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Old 06-02-2004, 06:18 AM   #1
Registered: Jan 2004
Distribution: Debian etch
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Do I NEED a swap partition

I'm installing slackware on a computer with only 1gb space for linux. I'm doing a small install, no X etc. Do I need a swap partition or can I just have 1 partition.

When I installed slackware on my laptop I had 500mb swap but it didn't seem to be hardly using it.

2.4 celeron procseeor
256 ram

Last edited by priller; 06-02-2004 at 06:21 AM.
Old 06-02-2004, 06:38 AM   #2
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If it's not being used, then you don't need it (not that much). You certainly don't need 500mb. You have a lot of ram, and the more you have, the less swap you'll need.
Old 06-02-2004, 06:50 AM   #3
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Swap is optional. Normally I would say you can't live without it, but in this case, I think you just might have to. Swap is akin to virtual memory in the Windows world. If you fill up your ram the machine will "swap" memory onto your partition on the disk to free up space in the real memory. In your case, the machine would not be able to swap out anything so once you have used the 256MB you'd be done. However, if you are running a very small scale system 256 MB is often more then enough memory, and since your disk space is tight I'd probably just go without swap for now.
Old 06-02-2004, 07:03 AM   #4
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There is a good case for why having a small swap is still a good idea, but I forget where I read it. You have a lot of ram. I don't think you'd use the swap often, if ever.
Old 06-02-2004, 10:23 AM   #5
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I'm doing a small install, no X etc
Since you will not be installing X, you may do without swap.

My system uses swap on regular intervals, but I use X and a lot of graphical applications which consume memory.
Remember, graphical environments are memory hogs while command line programs are lightweigh.
But if you plan on only using the command line and having very few active services, large amounts of SWAP will go to waste.

But you may want a safety net just in case.
If possible, create a small swap... 32 MB for example.


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