Solid-State Drives and Caching
Intel® Cache Acceleration Software
FAQ Configuration and Use

What is the memory requirement for Intel® Cache Acceleration Software (Intel® CAS)?
Requires a minimum of 4 GB of RAM, but 8 GB is recommended for best performance.

I am having problems installing Intel® CAS, why is this happening?
Make sure that you are running the installer while logged in as Administrator.

Why am I not able to update my Include file list?
Make sure you are logged in as Administrator. Only the Administrator account can modify the Include list and make and configuration changes in Intel CAS.

Can Flash on the SAN be used for the cache device?
Yes. As long as it is formatted using NTFS.

How do you combine Flash devices to use them as a single device?
In Windows 2008 Server*, you can create a spanned or striped volume for the Flash devices and create a single volume to use them.

Can you pin a file that is larger than the cache size?
No. The service refuses to pin larger files.

What happens when you pin a file and it grows to a size larger than the cache?
Once a file exceeds the cache size, cache maintenance starts clearing aspects of the file that are least likely to be used. If you restart the service, it refuses to pin the file.

Why does nothing happen when I click Intel CAS on the Start Menu or desktop icon?
Shortcut links only launch Intel CAS if it is not already running. If the Intel CAS icon is present in the system tray, the Start Menu or Desktop icon items do not launch the GUI. To bring up the GUI, double-click the icon in the system tray. The issue is planned to be fixed in a future release.

How can I tell what applications need more I/O?
Disk usage statistics are recorded in Windows Performance Monitor (perfmon), which is included by default with Windows Server 2008 R2. Two counters that can be monitored to see overall disk I/O activity are:

  • PhysicalDisk: % Disk Time (percentage of time that the disk is busy with I/O)
  • PhysicalDisk: Avg. Disk Queue Length (how many system requests are waiting for disk access)
Individual applications may have specific counters to see the amount of I/O generated by the application. For example, in Microsoft SQL Server:
  • SQL Server:Buffer Manager:Page reads/sec
  • SQL Server:Buffer Manager:Page writes/sec

How do I test performance?
In addition to Windows Performance Monitor, there are several third-party tools that can help test I/O performance on your applications and system. Iometer (Iometer) tests for overall I/O performance, and TPC-C transactional database performance tests for SQL (TPC-C).

Performance is slower than I expected, what can I do?
Intel® CAS can run as a one or two-level caching system. Your application or hardware can require you to run in a particular configuration. You should try switching between one and two level caches to see if that solves your performance issue. See Section 4.6 in the Intel CAS Administrators Guide for details.

Where are the cached files?
Cached files are found in the folder <drive>:\IntelCAS\ on your cache drive.

How do I delete all the cache files?
You can clear the cache by stopping the service, deleting all the data under <drive>:\IntelCAS\ on your cache drive, and then restarting the service.

Does Intel® Cache Acceleration Software support write-back caching?
No. The current release of Intel® CAS supports read with write-through caching only. In this mode, both read and write operations build the cache data, but only read operations are accelerated. The writes are written into the cache and to backend storage concurrently. Data integrity is never a concern with write-through.

A future release will support write-back caching, in which writes are written first to the cache and sync to backend storage when I/O is available. The release also allows you to specify what applications or data is set to write-through versus write-back modes.

How do I change the cache drive used by the service?
Launch Intel CAS. In the Policy tab, drop down the Cache Drive combo-box and select the drive you want to use. Click Apply.

How do I add to or change the list of files I want to accelerate?
Launch Intel CAS. In the Policy tab, click the Include button. Type the names of the specific files you want to accelerate or all files of a given type (*.xyz) or specific directories (X:\Folder Name\Folder Name\*). Click Apply.

How can I tell if all the operations are being performed without errors?
The Intel CAS service logs all important operations in a log file called IntelCAS.log. This file resides in the folder on the drive where the software is installed. Any errors or exceptions thrown by the software are logged in this file. By default, the logs folder is at: C:\ProgramData\Intel\Cache Acceleration Software\logs\ .

Where is the log file?
By default, the logs folder is at: C:\ProgramData\Intel\Cache Acceleration Software\logs\ .

This applies to:

Intel® Cache Acceleration Software

Solution ID: CS-033973
Last Modified: 18-Jan-2013
Date Created: 07-Jan-2013
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