Monday, April 18, 2016

Running Icaros at light... ehm, RAM speed

Some times I like to make silly experiments, for the pure curiosity about their possible results. One of the questions I always wanted to give an answer was: "how fast would Icaros be, if it only could run straight on RAM, without hard drives or SSD involved?". The answer is, of course, in the middle between "amazingly" and "blazingly" fast, and I could prove that quite easily. I've been given, in fact, a brand new Core i5-based notebook with 16 GB of RAM, so I installed onto it SoftPerfect RAM Disk, a software which allows creating on Windows one or more RAM drives. I copied one of my Icaros virtual machine on a newly-created volatile volume and I started it. You can see how it behaves in the following video.

The experiment, for now, is obviously self-contained. But AROS has a built-in RAM drive which has always been used to store environment settings and variables, just think how fast might become a 64-bit version, if a larger RAM partition could be created: most if not all files from the core system might run straight from the hard drive (with a fairly fast copy operation at startup, which would happen almost instantly with a SSD unit), finally making all those GBs of RAM effectively useful for something with an Amiga-like OS.