Partitioning hardrive for XP on NTFS



I am doing a fresh install of Windows XP Home Edition. I am going to install it on a computer that has two 40 GIG harddrives setup in a raid. I want to partition the 80 GIGs into more useable sizes(I know NTFS can handle 80 GIGs, I want to create a portion of my hardrive space for storage).

Can anyone recommend some suggested partitions?


Well I havnt got raid, but do have two 40Gb drives just like you. what I did was made them both masters with the following partitions, Hope this gives you some ideas for your setup..

c: - xp system & program files 25Gb (drive1)
d: - cache , swapfile 768 minimum..maximum to size of partition -2.5gb (drive2)
e: - games 15gb (drive1)
f: - storage, docs,images, music 35Gb (drive2)

My system works fine with this setup I have plenty of space for anything! :)


Well personally I would partition it as one 80GB drive!

I used to partition seperate drives when slack space was an issue, and max drive sizes were prohibitive.. but I don't see the point anymore! You just end up, when your disc is getting nearly full, with a bit of free space on each drive and not enough space on any 1 drive to do what you want with.. (Like install soemthing!)

SO where's the point?

Soemthign else, now this doesn't really apply to RAID setups, if you haev 2 HDD's one master and one slave, it apparently isn't a good idea to put your swap file of the slave and have your OS ont ehmaster.. Something to do with the time it takes to swap between master and slave makes it slow..... ( I saw this in a redhad linux manual/book)
So dunno exactly how pertinent it is to different OS's.. I don't see any particular it woudl be any different... They recommend tha if you want to do this that you have the second drive on it's own channel as master!

Also saw soemthign about partitioning... If you want to put a swap file on a seperate partition make sure the partition is physically at teh end of the drive so it's near the outer edge where you get better transfer rates!.....

Personally I avoid all this hassle by just having 1 partition!

Easy see! ;)


thats why both my drives are masters :) as well as my dedicated partition for the pagefile.. Ive also got smaller pagefiles on all drives too!


I have the exact same hardware sitch...

2X40GB drives = 80GB stripe.

trebor, you ask what the point is of partitioning?

Well, if he only has these 2 drives in his machine, the point of partitioning the stripe is so that when the time comes to format c:, he has a spot where he has saved his 'data'... ie files he wants to keep....

I however don't see the point of a separate drive for swap or games. Swap on a separate partition on the same physical stripe will not offer any perf adv. and once XP is blown away, the games will not work anyway, so keeping them on a separate drive is pointless. I look at games the same way I do program files, as in they belong on c.

That being said, I think it makes sense to have 2 partitions. I personally have chosen (for no good reason) to have a 30 GB Windows partition (XP, program files etc.) and a 50 GB data partition.

Once I have installed XP, all updates, drivers and what i consider to be 'base apps' like office, photoshop, and whatever tweaking apps or utilities, I use ghost to image the C partition, and dump it to D.....

At that point, a FRESH XP INSTALL takes about 15 minutes to load from the image file on D....

my .02


YEah the backups thing is a good reason to have a seperate drive, but I usually just keep an old drive back (i.e. don't put it in the bin) for backups.... I have an 8 GB one now....

I have thought long and hard about creating an image to 'restore' XP as you do.. but I haven't really do any searchign intoa good util to do it with...
What do you use?????

But as to making formatting easier yeah I agree totally...

I guess if you don't have a spare HDD layign around then a partition woudl work just as well...

Spreading yoru swap file over all HDD's is a bad idea though!!!!

If you have 2 partiotions on 1 disk (eg C and D both disc 1)
and your machine is writing/reading the swap file, then what you end up doing is making the read head jump from early(1st partition) on the disc to late on the disc (2nd partition).. Effectivley fragmenting your swap file!!!!!! And this is fragmentation even defrag CAN NOT cure!!!!!

So thats a bad idea!

Spread it over seperate physical drives by all means, but never spread it over the same drive using different partitions... it cause the heads to undergo the most movement travelign from one partition to another! SLLLOOOWWWW!!!!!

Isn't a simple thing such as partitioning full of SOOOOO many pitfalls! ;-)

Bob S

I do not partition or use RAID anymore. More trouble than it is worth. I run four hard drives. Three have operating systems and the last one is for ghost backup of the other three. Everything else on the system is either SCSI, or usb.

Personally I believe that Ghost backups are the best. Fast to make, fast to restore and best of all errorless.


Software Raid is what I use on XP Pro. My ATTO scores are over 100K :)
I have a Cheetah X15-36LP 18G U160 SCSI in two partitions C: OS (8Gig) F: Backup and storage.
I then Have two Fujitsu MAN3184 18G 10K U160 SCSI drives setup on Software RAID. Here I put all my games, benchmarks, etc. I'm using an Adaptec 39160 Controller.
Been running it for about 4 months and its GREAT!

I would only put the swap file onto a seperate Hard Drive. If not just let windows handle it.

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