Windows 8 has a built-in feature that enables users and administrators to use their flash drives as physical memory (RAM). When a USB flash drive is connected to the computer, Windows 8 asks users if they want to enable ReadyBoost and use the inserted USB drive as RAM to increase the performance of the system. If users select to use the connected USB drive as a memory, Windows uses a certain (specified/available) or the entire space of the drive to store the contents which Windows is not able to accommodate in the limited space of the physical memory. Although Windows can use pagefile to enhance the efficiency and performance of the operating system, using a USB drive for ReadyBoost remarkably increases the efficiency of Windows 8.
When a USB drive is connected to the computer, users can configure ReadyBoost settings by right-clicking the drive’s icon, going to its properties, and then going to ReadyBoost tab from the drive’s properties box. While configuring ReadyBoost, users can allow Windows to use either the entire space of the USB drive, or they can specify the amount of space that Windows must use for the ReadyBoost.
Only the USB drives that are of 256 MB or greater in size can be used to enable ReadyBoost. Moreover, as a precautionary step, all contents of the USB drive must be backed up and the data must be removed from the drive to give ReadyBoost enough room to perform well.
Enable and Configure ReadyBoost
Although Windows 8 automatically prompts users to enable ReadyBoost as soon as a USB drive is connected to the computer, users can manually enable the feature and/or configure its settings by following the steps given as below:
- Log on to Windows 8 computer with administrator account on which USB device is configured as ReadyBoost.
- Click Desktop tile from the Start screen to view the desktop.
- Once on the desktop screen, click File Explorer icon from the taskbar.
- On the opened Libraries window, from the left pane, click Computer.
- On the Computer window, right-click the icon of USB flash drive on which ReadyBoost is to be enabled and configured.
- From the displayed context menu, click Properties.
- From the drive’s properties box, go to the ReadyBoost tab.
- On the selected tab, click to select either Dedicate this device to ReadyBoost or Use this device radio button.
- Click OK to enable ReadyBoost on the inserted USB flash drive.
- Wait till the USB device is configured as ReadyBoost.
Note: Make sure that the USB device that is to be used as ReadyBoost does not contain any important data.