AMD Radeon RAMDisk

OK, so there has been a lot of hype around about AMD Radeon RAMDisk. The question remained though, “Does AMD Radeon RAMDisk work?”. Well, after some testing, I have the answer.

How AMD Radeon RAMDisk works.

From AMD’s website: 

AMD Radeon RAMDisk is a kernel-level driver that presents a standard disk drive to the Operating System. It stores and retrieves data from the system RAM on your motherboard instead of an actual, physical disk. Along with the Kernel Driver is a GUI that talks to the driver and allows the user to set various options as well as create or delete the RAMDisk.

AMD Radeon RAMDisk is similar to a hard disk. Just like in regular disk drives, applications such PC games or software suites will create temporary files. Additional memory should be set aside to accommodate temporary files created by these applications. When creating a RAMDisk the types of files you plan to load can affect the size of the disk in relation to the available system memory. With the chart below see how far your system memory can go with AMD Radeon™ RAMDisk.

What does this mean? Well, in simple terms, it stores data that is being passed to a virtual hard drive and process the data ahead of time instead of a physical disk. This virtual hard dive then quickly uses the stored data which reduces the need of a  physical hard disk having to process it all over. This is called cache.  A cache is a component that transparently stores data so that future requests for that data can be served faster.

Does AMD Radeon RAMDisk work?

Short answer, yes. When I used AMD Radeon RAMDisk, I saw a noticeable increase in how my test system responded. Web pages opened faster, programs seemed to respond much better and less lag was noticed in switching between applications.

I had tried a variety of benchmarks to try to capture the difference, but none really showed significant improvements. That leads me to believe that AMD Radeon RAMDisk only works with certain factors. I was able to capture web page load times, but most of them were minimal improvements.

For these tests, I used an older low spec machine to capture the best results of AMD Radeon RAMDisk.

Test System Specs:

  • Intel Core 2 Duo E4500 @ 2.20GHz
  • 4GB Corsair Value Select DDR2 1333MHz
  • 1TB Western Digital Black HDD
  • Windows 7 Professional x64

AMD Radeon RAMDisk Configuration:

AMD Radeon RAMDisk configuration

 

 

Windows Settings:

win7-default

 

The Test

Page loads in miliseconds:

I ran loaded the each of the following pages 10 times each, and took the average to come up with the results. Each did good, but with AMD Radeon RAMDisk enabled, I did see some improvements.

ramdisk-webload

 

ModCrash Conclusion:

If you have an older, slower system, than by all means, use AMD Radeon RAMDisk. If you have a newer snappier system, you won’t see much of a difference. Also it is worth mentioning, that if you have an SSD, you will not see much of an improvement in system performance as well. AMD Radeon RAMDisk does have its benefits for spindle hard drive users, and even if you have a beefy system, you could notice some differences if you use AMD Radeon RAMDisk.

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