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  1. #1
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    RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    A low-priority musing:

    Now that I have 3MB cable internet access, why don't I assign my browser cache to a RAM drive?

    I notice that my start-of-day backup copies mozillons of cache files across to the backup drive, and yet I'm unsure in today's age of high-speed access of the real value of browser cache.

    With a 14K dial up connection, browser cache made sense.

    If my cache was trashed each day, I'd be sure of getting updated pages, and would there be that much of a delay in downloading, each day, the fixed content of regular sites, such as the newspaper, weather etc. Most of those sites's burdens seem to be the ever-changing advertisements, and I don't see that browser cache will help any there.


    I'm particularly interested in hearing from anyone who has tried RAM cache and found a good reason for abandoning the practice.

  2. #2
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    Re: RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    If you like the sites you visit and support them, and do not want to inflate their bandwidth costs, please do not turn off caching. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    As for RAM disks, I don't think I've used one since I started using Windows 95.

  3. #3
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    Re: RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    > do not want to inflate their bandwidth costs

    Good point.

  4. #4
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    Re: RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    Jonothan, I've had further thoughts on bandwidth, and hope I hope that you'll ampolify (nice one, Chris) your comments.

    At Otto's Classical Music I see three options for listening: "Dial-Up", "Broadband" and "Broadband 128kbps".

    I have ASDL at an effective rate of 3M bits/second, so I assume that Broadband is for me.

    Now, under Firefox 1.0 I can't get the second and third options to work, but the "Dial-Up" runs just fine.

    In terms of bandwidth, why should I care if I use the dial-up connection?

    If the streamed music sounds Ok to my ears through the audio jack, through my 20-year old amplifier to my two hand-built speaker enclosures,
    If the news from on-line editions of New York Times looks just as good to my tired old eyes,
    If the email comes at me faster than I can reply,
    Why should I bother to use the ASDL part of my opportunities?

    In particular with streaming radio (to which I am now addicted) if I opt for the dial-up (which I am assuming means 56K) then am I not
    (a) reducing the bandwidth load on Otto's servers/system?
    ([img]/forums/images/smilies/cool.gif[/img] reducing traffic in general across the Internet?
    reducing the load on my local ASDL service?

  5. #5
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    Re: RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    <hr>Now, under Firefox 1.0 I can't get the second and third options to work, but the "Dial-Up" runs just fine.<hr>
    Interesting, each link on that page is sourced differently. Thus I suspect the problem lies on the server that resides at the end of each link. I found that if I right-clicked on the Broadband link and saved it to my desktop, I could then listen to the stream in WinAmp without a problem. The target is listen64.pls which I assume is the bitrate of the stream; that would mean that the 128K option is higher bitrate (and thus higher quality). Unfortunately that link was dead so I have no idea.

    I can hear a noticeable difference in the streams. If your ears are not as discerning, then it really makes no difference which stream you choose. But since the links are from different servers...you are not doing Otto any favors. (a)

    As it relates to ([img]/forums/images/smilies/cool.gif[/img] reducing traffic in general across the Internet it's akin to a drop of water in the ocean. Your one streaming connection is surely not making much of a change in the ocean of Internet traffic.

    And as for reducing the load on the local ASDL service, isn't that what you are paying a higher bill for high speed access for? <img src=/S/yep.gif border=0 alt=yep width=15 height=15> It sounds as though you are trying to talk yourself out of high-speed Internet access in your post, but personally I use my DSL connection for a lot more than email and the reduced loading times of all websites is an added bonus that I am not willing to give up. <img src=/S/exclamation.gif border=0 alt=exclamation width=15 height=15>
    -Mark

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    Re: RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    <hr>I note the distinction between "There's a resource out there and I may was well consume my share" and "I can do what i can to conserve resources".<hr>
    True words, but consider that ADSL is essentially a dedicated pipe to you, the consumer. Unlike most cable systems, you are not sharing that bandwidth down the last stretch to your home, so in that respect it's not saving anything, really. As a part of the overall system, well, that's a different story - but even so, streaming music is nowhere near as bandwidth intensive as downloading massive megabytes of files!
    -Mark

  7. #7
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    Re: RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    > And as for reducing the load on the local ASDL service, isn't that what you are paying a higher bill for high speed access for?

    Well, sort of. My impetus came from being fed up with my previous ISP - which was a 56K - and I figured that I may as well upgrade to the next higher level as long as I was making a switch. I ended up with this 3MB ASDL which is still overkill for me.

    I like being connected and having the voice line free; I could have achieved that by getting a second line for data.

    I note the distinction between "There's a resource out there and I may was well consume my share" and "I can do what i can to conserve resources". I'm happy with streaming radio, and apart from that, my internet habits haven't changed much, so I loosely reasoned that since my ears were bad and there's traffic noise outside, choosing a low-rate stream over a high-rate stream didn't hurt me at all.

    Of course, if ever i decide to d/l Install Shield's 60+MB demo suite, I'll be happy enough to get all the band width I can.

    I would like listener's to note that I have refrained (nice one, Chris!) from maiing any lousy puns relating band-width to streaming music

  8. #8
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    Re: RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    Chris,
    Thanks for posing this thought provoking question. I'm all for conserving resources, whether it's the gas in your car or the bandwidth on the internet. As for streaming radio, I took a look at the listing that pops up in the Winamp Internet Radio directory. The top ten stations this Sunday have a total of about 44,000 listeners, mostly at a 128 (or 96) bitrate. Considering the size of internet traffic, and that there are many more Internet broadcasters than are listed for Winamp's SHOUTcast, I think we're still within Mark's drop in the ocean. The only additional load on capacity would be in your ADSL "last mile", and that has plenty of room. Enjoy your music.

    Errol

  9. #9
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    Re: RAM drive for cache? (Mozilla (but any))

    > The only additional load on capacity would be in your ADSL "last mile", and that has plenty of room.

    Hmmm. I agree with the figures and statistics - I know that I am but a drop in the ocean.

    Jonothan's original response was conservative in nature.

    I guess that it boils down to one's philosphy. Our parents used various lines, amongst them "But what if everybody picked a wildflower?", and I used to stare at the (literally) hundreds of square miles of wildflowers and ponder whether we had enough people in the world.

    Witht he power of desktop computing now, i take the view that I'm better off writing quickly and letting the big clunker run the job inefficiently during my lunch break (used to be "overnight"). I've changed my view as computing power has increased. Gone are the days when we tried to squeeze eleven milliseconds out of a loop.

    Perhaps that shift is happening with the internet, as available bandwidth outstrips use.

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