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#1 Posted by geitenvla (960 posts) -

I have an I7 with 12Gb Ram installed. Whenever I check the usage of my RAM, I notice that not even half of that space is used; not even when I do some "heavy" mutlitasking. I can easily run photoshop, word, excel, firefox and a game like Skyrim and still there's plenty of RAM left. In the past I used Amiga which has a virtual ramdisk built in its OS. One thing led to another so I started searching for virtual disks in Windows. I came across this freeware program that I've been testing for two weeks now on an older Win 7 x86 laptop. I created a virtual disk of 512 Mb out of a total of 3 Gb, just to try it out. This seems to work really well and stable and now I'm tempted to install this to my gaming rig (i7), but I'm hesitant.

Do any of you have an opinion on using virtual ramdisks, pros and cons. And if you use (or have used) it yourself, what are your experiences?

#2 Posted by JigglyWiggly_ (23422 posts) -
what's the point on a desktop it's volatile
#3 Posted by geitenvla (960 posts) -
[QUOTE="JigglyWiggly_"]what's the point on a desktop it's volatile

That's the whole point. Think about winrar for example, or decompressing large files. And what about the speed?
#4 Posted by JigglyWiggly_ (23422 posts) -
That's assuming said saved file is on your ram disk. Also any big archives are like 10 gigs and they take about 30 minutes to extract provided there aren't hundreds of thousands of files in it.
#5 Posted by geitenvla (960 posts) -

Example:

What if I download a 2 GB Rar file to my RAM disc (which I do quite often) and from there I extract the file to where ever I need it. Once the Rar file is extracted, I have no need for it anymore; RAM clears itself on start-up so it saves me the trouble deleting temporary files. Another reason why I it like is that in creative processes (photoshop, acid, etc.) I use a lot of in between saves that immediately become obsolete once I quite editing and save my WIP into one file for that session.

#6 Posted by comp_atkins (31211 posts) -

Example:

What if I download a 2 GB Rar file to my RAM disc (which I do quite often) and from there I extract the file to where ever I need it. Once the Rar file is extracted, I have no need for it anymore; RAM clears itself on start-up so it saves me the trouble deleting temporary files. Another reason why I it like is that in creative processes (photoshop, acid, etc.) I use a lot of in between saves that immediately become obsolete once I quite editing and save my WIP into one file for that session.

geitenvla
does it dump to spinning disk on shutdown? what if you're not paying attention and save your final stuff to the ram instead of the the disk? is it lost?
#7 Posted by geitenvla (960 posts) -

[QUOTE="geitenvla"]

Example:

What if I download a 2 GB Rar file to my RAM disc (which I do quite often) and from there I extract the file to where ever I need it. Once the Rar file is extracted, I have no need for it anymore; RAM clears itself on start-up so it saves me the trouble deleting temporary files. Another reason why I it like is that in creative processes (photoshop, acid, etc.) I use a lot of in between saves that immediately become obsolete once I quite editing and save my WIP into one file for that session.

comp_atkins

does it dump to spinning disk on shutdown? what if you're not paying attention and save your final stuff to the ram instead of the the disk? is it lost?

Using a RAMdisk requires some experience, but the same logic applies to shift+delete (I never use the trashcan). If you don't trust yourself, there is an option to dump it to spinning disk and reload it into RAM on the next startup.

#8 Posted by comp_atkins (31211 posts) -

[QUOTE="comp_atkins"][QUOTE="geitenvla"]

Example:

What if I download a 2 GB Rar file to my RAM disc (which I do quite often) and from there I extract the file to where ever I need it. Once the Rar file is extracted, I have no need for it anymore; RAM clears itself on start-up so it saves me the trouble deleting temporary files. Another reason why I it like is that in creative processes (photoshop, acid, etc.) I use a lot of in between saves that immediately become obsolete once I quite editing and save my WIP into one file for that session.

geitenvla

does it dump to spinning disk on shutdown? what if you're not paying attention and save your final stuff to the ram instead of the the disk? is it lost?

Using a RAMdisk requires some experience, but the same logic applies to shift+delete (I never use the trashcan). If you don't trust yourself, there is an option to dump it to spinning disk and reload it into RAM on the next startup.

never heard of this.. since usually in your hierarchy ram is at a premium not nv storage. interesting.
#9 Posted by geitenvla (960 posts) -

[QUOTE="geitenvla"]

[QUOTE="comp_atkins"] does it dump to spinning disk on shutdown? what if you're not paying attention and save your final stuff to the ram instead of the the disk? is it lost?comp_atkins

Using a RAMdisk requires some experience, but the same logic applies to shift+delete (I never use the trashcan). If you don't trust yourself, there is an option to dump it to spinning disk and reload it into RAM on the next startup.

never heard of this.. since usually in your hierarchy ram is at a premium not nv storage. interesting.

I just installed it on my Win 7 x64. I created a disc of 4 Gb (the maximum that is allowed by the freeware edition); so now I've to see how much of a performance hit it's gonna give. I expect none, since most of the RAM itself is never actually in use.

It's really useful for temporary files.

#10 Posted by comp_atkins (31211 posts) -

[QUOTE="comp_atkins"][QUOTE="geitenvla"]

Using a RAMdisk requires some experience, but the same logic applies to shift+delete (I never use the trashcan). If you don't trust yourself, there is an option to dump it to spinning disk and reload it into RAM on the next startup.

geitenvla

never heard of this.. since usually in your hierarchy ram is at a premium not nv storage. interesting.

I just installed it on my Win 7 x64. I created a disc of 4 Gb (the maximum that is allowed by the freeware edition); so now I've to see how much of a performance hit it's gonna give. I expect none, since most of the RAM itself is never actually in use.

It's really useful for temporary files.

does win7 pre-cache stuff into ram for like recently used programs and stuff? i remember vista used to do that to speed up loading for things you hit often? if so you may want to keep the ram avail to the os for that kidna stuff..
#11 Posted by geitenvla (960 posts) -

[QUOTE="geitenvla"]

[QUOTE="comp_atkins"] never heard of this.. since usually in your hierarchy ram is at a premium not nv storage. interesting. comp_atkins

I just installed it on my Win 7 x64. I created a disc of 4 Gb (the maximum that is allowed by the freeware edition); so now I've to see how much of a performance hit it's gonna give. I expect none, since most of the RAM itself is never actually in use.

It's really useful for temporary files.

does win7 pre-cache stuff into ram for like recently used programs and stuff? i remember vista used to do that to speed up loading for things you hit often? if so you may want to keep the ram avail to the os for that kidna stuff..

That's called superfetch and works quite well as opposed to Vista, where it horribly slows down start up. But Windows 7 runs perfectly fine using 6 to 8 Gb of RAM. You never seem to need any more than that. So, I thought, since I paid for the space, why not make use of it?

#12 Posted by JigglyWiggly_ (23422 posts) -

Example:

What if I download a 2 GB Rar file to my RAM disc (which I do quite often) and from there I extract the file to where ever I need it. Once the Rar file is extracted, I have no need for it anymore; RAM clears itself on start-up so it saves me the trouble deleting temporary files. Another reason why I it like is that in creative processes (photoshop, acid, etc.) I use a lot of in between saves that immediately become obsolete once I quite editing and save my WIP into one file for that session.

geitenvla
pointless copying 2gb from disk when extracting takes no time at all
#13 Posted by geitenvla (960 posts) -

[QUOTE="geitenvla"]

Example:

What if I download a 2 GB Rar file to my RAM disc (which I do quite often) and from there I extract the file to where ever I need it. Once the Rar file is extracted, I have no need for it anymore; RAM clears itself on start-up so it saves me the trouble deleting temporary files. Another reason why I it like is that in creative processes (photoshop, acid, etc.) I use a lot of in between saves that immediately become obsolete once I quite editing and save my WIP into one file for that session.

JigglyWiggly_

pointless copying 2gb from disk when extracting takes no time at all

It's not really about the time it takes to extract (given I extract to spinning disc), but about another way of managing temporary files. Example: I've redirected my browser cache to my RAM drive. Not only does this have a noticeable effect on the chache speed, my spinning disc has a lot less to do and I don't have to manually clear my cache each and every time. (speaks for itself that I keep my cookies, prefs etc. on my C:\ )

#14 Posted by JigglyWiggly_ (23422 posts) -
why would you clean your browser cache? you really think it takes any time to read files less than a few meagbytes from disk? Your browser will load the whole cache to ram anyway from disk and it should be very quick this is completely pointless there are times when this could be useful if say you are hosting a server and there's a bunch of files people have to download and you have like a 10 gigabit connection, you might want to just store all those files to ram. I think you can configure apache to do that anyway automatically.
#15 Posted by kraken2109 (12978 posts) -

You do realise you can set firefox to cache to ram anyway in about:config right?

#16 Posted by FelipeInside (25170 posts) -
#17 Posted by geitenvla (960 posts) -
#18 Posted by JigglyWiggly_ (23422 posts) -
#19 Posted by jun_aka_pekto (15887 posts) -

I agree it's much better to use an SSD since it's non-volatile. A ramdisk was useful in the old days when hard drives were slow or non-existent. I used the ramdisk on the Amiga as well (MS-DOS also had it but not enabled by default) at a time when most PCs had just 640k of RAM and the Amiga can take up to 9mb. I think there was even a battery-driven gizmo that allowed the ramdisk to remain intact even when the Amiga was turned off.

#20 Posted by FelipeInside (25170 posts) -

I agree it's much better to use an SSD since it's non-volatile. A ramdisk was useful in the old days when hard drives were slow or non-existent. I used the ramdisk on the Amiga as well (MS-DOS also had it but not enabled by default) at a time when most PCs had just 640k of RAM and the Amiga can take up to 9mb. I think there was even a battery-driven gizmo that allowed the ramdisk to remain intact even when the Amiga was turned off.

jun_aka_pekto
YES, I remember that Battery Gizmo thingy. I was going to buy it but it's was too expensive at the time.