1. 47
  1. 6

    Impressive. When faced with a similar issue (laptop from 2015 with 4GB of RAM), I turned to zswap and then zram. Zram works incredibly well with 6:1 compression ratios. It seems web browsers data compresses particularly well (much better than it should).

    1. 3

      Hehe, kinda funny that in 2021 you can “download more RAM” for your computer!

      1. 3

        This idea is very old, e.g. in the 1990ies there was RAM Doubler for Macs:


        Or Quarterdeck MagnaRAM for Windows 3.1:


        1. 1

          It worked really well back then for day-to-day things like Office and Netscape… I remember a RAM Doubler/Speed Doubler combo making my PowerMac 7100 really noticeably snappier.

          I really enjoyed this upgrade story, and laughed audibly at the conclusion:

          I’ve now got an XPS13 with 16GB of memory.

          But next time I think I’ll just buy the 16GB variant upfront.

      2. 2

        1:6 seems very reasonable given a lot of the content will be text which compresses very well. Then there will be a lot of UI memory which is also pretty repetitive. http://mattmahoney.net/dc/text.html

      3. 1

        Since it doesn’t exist, I’m assuming the benefits aren’t there, but why can’t one buy a thunderbolt -> DDR adaptor of some sort, as a stopgap between main ram and ssd swap? What am I not seeing that rules it out?

        1. 4

          Since Thunderbolt is, in the best case, PCIe, I think this answer applies in full. Even looking at this link from that thread I’m having a hard time seeing how this could be better than just attaching the fastest SSD you can get and using it as a swap volume. I don’t think thunderbolt is going to let you get to RAM faster than it will an NVMe SSD.