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RAM (Random Access Memory) is currently the fastest storage device out there that is able to perform read/write operations. There exists a downside though, as RAM sticks mean, by definition, volatile memory and, as a result, once you cut them off from power, you will lose all the information. This is where RAMDisk comes in and helps us fix this annoying issue. The volatile nature of RAM storage is turned into a stable and permanent solution with RAMDisk. So how does this useful tool works? Well, in a simple yet highly effective manner. A RAM drive can be mounted on the system and then you can use it in the same way you would use your hard disk. RAMDisk is an easy to use tool and novice users will surely love it! Let’s analyze its features in this quick article.
RAMDisk is a lightweight tool and you will not have any problems during its easy and fast installation process. With a setup kit of just 3 MB, this little tool installs without any snags. You should be happy to find out that there aren’t any third party components, like spyware or adware, incorporated into RAMDisk during its installation process, but the tool is ad-supported. Thus, an advertisement pops up each time the application is launched. In terms of system requirements, keep in mind that you’ll need an Intel or AMD system boasting at least 512 MB of RAM. All versions of Windows 7, XP, Vista, Windows 2003 and 2008 are supported by RAMDisk.
RAMDisk sports a traditional interface that has overlooked looks and fancy graphics in favor of functionality. Tabs govern the upper part of its main window, and the navigation between its various options is smooth, due to the excellent placement of controls and buttons. What is more, novice users will not have any sort of problems understanding the tool’s functions. However, if a fog of confusion begins to slowly surround you then the Help file is your lighthouse! Every answer you need is present in it. RAMDisk can also be accessed from its DOS command line interface.
RAMDisk does its magic by taking a portion of your available system memory and using it as a disk drive. Whilst the fast drive is created from the available RAM, the volume’s size has a 4 GB limit that can’t be exceeded by owning the free version. The full edition gives you a larger RAM drive and those pesky ads are also eliminated. In order to create a disk drive, certain settings have to be defined first: the file system type (FAT16, FAT32) and the size. The storage is very important, as your RAM will lose the amount of RAM you define in this step. You should always make sure that your operating system and all of the software tools you use have enough memory to function properly.
Even though volatile storage is offered by RAM, the information can be saved on your PC upon its shutdown, thanks to the great options of this freebie. You can automatically save an IMG archive with the data on the drive by using the “Load and Save” menu. What is more, you can even define time intervals in seconds. In addition, the image can be saved on shutdown of the drive and then mount it when the computer boots. The main strength of RAMDisk is represented by its speed and, thus, it can be easily used with high I/O programs or those that require intensive r/w operations. Games benefit a lot from RAMDisk as well as internet browsing.
New backups renamed with BAK extension are created if the RAM disk is already saved locally. The auto-save option doesn’t overwrite future versions. As a result, the latest version is not mounted by RAMDisk if image loading is enabled at startup.
There are a lot of tools similar to RAMDisk on the market. Let’s have a look at some of them. The following software products fall into this category: imDisk, SuperSpeed's RamDisk Plus, Gilisoft RAMDisk, Power RAMDisk and Gavotte Ramdisk.
All in all, if boosting performance of your system is one of your priorities, then RAMDisk is a tool you simply can’t afford to miss!
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