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The Swap space is an actual partition that's used sort of like a scratch disk. If you have alot of memory, you honestly probably don't even need one. I know I don't, but for Linux, I said ok, take 150Megs, which of course has never been used and sits as wasted harddrive space. 150-200 sounds good depending on your RAM as scotty says. Three times RAM though, YIKES, I would have a 1.5Gig swap partition of wasted space.
Yeah, these docs were probably written when a computer with >32Mb of RAM was considered to be power machine. Even that Linux for Dummies (which was written only a couple of years ago) suggests SWAP=2xPhysical. I did have 512Mb (to be on the safe side), but since my gkrellm showed me that I wasn't every using any, I've down-sized to about 150Mb.