FancyCache and Windows 8

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DemolitionMan
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FancyCache and Windows 8

Post by DemolitionMan »

Hello I have been testing this software for a long time. Overall I'm very pleased with this product. I have been running it on two different Windows 7 x64 computers. On one of my computers I have installed 24GB of RAM just to be able to have a huge fancycache cache. Unfortunately it has corrupted my SSD drive (to the point where I've had to reformat it completely) several times when I had deferred writes turned on, but it has only happened so far because my machine has been unstable because of overclocking (after crashing the computer refuses to boot because of corruption on the drive).

I've since then reset everything back to stock settings and enabled a daily backup of my SSD drive so if it gets corrupted again it's really easy to restore. Now my PC is super stable again.

Anyways, I have been playing around a bit with the Windows 8 Developer preview. Both in VMs and right now I'm writing from Windows 8 properly installed as dual-boot with Windows 7. I decided to try out how FancyCache works with it and I discovered a huge annoyance.

I installed Windows 8 on a separate small 25GB partition on an old HDD (because my SSD is basically out of space). Then I downloaded FancyCache for Volumes and gave the C: drive inside Windows 8 12GBs of cache. Normally starting the cache on Windows 7 takes about a second, but on Windows 8 FancyCache locks up for several minutes.

Opening the task manager explains why. Instead of FancyCache allocating all it's memory at once like in Windows 7, it now takes a looong time. I saw the memory usage climbing very, very slowly and waited for a couple of minutes until it finally stopped climbing. After that FancyCache started responding again and it seems to be working normally. Performance is remarkably improved. Probably because the C: drive for windows 8 is only using 12,2GB on an old slow HDD and my cache size is 12 GB xD.

Even more annoying though is what I discovered when I rebooted. It suddenly took several minutes as well, just to start the boot loader. Windows 8 has a new very cool bootloader and it seems to be loading the fancycache driver or something even before the bootloader. I didn't want it to take this long to boot my computer when I want to use Windows 7 and when I changed the default OS to Windows 7 with msconfig the Windows 7 bootloader came back and the very long boot time was fixed.

Now it only takes a really long time to boot Windows 8 because of the slow memory allocation.

I have no clue what has changed in Windows 8 that causes this, but currently this software doesn't work very well on Windows 8. Although if you just use a small cache like < 1GB this might not be that big of an issue.

If it won't be possible to allocate that much memory instantly in Windows 8 anymore like you can in Windows 7 it would be much better if FancyCache could start the memory allocation once Windows 8 has booted completely.
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Re: FancyCache and Windows 8

Post by Support »

Hi DemolitionMan,

Thank you for your feedback. We'll check the slow memory allocation issue in Windows 8.
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DemolitionMan
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Re: FancyCache and Windows 8

Post by DemolitionMan »

I've found another issue with huge cache size and really long deferred write on a normal mechanical HDD. I discovered this in Windows 8 but I do not think it is Windows 8 related. I am running with "Averaging write amount" but it doesn't seem to work.

When FancyCache is running I see no writes at all to the drive, until FancyCache's deffered write timer clock kicks in. Then it flushes everything at once and uses the drive to 100%. Everything else slows down to a crawl during this. I thought the "Averaging write amount" would cause it to only write during disk idle time, like the defragmenting software Diskkeeper does.
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Re: FancyCache and Windows 8

Post by Support »

Yes, currently it is possible to cause slowdown on flushing deferred data. "Averaging write amount" shall be somewhat helpful. Perhaps you may try to shorten defer time. We're also thinking other methods.

Thanks.
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Re: FancyCache and Windows 8

Post by Support »

Slow memory allocation on Windows 8 CP has been fixed in verison 0.8.0
Thanks.
ringram
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Re: FancyCache and Windows 8

Post by ringram »

I have been having issues. I upgrade from 0.72 to 0.8 and now get an Unexpected Kernel Mode Trap error 0x1000007f
Windows 8 Consumer Beta reports this occurring in rxfcd.sys
I have now removed fancycache and will see if the error occurs again.
laban
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Re: FancyCache and Windows 8

Post by laban »

I havet av lit of trouble With Windows 8 and latest version of fc.

Kernel-power id 41
Computer stopp and do not fins c: ssd.
Computer wont start again. Windows cd on startup finds problems on c:
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