Use RAM with HD

Using your RAM and hard drive in Windows

This is an issue that has already developed and time is nothing new, but with such rapid development of new and larger storage capacities in the RAM seems to have the option to use some memory and hard drive is less far-fetched every day. My computer for example has 4GB's of RAM and is very common nowadays to buy a new computer either desktop or laptop (except the new wave of netbook's) come equipped with 2 or 4GB's of RAM. So remembering about 10 years ago my hard drive was the same capacity as my RAM in the present. At that time and made use of this principle to load system files that require fast access memory, with the only difference in size (about 2 Megabytes). Today many programs including the operating system still do (sometimes reaching to pay vast amounts and poor exploited as in the case of Windows Vista), all with a single reason: to speed access to data.

This is done in dark ways by programs and the same operating system. But what if we could put any program that we would like in RAM to speed up their performance? There are several programs on the network that already do this, some easier to use than others but with the same goal, and best of all is that they put at your disposal that RAM as if it were a regular disk drive on your computer .

My SATA II hard disk has a speed of 16.7 MB / sec (50% 50% reading and writing simultaneously) while my 800Mhz DDR2 RAM can reach 636 MB / sec. That's 38 times more than my hard drive!. The benchmarking screenshots say it all:


The difference between the consumption of the processor is very clear RamDisk 50% vs 6.2% of SATA II, but I can not say it's a disadvantage because the time is shortened incredibly in reading and writing so in real and practical use will some peaks only.

Some commercial and freeware programs that offer solutions to create RAM disks are:
Enterprise RamDisk
SuperSpeed RamDisk
Virtual Hard Drive 2 Pro
RamDisk VSuite
DiskBoost
PowerRamDisk

Personally I tested the top three.

Enterprise RamDisk has worked well but I have bothered me a lot of popups that throws with the message "Fatal Application Error" that there is nothing fatal because it is a limitation because Freeware version.

SuperSpeed RamDisk is software that greatly simplifies the task because it has a comfortable Wizard that lets you create new units very easily, unfortunately I had some problems loading / saving images automatically at each system restart. Despite this HD Tach is the only one who recognizes him as a physical unit (see screen-shot above).

Virtual Hard Drive 2 Pro software is currently used by the interface and customization. The only drawback is that it allows you to create more than one unit simultaneously (in SuperSpeed RamDisk thing is possible), which will be limited to sharing images from your hard drive when you need it.

The three programs discussed here have allowed me to create records in RAM up to 3GB's (some promise to create disks up to 512GB's), but I do not recommend creating discs of sizes as large unless you really plan to use them, because as you will see, creating a unit assigned space will be reserved from the beginning, regardless of whether the Ramdisk drive is full or empty.

Applications for these programs are as many as you can imagine, I've tried using VMWare (from the virtual disk file to ramdisk) to start Windows XP so that everything runs in RAM and I really was speechless when I saw him run ...

Do not forget that everything that is stored in RAM disappears when computer shuts down or restarts, so it is important that the program of our choice supports the dump information to disk, either before shutting down or restarting our computer or by time periods. Most programs support the auto-save to hard disk, leaving an image format (*. img) in the place of our choosing.

It is also necessary to comment that this type of software has very specific applications in the professional field, it is widely used to speed access to databases on a server (although it is possible to do something similar with Mysql "Heap Tables" .) Unfortunately if the data are very important to use this method should always be evaluated with its risks, because if it is possible to backup data on a regular basis is always the risk of a power failure or hardware that could cause us lost in our data.

The application trivial for us mortals is reduced to create a unit of about 512MB's to make the installation of our beloved Firefox, change the address of our profile to point to our unit RamDisk (Start -> Run: "firefox-p" with closed browser) and enjoy speed like never before. It is also possible (if you have enough RAM) to load a game, although it has tools such as SuperSpeed SuperVolume SuperCache and that work differently because only put in RAM most used files (Cache).

SOURCE: Several