Super Talent DRAM Disk Review

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docjones

Cute. Once again, computer history rhymes. I was using ramdisk back in 1983 (!) on an original IBM PC, via a plugin PC-bus board with DOS driver. Sped up the old PC something wonderful. Used a UPS for better reliability, and turned out a heckuva lot of work that way.

Given how inexpensive and fast RAM is these days, I truly wonder why nobody has made a PCI-E battery powered/backed up ramdisk board for current PCs, to serve as the ultimate hyperspeed system volume and/or scratch pad. (I know these exist for server class boxes.)

In answer to LatiosXT et al, a ramdisk is most useful when ehewing through large chunks of data that can be moved to the ramdisk first--removing disk access overhead speeds this up almost magically. Ramdisk is also useful when running programs that need to be reloaded repeatedly. These are niche applications, but whatta difference a ramdisk makes!

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lordfirefox

This isn't a ram drive itself, it's basically a USB thumb drive with specialized software on it that helps configure your existing system ram as a ram drive. The only thing special about it is it saves whatever is on your Ram Drive to the thumb drive's flash memory. So don't expect miracles with it.

You can also do this with Dataram's Ramdisk software, even with the free version. Hint: It's the same software AMD uses for their memory modules, except it's not restricted to AMD's memory, it will work with ANY memory module.

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legionera

I gave up on USB drives long ago. Too much pain from losing my files. Now, I share them with NSA using the cloud and everything is a lot better :)

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aarcane

If it was battery backed DRAM inside a USB chassis, I'd be all over it. It's not.

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devin3627

so then, i could load my pc games onto the ram drive and it would out perform SSD with infinite space with unloading and loading the game i wish to play?

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LatiosXT

Would it outperform an SSD? Yes.

Would it outperform it by a lot? No. Real world performance between an SSD and RAM Disk is like 10% at best versus the theoretical performance difference of almost 1200%.

Also Wolfing... if you're running out of RAM, making a RAM Disk will get you less usable RAM, exacerbating the problem.

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wolfing

If you already use a SSD it doesn't make much sense. This is more for people still stuck with HDDs.
I'd think of a different use. If your RAM is limited (old computer or laptop with not much RAM and not upgradeable) you could load stuff there (like the paging file) and it could make things a lot faster if you're constantly running out of RAM.

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Bullwinkle J Moose

Sorry Wolfing, but this isn't a Ramdrive!

The Dramdisk only creates a Ramdisk from usable Ram in your system, so using this for a paging file makes no sense, especially on a system with limited Ram

Making a thumbdrive with actual Dram onboard makes a lot more sense than this type of thumbdrive

Making a dramdisk on a thumbdrive that looks like a bootable disk to the O.S. makes even more sense

It would be sweet to restore an actual image of your O.S. from flash to Dram as you boot so that all viruses and Gov't spyware are wiped clean as soon as you shut down or reboot

A write protect switch for the Flash backup of your O.S. on the thumbdrive would prevent even the flash portion of the Thumbdrive from getting malware as well

Booting an O.S. from Ram would be very worthwhile on USB3 from a security aspect but not a speed aspect

For speed, we need something better that current USB tech

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Bullwinkle J Moose

My USB ports are powered even with the computer off, so keeping an O.S. loaded in Ram on a thumbdrive would be sweet

Only the very 1st boot would be the slowest as the O.S. was loaded onto a Ramdrive

"Not much security though"

You would need to physically unplug the drive and reinsert to wipe any malware

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LatiosXT

Unfortunately for Windows you'd need at least 30GB, since winsxs inflates the darn folder so much. It's what you get when your customer demands to be backwards compatible with some late 80s software.

I'm sure Linux though could take advantage of this.

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rsaotome

There's a 64GB version @ SuperBiiz

http://www.superbiiz.com/detail.php?name=ST3U64RAM&similar=225

This might be worth the $34.99 asking price.

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devin3627

yes, this site is real but they lie about what they have in stock. they'll probably get you it when they have it in stock but they have a stratedgy where they sell stuff they don't have. a number of reviews will tell you this vary fact. they are dishonest with their strategy of sales.

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rsaotome

Was really just pointing out there's a 64gb model & using Superbiiz as an example. Never had any problems with them thou.

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Bullwinkle J Moose

So how can you copy Gigs of data in a millisecond if the read speed is only 5GB/s with the Ram in the system you were using?

Hmmmmmmmmm?

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praetor_alpha

You haven't read up on hyperbole?

Hmmmmmmmmm?

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vrmlbasic

I can't imagine a use for this over any old RAM disk but maybe I'm just not sufficiently imaginative lol.

When I read the headline, I thought that it would be some sort of USB drive that contained DRAM instead of Flash memory.

I thought that FireWire was pretty cool. 100 MB/sec sustainable when USB 2.0 had a theoretical max of 60 MB/sec that it never-not even with today's USB 3 drives-came close to reaching. Its ability to directly access RAM was odd and IMO fascinating. Too bad its faster variants never took off and that it has been "supplanted" by ThunderBolt, a technology that is even less widespread.

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ThomasLG

I use ImDisk for creating RAM drives and mounting ISO images. It's free (and open-source): http://www.ltr-data.se/opencode.html/#ImDisk

I'm sue there are others, but this one has been a rock-solid performer for years, and the price is right!

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wolfing

this is not maximumapple.com, who cares about external design? if the thing is good, then it's good.

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LatiosXT

There are also other, free utilities that help create RAM Disks. Though I find their applications severely limited. Unless you have oodles of RAM to spare, they're too small to hold anything you might want to throw in, they don't offer a dramatic real-world performance that going from an HDD to SSD provides, and depending on what you're doing, you're going to be bottlenecked elsewhere anyway.