How would i go about installing visual studio 2010 and all of its dependencies entirely on a ramdisk? I have 16GB ram in my computer and a 4GB ramdisk just for visual studio.

If i just try to install visual studio using the normal installer it still adds a ton of things to my default hdd. I would like all dependencies to be on the ramdisk plus visual studio itself and any cache it might have etc. Thanks for advice.

  • What exactly does it install to the default hdd? Using the default installer is the only way I know how to install Visual Studio and would assume is the only way to install it.
    – Ramhound
    Oct 25, 2011 at 13:13
  • Exactly? Not sure, just dependencies. For example the .net 4 framework... prerequisites... Oct 25, 2011 at 13:27
  • You have to install .NET 4 and company on your desktop for obvious reasons. Your install Visual Studio to a ramdisk so it compiles faster. I am not sure the reason you simply wouldn't place your solution on it instead.
    – Ramhound
    Oct 25, 2011 at 17:32

2 Answers 2


From my experience changing the installation path of Visual Studio is possible but may cause a lot of problems later. I would not try to change the location Microsoft where thinks an installation have to be. Instead I would use the NTFS soft link feature and pretend that Visual Studio and some of the other components are installed on C:\Program Files\... where as in reality they are located on the RAM drive:

  1. Format your RAM disk with NTFS (if it is not already in this format)
  2. Copy the directories you would like to mirror to RAM onto the RAM drive (better use command line, not Explorer) - the exact target path on the RAM drive does not matter
  3. rename the original directory in your Program Files directory (e.g. "Visual Studio" to "Visual Studio_".
  4. Create a symbolic link from C:\Program Files\Visual Studio to your ram drive (R: in this example):

mklink /D "C:\Program Files\Visual Studio" "R:\Visual Studio"

Now your Visual Studio installation on the C-Drive points to your RAM-Drive. And the best is that you can automate the whole process via a batch script.

  • He had no problem installing to a different disk, he is complainging that .NET was installed on his system disk for some reason.
    – Ramhound
    Oct 25, 2011 at 17:34
  • 1
    Use /J to create a junction point instead, so it correctly re-parses all requests. Oct 25, 2011 at 21:50
  • Don’t use links. I tried. It will break when you update Visual Studio and then you’ll have to reinstall Windows because Visual Studio consists of tens of thousands of components and is virtually impossible to repair.
    – Daniel B
    Apr 10, 2019 at 12:43

The .NET libraries are going to have to sit on disk, unless you decide to load the entire Windows folder into RAM (Why?? Haven't we've learned from security class the perils of this.)

They are libraries that other applications have to reference so you can't just arbitrarily use them.

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