Ram Drive

Nick Matteo nam14 at cwru.edu
Mon Sep 22 20:40:52 PDT 2003


On Monday 22 September 2003 21:00, Nickolaos Fotopoulos wrote:
> On Monday 22 September 2003 07:46 pm, Archaic wrote:
> > On Mon, Sep 22, 2003 at 07:40:08PM -0400, Nick Matteo wrote:
<snip>
>
> Eventually your gonna have to write back to disk for permanent storage. 
> What happens if you loose power suddenly?  I suppose that for day to day
> operations; bin, lib and config dirs that don't really change often could
> give you a boost, but would it be enough to make it worth your while?
>
> RAM is so cheap now I don't understand why they don't start making
> solidstate drives.  If you can get a 1GB+ compact flash for your digital
> camera why can't they make something similar to be used as permenant
> internal storage.
>
> Nick

Well, I would presumably have a cron job that would write the changes back to 
disk daily, during the night when i don't use the computer.  That way I could 
only lose a day's changes.  If it becomes a problem, I could even make it a 
low-priority trihourly task.  While power loss can be a problem here, since 
my documents would stay on the hard drive, there's nothing irreplaceable at 
stake.
Part of what brought this to mind is a computer company which claims to 
include solidstate drives:  See http://go-l.com/desktops/index.htm and look 
at their "PuRam no system hard drive technology".  Here's a quote:
"All operating system and program files sit permanently a on a Flash RamDisk 
operating at the speed of the maximum available memory bandwidth up to 7GB/s 
and capable of over 150,000 I/O requests per second, all with an average of 
0.0% CPU utilization."
Cheapest model is $3000, without monitor, however.  And unfortunately they are 
VERY windows-centric, claiming that 98% of the world uses windows and that 
it's the best thing since sliced bread. :s

So, if I have a cron backup going, and a UPS, on my rarely-changed system 
files, that should be more than enough data security.  I'm not sure how to 
make the contents of the ram drive write out to disk when it's unmounted, 
however -- I figure I could make "shutdown" and "reboot" wrappers that do it 
when i shut down, though, and that should take care of it. 




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