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Old 14 November 2017, 14:49   #1
Nightfox
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Virtual Memory on Amiga?

I was thinking, since the 68010 and above support virtual memory, was this ever used on the Amiga? Seems like a handy way to get extra memory in Workbench, albeit it would be slow.
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Old 14 November 2017, 14:59   #2
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yup, there's some extensions for it; VMEM and GIGAMEM. You do however need a full Paged MMU for this to work (so practically a full 030/040/060).
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Old 14 November 2017, 15:03   #3
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Is it too slow to be practical?
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Old 14 November 2017, 23:59   #4
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I can't speak for VMEM as I've never used it, I did use Gigamem on my A1200 with a Blizzard 1230IV for a while and didn't notice any slowdowns, the 030 on that card has a full MMU.
You can only use FFS though, it won't patch any other filesystem which is a let down for me, and the reason I stopped using it, I use PFS3 for the larger partition size.
It would be a great solution if it supported any Filesystem, but as it is very limiting!
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Old 15 November 2017, 13:09   #5
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As opposed to other systems, the Amiga virtual memory solutions only swap pages to the hard drive when free RAM is critically low. So you won't get a slowdown until it's actually using the swap. When it does though, it will be quite slow - especially on a slow interface like the built-in IDE.
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Old 15 November 2017, 15:30   #6
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Yeah I failed to mention that when I used Gigamem I had a external SCSI drive connected to the Blizzards SCSI kit dedicated for swap. Never tried it off the IDE port but can imagine it would slow it down a little.
Even so, as long as you are only using FastFileSystem it is a useful addition for extending RAM support.
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