Pagefile.sys – how to safely delete pagefile.sys or use it on Windows XP.

As to the pagefile.sys that is in use by the virtual memory if you have plenty of ram you can turn off or at least reduce the amount set aside:

  • click start
  • right click my computer
  • click properties
  • click advanced (tab)
  • under performance click settings
  • click advanced (tab) under virtual memory click change

here you can change the space available for each drive by choosing the custom button then entering the amount you want
or if ya got lotsa ram choose the no paging file either way make sure to click the “set” button when you’re done


Posted on February 1, 2007, in Web Dev. Bookmark the permalink. 48 Comments.

  1. I have 512 ddr …and my pagefile.sys use 770mb of my hdd. It’s recomanded to deleted or to decrease it size. ???

  2. decrease the size

    if you use much software at the same time use what you have

    if you are a standard user “surfing””some games” etc

    try using 255 initial – 500 maximum

  3. 512 meg of memory is not enough to be able to decrease your page file in most cases. Particularly with all of the programs people run consecutively now. (Background programs that you don’t ever see often take up more memory than your forground programs.)

    To increase system performance make a static sized page file (i.e. set the initial and max to the same thing.) And make it atleast 768meg.

    To maximize disk space set it to an initial size of 256meg and a max of 1024meg. It will start off small and then grow if it needs to.

    Do to the technical details of how it works, very bad things can start happening if your page file fills up and can’t increase in side any more.

  4. I Am Using 2GB Ram and my Pagefile.sys file is of 4.00 GB so what can i do ?

    i it safe to delete this file or not ?
    if answer is yes how can i delete that file ??

    Please Help Me…………..

  5. I’m having the same issue as Adnan…any help would be appreciated!

  6. To delete pagefile, use the script pagefileconfig.vbs (found in system folder) and pass it /delete argument. Specify the drive in which pagefile resides.

  7. What about taking pagefile.sys and putting it on a separate partition, much like the way Linux does with its swap partition –perhaps a 2 or 3 gig part?

    I like the way linux handles divvying what would be it’s C drive and breaking it up into smaller bite-size compartments. like a partition for /boot, /home, /(root), /usr, /opt (for certain systems), /var….

    and I wish there was a way i could do the same thing in windows, and somehow get better performance.

  8. you forgot to mention that deleting pagefile.sys by turning off the virtual memory option can cause extreme instability in Windows to the point where it might stop:

  9. I routinely delete this file when doing system maintenance (defrag / backup)

    it save me a gig of space and a bit of time when ghosting an image backup using Norton Ghost 8

    I let windows (XP) re create it when I reboot the newly cloned machine so it will be one continious file.

    I DO NOT RECOMMEND deleting it for simply saving space.

    try a utility like CleanUP by Steve Gould to ruthlessly get rid of junk with one easy click.

    To save space I recommend TinyXP Pro which you can find the ISO file to download through any torrent site. – The most recent is below

    This saves loads of hard drive space
    This runs fast on a small amount of RAM
    This is a simple “one click” automated install

  10. Thank you so much.

  11. Greetings All…

    My laptop froze up and I had to do a ‘hard’ shutdown. When I re-started it, it had to do a CHKDSK and then did a repair of either bad sectors and/or files and also deleted some. Then when it re-started up again, a “Limited Virtual Memeory” message can up. I’ve tried to reset the Page File several times trying to do so in the Normal mode and then in Safe Mode and STILL no luck getting rid of the LVM message. Plus now under Normal Mode the laptop is running SO SLOWLY that hurts just so much waiting for it to run (or try to) a program. I’ve also tried to delete the Page File but to no avail either. I’m wondering if, in fact, there is a bad system file and, if so, how can I do a “repair” so that I can then use a transfer cable (and load the software first) to move those main programs from the XP Pro to a VISTA. Any and all help, assistance or thoughts would be greatly appreciated at this point as I’m currently ‘dead in the water’ till I can get the HD back UP on it’s ‘feet’ to do the transfer. Thanks In Advance!!! Ciao

  12. Dont disturb me because all the time your massage coming pls remove this massage
    thank u

  13. my c drive is 71 gb and i have used 71 gb what can i do to get my space back and how please .

  14. davewickett,

    I recommend you buy the external HDD and move your data there.

  15. A very easy way to for pagefile.sys.
    First download “Unlocker 1.8.7 or any of version” It’s a very free software and easy to download.
    1. Right click on pagefile.sys
    2. Click Unlocker.
    3. After then delete the pagefile.sys
    4. Then in your C drive creat a new notepad file
    5. Rename the file as pagefile .sys
    6. Change the new pagefile.sys file’s attributes as read only.
    7. restart

  16. hi..

    my local cant open with double click ..right click of local drive so show me different language like chinese n japness but dis totally different .. kindly suggest me how to remove dis virus..

  17. hi…………

    i have tried shiplu’s comment but everytime i use delete it with unlocker,
    there is physical dump of memory with in second’s and on restart it is still again there ………
    i have 1.5gb ram and 120gb hard disk

  18. Pagefile.sys is a important swap file. I contains memory that gets swaped constantly with your memory card.

  19. there is a virus in my pagefile.sys….
    i m not able to delete it…
    my pc juz hangs after each 15 mins..plzz help me out..

  20. Gordon , this is the best find of the new year 2009 for me so far. Thanks Gordon I have been looking for something like this for some time.

    “To save space I recommend TinyXP Pro which you can find the ISO file to download through any torrent site. – The most recent is below”

  21. when i did a rootkit scan it came up with 9 hidden objects advised me to do full scan ..came up with [warning] for page file system saying.. The file could not be opened…how can i repair it …not very good with computers so make it simple….

  22. any solutions for windows vista??

  23. when i start avira antivirus scan of c drive.There is 1 warning c:/Pagefile.sys {the file cannot open}i m using 2 rams of 256 and 512.both are what can i do plz help me…..

  24. People, you really must stop your campaign of hate against poor old pagefile.sys

    It serves a very useful purpose of being somewhere for Windows to store stuff when it’s running out of memory. This is usually because you are running several tasks concurrently and switching your attention between them, as the mood takes you. If Windows runs out of RAM under these circumstances your machine will become progressively more sluggish until you have to close it down. or even freeze up completely. But hold on a moment, what if Windows had a scratchpad on your hard drive where it could store inactive stuff that’s hogging memory? That, folks, is where pagefile.sys comes in.

    Just let Windows manage its own virtual memory (pagefile.sys) requirements and all will be well.

  25. For XP users, if you really /must/ adjust the size of pagefile.sys this is the safe way to do it :

    1 Right-click My Computer on the desktop
    2 Choose Properties and select the Advanced Tab
    3 Click the Settings button in the Performance box
    4 This brings up the Performance Options dialogue
    5 Select the Advanced Tab
    6 Click the Change button in the Virtual Memory box
    7 This, at last, brings up the Virtual Memory dialogue

    This is where you can impose your own limits on pagefile.sys _or_ you can elect to let Windows continue doing it. You can even choose to have no paging file at all, if you like, just for the dubious thrill of finding out how long you can live without one.

  26. Hi, i have a major issue with my page file, i see poeple asking if 1 gb is a ok size.. poeple say no and advise to decrease it a little, but what if you have.. a 10gb pagefile on a xp parttion thats never used, and a 4gb on a windows 7?… i have 3gb ram.. what shuold i do?… please email me at, as i might not check this site 😦

  27. Jmyeom, the answer to your Q was the last post on this very page. I have been testing with it changing its size and the steps above are just the ones I used.
    If you have a 10 gigs file it must be that it is set to that.
    If you never use that partition what’s the big deal anyway?
    It must have been set to ten gigs by the guy that built your computer and thoughtfully he’d set it on a partition that you never use. The bigget the file the more the stability and if you can afford the size then just have a cup of tea and forget about it.
    Also, if you look just below the button that you hit to post your post, there’s a BOX that you tick to be emailed automatically.
    I am not emailing this to you, I’d rather say it full knowing that you’ll never read it!

  28. hi
    i have 4gigs of ram and 1gig of video card, what should be the size of my pagefile

  29. I Am Using 2GB Ram and my Pagefile.sys file is of 4.00 GB so what can i do ?

    i it safe to delete this file or not ?
    if answer is yes how can i delete that file ??

    Please Help Me…………..

  30. Ok, people are asking if it is safe to disable pagefile with 2-3GB of RAM. But what about 8 GB of RAM (DDR2)? Do I really need it? I could save almost 9 GB of space if it is really safe to remove it.

  31. thanks for the tips!

  32. pagefile.sys was virus in my system not deleted a fiel place cleaar this system


  33. If you have over 2GB of ram and you are not running your ram over 60-70% full, it is safe to turn off page filing. I have done it on several machines starting at 2GB.

  34. My hard drive has quit working. I changed motherboard and memory (2GB) and the system will not reboot the drive. It will boot other drives. When I hook the drive up to a 2nd system and defrag it, It reports the pagefile.sys file as fragmented. I have also checked the disk for errors. Windows starts to boot and then continuously reboots. Can this file be causing this (since other drives work)? How can I fix it?

  35. UltimateCoder

    Hi, I want to decrese the size from Windows 7 (In Win. XP on another HDD) but how? Should I delete the file (hidden system file – Located in HDD)?

  36. i have windows 7 ultimate with 1gb ram. the issue is the low memory error comes repeatedly. the settings i make to the page file console some how wash away on next boot and the console shows blank space in the area designated to show the size of page files. can the page file be forced edited in a text editor as i believe the windows based console is not working. i have been optimizing for programs and use values much above the min and max allowed in the custom size.

  37. Thanks for the tip, that was useful (I was trying to format a drive and could not because of a pagefile.sys on it).
    Still useful on windows7.

  38. The contents of Pagefile.sys can be deleted at every shutdown through a Local Policy setting, if so desired.

  39. Thank you very much for the tip. Very useful 😉

  40. i have 1GB of ram and 1.99 GB data use my hard disk pagefile.sys……..delete this file method me

  41. I work with sensitive information on Truecrypt container and would like to delete pagefile.sys securely just in case it has unencrypted information such as passwords, etc. I’ve heard that the Windows method of deleting pagefile.sys at shutdown is unreliable. Any suggestions?

  42. Nice post, Thanks 🙂

  43. my system is having 4 gb ram but the sys file size is showing 8.5gb because of this my c drive is always full.can u help me out

  44. i have 8gb of RAM im good to lower the size of this file right?


    I put a slave disk on my system XP , but unfortunately it keeps old Windows XP and pagefile.sys
    Although I have Administrative rights – the system does not allow me neither to format the disk nor even change its letter (I need it badly to keep the system in working state – I installed many programs and files on an external disk.) because it sees pagefile.sys and probably other system files on the slave. I set it to C disk and rebooted the system and this did not help.

    Can you please advise?

  46. Definitely a pain in the arse…. haven’t updated my PC in forever, too many important files but also, my C drive was always small, only 150 GB. Always running out of room and this pagesysfile at 4 GB is pissing me off!!

  47. Thanks, I set to virtual memory to No Paging file , It works And I free my 2GB HD space.

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