NOTE: Only applicable to 32bit Windows XP/Vista
, which possibly
means it should work on 32bit versions of Home Server, Server 2003 and Server 2008.
There is a possible
free alternative to these programs which I am using at the moment on my Acer Aspire One to save it's SSD, (which is only 8GB and rather slow), but it does mean some of your RAM is no longer available for program use.
Basically, you use Microsoft's own EWF, (Enhanced Write Filter), or FBWF, (File Based Write Filter), to redirect writes away from your system partition to a section of RAM.
Both filters are part of Microsoft's Windows XP Embedded SP2 Feature Pack 2007
, which is a 131MB free download.
Once you have your system set the way you want, you activate the filter, (which one is dependent on the filesystem you're using, FAT32 or NTFS), all subsequent writes from the next reboot go to RAM. Any subsequent reboots return the system to the state it was when EWF/FBWF was enabled.
My AAO has 1.5GB of RAM, 384MB has been allocated to EWF writes and the pagefile has been turned off, of course it doesn't run any really memory hungry apps like a desktop would but because all the writes now go to RAM it sure has sped it up a hell of a lot
There is also a couple of third-party utilities, (EWF
), available that allow you to:
- Enable and Disable the filter
- Commit any changes to the physical drive
- Commit changes and Disable
- Clear the last command
These commands are executed at shutdown/reboot - so if you choose to Commit Changes, when you shutdown the system any changes to the system drive are written from RAM to the physical HDD and will appear next reboot.
The EWF fully supports FAT32/NTFS and allows you to choose to send subsequent writes to either RAM or a separate HDD partition somewhere, (if you can't afford the RAM).
More info on it can be found here
More info on the FBWF can be found here
Info on the differences between them can be found here
both filters work with Vista, the only problem being that they are most likely 32bit only.
Attached is instructions, (from MP3Car forums), for enabling FBWF on XP Pro and over at GranTuring
you can find info on where to find and how to install EWF.
With EWF you can also implement HORM, (Hibernate Once, Resume Many), which can be found a little further down the GranTuring page above.
Anyway, it might not be suitable for what you want, (or even apply to the particular Windows OS you're using), but it does implement a similar
concept to what Deep Freeze, Shadow Protect, etc, do without spending a lot - so maybe it will help someone else who has the requisite OS.EDIT:
It appears EWF does work with Vista as mentioned in this post
on installing EWF.
Added big NOTE at top.