the Boot.ini file. One of the page files on the system partition must still be 1 MB larger than the amount of RAM installed in the computer to successfully create a memory dump. For more information, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
(http://support.microsoft.com/kb/108393/ )The /maxmem switch in the Windows Boot.ini file
Important This section, method, or task contains steps that tell you how to modify the registry. However, serious problems might occur if you modify the registry incorrectly. Therefore, make sure that you follow these steps carefully. For added protection, back up the registry before you modify it. Then, you can restore the registry if a problem occurs. For more information about how to back up and restore the registry, click the following article number to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
(http://support.microsoft.com/kb/322756/ )How to back up and restore the registry in Windows
Note that reading or writing a paging file of this size can be costly in terms of performance. If you find that you need a paging file of this size, it may be better to add more RAM to the computer. The current algorithm Windows uses to set the default paging file size is:
Note To get a complete memory dump from computers that have 4 GB RAM or more, it is still necessary to use the /maxmem switch in the Boot.ini. One of the page files on the system partition must still be 1 MB larger than the amount of RAM installed in the computer to successfully create a memory dump.
Article ID: 237740 - Last Review: October 26, 2007 - Revision: 6.9