I have seen people asking question about the necessity of swap space with various amounts of RAM installed, but my question is one to two orders of magnitude larger in the respect of installed RAM.

The machine in question was used as a virtual machine host server. For that purpose I had 128GB of RAM installed, and that was just about enough (peak memory usage was around 119GB)

Now this machine is decommissioned as virtual machine host and I am giving it Ubuntu Desktop to repurpose it as my power workstation that can crunch through big compiling tasks (e.g. Linux kernel) or multimedia rendering tasks (e.g. for uploading to YouTube) since it is such a powerhouse with dual Xeon E5-2620v2 processors (12 cores total, 24 threads)

Now with 128GB of RAM installed and since there is nowhere else those ECC RAM modules can go to, this Ubuntu installation is receiving full 128GB ECC RAM.

With that RAM space which is double the SSD space in my (another) daily driver workstation (as this behemoth of a workstation is a major power hog running it as my daily driver wouldn't be ecnomical,) do I need any swap space on this powerhouse in perceivable future?

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    Swap is helpful in case of running out of memory, which depends on whether you want compile/render stuff at the same time - you done need to it hibernate though. The view on swap size is often opinion based - e.g. in this question from a while ago. Swap can slow things down if swappiness if not configured properly though. – Wilf Jul 19 '15 at 15:15
  • @Wilf I am limited to 24 threads after all so I don't think I will have that much parallelism in my system that can saturate this 128GB RAM, no matter whether I am compiling the kernel or rendering video. – Maxthon Chan Jul 19 '15 at 16:03

No you don't need swap, would be my short answer. Unless you are going to do some heavy video editing or similar RAM heavy task, you won't have any speed up benefits of enabling any ram. As you will still have plenty of free ram for file caching.

Do note that you won't be able to hibernate without enabling something like twice the amount of RAM for your swap space, however as you state that you only have 64GB of disk storage, that wouldn't have been possible anyway.

  • The 64GB of SSD is in another workstation - this machine have 6x 2TB HDD in RAID-10 configuration. But taking out 250GB as swap is crazy. – Maxthon Chan Jul 19 '15 at 15:53
  • I guess having 128GB of RAM for a desktop is somewhat crazy too;) – Minos Jul 20 '15 at 11:35
  • I said that the machine WAS a virtual machine host and 128GB was barely enough. Now repurposed this 128GB RAM became a problem. – Maxthon Chan Jul 22 '15 at 18:39

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