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Booting XP/Vista into RAM - have I got this at all right?


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#51 Mammuth

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 09:29 AM

Hi all B)

I have to do almost the same thing. I spend 2 days to read this forum, but I am still a little bit confused. :cheers: I am a "newbie" :cheers:

I will a "full" XP system boot into RAM from HDD. I mean, my drivers, JAVA, some special program, mplayer, and so on ...
I don't need "MovieMaker", and such programs. I will use it as "my everyday pc".
I hope it will be very fast :cheers:
I have 4GB RAM, but 1GB its enough for me (I try it). So, I would like to make 2GB - 2.5GB RamDisk for my XP.

I don't need the "on the fly" boot image modification.
So, if I will to install a new program or driver, I have to build a new boot image. Its OK for me.
I can write a script for the "new build" process. (or use Image Creator)

I have to install a clean XP, because I have W7 x64 :cheers:
After that, I will try this: http://thuun.boot-land.net/XPnRAM/

yvonne: Have you finished ? All works great?

ps: What's about W7? :cheers: (with 8GB Ram)

#52 MedEvil

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 11:01 AM

512MB is the max size for a Ramboot image.
If anyone found a way around this, i would be very interested.

:cheers:

#53 Mammuth

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 11:33 AM

512MB is the max size for a Ramboot image.
If anyone found a way around this, i would be very interested.

:cheers:


http://members.fortu.../ramdiskent.htm

"Increased ramdisk sizes, theoretically to up to 64 GB using PAE and if supported by the OS."

The Enterprise version costs only $10 B)
I will not promote this product! But isn't there any other solutions ...
If it works i will buy it ...
The hardware variant is cost much more ... ( for example: http://www.hyperossystems.co.uk )
Ok, it would be nice to have an OpenSource or Freeware version, but this is not much money. Like a big Pizza :cheers:

But i need a bootable image file ...

#54 was_jaclaz

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 12:01 PM

Let's try NOT to "mix things".

There are several "ramdisk" apps, some Freeware, some Open Source, some Commercial.

A (hopefully complete :cheers:) list is here:
http://www.boot-land...?showtopic=1507

But what you need is not "a" ramdisk driver, but rather a "bootable ramdisk driver", AFAIK the only one (Commercial) is DisklessAngel:
http://www.disklessangel.com/

There is NOT any "definite" report about Gavotte's RRamdisk:
http://www.boot-land...?showtopic=4064

The Microsoft SETUPLDR.BIN and RAMDISK.SYS files from Server 2003 SP1 or R2 (NOT "gold", NOT "SP2") have a 512 Mb limit.

There are workarounds to this limit, basically using a compressed NTFS filesystem and "splitting" the build in a "core" within the MS Ramdisk and "options/programs" within another ramdisk that does not need to be bootable and can be initialized after first part of booting, and that is mounted on a mountpoint in the NTFS filesystem in the booted ramdisk.

sanbarrow uses this technique in his MOA projects.

jaclaz

#55 Mammuth

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 01:30 PM

Let's try NOT to "mix things".

Sorry ! :cheers:

There is NOT any "definite" report about Gavotte's RRamdisk:
http://www.boot-land...?showtopic=4064
jaclaz

Have You try It?
Maybe, the new version can work over 512MB ...

#56 was_jaclaz

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 02:11 PM

Have You try It?


Let's see :cheers::

There is NOT any "definite" report about Gavotte's RRamdisk:


Would that mean that I tried it, succeeded or failed and omitted reporting it? B)

Naaah, I would never do such a thing..... :cheers:


Maybe, the new version can work over 512MB ...

You appear to be missing the point :cheers:, Gavotte's RRamdisk is ALREADY reported as being able to work over 512 Mb, at least up to 3.6 Gb.

What is missing is whether it can be used as a direct substitute to ramdisk.sys (or in any other way ) and actually boot.

jaclaz

#57 Mammuth

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 03:03 PM

Would that mean that I tried it, succeeded or failed and omitted reporting it? B)

Naaah, I would never do such a thing..... :cheers:

OK, OK :cheers:

You appear to be missing the point :cheers:, Gavotte's RRamdisk is ALREADY reported as being able to work over 512 Mb, at least up to 3.6 Gb.

What is missing is whether it can be used as a direct substitute to ramdisk.sys (or in any other way ) and actually boot.

jaclaz

OK.

So, at the moment the only one solution is the DisklessAngel ... :cheers:

Thank you for your Patience !

#58 joakim

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 03:10 PM

Has anybody ever tried patching ramdisk.sys to extend the 512 limit?

It might not be so easy..?

Joakim

#59 was_jaclaz

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 03:22 PM

Has anybody ever tried patching ramdisk.sys to extend the 512 limit?


YES.
http://homepages.tes...no-answers.html

:cheers:

It might not be so easy..?


...or it might be, a definition of "easy" would be interesting, and one of "not so easy" even more.....B)

jaclaz

#60 joakim

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 03:44 PM

You got me there.

Second try:
Has anybody ever tried patching ramdisk.sys to extend the 512 limit (and if you so have, share your research findings filtered for nontechnical bullshit, not related to assembler)?

As ramdisk.sys from 2k3 belongs to an OS that soon will be regarded as history, I thought maybe it contains a simple check against a hardcoded size (which by the size of it also remains to the past). If that is the case it may be possible to patch that check to bypass the 512 limit. If someone have found it and patched it, I would have assumed they already posted it, just like the case of SETUPLDR.BIN. Preferrably posting a dissambly with remarks is excellent.

By not so easy I mean there are other binaries involved in a ramloading process and looking at just ramdisk.sys, may not be enough. I you have solved this on your own, do you mind share these findings as well?

In any case, does someone know why and where the 512 limit come from (if not inside ramdisk.sys)?

Joakim

#61 Mammuth

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 04:05 PM

You appear to be missing the point B), Gavotte's RRamdisk is ALREADY reported as being able to work over 512 Mb, at least up to 3.6 Gb.

What is missing is whether it can be used as a direct substitute to ramdisk.sys (or in any other way ) and actually boot.

jaclaz

Let's see :cheers:

We can make a bootable ramdisk with max 512Mb.
We can make a non-botable ramdisk over 3GB.

Is it possible to "split" the System?
For example:
LiveXP (from RAM) + Ramdisk (over 512MB) with lot of programs and services.
C:\ for LiveXP ; D:\ for programs and so...
Both RAMDISK!

For example:
You don't need the network at boot time. This service should start after the second RAMDISK is ready. Delayed service start, or something like this ...
(I don't know how is working this in "real XP", this is only an example)

For example:
JAVA. I need JAVA.
Is it possible to load the JAVA files from the second Ramdisk?

#62 MedEvil

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 05:36 PM

Main problem with the add on methode is, that you can't have half a folder in ramdisk A and half a folder in ramdisk B.
Which means that your complete Systemfolder needs to fit into ramdisk A.

I would be interested to know if 512MB is/was some magic value for HDD or if someone at M$ just picked the value.
This would help to determine where to look for a solution.

btw. Exists a limit for the size of a ISO for rambbot too? If it's also 512MB. It's definitly a hand made limit!

:cheers:

#63 Oleg_II

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 06:12 PM

Well, it is completely possible to have "half a folder in ramdisk A and half a folder in ramdisk B" and it is not "complete Systemfolder needs to fit into ramdisk A".

Look at MobileOS or even some projects like BootSDI - only part of system files is loaded into RAM and after that mounted another image with the rest of files. You always can change the path for files in Regestry :cheers:

#64 joakim

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 06:19 PM

I am not going to spend much time on reversing ramdisk.sys as the LODR pack discussion, as a workaround, seems much much more appealing. Extending the 512 limit will only help adding more static stuff to a ramload that takes longer to boot and is less flexible. For now 512 is enough for a good core system.

Joakim

#65 was_jaclaz

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 06:31 PM

Is it possible to "split" the System?


Why don't you re-read, this time SLOWLY, post #54:
http://www.boot-land...?...=3099&st=53

and then go searching for threads started by sanbarrow? :cheers:

Here are two that you may find interesting:
http://www.boot-land...?...130&start=0
http://www.boot-land...?showtopic=6621

jaclaz

#66 Mammuth

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 07:20 PM

Well, it is completely possible to have "half a folder in ramdisk A and half a folder in ramdisk B" and it is not "complete Systemfolder needs to fit into ramdisk A".

Look at MobileOS or even some projects like BootSDI - only part of system files is loaded into RAM and after that mounted another image with the rest of files. You always can change the path for files in Regestry B)

:cheers: :cheers: :cheers:
I believe, we have a solution :cheers:
BootSDI to boot the system and prepare a second ramdisk to run all programs :cheers:

#67 Mammuth

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 07:50 PM

and then go searching for threads started by sanbarrow? :cheers:

jaclaz

I have seen it ...
But I did not see the advantage for me. (at this time)
I believe, it is a god thing if you don't have enough RAM in your system.
With this process, you can load only that program in your RAM what you really need. You load the program (when you need), use the program and finally unload the program. You will have always enough free ram even if you don't have to much ram in your system.
It means, the program load slowly (like from HDD or CD), run FAST and unload FAST.

Now, I know the advantage for me!
I can load all my program one time (boot time) and after that I can use from RAM, and I will never unload. (if is't possible)
Finally, the boot process takes more time, but all my programs will start FAST and run FAST .

So, I have to read some topics! (slowly B) )

#68 was_jaclaz

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 08:06 PM

Finally, the boot process takes more time, but all my programs will start FAST and run FAST .


Well, NO. :cheers:

The more you reduce the "core" the LESS will be actual OS booting, I don't know you, but I don't think that you, as soon as the "Start" button appears, open at once several programs: usually just one is opened, say your e-mail, then you read what's in the inbox - while the other data is being copied to the second RAMDISK.
So your actual "feeling" should be that of a decently fast booting system (it greatly depends on the media from which the contents are copied from)

jaclaz

#69 Mammuth

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Posted 24 January 2009 - 08:53 PM

Well, NO. :cheers:

The more you reduce the "core" the LESS will be actual OS booting

OK.
What do you mean as "boot time"?
In this case, I mean EVERYTHING is copied to the RAMDISK. All OS files and all my programs are copied to the RAMDISK and ready to use.
After this, I don't need to touch the HDD.
It should be so fast like you have a DDR2 HDD. In this case, that should be happen.

So your actual "feeling" should be that of a decently fast booting system (it greatly depends on the media from which the contents are copied from)

I absolutely agree with you.
It is possible, that I get a FASTER boot as before. Because, the image file loading can be faster. (sequentially read not random read, if it isn't fragmented)
And I don't need so much services and so ...
Actually, If I have LiveXP (MOA) , I have less amount of services. This is a god thing B)

#70 Mammuth

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 11:43 AM

Hi all!

I began to something to do. :cheers:

I installed new XP SP3 Hungarian.
I installed VirtualBox. It is really nice :cheers: and Free B)
I installed Gravotte's RRamdisk with 1GB Ramdisk.
I installed native_ex.

I made an .iso from XP SP3 HUN and tested in VirtualBox. It's Works :cheers:
I copied this .iso to the ramdisk, and I started it from there. It's Works :cheers:

It is really simple to have a LiveXP :cheers:

Great job! :cheers: My congratulations to all developer of this tool!

I have to make a BootSDI in Virtualbox ...

#71 was_jaclaz

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 12:31 PM

What do you mean as "boot time"?


From switching on through LOGIN (unless minlogon is used) up to when you can click with the mouse on the Start button (or equivalent on other shells).

Of course, you won't be able to access ALL programs, just the ones in the "core" part" at this stage.

Switch ON->SETUPLDR.BIN copies source image to bootable RAMDISK->Contents of bootable RAMDISK are loaded->Start->your comparatively slow response/actions
Loading of second ramdisk image starts as soon (or a little before) as contents of bootable RAMDISK are completely loaded, and should be completed in the time you are doing your initial things.....

jaclaz

#72 Mammuth

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 02:47 PM

From switching on through LOGIN (unless minlogon is used) up to when you can click with the mouse on the Start button (or equivalent on other shells).

OK.

Of course, you won't be able to access ALL programs, just the ones in the "core" part" at this stage.

Yes. I have time ...
The boot time is not important for me. (but 10 min would be too long B) )

Switch ON->SETUPLDR.BIN copies source image to bootable RAMDISK->Contents of bootable RAMDISK are loaded->Start->your comparatively slow response/actions
Loading of second ramdisk image starts as soon (or a little before) as contents of bootable RAMDISK are completely loaded, and should be completed in the time you are doing your initial things.....

Yes, I will to do this :cheers: It isn't possible.

I played a little bit with native_ex :cheers:

I can not add a new "clean" ramdisk in this system.
But, I saved the "Temp" ramdisk, and this image can be loaded into a new ramdisk :cheers:
So, i have to make an image file in the ""real" XP, and save as. After that, i have to load it into a new ramdisk in native_ex.

I hope it is possible ...

#73 Mammuth

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 05:23 PM

I have a little problem ...

I try to boot from ram (BootSDI), but I get an Error message :cheers:

" The file ramdisk.sys is corrupted.
Press any key to continue."

Both file (ramdisk.sys, setupldr.bin) come from win 2003 sp1 package. And I expanded the ramdisk.sy_(12k) to ramdisk.sys (22k).

I have XP SP3 HUN as "XP source". Maybe this is the problem ...

Have you any Idee?

#74 Mammuth

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Posted 25 January 2009 - 07:41 PM

I have an another Idee :cheers:

I give up the native_ex solution, and try a new one. The most disadvantage of this native_ex "way" that, it isn't a Full XP.
--------

I have installed the ImDisk (1GB size). It's works gerat! :cheers:
So, I installed all my program to this RAMDISK.
It is very, very fast :cheers: :cheers: :cheers:
You can't start a program (for example: M$ Word) twice whit double click, because the first one is there! (and get the focus)

So, i have decided to install all my program to a RAMdisk. Maybe it is possible to move some files to there from system32, and than update the registry (link to the new path)
It will be great to install the XP system to ramdisk. I don't know is it possible or not.
When you install a new XP, you can load "hdd" driver. Maybe, it can load a RAMDISK driver ...
Maybe, it is possible to make an nLite install with integrated ImDisk driver (with default settings, like: 2GB Ramdisk, ntfs, ..., and auto load a hdd image), and BEFORE restart, save the image to hdd.
Is there such a message in windows system? Like: "BEFORE_RESTART"?
I see "before_exit" and so, for a program (Delphi) ...

Anyway, this would be an another topic B)

Than you for you help!
My computer became faster! :cheers: This is great! Thanks for ImDisk and all people here!

#75 Dogdc Catdc

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