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Windows 7: Readyboost

21 Dec 2010   #1


I've read this and this and I'm wondering do these statements still hold true:

  • Using more than one stick doesn't increase performance
  • 1.5x your amount of seated, physical RAM is ideal
So, my machine is 64bit, with 4GB of RAM on two DIMMs. I have a 4GB stick in the back dedicated to readyboost. Obviously, I'd like to fill those other two slots with 2 more 2GB DIMMs - but should I add another stick as what I have for flash is equal to what I have physically.

Or should I just put my 8GB stick in there?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2010   #2

Win7 x64 Ultimate SP1

I've read several coments that readybost is of litte use to improve performance. Your best bet is to install the other 2 main board slots with matching 2GB DIMMS.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Dec 2010   #3


I've read it makes no difference, too. However, most of the articles I've read claim that it in fact, does.

Of course I'd love to seat two more DIMMS, but that wasn't the question.

The question was:

With pro-readyboost arguments stating that the ideal target is 1.5x your physical RAM, my machine having 4GB of physical RAM and having a 4GB stick dedicated to readyboost should I either:

A) Use another stick (even though some articles claim that readyboost doesn't actually use more than one stick
B) Just install an 8GB stick, thereby going beyond the "recommended" 1.5x mark
My System SpecsSystem Spec

21 Dec 2010   #4
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

Ready Boost gives you a slight performance boost for RAM smaller than 2GBs. Above 2GBs it adds overhead and buys you nothing. The overhead comes form the fact that the system writes the pages to both the disk and the stick.

And more than 4GBs of RAM will improve performance only in rare cases - e.g. CAD. But for normal day to day operation it does practically nothing. There may be games that can make use of it though. The best is to check the paging activity in Resource Monitor - the graph on the bottom right. If there is little activity (some rare programs trigger slight paging even if there is plenty of available RAM), then your configuration is fine.

If you want to get a real performance boost, install a small SSD for the OS.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Dec 2010   #5


Oh man, I've been eyeing some of those OCZ SSD drives...newegg had one on sale a few weeks ago for a decent price...think it was 80GB for $90...might have been 60GB. But it was a great deal.

Anyway, running Windows 7 with more than 4GB of RAM won't do much you say? I've been dying to up that to 8, perhaps simply because I've never had more than 4GB...but I run some heavy games and when working from home some applications that are more processor intensive than are memory dependent (engineering applications etc).

On my laptop, which is kind of old, Windows 7 runs even better than did Windows XP, and I've been using readyboost on it. I guess I don't have to worry about losing that flash drive anymore (the machine won't fit in my carrying case with the drive sticking out).

Honestly, perhaps it's been perception more than reality...but it sure had seemed as if readyboost had been benchmarking well.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 Dec 2010   #6
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

On your laptop, RB will definitely not buy you anything. I have even tried it on a laptop with 2GBs of RAM and a 1.6GHz processor - and it did nothing. Just leave the stick in the box.
SSD sales are going on all the time. Just keep checking this thread ( ). The guys (especially Dave) are always posting the latest deals at Newegg and else.
My System SpecsSystem Spec


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