A recent Microsoft article explains how to work around a SQL Server 2000 problem that occurs when you change the file growth value for the tempdb database from fixed increments to percentage. The article, "PRB: File Growth Value for TempDB is Not Persistent When Changed From Fixed Increments to Percentage," says that when you make the change and restart SQL Server, the file growth value still appears in fixed increments (for example, 80KB). The article explains the problem and the workaround, which involves updating the status column in the master database's sysaltfiles table.

   http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=816939