The UX of Windows 7 ReadyBoost

I did some research and decided to try the Windows 7 feature called ReadyBoost.  Basically, you put in a USB or SD card and the system puts the swap file on it, thus speeding up the system.  I have seen mixed reviews of the effectiveness of this technique.

I found the fastest USB thumb drive for my workstation and fastest SD Card for the Asus netbook.  After I did the SD card, I realized the max swap file was 4 gigs, so I only only got 4g instead of 8g on the USB drive.  I plugged them both in.

I don’t know what I was expecting.  A sudden increase in speed?  I guess it was anti-climatic.  Here is my advice to the Windows ReadyBoost team.  When someone uses Readyboost, it should ask the user if they want to run a few days of benchmarking to see how effective the feature is.  In other words, they need to provide some feedback into how it’s doing.

This could be a screen that shows performance improvements.  It could mean delaying the execution of the feature for a few days to run baseline tests and then enable it and compare.  I am just saying that I seriously have no idea if it’s working or not.  For all I know, it might not even be enabled right.

Lesson:  When you have a feature that only works invisibly, you need to provide some feedback to the user to let them know it’s working right.  Otherwise, they won’t appreciate the feature.

3 replies on “The UX of Windows 7 ReadyBoost”

You can monitor ReadyBoost in action via Performance Monitor on Windows 7.

Just open Performance monitor from Administrative Tools, click Add Counters and there you can find a counter called ReadyBoost Cache.

Unfortunately, I have found that the resource monitor actually takes up significant resources. Plus, this technique doesn’t really tell me how much improved from NOT having it.

Why don’t you run the built-in windows benchmark test and without and with the readyboost device and check the difference.

This will tell you if there is any increase in erformance.


Whatya think?