Tech Tip: Determine the role of your computer

Both Windows 95 and 98 include a common File System Properties page, which gives you an easy first step to optimizing your Win9x installations. To access the page, right-click My Computer and select Properties. Click the Performance tab, and select File System, which will open the File System Properties window.

On the Hard Disk tab, the Typical Role Of This Computer drop-down list allows you to select one of three typical roles. Each of the settings changes the way the Virtual File Allocation Table (VFAT)—the 32-bit disk access mechanism—allocates resources to cache disk requests.

Here are the three role options.

  • Desktop Computer: This is the default setting. It uses 10 KB of memory to configure the VFAT with enough memory to record the last 32 folders and the last 677 files that were accessed.
  • Mobile Or Docking Station: This uses less memory to record fewer of the last accessed folders and files, which is better for systems with very little memory—whether or not they're laptops. It's also beneficial for computers that don't access many files but spend more time processing a small number of files.
  • Network Server: This uses much more memory than the Desktop Computer setting (40 KB) to remember a far greater number of folders and files. It's best for computers that hold a number of shared folders accessed by other computers or for computers that access many files for light processing.

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