When I first got my laptop a few years ago, it had 1 gigabyte of RAM, which was pretty cool at the time. I was using WinXP as my main operating system back them. One day, I opened up as many programs as I could, I opened up every part of MS Office, I opened up a few media players and set them all to play, I opened up my web browser and set a few YouTube videos playing. I had a ridiculous amount of programs running, and my RAM usage peaked somewhere between 700 and 800 megs.

So then I thought, "what the hell do I need a swap for?", so I went into the settings and disabled it.

Now that I use Linux as my main operating system, I don't have a swap partition, and everything works fine. Right now, I've got Xfce running, with Thunderbird, two terminals, and Firefox. Here's what I get when I type "free -m":

             total       used       free     shared    buffers     cached
Mem:           999        558        441          0         43        214
-/+ buffers/cache:        300        699
Swap:            0          0          0
As I'm sure everybody is aware, RAM is way way way way faster than a hard disk. Back when I was about 7 years old using DOS and Win 3.11, if I had a game that was playing sluggish (e.g. DOOM), then I would create a RAM drive and then copy the game to the RAM drive. I'd then run the game off the RAM drive and it'd run like lightning.

So one of the reasons I don't want a swap file is that I'm afraid the computer will start saving memory to disk when it doesn't have to (because as I've already said, I opened up a ridiculous amount of programs in WinXP and the most I ever used was about 750 megs).

Plus nowadays, I hear people have computers with 2 gigs and 4 gigs of RAM, so the whole idea of a "swap drive" should be left in the stone age.

Anyway the reason I started this thread is because I'm just after reading a tutorial that was posted here that shows how to dual-boot Linux with another operating system, and the tutorial involved making a swap partition.

Can anyone remember about 10 years ago or so, when people were using Windows 98, and the hard disk drive would thrash every time you go to do something... 9 times out of 10 that was he swap file being loaded... it was horrible.

Swap files might have their use for dealing with old computers, computers with 128 megs of RAM, but really I think they have no place in modern PC's.