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I have at home a 1TB disk and a 40GB SSD. I have tried using Windows on the 40GB SSD, but it's just not doable, even when I install everything on the 1TB disk I run out of space.

I am wondering if I should sell my 40GB SSD disk and get a 120GB one, buy another 40GB disk to go for software raid0 or if I should use ReadyBoost.

I would like Windows to boot quickly, this seems not faster with ReadyBoost though. I also would like Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Office and the entire system to respond quickly as it did when I installed them on my SSD.

Will ReadyBoost on a 40GB SSD give significant performance improvements? When will it and when will it not?

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2 Answers 2

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The ReadyBoost should improve the system responsiveness when used with an SSD. Windows 7 should be able to use up to 32 GB per device and up to 8 devices for ReadyBoost.

Unlike popular opinion on the internet goes - ReadyBoost is not really about adding "virtual RAM" to the system. It's more about increasing system responsiveness by caching (through SuperFetch feature) frequently used data on a device with very fast response time and thus "masking" the lagginess of the hard disk(s). Flash memory access time is in the order of magnitude of 1 ms, Hard disk in the order of magnitude of 10 ms.

However, I do not know how to make ReadyBoost cache data to survive over reboots of the system (as by default it's flushed during the reboot and built up again afterwards) so that it could speed up the boot process as well - as it does when it's used as boot drive.

If it's giving you significant performance boost or not depends on how you use your PC. It should improve the performance a lot of areas (accessing many smaller files) and a little or not at all in others (accessing large continuous blocks of data). If you have modern PC with a lot of RAM and very predictable usage pattern of the PC then you might not spot any difference (as SuperFetch would be able to use spare RAM as sort of ReadyBoost-like cache in the RAM).

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I have a new-ish Z77 motherboard with an mSATA port and decided to get a cheap mSATA 32GB SSD drive (Crucial M4). I plugged it in and it appeared in windows Disk Management utility.

I then read an awful lot about how you need to enable Intel RTS, then RAID, then re-install Windows and rebuild your system etc. etc. !!! I was horrified and thought I had wasted my time as I was not prepared to do all that.

Then I formatted the volume and selected Properties from the right-click menu, and clicked Enable ReadyBoost with the option "Dedicate this device to ReadyBoost."

After re-booting the computer a couple of times the boot time has dropped to just under half what it used to be and the desktop is FULLY responsive within 10 seconds with all the taskbar items up and running.

After booting my favourite Steam games a couple of times each and re-booting there are now no pauses at all for their start-up loading screens, very fast and very nice!

The only downside is that I get periodic pop-up windows complaining that I am "running out of disk space on drive (G:) Cache" as there is only 1% disk space remaining... I would have thought that Microsoft could have sorted this out given the options I have selected!

To relate to your question more directly, if the SSD is connected by a SATA interface I am sure you will notice a very good improvement in boot times and commonly used programs.

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