I'm a new system builder and on my new rig I have a 160 GB hard drive that has no partitioning.
This hard drive contains my OS and all of my program and media etc.
(1/) Should I partition this drive? and (2/) Is it good practice to?
I think Vista will allow you to partition the hard drive on the fly, (3/) is this safe?
If I was to partition the drive, (4/) Could I partition the drive so that I have my OS system files on one partition and then all my program and media on another?
Finally, am I correct in thinking if I have my partition setup as above and my OS becomes corrupt or I wish to change to a different OS, (5/) would I just need to format the partition that contains the OS and re-install?
1. No. Get a bigger one for My Documents & backups.
2. It WAS a good practice cuz harddisks were more expensive then.
5. Yes, but a misconception about Vista is that it's the same as XP. It ain't. Vista has MUCH better fail-safe. Say, the disk is unbootable. Drop in the Vista disk & do repair install. Or if you know what you're doing, go to recovery console & hack the files/registry. In most cases, you'll lose nothing other than the files you deleted.
BTW, go to start, Control Panel\Administrative Tools\Computer Management\disk Management for managing the harddisk. You can even partition the drive. Restart may be necessary.