Memory cache pertinence with a RamDisk

Started by belami


Memory cache pertinence with a RamDisk   23 September 2014, 06:25


Just installed SoftPerfect RAM Disk 3.4.6 and created a volatile 285MB NTFS removable disk in order to handle my Firefox disk cache which I've set to 256MB. Works fine. Adequate since I scratch/delete my disk cache myself once in a while without waiting for a reboot.

I still don't know, and that's my question, if a browser's memory cache should be disabled when its disk cache is set on a RAMDisk. Both caches play with RAM, that's why I'm puzzled.

As for the NTFS/FAT32 dilemma, I get better results with NTFS but mainly with the new Google Maps. Why I don't know. I read a Which file system to use for ramdisk which maybe explains why ...

Thanks for your advice.
SoftPerfect Support forum - Andrew avatar image

Re: Memory cache pertinence with a RamDisk   23 September 2014, 10:49

I guess it depends on how exactly caching is implemented in the specific browser you are using.

My understanding is a browser would use its own memory cache until it runs out of space, in which case it will start using its disk cache (whether on a RAM disk or not). So probably there's no difference whether the built-in memory cache is enabled or not.

Re: Memory cache pertinence with a RamDisk   23 September 2014, 20:14

Thanks Andrew, but I am referring more to a compatibility approach than to the process itself.
What you are stating is the balance instructed by the browser between memory and disk cache. What I am wondering is in which way this balance might be interfered with the fact of having the disk cache on a RAM disk, that is in RAM... like the memory cache is.

The question seems to have sens IMO. I had a problem with disk cache on a RAM disk together with memory cache enabled a long time ago with Firefox on XP. I did not have this problem now with Firefox 32.0.2 on Win7 SP1 x-64 but I was surprised to notice, when experiencing with browser.cache.memory.enable set to false that nevertheless Firefox's about:cache showed a few bytes in the memory cache.

All this convinces me that my question has a basis of interest.

I found an old article on memory optimization with a RAM disk (Memory cache optimum size?) where a user points out:

Point the K-M cache to the ramdisk, and set the maximum disk cache to less than the ramdisk size. Set the Memory Cache to 1K, because 0K will cause Mozilla's HTTPS support to malfunction.

It is this point which continues to puzzle me : when a browser's disk cache is on a RAM disk what is the way I should think the memory cache? I am stunned to have so much difficulty to find this topic discussed on the Web ...
SoftPerfect Support forum - Andrew avatar image

Re: Memory cache pertinence with a RamDisk   23 September 2014, 21:07

I am afraid I don't know much in this area. A RAM disk is super-fast emulation of a hard disk and writing and reading from it should be exactly the same as doing so with a physical disk.

Provided a browser uses the standard disk access methods it should work exactly the same way as a physical storage. I have been personally using Firefox, IE and Opera with a disk cache on a RAM disk and never encountered any issues.

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