Windows Vista – Windows ReadyBoost

Posted by: Minal Agarwal , on 5/30/2008, in Category Windows Vista
Views: 44076
Abstract: Have you experienced that your systems’ performance has reduced and you cannot work fast or open more applications that you require to work on simultaneously? If you have, then you must have thought of options to improve your system’s performance so that you can run more applications or access your open applications with a better speed. This problem can be solved by upgrading your system memory (RAM). But upgrading memory could be difficult as well as costly. Then you have come to the right article. Learn about Windows ReadyBoost and boost your system performance.

Windows  Vista – Windows ReadyBoost

Any computer’s performance depends upon its memory. Windows Vista requires more memory because of its cool new features like Windows Aero, Sidebar and Gadgets, Instant Search and so on. For more on features of Windows Vista; read our article: ‘What’s new in Windows Vista’. Windows Vista performs well on systems with memory of 1 GB and more. If your system memory (typically referred to as RAM) is less and 1 GB then it is not recommended to use Windows Vista on your system, as less memory on your system would slow it down and you would not get the look and feel of the real Windows Vista interface and features. Though Windows Vista has an efficient memory manager that intelligently utilizes the computer memory a 512 MB memory would not be enough to run Windows Vista. This problem can be solved by upgrading your system memory (RAM). This is the best way to improve a PC's performance and in turn more applications could be accessed simultaneously without accessing the hard drive. But upgrading memory could be difficult as well as costly.
With Windows Vista you no longer need to worry about your low system memory as they have introduced a concept of Windows ReadyBoost that lets you use a flash drive like your USB drive or an SD card as an additional memory. All you have to do is plug in your flash drive in your system’s USB 2.0 socket and from the ‘Auto play window’ choose “Speed up my system using ReadyBoost”. You will have to keep at least 230 MB of free space in your flash disk.
How does Windows ReadyBoost work?
Windows Vista has an intelligent memory management technique called Windows SuperFetch and Windows ReadyBoost relies on this memory management technique. The flash memory device is used as an additional memory cache that can be accessed more quickly than the hard disk. Flash drives too have a memory, but Windows ReadyBoost does not use this flash drive memory as an extra memory to the RAM in your system, but is uses the flash drive to store the data that is used by the memory manager.
When you want to run a group of applications on your system that has lesser RAM, then plug in the flash drive into the socket the AutoPlay window would appear and here you would find the option – ‘Speed up my system’.
Autoplay Window
Click on this option and Windows ReadyBoost will then test if your drive meets the required performance characteristics for use in speeding up your system. If the drive does not meet them then you are prompted the same.
You can choose to assign part of you drive to boost the OS performance and use the remainder to store your data. Windows ReadyBoost will use the external memory drive to create a copy of virtual memory which is faster than accessing the hard disk.
When you remove the flash drive from your PC, the memory manager detects the change and redirects to the hard disk and the boost in the performance comes to an end. But since nothing is stored on the flash drive there is no loss of data or any sort of disruption. Windows ReadyBoost cache on the external flash device is encrypted using AES-128 so your data is safe from being exposed.
Now don’t worry if your Windows Vista system is running slow when you open multiple applications, just plug in your flash drive and get going.
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This article has been editorially reviewed by Suprotim Agarwal.

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Minal Agarwal, Expression Web MVP, MCDST, works as a freelance web designer (SaffronStroke) working on Expression Web, Photoshop and other Graphical tools. As a hobby, she also runs a famous Food site called Follow her on twitter @ saffronstroke

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