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I got a lot of RAM installed in my PC recently and I looked into this RAMDisk thing.

There are two things I've found from my investigation:

  1. You should not mess with Windows native pagefile/memory settings. Memory handling system of Windows and its services are perfected by multiple years of testing in real scenarios. SuperFetch and Windows memory model apparently make moving specific files and folders to RAMDisk unreasonable since mapped files are not immediately flushed from memory and SuperFetch does a good job of predicting user's actions.
  2. However, developers of 3rd party programs like browsers and utilities spent considerably less time worrying about performance, thus in edge cases, like having an abundance of memory, these program work in a less than optimal ways.

If I am correct, RAMDisk may be useful to store some programs' temporary cache: the files that can be automatically regenerated without much trouble. Browsers love to cache data to disk to avoid downloading it from internet, what else can be put on RAMDisk?

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Just about anything. I'm a developer and use a 1-2GB RAM disk for holding the working copy of code bases I work on. The time taken to build a typical app is reduced by about a factor of 10 compared to conventional HD and even SSD. Highly recommended if you've got the spare RAM. –  5arx Sep 18 '12 at 16:05
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1 Answer

Basically, anything that you need speed for, that you will use often. Its a way of increasing your apparent ram.

More info here: http://www.techrepublic.com/blog/window-on-windows/how-do-i-use-a-ram-disk-to-help-speed-up-disk-intensive-applications/3430

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I use a set of utilities often, but RAMDisk is volatile and will delete all files on it after reboot. Most utilities store their preferences in their folder in some sort of .ini file, so I would need: 1) a way to copy necessary files to RAMdisk automatically during system start, and 2) some mechanism to flush data from RAMDisk to HDD. This is the sort of troubles I don't like so I specifically want fuss-free speedup. Thus, the stuff that would be kept on disk should be regeneratable. –  boomie Jan 3 '12 at 22:54
    
Covers it all so far. Paging will not work in most of the ramdisks, they come to late in the system. Even if RD could be paging, it would serve a small and useless purpose. On a really stable system a person mightuse Ramdisk to "work with files", then transfer them out when done. Putting windows Own temps in them is very fast, But installs that break out into temps then reboot to install fail, making a mess. :-( Browser caches (clearable:-) work wonders in them. Some browsers now use large ram caches for speed, some still get an advantage. Apps still have to be put ON it, so it is a toss-up –  Psycogeek Jan 4 '12 at 7:29
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