Can someone please explain ReadyBoost?

Chris Marcoe April 17, 2013

We are covering ReadyBoost in school. How much faster is ReadyBoost than the regular paging file?

If my motherboard only supports 16GB of RAM and I have 16GB in it, does the ReadyBoost flash drive still get recognized? Would several smaller flash drives work faster than one bigger drive?

I’ve looked online at the various places and so please don’t just Google this and post a link. I am wondering if anyone had any other insight…

  1. Barbara Redfearn
    April 23, 2013 at 6:14 pm

    If I may, the answers already provided do a wonderful job explaining the technical side of ReadyBoost. As an end user, my own experience with ReadyBoost has been not only an education, I learned that not all storage devices are made equal, you'll need a flash drive. But ReadyBoost is well worth the effort. I can play games, like Diablo III on my computer that I couldn't without it. Prior to ReadyBoost the game lag was unbearable, and I would be forced to stop after loading just a couple of pages. With ReadyBoost, everything works great, no lag, no screen freeze, no error out. I can play for hours on end without incident.

    • Chris Marcoe
      April 23, 2013 at 8:20 pm

      Thank you for a great response. I'm a DIII player also, but haven't checked out if the performance is better with ReadyBoost.

  2. Chris Marcoe
    April 17, 2013 at 3:00 am

    Wow. This is exactly what I was after. I put in a SD card to use in my home comp. Its only got 3G of RAM. I put a Class 10 16G card in, but, it only recognized 4G to use as Readyboost. Windows recommended the 4G and didn't give me an option to up the amount. Though I could have lowered it.

    Thanks for a great answer.

    • DalSan M
      April 17, 2013 at 5:27 am

      Sounds like your SD card is formatted in FAT32 instead of NTFS. Although formatting types aren't supposed to matter in Windows 7 and 8, NTFS should enable the use of up to 256GB for ReadyBoost (Windows Vista has the formatting limitations). I use a 32GB drive in my Windows 7 netbook and 29GB is seen as usable for ReadyBoost. Because of caching data for commonly used programs, much like Superfetch, programs do tend to load quicker for me.

    • Chris Marcoe
      April 17, 2013 at 6:21 am

      Good info. Thank you. I'll check it out at school tomorrow.

  3. Bruce Epper
    April 17, 2013 at 1:39 am

    Since ReadyBoost is using flash memory rather than a magnetic hard drive, it is significantly faster for paging operations. It will work no matter how much RAM you have installed in the machine although the more RAM you have in a machine the less paging your system will be doing in typical usage scenarios so that aspect will lessen the impact of using ReadyBoost. For example, a machine with 16GB of RAM is unlikely to be hitting the page file under normal usage scenarios and would only be hit in a significant manner when doing heavy photo and/or video editing.

    Since ReadyBoost is designed to be used as a general disk cache and not just paging operations, you could see some performance improvements there when using magnetic hard drives with slower rotational velocities. If the machine has 7200- or 10,000-rpm disks, the speed improvement will be minimal for random reads, or completely nonexistent for sequential reads. With files that are used for random, non-sequential access, the speed improvement can be fairly significant.

    Since the internal bus puts constraints on transfer speeds, multiple devices configured for ReadyBoost on a single bus in the system proably would not show any kind of performance benefits and may cause performance degradation instead. I will need to set up a test system to verify this as I have not seen any kind of documented testing to prove it.

    And as a final note, if the system has a SSD for its primary drive, ReadyBoost will have absolutely no benefit.

    • Degenerated S
      April 21, 2013 at 1:02 pm

      U wrote a great answer..!!!!

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