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What happened to the idea of RAM drives?

Several years ago I remember the buzz about creation of a RAM drive. This new idea seemed to be a sound idea. At the time the only hurdle was the fact that RAM memory was volatile (meaning without power it could not hold the information).

Over the past couple of years the volatile issue has been addressed as we know when we use usb drives to hold data. Many memory based drives now have a nonvolatile setting which will enable memory retention.

Im just curious what ever happened to this idea. We know that a RAM drive would be faster than typical magnetic drives. As well since they have no moving parts they would be more reliable.

Could you imagine if someone was to create a RAM drive. It would almost be instant data access. Think about it….as soon as you were to power on your computer the operating system would be loaded. I know I would have to purchase one if they were made available.

I guess the manufacturers can make more money by having us upgrade an older technology rather than allowing us to have access to a new technology which might make our computer as fast as we need it to be.

I hope one day someone decides to revisit the idea of a ram drive. A computer is only as fast as it’s weakest link which in this day and age seems to be hard drive access speed. Who knows….maybe a few years from now someone will create the first in a new generation of data storage devices. I hope so anyways!

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Gopal Aggarwal says

hmmm, maybe the marketplace is making the new technology remain in the papers, for now (hopefully)…but as I read somewhere, “No one is above the market”…let’s see what happens

pbash says

Absolutely right Gopal! The market is driven by consumers in most ways. The way manufacturers control it is by not making the knowledge readily available to consumers on new technology. Of course they cant report on all new technologies, but one that could impact computing as much as a RAM drive should atleast be made known somewhat.

Thank you for the comment!

johnyboy says

There is a cartel. Gigabyte got bought out. IF there are no ram drives in the market place. Then there is a cartel. Why would RAM hard drives suddenly disappear? Its a cartel. SSD have a lifespan and will fail. They only have a certain number of write cylces before they die in the arse.

RB says

As you mentioned, RAM requires power to retain the data written to memory. As such, a RAM drive would need to have a constant source of power to retain data when the computer is shut down or transported.

With the current cost of RAM, you’d end up paying more money for a RAM drive than you would for a comparable sized SSD.

I think your idealization of RAM drives is not based in reality. The fastest computers on the planet read/write to storage devices that are not RAM drives, and they are not being constrained.

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