RAM Useage Reduction - Best Way?

Discussion in 'other software & services' started by TheKid7, Apr 26, 2011.

Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.
  1. TheKid7

    TheKid7 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 22, 2006
    Posts:
    3,469
    If a PC is "RAM limited" and the option of living with the current amount of RAM rather than upgrading is chosen, what are the best tools/methods to reduce RAM usage.

    Basic PC Information (Taken from MyComputer Properties):

    Compaq Presario, AMD Athlon XP 3000+, 2.16 GHz, 448 MB of RAM, Windows XP Home, C: Drive: 147 GB, Free Space 126 GB.

    I am somewhat familiar with tools like Windows Task Manager, Microsoft Process Explorer, Microsoft AutoRuns, MSConfig but have never used them to do things such as permanently remove some Windows Startup Entries.

    I have not yet fully evaluated the PC to make sure that RAM limitation is the problem. The hard drive activity is almost constant. The PC is super slow. I was eventually able to run an "Express Scan" with Dr.Web Cureit in Safe Mode. No Malware was detected.

    Yes, I know that I still need to run a hard drive diagnostics from the manufacturer's bootable diagnostics CD. I just haven't yet gotten around to it. The PC is located at someone's house about 25 miles away.

    Thanks in Advance.
     
    Last edited: Apr 26, 2011
  2. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    Posts:
    6,468
    If i'm not mistaken, Windows XP ram usage is extremely low!! Around 200mb when it's a fresh install.

    So what i recommend is . . . format :D :D
     
  3. J_L

    J_L Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    Posts:
    8,516
    CleanMem works without any lag. It's the best out there, and definitely not snake oil (ignore haters that are too lazy to try it).

    @Noob: After installing SP3 and all the updates, I think it'll require more.
     
  4. CloneRanger

    CloneRanger Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Posts:
    4,833
    There is also an App called something like "Project Lazarus" or similar. Hope a member can recall it Exactly :thumb:

    If i remember the name, i'll post back with it, unless somebody else has in the meantime :)
     
  5. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    Posts:
    6,468
    Well, on my VM, a fresh instal of XP SP3 was around 200mb (I mean 100% fresh) :D
    You wonder how systems back from 2001 survived with 256 ram :rolleyes:
     
  6. blasev

    blasev Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 25, 2010
    Posts:
    763
    I've a very similiar dekstop. Too many app installed should also be the problem. Don't forget to clean temp file, and followed by defragmenter if necessary.

    After sometimes I upgrade the memory to 1GB DDR1, it really help a lot

    Last but not least, format is always my best answer for my desktop.
    Using win xp sp3 and avira free only
     
    Last edited: Apr 27, 2011
  7. doktornotor

    doktornotor Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Posts:
    2,047
    Well, those memory "optimizers" are certainly NOT an answer here. Either get more RAM, or if you cannot, then you need to

    - either reduce the number of things that are running (needless startup things etc.)
    - switch to a less memory hungry OS Linux w/ Fluxbox, E17 or even Xfce should be fine with 1/2 gig of RAM - but of course it will not exactly rock when you launch huge things such as Oo_Org/LO.
     
  8. CloneRanger

    CloneRanger Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 4, 2006
    Posts:
    4,833
    Remembered what it is :) And it's not Project Lazarus :D but this

    Not exactly a dedicated RAM optimiser, but it could still help in trimming down things, and making your comp run much more smoothly with what you have.

    Also i would suggest that you use Autoruns to prevent prevent programs you don't actually need constantly running, from loading up on boot. You'll be surprised at what a difference it can make :thumb:
     
  9. ESS474

    ESS474 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2010
    Posts:
    201
    Location:
    S?o Paulo (Brazil)
  10. doktornotor

    doktornotor Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Posts:
    2,047
    Oh please...

    The Memory-Optimization Hoax by Mark Russinovich

     
  11. Konata Izumi

    Konata Izumi Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 23, 2008
    Posts:
    1,544
  12. Cvette

    Cvette Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 16, 2010
    Posts:
    373
    Location:
    South Carolina, USA
    Another vote for CleanMem here, although I no longer run Windows, it served me well. But in the end, the best thing you can do is buy more RAM.
     
  13. adrenaline7

    adrenaline7 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 27, 2011
    Posts:
    128
    If you want to go through tons of details on how to reduce memory and optimize XP then take a look here: http://www.tweakguides.com/TGTC.html

    Windows XP fully stripped down will use about 115mb ram on boot and need about 17 processes to run XP properly.

    In the XP guide take a look at page 84 for display options, p93 for sounds, p95-99 for system, p104-110 for services and startup, p136 for tweak ui, and after that RAM use in XP will be minimal.
     
  14. Noob

    Noob Registered Member

    Joined:
    Nov 6, 2009
    Posts:
    6,468
    Open task manager and start ending processes :D
    Just be careful ;)
     
  15. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2005
    Posts:
    3,719
    I would use pserv
    http://www.p-nand-q.com/download/pserv_cpl.html

    Make an exported .xml of the current services running. Save that somewhere safe in case you need to import it later.

    Go through the list of services. Use a website that has information on all the services like
    http://www.blackviper.com/

    Disabling services can reduce the memory footprint as well as the CPU usage.

    Use something like AutoRuns
    http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb963902
    or Mike Lins Startup Control Panel
    http://www.mlin.net/StartupCPL.shtml
    to examine what is starting up. Printers and scanners and some cameras like to put software in place which auto-start certain portions so they seem to load faster or provide a convenience. These consume memory and often CPU cycles. If you don't use them often, stop auto-starting them and only start them when you actually need them.

    I like the statement made already that many programs, and very often security tools, are quite simply memory hogs. Even current browsers are memory hogs compared to older versions. In fact, I would daresay that almost every new program is a memory hog, because so many people now have more memory (and faster CPUs) they figure the majority will be fine.

    You have enough memory. I ran XP Pro on an Athlon XP2100 for years with only 512gb of ddr2100 ram. I ran vmWare workstation in it, and could run more than one VM at a time with no apparent issues, although I did control the VMs so they would not get out of hand.

    I have ran, after tweaking a system and being picky about what was installed and especially always running, XP Pro on under 100mb of ram being used. It can be done if you desire to. Of course, that requires time to do so.

    In the end though, with the price of RAM, you would be better off to just buy more of it. And regarding memory optimizers, they had a place when you only had 8mb or 16mb of SIMM ram. They worked great back then to free up memory. I used a few of them when moving to DIMM, but it was never really the same experience. I think when moving into the newer OSs microsoft started to optimize ram usage much better. Certainly better than they did in win 3.11 where you had lots and lots of options on just how to set and utilize your memory via config files and himem, umb, etc.

    Sul.
     
  16. ESS474

    ESS474 Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jan 13, 2010
    Posts:
    201
    Location:
    S?o Paulo (Brazil)
  17. doktornotor

    doktornotor Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jul 19, 2008
    Posts:
    2,047
    Yeah, cannot beat the placebo effect... :p
     
  18. Spruce

    Spruce Registered Member

    Joined:
    Dec 18, 2010
    Posts:
    291
    CleanMem :thumb:
     
  19. Night_Raven

    Night_Raven Registered Member

    Joined:
    Apr 2, 2006
    Posts:
    388
    Ditto. It just goes to show the power of the placebo effect and that it's sometimes actually more powerful and convicing than real/noticeable/measurable effects. :)
     
  20. TonyW

    TonyW Registered Member

    Joined:
    Oct 12, 2005
    Posts:
    2,633
    Location:
    UK
    I'm still using a computer running Windows XP with 256MB RAM from 2002. Even to this day, it runs fine, but then I don't run too many things at once.
     
  21. noone_particular

    noone_particular Registered Member

    Joined:
    Aug 8, 2008
    Posts:
    3,798
    Older software and operating systems had less RAM to work with and were coded with efficiency in mind. 3 years before that, they were running on 64MB RAM, and doing it quite well. Present day systems have almost unlimited RAM. Coders aren't concerned about efficient code any more as the nearly unlimited RAM, disk space and resources can handle the inefficient code. It's made coders sloppy and lazy. A lot of what's available now would have been unacceptable a few years ago.

    To the original poster. With that limited amount of RAM, you need to shut off anything you're not using. System services are part of it, but the worst offenders by far are the extra apps vendors bundle onto the PCs. Many of them run at boot and are never used. Take a good look at your running processes, especially those launched by explorer. Some will be obvious items that you'll know you don't use. Others won't be so clear. Shut them down one at a time and see if the PC still does all that you need. Uninstall those that you don't use at all. Those that you use rarely, remove the autostart entry and launch them manually when you will actually use them.

    With limited RAM, efficient code is the key. Up until 2 years ago, I used a PC with 160MB RAM. It worked quite well once I got all the junk out. Internet Explorer was a RAM hog, as were most security suites. AVs are becoming very demanding as well. Choose efficient apps that do what you need without adding on a lot of extras that you don't.
     
  22. vasa1

    vasa1 Registered Member

    Joined:
    May 1, 2010
    Posts:
    4,152
    Nobody mentioned fonts. Does reducing the number of installed fonts make a difference?
     
  23. Nanobot

    Nanobot Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 23, 2010
    Posts:
    237
    Location:
    Neo Tokyo
    I doubt that Fonts play such a big role (if any) in ram usage ,in any case you can try FontFrenzy for that job,i use it mostly to remove all the fonts except those that came along with windows.(Defrenzy)


    For Ram usage/management i personally use O&O Clever Cache or Cacheman 7 honestly don't know if its just a placebo or not but both of these programs make my 1gb/win7 machine work very smooth.
     
  24. ABee

    ABee Registered Member

    Joined:
    Jun 2, 2010
    Posts:
    330
    You've got 64MB of RAM dedicated to your graphics card, which leaves the other 448 for the rest of the machine.

    Do as has been suggested, and disable things that unequivocally don't need to be running. The Java Updater (jusched.exe) would be a perfect example of that.
    You need that using a couple MB of memory at all times, when it only serves a useful purpose once every couple of months or so? I don't think so.
    Check for updates yourself once in a while, manually download and install them when they're released.

    The apps you choose to use are a big factor. Skype, e.g., will always suck up plenty of memory.

    Another thing you can do to reduce memory usage by a few MB is tell your machine to use 16-bit color instead of 32-bit. The average user will never notice the difference.

    I might also suggest to create a separate partition on the drive of around 10 or 15GB, and use that for your pagefile. Set the maximum pagefile size to 5 or 6GB, and let it reside on that partition all by itself.

    None of what I've mentioned are going to all by themselves make any sort of huge difference for you, but the cumulative effect may be somewhat noticeably better, and that's all you can reasonably expect, at best.

    And try to make sure you don't make changes that ultimately do more harm than good. Just because there's a tweak posted somewhere on the internet doesn't mean it's worthwile or even necessarily advisable to implement.

    Good luck with it.
     
  25. Sully

    Sully Registered Member

    Joined:
    Dec 23, 2005
    Posts:
    3,719
    True. Try using pserv when messing with services. It exports your current configuration as an .xml file, which you can import back in if things get funky. As well, StartupControlPanel allows you to "uncheck" items, but it leaves them available to "check" at a later time if functionality is not correct.

    Sul.
     
Loading...
Thread Status:
Not open for further replies.