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Files and folders persist on a RAM disk after shutdown

When you are using a regular RAM disk without an image file attached to it, it is supposed to be volatile. This means that all the RAM disk contents should disappear when you shut down or restart your computer.

However, you may see that this is not the case on Windows 8 and above due to the hybrid boot Windows feature. When you shut down a hybrid boot system, it saves the current system state to the hard disk before switching off. On boot, it restores the system state back into memory. The saved state includes any RAM disks, which means that files and folders stay on a RAM disk between sessions.

You have two options to deal with this issue:

Option 1: Perform a complete shutdown

Press Win-R or open a command prompt and type

shutdown /s

This will shut down the system completely, temporarily deactivating the hybrid boot and clearing the RAM disk contents.

Option 2: Disable the hybrid boot permanently

Open an elevated command prompt and type

REG ADD "HKLM\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Power" /V HiberbootEnabled /T REG_DWORD /D 0 /F


Alternatively, if you don't hibernate your PC and want to save a few GBs of disk space, you can disable hibernation. This will permanently deactivate the hybrid boot as well. For that, in an elevated command prompt type

powercfg /h off

Article details

Article ID: 21

Category: RAM Disk: technical questions and how-to

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