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[expert][tip] Using a RAMdisk to speed up your HDD - and/or reduce SSD trashing

Mussels

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I've been using dataram for over a week now on the lappy. Can't say for sure that there's a speed up but it has deffinately reduced HD noise and thrashing. I moved my temp files and mozilla cache. Am also using it as WinRAR's temp folder.

The only problem that popped up so far is whe I was trying to install IBM's Lotus Symphony office package and there wasn't enough space in my TEMP folder for the atchive. Increased the size, rebooted and that solved the issue...
 

shevanel

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I installed firefox onto the ramdrive but still had to change the default cache directory and this is how...

type about:config in firefox

right click and select new string

enter browser.cache.disk.parent_directory, and chose parent directory location ie: H:\FFcache

and it'll put a sub-folder named cache below that.
 
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shevanel

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had to uninstall dataram.. it blitzed my dvdrw.. whenever i wanted to burn a dvd it was fine, but installing from the dvd completely choked out the pc with minimal cpu usage..

i uninstalled dataram and defaulted my temp folder and now its fixed. im baffled too.
 
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had to uninstall dataram.. it blitzed my dvdrw.. whenever i wanted to burn a dvd it was fine, but installing from the dvd completely choked out the pc with minimal cpu usage..

i uninstalled dataram and defaulted my temp folder and now its fixed. im baffled too.
I think you ran itno the same problem as me earlier. You just ran out of space on your ram drive. When you have your temp folder on a HD, it's not limited in size. Windows doesn't know you moved it to a ram drive and started writing the dvd info on it...
 

ataxy

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ok i am trying to use the unused ram of my m1710 to make a ramdisk, ramdisk plus does not seem to be able to use it, i havent tryed romex ramdisk for now all i can say is that it seems that ie8 is slightly faster in win7 ultimate will try romex to see if i can use the unused ram will report back
 
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had to uninstall dataram.. it blitzed my dvdrw.. whenever i wanted to burn a dvd it was fine, but installing from the dvd completely choked out the pc with minimal cpu usage..

i uninstalled dataram and defaulted my temp folder and now its fixed. im baffled too.
When you say "installing from the dvd" what do you mean? Any old .exe or msi installer? Installers can sometimes have massive temp requirements due to compressed data. (Installer needs to unzip the install data... and guess where it does that?).

Hmm. I wonder if it is possible to make the Windows installer use a different temp directory. Otherwise, installing big setups will require temporarily disabling the ramdisk. Shame.

A clever RAMdisk driver would use physical HDD space once it ran out of memory. We'd better pass that info/request on to the RAMdisk programmers: Hybrid-RAMdisk drivers needs an X size for virtual, and a Y size for physical (set to zero for a pure RAMdisk). Oh, this does sound a bit complicated :pimp:

Yes, perhaps my suggestion is techo overkill. But there may be uses... esp. in a 24/7 system.

But in your case, why not just run a script
set temp=c:\temp when you want to install, and another,
set temp=z:\temp when you have finished and want to use the RAMdrive again.

More info here: http://vlaurie.com/computers2/Articles/environment.htm
 
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I have a question, after one would setup/establish this new space is the intent to load programs to that partition and run it from there or just 'cache' temp files to reduce access from the HDD?

Example:
I want Game X to run faster so I create a 2GB RamDisc partition and install Game X. Game X is now running from my ram, thus increasing load times significantly.

Does the install of the game dissapear at a power cycle? I'm assuming yes after reading all the comments.
 
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mlee... read the whole thread! Your question is already answered. And why not try one of the tools and show some benchies ;)

With most of the RAMdisk drivers discussed here, you have an option to select "save image to HDD" on shutdown, which will also reinstall on next boot. So no, you dont lose your data.
 
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do this i shall
 
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Thought I'd chime in as well. Using the Romex software, I was able to create a RAMdisk using the invisible memory with the free edition. Out of curiosity... would this speed up the process of converting videos that aren't very large? like 500-700mb into smaller file sizes? using a portable video converter, or say, installing virtualdub into the ramdisk?
 

Mussels

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Thought I'd chime in as well. Using the Romex software, I was able to create a RAMdisk using the invisible memory with the free edition. Out of curiosity... would this speed up the process of converting videos that aren't very large? like 500-700mb into smaller file sizes? using a portable video converter, or say, installing virtualdub into the ramdisk?
no, because those tasks are CPU limited, not HDD limited
 
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I didn't think so, but i figured I'd ask anyway. =)
 
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Using Dataram, 1GB partition compared to my raid0 array:



Wow, I'm impressed. I need to put this to use.
 
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Your 4K speeds are S.L.O.W. Very SSSLLLOOOWWW.

Try formating it as FAT32 or NTFS and try again.
 
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where are the temp windwos settings for vista? i havent had any luck finding them

EDIT:
ok, disregard my above question, as i've given up on the ramdisks.

but, when using the dataram ramdisk utility it wont let me stop the ramdisk. when i tell it to stop, i jsut get a bsod saying that windows stopped a driver from corrupting the system. anyone else having this problem?

i tried rebooting, hiting f8, and hitting "disable driver signature enforcement" but still got the bsod, even when right clicking the utility and running as administrator.

i've done some poking around, and the ramdisk utility is not a start-up feature that can be disabled in msconfig. however, i did notice that now in device manager i have a "DataRam Ramdisk" tab, upon which the ramdisk is under. since it seems that windows doesnt load/activate the ramdisk until it loads the driver upon bootup (as the ramdisk does not come up in safe mode, and there are no listings for it in msconfig, or i should say that everything in msconfig i am aware of) could i simply uninstall the driver, to force the ramdisk to stop, and then uninstall the utility without any problems?
 
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i really want to see someone with a massive amount of ram load crysis into a ram drive and see the loading speeds ;) im also betting texture pop in would be all but gone :roll: makes me wish i had 32gigs of ram
 
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Ok. For Xmas I bought myself an Gigabyte i-RAM. Going CHEAP-CHEAP on ebay. Why? Because what I paid for it was not more than just the RAM price, plus I am on 32-bit W2K3, so expanding system RAM and trying to RAMDISK isnt an option. (In theory it is, but my tests with PAE were not successful and met with BSOD).

So here is the comparison of Original HDD, system ram RAMdisk, and Gigabyte i-RAM. Notice that the i-RAM is contrained by SATA-150 speeds, so doesnt outpace the system RAM based RAMdisk in sequential. But look where it counts... the random read/writes. It's a hell of a lot faster than a HDD even it not quite up there with the system ramdisks :)

My temp files now point to the i-RAM, and I have turned off Romex since I dont need it anymore.

Memory organisation: 4GB system 32bit W2K3, and 4GB Ramdisk on i-RAM

1./ WD Greendrive. (No comments, wish I never bought this slow CLUNKY noisy pretender).



2./ Romex RAMdisk Scratch that. I havent a clue what type of ramdisk this is... I think it is corrupted install of gavotte and needs deleting


Please note that these speeds are nowhere near the speeds in my original post. See next post for new installs of ramdisks; i think the above result is buggy.

3./ Gigabyte i-RAM


The i-RAM is 30-50x faster than the HDD, where it counts, the randon read/write. That's OK with me, even if not as good as a system ram disk. It all depends what ram you have got spare and can allocate to a ramdisk. I'm limited due to my 32bit W2K3 setup :pimp:
 
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OK, comparison with the latest Dataram RAMdisk utility 3.5.130



And the latest Romex (free) 1.16.2127.1603



Both of which are a lot faster than the i-RAM. Therefore, if you have the option, buy more system ram and create a RAMdisk in the system ram, rather than buy a gigabyte i-RAM over SATA.
 
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OK, comparison of i-RAM with different formats.

1./ NTFS size 4096


2./ FAT32 default size


3./ NTFS size 2048


4./ NTFS size 1024


5./ NTFS size 512


6./ NTFS size 4096 again


Conclusion: NTFS faster than FAT32. Not a lot of difference across format sector size on NTFS, but 4096 wins marginally.
 

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Great thread Lemonadesoda! FireFox runs so much smoother now.