Thursday, February 28, 2008

ReadyBoost with lots of RAM

There's been quite a bit of discussion as to whether ReadyBoost does anything for you if you already have 2GB of RAM. On my system, I'm running 2GB of RAM and a 4GB thumb drive for ReadyBoost, and I believe ReadyBoost makes a dramatic difference.

I'm hardly a typical user. Normally I have open: Outlook 2007, Visual Studio 2005, Virtual PC 2007 running Windows XP, and Internet Explorer with a dozen pages open. The Performance tab in Task Manager currently shows I have 1GB cached, which isn't much considering how much is running.

Earlier this week my system started churning. Everything was taking a lot longer than it had the day before. It took me a while, but I finally realized that the lights weren't flashing on the ReadyBoost drive anymore. I rebooted, reset the ReadyBoost drive, and performance returned.

So I don't have any concrete, measurable results that I can hold up as evidence, but the subjective experience is pretty clear. Many reviewers have tried to do synthetic benchmarks, such as loading five applications in a row. These tests don't do a good job of measuring what ReadyBoost is doing. Loading apps measures SuperFetch, not ReadyBoost. IMHO, ReadyBoost seems to shine when the system is under heavy memory load and you switch applications task.


  1. Both my laptop and my desktop, both equipped with 4GB of DDR2-800 memory and Vista Ultimate x64, are seeing immense performance improvement from ReadyBoost.

    Because both my laptop and my desktop are performance machines, disk access, processor power, and memory bandwidth should not be a problem for these two com,puters. With that in mind, I realize that in order to see a difference with Readyboost, I must use a flash drive that is capable of performing on par with my other system spec, and not lag behind.

    With that in mind, I am using a 2GB OCZ 150x SD Card on my laptop and a 4GB OCZ ATV Dual Channel USB drive for my desktop. Both are known for their quick random access and high bandwidth.

    I have a many SD cards and USB drives that are ReadyBoost compatible, but being compatible does not mean the drive is capable of performing on par with other system perf.

    This is why many ReadyBoost reviews indicate that ReadyBoost is useless. On a very fast machine, ReadyBoost may even hinder system performance if a minimal spec USB Drive is used.

    When I post about my findings on forums, I get criticized and flamed by users who do not agree with my view that ReadyBoost actually works.