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Is it best to partition your drive?

Junior05

OSNN Junior Addict
#1
Hello

I am building a new PC and have just fitted a 200Gb SATA hard drive. I am about to install XP but was wondering if it is best to leave the drive as 1 huge partion or should a split it into two. One for the OS and apps and then the rest for data.
If I should partition, what ratio? 50Gb & 150Gb?

Many Thanks
Ryan
 
#2
Re: Is it best two partiton your drive

It's up to you, really.

Microsoft recommends leaving the drive as a single volume, since there are certain optimizations that run in the background and work best on single volume drives. But if you defrag your drives regularly, you won't notice a difference in performance.

I personally prefer to have one partition for Windows and all my applications, and another for all my persistant data (i.e. data that needs to survive an OS failure) so that if something ever goes wrong with my Windows setup, I can just clean out the partition and reinstall it, and I don't need to worry about losing any data.

Partition sizes? Again, up to you. It depends on how you want to set up your partitions (i.e. what each one will contain), how many applications you expect to have installed, and how much space they all end up taking together. I've split my 200GB drive into 80+120, since I tend to have a number of apps that take up lots of disk space, and it's good to have a lot of slack for future needs.
 

Admiral Michael

Michaelsoft Systems CEO
#3
Re: Is it best two partiton your drive

NetRyder said:
It's up to you, really.

Microsoft recommends leaving the drive as a single volume, since there are certain optimizations that run in the background and work best on single volume drives. But if you defrag your drives regularly, you won't notice a difference in performance.

I personally prefer to have one partition for Windows and all my applications, and another for all my persistant data (i.e. data that needs to survive an OS failure) so that if something ever goes wrong with my Windows setup, I can just clean out the partition and reinstall it, and I don't need to worry about losing any data.

Partition sizes? Again, up to you. It depends on how you want to set up your partitions (i.e. what each one will contain), how many applications you expect to have installed, and how much space they all end up taking together. I've split my 200GB drive into 80+120, since I tend to have a number of apps that take up lots of disk space, and it's good to have a lot of slack for future needs.
I second that. My setup is as follows:

Desktop
Drive 1 (111GB)
C:\ Programs (69.3GB)
D:\ Music (30GB)
E:\ Document (12.3GB)

Drive 2 (111GB)
F:\ Storage (111GB)
Laptop
Drive 1 (60GB)
C:\ Programs (35.3GB)
D:\ Music (9.7GB)
E:\ Documents (5.39GB)
F:\ Storage (5.38GB)
 
#4
Re: Is it best two partiton your drive

NetRyder said:
It's up to you, really.

Microsoft recommends leaving the drive as a single volume, since there are certain optimizations that run in the background and work best on single volume drives. But if you defrag your drives regularly, you won't notice a difference in performance.

I personally prefer to have one partition for Windows and all my applications, and another for all my persistant data (i.e. data that needs to survive an OS failure) so that if something ever goes wrong with my Windows setup, I can just clean out the partition and reinstall it, and I don't need to worry about losing any data.

Partition sizes? Again, up to you. It depends on how you want to set up your partitions (i.e. what each one will contain), how many applications you expect to have installed, and how much space they all end up taking together. I've split my 200GB drive into 80+120, since I tend to have a number of apps that take up lots of disk space, and it's good to have a lot of slack for future needs.

I'll third this. Lost my OS a couple times and thankfully had everything else on a different partition, and was able to save it.

The 150/50 sounds about right, depending on the number, and type/size of programs you use.

I set my OS/Program partition to 15 GB and think I might regret it at some point. Although its been 6-8 months, and I still have 44% (6.71GB) free, so its all good....so far.
 

Johnny

.. Commodore ..
Political User
#5
I just got an external hd for my back up. As stated though, it is all up to you what you want to do. With a drive that big, I would partition if it was me. There is no way you will ever use 200 gig. I would make a partition maybe 80 gig and the other one 120. That is just me though ..
 

madmatt

Bow Down to the King
Political User
#6
When it comes to my personal production systems I always partition the drive into three.

C = System
D = Documents
E = Data

At home I have a RAID 0 and at work I have a RAID 1. I always make the System partition at least 25GB on smaller drives and 40GB on larger drives.
 

Johnny

.. Commodore ..
Political User
#7
madmatt said:
When it comes to my personal production systems I always partition the drive into three.

C = System
D = Documents
E = Data

At home I have a RAID 0 and at work I have a RAID 1. I always make the System partition at least 25GB on smaller drives and 40GB on larger drives.
Raid0 ?? Hmm .. Not a good choice is it ??
 

madmatt

Bow Down to the King
Political User
#8
If you are concerned about data loss (due to one drive failing) then it isn't. However, performance wise it is a good choice.
 

Johnny

.. Commodore ..
Political User
#9
Dataloss is what I was referring to. I heard way to many horror stories about it as far as data loss ...
 

madmatt

Bow Down to the King
Political User
#10
Had a major problem at work, that's why I run RAID 1 at work. Not so concerned about my home system though.
 
#11
i also go with 3 partitions:

I have partiton 1 (20 GIG) for windows
patition 2 for Games and APPZ (60gb)
and 120 GB for files i need to keep incase of an OS failure

I also have a 2nd harddrive for the pagefile. All seems to run nice and smooth this way. It makes reinstalling windows a breeze because my apps are all installed off the Windows partition. So I never forget to reinstall anything.
 
#12
I recommend 4 partitions:

C: 10% System - Windows & any programs that are finicky when not on C:
D: 40% Programs - all programs that tolerate not being on C: + music/video
E: 40% Backup - copies of upgrade, patches, downloads, music, video, etc
F: 10% pagefile and room for building DVDs

You can defrag your critical system files on C: in only a few minutes since the partition is so small.

Drives D: and E: get hardly any fragmentation. You can vary the percentage to your needs.

By putting the pagefile on E: with a fixed size it stays contiguous and you have a clean drive to use for max speed DVD/CD burning.

If windows gets trashed or infected everything else is intact with all the setups customizations etc. I also have a redundant backup incase anything gets corrupted.

If you have to reinstall windows you loose the registry so many of the programs die with it but reinstall is trivial and you don't have to redo all your setup files.

PS you still need to run backups onto an external drive or DVDs in case the entire drive dies.
 

Johnny

.. Commodore ..
Political User
#13
You guy are mentioning about page files and such. The last time I tried to move that, it didn't make a diff as far as performance. Also, if you install programs on a seperate drive and have to reformat. You will still run into the problem as that some programs install things in more places than just your program file folder.

I agree with installing them that way though. It does make it easier. If you reformat all you hav to do is just fix send a short cut. Of course you won't have anything in your start menu and the such though ...
 

Taurus

hardware monkey
#15
two partitions seems perfect to me. one for the OS and applications and another for everything else you'd want to survive a format/OS install.

why more than two, though? doesn't make sense to me. why not just have everything in all the secondary partitions (D:, E:, etc) in one single D:? any further oraganizing can just take place in folders and you get use the most of the available space. not to mention moving files is a hell of a lot faster.
 

Junior05

OSNN Junior Addict
#16
Many Thanks for your comments. I have partitioned into two so far, but may split the larger drive once I transfer all over my data onto it.

Very pleased with the machine I have built too! I have gone from a AMD K6 @ 500Mhz to a AMD 64 3200+. the one mistake I made last night was installing norton that came with the MD drivers! After it installed and rebooted a message appeared every fine minutes telling me I had to subscribe! I am talking in past tense, as I soon removed it and installed AVG.

Cheer
Ryan
 

Johnny

.. Commodore ..
Political User
#17
Junior05 said:
the one mistake I made last night was installing norton that came with the MD drivers! After it installed and rebooted a message appeared every fine minutes telling me I had to subscribe! I am talking in past tense, as I soon removed it and installed AVG.
The worst thing you could ever do to your computer, or any computer for that matter, is put anything norton in it. Good call taking it out and putting avg in ..
 
#18
Johnny said:
The worst thing you could ever do to your computer, or any computer for that matter, is put anything norton in it. Good call taking it out and putting avg in ..
Agreed, unless it's corporate. It runs itself, hardly a footprint.
 
#19
The advantage to moving your program files away from the system partition is to protect setup and save files.

If you get your OS trashed by a virus or just a glitch and you have to reformat to get clean it out you will loose everything. That means you loose your level 21 super warriors and magical weapons you spent 6 months earning, all your office program setup files, any special liscencing or activation files for programs, voice chat server IPs, FTP IPs, torrent downloads and links, etc. That's too painful a loss to risk.

You still need to back up my documents (music, pictures) regularly to another partition. And make sure you back up the directory where windows stashes your media liscences.
 

Johnny

.. Commodore ..
Political User
#20
I can see your point there leejend. My point was that if you do that you will have to reset all the shortcuts and reinstall the apps that store files in more places than just the program file folder anyhow.
 

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