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Microsoft Windows Vista & ReadyBoost: Does it Make a Difference?
Microsoft Windows Vista & ReadyBoost: Does it Make a Difference? - PCSTATS
To take advantage of the ReadyBoost feature built into Microsoft Windows Vista, the computer first and foremost has to have USB 2.0 slots.
 60% Rating:   
Filed under: Memory Published:  Author: 
External Mfg. Website: Microsoft Oct 15 2007   C. Sun  
Home > Reviews > Memory > Microsoft ReadyBoost

ReadyBoost: Not There Yet

To say Microsoft Windows Vista brings a lot of new features to the table is an understatement. One of the more intriguing features is Vista ReadyBoost. USB drives have exploded in size and access speed, and if Microsoft can take advantage of that to increase system performance we all win right?

In this article written by Microsoft, it seems to indicate that USB flash drives can be used as a substitute to system memory. In other words ReadyBoost acts as a HDD read cache and is not a direct system memory replacement! If your computer is too old or slow to run Windows Vista properly, ReadyBoost won't change that situation. If your computer just meets Vista requirements, ReadyBoost can potentially smooth out the ride, a bit.

The theory behind ReadyBoost makes sense; store non essential data on the USB drive for quick access. Sounds good, but in reality ReadyBoost doesn't increase computer performance significantly. Even with 512MB of system memory, ReadyBoost only increases performance in the benchmarks by a few percentage points.

What the tests don't show, is that applications within Windows were clearly quicker in loading.

For instance, Microsoft Windows Vista load up times with 512MB of system memory and no ReadyBoost was ~47 seconds. When equipped with a 2GB ReadyBoost USB drive, boot time was cut down by 7 seconds. It was also quite a surprise to see that ReadyBoost boosted framerates of Doom 3 and FEAR when the system was running 512MB of memory.

For memory configurations 1GB or higher, ReadyBoost does not improve system performance, at least not enough for you to notice it.

So there you have it. ReadyBoost can slightly improve performance for users with minimal amounts of system RAM, particularly when it comes to application and boot time.

If you've got an older system and find Microsoft Windows Vista a bit slow, ReadyBoost can act as a band aid solution... but I think in the long term you would be much better served by upgrading to at least 1GB of system RAM.

On the other end of the spectrum, if you have a fairly current computer system, ReadyBoost seems to have little to no effect at the moment.

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Contents of Article: Microsoft ReadyBoost
 Pg 1.  Microsoft Windows Vista & ReadyBoost: Does it Make a Difference?
 Pg 2.  Testing ReadyBoost in Vista
 Pg 3.  ReadyBoost Benchmarks: Office Productivity, PCMark05
 Pg 4.  ReadyBoost Benchmarks: Doom 3, FEAR
 Pg 5.  ReadyBoost Benchmarks: WinRAR, Windows Boot Up
 Pg 6.  — ReadyBoost: Not There Yet

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