Computer and Software Support

DOS Command Buffers


BUFFERS=(number),(read-ahead number)

Used in the CONFIG.SYS file to set the number of disk buffers (a number from 1 to 99) that will be available for use during data input. Also used to set a value for the number of sectors to be read in advance (read-ahead) during data input operations.



While conducting input and output operations, DOS stores information in memory buffers so that it will be readily available when requested by an application. The more buffers set in the CONFIG.SYS file with the BUFFERS command, the faster DOS will be able to access the information requested. You should experiment to determine the most efficient number of buffers for your computer and the applications you are running. The same is true for determining the appropriate number of read-ahead buffers. The read ahead buffers determine the amount of data DOS will read from the disk in addition to the data requested by the application.


number - Sets the number of disk buffers DOS should use (1 to 99). If no value is provided the default value (determined by the amount of memory in your computer) will be used. Generally, if you have 512K of memory, the default will be 15.

read ahead - Sets the number of buffers in the secondary or read-ahead cache. DOS 5.0 allows values of 1 to 8 with 1 as the default. In DOS 6.0 you can specify 0 to 8 with 0 as the default.



To set buffers to 20 and read-ahead buffers to 2 enter the following line in your CONFIG.SYS file


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