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Is HDD Compression worth it?

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August 16, 2007 8:26:06 AM

Hi, I have two drives and one for storage an the other is my operating system. I know compressing drives can take up cpu power but it can also make your hard drive hold nearly twice as much. Right now I don't have much on my hard drives an I have my storage drive compressed an my operating drive uncompressed. I was thinking later when it gets bigger I can compress it. Is it possible to compress files that are already downloaded on the hard drive? Also, do you guys think its worth it to compress drives or is it worth it to slow down the cpu on my p4 processor and 512mb ram computer. thanks for any help

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August 16, 2007 9:45:00 AM

Just to let you know it takes almost as long to de-compress a file as it does to compress it.Although it does save space,it can be a hinderance when you need to access information quickly,but have to wait for it to de-compress.If possible,I would just add more drives as needed.I mean like seriously,a 300gig HD goes for like 120 dollars.You can always compress files using windows,even after they've been downloaded.Just go into properties on the drive you wish to compress and check the box that says"compress drive",as it looks for unecessarry files to be deleted.It does save space,but is more hassle these days than it's worth.Compressing drives is something we did 10 or more years ago when harddrives were only 2gigs.Now with drives hitting the 750gig and even the 1 terabyte mark,the days of compressing drives is over for personal computers.Only business and servers really need that option anymore.Goodluck.I would also get another 512 stick of ram or buy two new sticks of 1gig ddr[2X1gig=2gigs],this by itself will increase system performance significantly.

Dahak

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August 16, 2007 10:37:23 AM

Agree with Dahak. It has been 15 years maybe since I compressed a drive?
Frys has a 500GB SATA-300 Seagate drive on sale this week for $109.
With space so cheap, there simply is no need to compress a drive and take a big performance hit.
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August 16, 2007 11:24:32 AM

Plus the fact that a lot of games won't run on compressed drives.
If you look at the specs for most of them they spec Uncompressed hard drive space.
With hard drives so cheap now it's crazy to even think of compressing your drive.
August 16, 2007 3:15:08 PM

Mostly true, but if you say make a folder for things that dont need performance, such as movies, music, then simply compress solely that folder with windows. ince its those types of files that take up tons of space anyway.

Or like people said just buy another drive. Dont know about US but in the UK a 25gb drive can be had for £40, thats mad.
August 17, 2007 12:15:27 AM

The trouble is that movies, music, etc. are already compressed. They're MPEG/MP3/AAC/x264/XviD files. Those are a form of compression just like RAR and ZIP.

What I mean is that these compressed files have a data pattern that is very near random. You can't compress that effectively.

No, in fact, the things you should be compressing are the things that ought not to be or that shouldn't be there. Temporary folders can largely be deleted. You can decrease the number of recovery points to save space.

Of course, by my calculations, 1GB of RAM and 320GB HD is about $130.
August 17, 2007 12:21:31 AM

Hatman said:
Mostly true, but if you say make a folder for things that dont need performance, such as movies, music, then simply compress solely that folder with windows. ince its those types of files that take up tons of space anyway.

Or like people said just buy another drive. Dont know about US but in the UK a 25gb drive can be had for £40, thats mad.


Music:
* wma: Already compressed
* mp3: Already compressed
Movies:
* Probably most format are compressed!

Feel free to correct me about compression level for those format.

So, I do not believe that you will benefits with today's files using XP Disk/Folder compression. It too bad with today's Dual or Quad CPU where they would be better used to compress/decompress while the other would be free.

320/500 GB are now at a good price and now 500/750/1000 are available!

I would suggest to get a new bigger drive and drop compression.
August 17, 2007 12:44:47 AM

While i didn´t compress my whole HDD i did activate it. There are some file types that benefit from the compression, like .iso files for example. If you store dvd or cd images on your hd to play games without using the original DVD then the compression can be worth it.
I´ve a folder containing 5 images totalling at roughly 20gb but the actual hdd space used is way below 2GB. I suppose i could use a different format for the images but it works this way.
!