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Thread: ASRock Utilities explanation?




  1. #1
    axehead15 is offline Junior Member
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    Default ASRock Utilities explanation?

    Hi all, I've been using my ASRock H61M-DGS for a while, and just never bothered using the utilities that came with the board. I am now exploring those utilities, and having a hard time finding places explaining what they are for, whether they are useful to me, and how to use these. The utilities in question are:

    1. XFast LAN
    2. XFast RAM
    3. XFast USB
    4. ASRock InstantBoot
    5. ASRock eXtreme Tuner (I see OC stuff in here, so I assume this is used to overclock components?)
    6. ASRock SmartConnect

    Someone please explain to me in depth what these utilities are good for and how to use them?

  2. #2
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    parsec is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: ASRock Utilities explanation?

    Explain in depth? I could spend an hour+ doing that... Have you ever seen this:

    ASRock Tech Zone

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    Default Re: ASRock Utilities explanation?

    What parsec posted is the best way to get a handle.

    Click on each and watch videos.

  4. #4
    axehead15 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: ASRock Utilities explanation?

    OK, I watched some of them, I can see that I can lower latency in SC2 by putting XFast LAN to highest priority for that game. Now how about logging into work remotely from this computer? Is there a setting in this LAN utility to reduce lag over the VPN?

    Also, when it says "speed up your RAM", if I have 8GB RAM and allocate 2GB for the virtual thingy like they did on that site, wouldn't that slow it down more? I am confused, because it then seems like you have 6GB RAM left to play with instead of the whole 8GB. Or is this taking programs and dedicating them to a certain section of the RAM so that it doesn't fragment? Sort of like SSD vs HDD (I realize a hard drive and RAM are not the same thing, just trying to come up with a good comparison).

    XFast USB is self explanatory, so no issues there.

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    parsec's Avatar
    parsec is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: ASRock Utilities explanation?

    XFast LAN is complex, but I can't see it being very useful on a single user PC, unless you have multiple downloads running, while on line gaming, etc. If the PC was a server of some kind, then assigning priorities to various things could be useful. I don't use it, not even installed.

    XFast RAM is just a free RAM disk program, which is fine and can be useful in some cases. Using it for the pagefile is, as you said, for most people worthless. If you have a 32 bit OS, a slow HDD, and have more than 4GB of memory, then yes it is a nice feature. The pagefile is used when a PC has very little memory, or when the user has used up all the system memory. If you have say 8GB or more RAM, most people will never use the pagefile. So how does it make sense to put the pagefile in a RAM drive, which uses system memory, thus reducing the amount of available system memory, which is the cause of the need for a pagefile?

    If you have an application that is constantly using temporary files, or reads one or more files many times for some reason, then putting those files in a RAM drive will make that much faster. Using it for a browser cache will speed things up, but I've had problems with it, and if you don't back up the cache on shutdown, it will be gone. I've played with it, it does work and can be useful.

    Instant Boot is ASRock's take on Windows Hibernate. They claim it is "cleaner", with no proof of that, IMO. I don't use it.

    SmartConnect is an Intel feature, that wakes the PC from Sleep periodically to update your email, reload Internet pages like Facebook, etc, so they are up to date when you wake the PC. So you must use Sleep for it to work. I suppose this is useful if you have a dial up modem that takes minutes to reload a web site page, or if it takes a long time to get new emails, but for me it is worthless.

    AXTU lets you change CPU, memory, and on board graphics speed and voltage settings usually available only in the BIOS, without rebooting. You can also check system temperatures, check and adjust fan speeds on the fly. The XFast RAM setup is done in AXTU. It also has an power saving feature that can be activated. I like it, Ive seen better fan speed control software, but it does work fine. Not essential, useful, a matter of taste.

  6. #6
    Lasch24 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: ASRock Utilities explanation?

    XFast LAN makes you able to prioritize your applications, for example to get lower latencies while downloading during MMO gameplay.

    XFast RAM is a ramdisk software. With it you can allocate parts of your RAM to be used as a logical drive. That means you can install applications directly into your RAM, so they can be executed ridiculously fast. If you're running a 32 bits version of Windows, it pretends to do so with the sections of your RAM that actually cannot be utilized by a 32 bit version of Windows (at least unless you patch it to support PAE).
    For 64 bits OS with PLENTY of RAM, about 32 gigabytes or more, depending on what that amount of RAM is used for, you could use 20 gigs of it to load your most frequently used software, your temporary folder, your browser cache and stuff like that on it that would take longer to load or save on your hard drive. If you use it to install software, you can configure it to store the whole ramdisk on shutdown, and load it again on bootup (which would take quite a long time to do, but after that, the loading times are almost gone). If you have an SSD, it would be quite....pointless.

    InstantBoot will boot up your system "faster". It actually turns your computer on again after you turned it off and puts it into sleep mode. That's all about it, it may use less energy than normal sleep mode would, but I don't see a point in waiting a minute longer until your computer is ready to use, for SSD users it also is less useful.

    eXtreme Tuner is an overclocking and system monitoring tool. I personally would use it to watch system voltages only.
    Of course, you can check how far you can overclock your system, but at the point, you're sure what settings to use, set those in your BIOS/UEFi and get rid of it. You are running an H61 *whatever* means so far, that you shouldn't even be able to overclock, and if you could, you just wouldn't take it far enough to see a significant difference compared to stock.

    I haven't heard about SmartConnect, but it can't be that big of a deal if it's actually working as they supposed it would.

    I hope this helps you about the tools.

    #edit: parsec, damn it, you were faster..

  7. #7
    parsec's Avatar
    parsec is offline Senior Member
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    Default Re: ASRock Utilities explanation?

    Sorry Lasch24, and welcome to the forum.

    Your explanations were not the same as mine, I think they are worthwhile additions, and I agree with what you wrote. Is my opinion the only one worth reading? No, no, no.

    XFast USB works, it does transfer faster, but has the annoyance of needing to plug and unplug the USB drive to activate it. It only works on one port too, and using a single to multi-port connection does not make a difference.

  8. #8
    axehead15 is offline Junior Member
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    Default Re: ASRock Utilities explanation?

    Thanks fellas I appreciate it!

    While I admit these are pretty nifty things, they aren't exactly the most useful for my application.

    You all explained things really well. Thanks again!

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