How to Change Virtual Memory Windows 11: A Step-by-Step Guide

how to change virtual memory windows 11

Virtual memory is a crucial part of your computer’s performance. If you feel your PC running slow, adjusting virtual memory can help. In Windows 11, this involves a few steps: going to System Settings, finding Advanced system settings, and adjusting the settings under Performance Options. Here’s a simple guide to get you through this process.

Step-by-Step Guide to Changing Virtual Memory in Windows 11

In this section, we’ll walk you through the steps to change virtual memory settings in Windows 11. This will improve your computer’s performance by using part of your hard drive as if it were extra RAM.

Step 1: Open System Settings

To start, click on the Start button, and open the System Settings.

The System Settings menu is where you’ll find all the options to tweak how your computer operates. It’s like the control center for your computer.

Step 2: Go to the About Section

Navigate to the "About" section at the bottom of the system settings menu.

The "About" section gives you detailed information about your computer, including what kind of operating system it has and how much RAM is installed.

Step 3: Open Advanced System Settings

Click on "Advanced system settings" on the right side.

This opens up a new window with more in-depth options for managing your system. It’s where you make the magic happen for virtual memory.

Step 4: Go to the Performance Settings

In the new window, click on "Settings" under the Performance section.

This brings up the Performance Options window. Here, you’ll find settings that affect how well your computer runs, including virtual memory.

Step 5: Adjust Virtual Memory Settings

Click on the "Advanced" tab, then click on "Change" under the Virtual memory section.

Now you can see the virtual memory settings. Uncheck "Automatically manage paging file size for all drives" to customize it.

Step 6: Set Custom Size

Select the drive where you want to change the settings and enter the initial and maximum size of the virtual memory in megabytes.

Be cautious here. It’s usually recommended to set the initial size to 1.5 times your RAM and the maximum size to 3 times your RAM.

Step 7: Apply and Restart

Click "Set," then "OK," and restart your computer to apply the changes.

Restarting your computer ensures that all the new settings take effect. Your system will now use the new virtual memory settings you’ve configured.

After you complete these steps, your computer should run more smoothly. It will use the extra space on your hard drive to help manage more tasks at once, making everything quicker and more efficient.

Tips for Changing Virtual Memory in Windows 11

  • Monitor Performance: Keep an eye on your computer’s performance after making changes. If things don’t improve, you might need to adjust the settings again.
  • Don’t Overdo It: Setting the virtual memory too high can slow your system down. Stick to recommended settings.
  • Regular Maintenance: Clean up your hard drive regularly to ensure it has enough free space for virtual memory.
  • Use SSDs: If possible, use an SSD for virtual memory. It’s faster than a regular hard drive.
  • Check for Updates: Make sure your Windows 11 is up-to-date to get the best performance and security.

Frequently Asked Questions on How to Change Virtual Memory in Windows 11

What is Virtual Memory?

Virtual memory uses part of your hard drive to extend your computer’s RAM, helping it run more applications simultaneously.

Why Adjust Virtual Memory?

If your computer is slow or running out of RAM, adjusting virtual memory can improve performance.

How Much Virtual Memory Should I Allocate?

It’s generally recommended to set the initial size to 1.5 times your RAM and the maximum size to 3 times your RAM.

Can I Use an External Drive for Virtual Memory?

While technically possible, it’s not recommended because external drives are slower than internal drives.

Will Changing Virtual Memory Hurt My Computer?

If done correctly, changing virtual memory won’t harm your computer. Just make sure to follow recommended settings.

Summary of Steps to Change Virtual Memory in Windows 11

  1. Open System Settings
  2. Go to the About Section
  3. Open Advanced System Settings
  4. Go to the Performance Settings
  5. Adjust Virtual Memory Settings
  6. Set Custom Size
  7. Apply and Restart


There you have it! You’ve now learned how to change virtual memory in Windows 11. This tweak can significantly boost your computer’s performance, especially if you often run out of RAM. Just remember the golden rule: don’t overdo it. Stick to recommended settings and always monitor how your system behaves after changes.

Virtual memory acts like a safety net for your computer, catching those extra tasks when your RAM is full. By adjusting it, you’re essentially giving your PC a bit more breathing room.

For further reading, I recommend checking out guides on optimizing your PC’s performance. And if you’re feeling tech-savvy, dive into more advanced settings in Windows 11 to truly make your computer run like a well-oiled machine. Happy computing!