Adjust Virtual Memory

If you have two hard drives in your computer and your C: drive is about full, you can tell Windows to use your other drive for virtual memory .
OR—if you have one hard drive that is faster than the other, it’s probably better to use that one for virtual memory, since your data is retrieved faster.

In any event, if you want to change the drive Windows uses for virtual memory, here’s how:

A word of caution first : If you mess something up with virtual memory (you know, like change the amount Windows can use or shut it off altogether), it can stop your system from functioning properly. So be careful!

For Windows 95, 98 & ME

1. Right-click My Computer and select Properties from the resulting menu.

2. Next, click the Performance tab and click the Virtual Memory button.

3. By default, Windows manages your virtual memory. Select “Let me specify my own virtual memory settings”.

4. From the “Hard Disk” drop box, select the drive you want to use.

That’s it. Hit the OK button and you’re all set.

Again, if you feel the need to mess with any other settings, you do so at your own risk.

Windows XP hides the VM adjustment—probably because they don’t really want you messing with it.

1. Right-click My Computer and select Properties (or hold down the Alt key and double-click “My Computer”)

2. Click the Advanced tab then under Performance , click “Settings”.

3. There will be another Advanced tab to select in the “Performance Options” window. Down where it says “Virtual Memory” click Change .

4. Finally, we get to the screen we’re looking for.


You will see a window with available drives where you can select the drive you want (if you have more than one). Notice that it also shows how much space you have available on that drive. You can specify a Custom size, or let the system manage the size for you. After you’ve made your selection, click Set and OK .

~ Steve