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new HDD, need help with partitions

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January 27, 2008 9:23:02 PM

hi, im building a new computer and have been reading up on partitioning and file management, the disk is 250gb so i was thinking of splitting it into 60 and 190gb. im planing on putting os (vista), program files and pagefile into the 1st 60gb partition. games, media files, documents and some utility software into the 2nd (ill relocate the whole my documents folder). the reason for this is to keep my data intact on the 2nd partition incase i need to reinstall my os or whatever.

will 60gb be enough for my intended use? would it be more benificial to put programs in the second partition with my personal files or even its own separate third partition, if so how would i go about doing this? should i relocate the whole program files folder? should i bother partitioning at all? sorry for the noob questions but everywhere i look people seem to have different opinions, any help/advice would be appreciated. cheers.

edit: i was thinking would putting games with os/programs and pagefile with data be better? how much space would you recommend, thanks

More about : hdd partitions

January 27, 2008 10:06:45 PM

The chief reason to partition is to keep your OS/programs and data on different partitions so do not put your data on a partition with an OS and/or programs. You should do one or the other. Put your OS/programs on the first partition and data on the second, 50GB should be fine. Or, put your OS on the first, programs on the second, and data on the 3rd. I always put the OS and programs on the same partition but others prefer putting programs on the second, it's really a personal choice. Regardless of where you put your programs they'll have to be reinstalled when Windows is reinstalled. If you haven't done so, check out Partition Magic, excellent program for creating, resizing, and managing partitions after Windows is installed
January 27, 2008 10:31:08 PM

thanks a lot, basically all i needed to know. would you keep games on C:? also if i was to put programs on a second and data on a third, would i have to relocate the whole program files folder to the 2nd partition?
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January 27, 2008 10:44:03 PM

nattydreds said:
hi, im building a new computer and have been reading up on partitioning and file management, the disk is 250gb so i was thinking of splitting it into 60 and 190gb. im planing on putting os (vista), program files and pagefile into the 1st 60gb partition. games, media files, documents and some utility software into the 2nd (ill relocate the whole my documents folder). the reason for this is to keep my data intact on the 2nd partition incase i need to reinstall my os or whatever.

will 60gb be enough for my intended use? would it be more benificial to put programs in the second partition with my personal files or even its own separate third partition, if so how would i go about doing this? should i relocate the whole program files folder? should i bother partitioning at all? sorry for the noob questions but everywhere i look people seem to have different opinions, any help/advice would be appreciated. cheers.

edit: i was thinking would putting games with os/programs and pagefile with data be better? how much space would you recommend, thanks


Why such a small HDD? Just curious.

If its a budget thing, then get an 80 GB drive for OS / programs, and a 160 GB drive for data / pagefile. Slightly more cost than a 250 GB drive, but you won't be putting all of your valuable data on the same drive as your OS. OK, same chance of failure, but with a good backup strategy the restore of either drive should be relatively painless.

Personally, I dislike partitions. Just another way for the HAL to screw something up, namely the partition table. KISS principle applies here, in my opinion. Don't like raid 0 or raid 1 either, BTW...
January 27, 2008 11:22:54 PM

g-paw said:
If you haven't done so, check out Partition Magic, excellent program for creating, resizing, and managing partitions after Windows is installed


Question on partion magic - are you referring to the symantic program here or a free one? Thanks
January 27, 2008 11:30:26 PM

g-paw said:
Put your OS/programs on the first partition and data on the second, 50GB should be fine.


i take it you mean 50gb for os/programs? croc, the reason i went with 250gb because yes its cheap and i dont really see myself ever using that much space anyway, im getting the faster single platter seagate drive also (410AS or something).
January 27, 2008 11:49:25 PM

croc said:
Why such a small HDD? Just curious.

If its a budget thing, then get an 80 GB drive for OS / programs, and a 160 GB drive for data / pagefile. Slightly more cost than a 250 GB drive, but you won't be putting all of your valuable data on the same drive as your OS. OK, same chance of failure, but with a good backup strategy the restore of either drive should be relatively painless.

Personally, I dislike partitions. Just another way for the HAL to screw something up, namely the partition table. KISS principle applies here, in my opinion. Don't like raid 0 or raid 1 either, BTW...



Amen Bro,

I don't know why people set up partitions all it does is slow down the slowest part of the system down and create a big ole mess if the hard drive fails, which inevitably they all do.

The better option is and always has been to have 2 drives. One for the OS and one for applications. Then once you have everything set up ghost the OS disk or both if you like.

If the OS disk goes down for whatever reason, ghost over it or replace with a new drive and ghost it and you're back up in minutes. Your apps will not need to be reinstalled with this option and is much faster and simpler not to mention, the drives speed are not slowed down an thrashed about searching for files.

Ditto on the raid, unless you are pulling / pushing heavy files like HD-video / animation or running a server etc. Raid is unnecessary.



January 27, 2008 11:57:55 PM

Stevemeister said:
Question on partion magic - are you referring to the symantic program here or a free one? Thanks


Yes I meant the Symantic program and 50gb for the OS/programs. If you decide to put the OS on the 1st partion and your programs on the 2nd, all you'll have to do is chose to install on the D drive if the 2nd. Agree with pip_seeker that a 2nd hdd is good, been using partitions for years and have never had a problem with them. Personally, I'd put the OS/programs on one paratition and the data on a second. If you get Partition Magic you can always create a new partition and try programs on it to see if you think it makes a difference. Even if you're partitions for years, you're likely to make changes over time. If you eventually get a new hdd, use it to backup your data anther advantage to partitions, your data is on 2 different drives
January 30, 2008 1:41:40 AM

ok so this is what i got planed:

Partition 1: 80gb - OS/all programs and apps including games

Partition 2: 170gb - data/all personal media files and documents


should i put PF with data or just leave default? also am i going to have to buy some kind of partitioning software, or can this be done through vista? cheers for your help g-paw.






January 30, 2008 1:49:35 AM

PF? Suggest you get Partition Magic, you can do the partitioning after Windows is installed as well as create new ones of resized the partitions. Partition 1 could be 60GB but 80GB won't hurt anything. Again, the advantage of Partition Magic is you can always resized later if you want. Good setup OS/programs on one and data on the other
January 30, 2008 4:44:24 AM

PF = pagefile.

the reason im asking if you can partition using windows is that im already stretched for budget and i only plan on creating two partitions initially. I will probably end up getting some kind of software in the future.
January 30, 2008 5:16:37 AM

You can partition without Partition Magic very easily. There is absolutely no reason to spend a dime. If you are going to do that put the cash toward a second drive. If you need to repartition later then buy it, you probably won't though.

Edit: If you can't get it done with Vista then use the hard drive manufacturers tools.
a c 105 G Storage
January 31, 2008 3:15:32 PM

BootIt NG is free for 30 days.

http://www.terabyteunlimited.com/downloads-bootit-next-...

There's no reason at all to partition a HD, welll....unless you want a fast computer or an organized computer.

The HD is fastest at the outer edges. You plop everything on C and stuff ya put on day will be on the fast side (80 Mb/s).....that new game you buy 2 years from now is gonna be on the "crawl" (40 MB/s) side. The most frequently used part of your HD is the paging file. let Windows manage it, and it's gonna get pushed back to the inside (slow end - 40 MB/s)) of the disk. Put it in its own partition at the front of the drive and it is forever at the 78-80 MB/sec side. "saving" a spot for games at the front and putting things like backups and data at the back puts the things you want to go fast and the 80 MB/s zone and the the things you don't care about at the slow 40 MB/s end
January 31, 2008 3:53:17 PM

This is the way i have it on my my 250gb hd.

33gb Partition 1: For Windows
203gb Partition 2: Games,Music,Photo,Documents, Programs

In this setup my pc never goes slow.
February 1, 2008 12:46:17 AM

thanks alot for the link jack, that will be very useful. but i have 1 question, i have heard that some programs need to be insync with the os registry so must remain on c: drive, how will i know which?

edit: laying out my files on 60gb for programs, rest for data like g-paw suggested cant be much slower right? because the games and pf would remain within 60gb of space from the outer edge. also if i wanted create a backup partition for data, would it have to be the same size as the original? thanks
February 2, 2008 9:51:38 PM

1) Make your primary partition smaller. Put Vista and only the "must have immediately for use" apps on this partition. This makes the backup smaller and keeps most often used files closer, less head movement.

2) Your best performance choice next is to add a 2nd HDD. There are better and worse ways to arrange the data on one drive but all pale to having a second one to divide concurrent IO. With a 2nd drive put swapfile and apps on it, and remember that if you had a drive failure, having a backup on a separate partition does no good.

3) With only one drive, have a second partition also limited in size upon which you first put your swapfile (at the fastest part of the platters) then your games because the games will have the longest load times of anything. Next put apps on this partition, any not qualifying as must have in #1.

4) On a 3rd and final partition place files that have lower throughput requirements, bulk storage or MP3 and videos, etc.

Don't worry much about frequently used applications, as they will tend to be cached in memory most of the time and nothing you do with the hard drives will matter as much as having plenty of extra memory to become filled as a filecache. 2GB is a bare minimum, more is better and really today there's no good reason not to go for 4GB or more on a desktop box, even if limited to a bit less because you choose a 32bit version of the OS.

A backup partition needs not be same size as os but you don't say exactly how you'll do a backup. Generally the most effective is to use a partition imaging app that compresses files and splits them how you want them so all your backup partition needs is enough space to store the comrpessed backup files - keeping in mind that some things compress well but others like JPG/AVI/ZIP are already highly compressed and won't get much smaller.

I really think you should get a 2nd HDD, not RAID with only two though, use it as a second volume after analyzing your most frequent and most demanding file IO so you can divide concurrent access between the drives. Plus, what if one drive did fail, you don't mention what other system's you'll keep running but to have another drive already in the system that still works upon which you can restore a backup and be running again in 10 minutes is priceless.
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