running windows NT on a ramdisk

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by tim, Aug 28, 2003.

  1. tim

    tim Guest

    hey guys,

    Does anyone know what an easy (ie cheap, efficient) way of running windows
    without a harddisk.
    I'm thinking a machine with 1-2gb of ram with most of that being dedicated
    to the ramdisk with the OS being swapped out over the network (imaging, eg
    ghosting) and users using roaming profiles with most of the data residing on
    the server.

    am i still dreaming? anyone doing this, is the RAM cost still prohibitive to
    make this economically viable. I'm thinking the intented users would be
    corporate clients and pc cafe's/rooms. Make it easy to swap out hardware and
    abstract out the maintance of PC's and user support.

    I am aware of this company, previously trading under the name of Sunbelt
    Software. www.superspeed.com/ that have offered the technology to run
    windows OS's off a ramdisk, haven't tried it or caught up with the news in
    this field for a couple of years tho.

    yeah yeah, linux right? hmm....
    tim, Aug 28, 2003
    #1
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  2. tim

    tim Guest

    ok thanks will look into that tho i suspect embedded XP will bring with it
    certain limitations tho...

    yeah i am aware of win98 working in this manner but win98 is not ideal for
    corporate, even in pc rooms I think they are a mistake.

    i guess a small HD would just be alot cheaper and easier eh...
    i see even a 40gb is only $130NZ. hmm, the extra space (eg most of the disk)
    could be used in a distributed fashion on a network to store data
    redundantly and other uses eh. dreaming again?

    sigh... my life is a conspiracy against my apathy.


    "David" <> wrote in message
    news:wKg3b.14384$...
    > I doubt you'll have much luck getting standard WinNT to work on a ram

    and/or
    > network drive. WFW was the last time I had any luck with that combo.
    >
    > I have heard of Win95 working that way, but that's years ago.
    >
    > Why not take a look at embedded XP, it's designed to do this and will run
    > from CD / ROM etc.
    >
    >
    >
    >
    > "tim" <> wrote in message
    > news:ayg3b.129570$...
    > > hey guys,
    > >
    > > Does anyone know what an easy (ie cheap, efficient) way of running

    windows
    > > without a harddisk.
    > > I'm thinking a machine with 1-2gb of ram with most of that being

    dedicated
    > > to the ramdisk with the OS being swapped out over the network (imaging,

    > eg
    > > ghosting) and users using roaming profiles with most of the data

    residing
    > on
    > > the server.
    > >
    > > am i still dreaming? anyone doing this, is the RAM cost still

    prohibitive
    > to
    > > make this economically viable. I'm thinking the intented users would be
    > > corporate clients and pc cafe's/rooms. Make it easy to swap out hardware

    > and
    > > abstract out the maintance of PC's and user support.
    > >
    > > I am aware of this company, previously trading under the name of Sunbelt
    > > Software. www.superspeed.com/ that have offered the technology to run
    > > windows OS's off a ramdisk, haven't tried it or caught up with the news

    in
    > > this field for a couple of years tho.
    > >
    > > yeah yeah, linux right? hmm....
    > >
    > >

    >
    >
    tim, Aug 28, 2003
    #2
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  3. tim

    David Guest

    If you goal is easy managment, rebuild etc, why not build a standard image,
    sysprep it and then clone to target machines, if one gets rooted, refresh
    from image.






    "tim" <> wrote in message
    news:Osh3b.129626$...
    > ok thanks will look into that tho i suspect embedded XP will bring with it
    > certain limitations tho...
    >
    > yeah i am aware of win98 working in this manner but win98 is not ideal for
    > corporate, even in pc rooms I think they are a mistake.
    >
    > i guess a small HD would just be alot cheaper and easier eh...
    > i see even a 40gb is only $130NZ. hmm, the extra space (eg most of the

    disk)
    > could be used in a distributed fashion on a network to store data
    > redundantly and other uses eh. dreaming again?
    David, Aug 28, 2003
    #3
  4. tim

    tim Guest

    "David" <> wrote in message
    news:%bi3b.6$...
    > If you goal is easy managment, rebuild etc, why not build a standard

    image,
    > sysprep it and then clone to target machines, if one gets rooted, refresh
    > from image.


    yeah thats the general plan...
    tim, Aug 28, 2003
    #4
  5. tim

    Steven H Guest

    as a side note, i know it is possible to "mount a ntfs drive in a
    folder" does this mean that if you have 1-n partitians of various sizes
    that if you "mount" these in a folder you get a "virtual" large drive
    the capacaty of the partitains?

    --
    ===================================================
    Steven H
    Steven H, Aug 28, 2003
    #5
  6. tim

    tim Guest


    > If you goal is easy managment, rebuild etc, why not build a standard

    image,
    > sysprep it and then clone to target machines, if one gets rooted, refresh
    > from image.


    The thing that I like about being forced to dynamically load an OS in the
    ramdisk situation is that it forces you to be proactive about system
    management. A couple of benefits:

    * If a software problem occurs on a machine it will be gone at next boot.
    * Tweaking the master image and having it replicated to target machines
    without further manual intervention is likely to lead to more frequent
    updating.
    * Seperation of hardware and software, less hassles in fixing machines, ie
    no OS or HD issues...

    hmm, is it even possible to remotely ghost a machine (ie no manual
    intervention on remote machine)?
    tim, Aug 28, 2003
    #6
  7. tim

    T.N.O. Guest

    "tim" wrote
    > hmm, is it even possible to remotely ghost a machine (ie no manual
    > intervention on remote machine)?


    yup, we do it at work.
    T.N.O., Aug 28, 2003
    #7
  8. Steven H wrote:

    > as a side note, i know it is possible to "mount a ntfs drive in a
    > folder" does this mean that if you have 1-n partitians of various sizes
    > that if you "mount" these in a folder you get a "virtual" large drive
    > the capacaty of the partitains?


    No, and the free space reported in most applications will be that of the root
    drive, not the directory you are in. Applicaions will move files expecting it to
    be quick and the whole app will freese while the file is really moved.

    I tried it with dc++ and the downloaded folder, everytime something moved from
    partial to downloaded, the whole thing ground to a halt.
    Richard Malcolm-Smith, Aug 29, 2003
    #8
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