I have partitioned my HDD at least into 2 partitions. One is for general purpose and the other is for swap partition. My desktop computer is still a 17″ PowerPC 1Ghz iMac with 512MB of main RAM.
Although many people complaint slow performance of Mac compared to Windows machine a few years ago, I didn’t have any performance problem same to what they have suffered. Actually I have more performance issues with my Windows machines whose HDDs were also partitioned to have dedicated VM space.
However, recently I noticed that my iMac slowed down a lot. I thought it was due to bulkier Safari, Firefox, and video files which demand high data bandwidth. So, I got to use my MacBook more often. Launching Xcode was pain. So, my iMac became a file server nowadays.
But I noticed that there is no activity on my Mac’s dedicated swap partition, and investigated what happened. Strangely swap files were created on its main partition not its swap partition. So, I checked its /etc/rc file and found out that all the custom settings to use a dedicated swap partition was gone. So, I looked up Move swap to another partition, revisited again
After setting a dedicated swap partition again, it felt like that I got a new computer! Everything is snappy!
It is clear that a dedicated swap partition on a dedicated HDD can give much better performance.
But just dedicated swap partition is fast enough for end-users!