How should I lay out my new partitions?

Discussion in 'Hardware Discussion & Support' started by IEMC, Dec 16, 2007.

  1. IEMC

    IEMC Neighborhood screw up.

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    Alright, getting a new HDD for Christmas. It's a 250 gig SATA 3 GB/S 7200 RPM Barracuda.

    I'm wondering how big / how many partitions should I put.

    On my current hard drive, I set 20 GB a side for my OS and other booting software. Then the rest is 90 GB for games and apps.

    I've read somewhere that the first partition should be for page file, then a partition for the OS, then another partition for priority software. Supposedly this will be the fastest set up, though not sure how true it is, and I can't find the article.

    I want to set a partition up for my Steam apps, which totals about 21 gigs, so I was gonna put 25 aside for it, maybe 30. Not sure if this is the best idea, either.

    I need some feedback, because I want the most out of my new hard drive. Thanks
     
  2. Trusteft

    Trusteft HH's Asteroids' Dominator

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    What I would do (and I have done something similar).

    Partition the faster drive into 3 parts. 1 for Windows XP, 1 for a future installation of Vista or other OS. Have at least 30GB for the Vista and 25GB for the XP.
    Put programs to the same drive but different partition.
    Put games to a seperate drive on a larger than needed partition. You might get more games that what you already have.
    If you have lots of music and/or videos, have a different partition for that.
    I don't give info on my partitions cause, I don't think you care lol.
     
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  3. RoyBatty

    RoyBatty Well-Known Member

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    I think it's best to create one small partition for the system and another partition for data from the remaining disk space. I wouldn't bother with creating a swap partition at the beginning of disk - I doubt that the speed difference would be noticeable.
    I have had my 250 GB drive divided into C: and another three partitions but after some time it became a mess, so I joined the three partitions - now I have 4 GB for OS and "priority software" and the rest for data - it's far better :)
     
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  4. IEMC

    IEMC Neighborhood screw up.

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    Anymore input?

    Even after the nay saying of page file partition, I'm still leaning towards it, regardless. It wont be any harm, and it may speed things up, at least a little.
     
  5. IEMC

    IEMC Neighborhood screw up.

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    Bump for "expert" advice :p

    I wanna know how others lay their's out, too.
     
  6. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -2 Great-grandsons

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    I've never been a fan of setting up separate partitions on a single HDD. Rather, I tend to setup the Pagefile on a completely separate HDD as that does make things work faster as it's not requiring communication on the same HDD when it's needed.

    Also, by using a good Defrag program (Auslogic is excellent and free!) the defragmentation will sort the data and programs so that the more utilized programs/data/utilities are placed on the faster portion of the HDD.
     
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  7. Teme

    Teme Super Moderator

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    Yeah I tend to agree with dyre here. It's better in terms of performance to have pagefile on different hdd that the OS is. But if you don't got the extra drive and you want to keep stuff in separate partitions I would say that 20Gb for OS would do fine. Unless you are using Vista. Then it's better to have at least 40Gb partition.

    [EDIT] Since you have XP and you will use NTFS it would be better to just use all that space for one partition. Since now you got one hdd for OS and the other for game and apps. I have currently 2 Seagate's SATA drives one is OS and one is "store" disk.
     
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  8. IEMC

    IEMC Neighborhood screw up.

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    These posts are confusing the hell out of me.

    Just to clear things up, as it seems like either you worded it horribly or you're unclear, I will only be using this drive once I get it. This will be my OS drive and my games drive.

    Now, what you just said, temeteus, is that I SHOULDN'T have multiple partitions on that drive? Because that's what I got out of your edit.

    Same with you, dyre. What you just told me is to not set up partitions at all, and go with everything on one partition, but that doesn't make sense as most people set up partitions for their OS regardless.

    Can someone clear things up? Write it out clearly, please. And don't just address the idea of a page file partition, address everything.
     
  9. RoyBatty

    RoyBatty Well-Known Member

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    If you will use only the new drive than make one small (but big enough) partition for OS and one partition for games/data. That's what I would do.
     
  10. IEMC

    IEMC Neighborhood screw up.

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    Alright, I read into this some.

    As dyre said, a page file on another physical drive helps. I'm still debating on whether I want to use the drive I'm using now as more space for data.

    The current drive I have is significantly slower than the new one I'm getting. I tested this one, and it averages 30 MB/s, and the new one is about 3 times that, at 87 MB/s.
    If I did add the page file partition on my current drive, while my new drive was for the OS / apps, would the slow-ness make a difference, or would the simple fact it's on a seperate drive make it better?

    I also did some research and came on to Microsoft's site. They suggested to have a page file on your boot drive (assuming it has it's own partition) along with a page file on a seperate physical drive (again, it's own partition). I may just do this.
     
  11. Trusteft

    Trusteft HH's Asteroids' Dominator

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    I fail to see the value of having the page file on a different partition but on the same drive.
     
  12. [hobo]eclipse

    [hobo]eclipse ...just bummin 'round

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    my take on this stuff is this, first off make it a static size, i use a 2048-2048 MB setup, if the size is determined by Windows it "throttles" the size of the page file to suit your particular needs at that time, thus saving HDD space by not constantly taking up more HDD space than needed, while this makes sense back in the day when HDD space and RAM where limited but nowadays there's plenty of each, This "throttling" of the PF causes it to become fragmented on the HDD, thus after a while reading and writing to the PF becomes more trouble than its worth. I have never placed a pagefile on its own partion, just make it a static size and place it on the fastest non boot HDD. keeping it a static size keeps it from becoming fragmented,

    placing a PF on a different HDD solves the bottleneck of the CPU trying to access the HDD for both system files and PF usage atthe same time. placing it on a different HDD lets each be accesses seperatly.

    making a PF partition and filing the partion with PF does the same as making it a static size and not allowing it to fragment. now placing this partion on the main HDD will still cause the bottleneck mentioned above at it is still the same drive.

    All this beeing said i feel the 2 best options for you to try would be to first try leaving the PF on the boot drive but make it a static size, then maybe try placing it on your older slower drive as a static size if you want to compare performance. I wouldn't worry about making a new partition for the PF.

    Install windows and ALL programs on the new drive, stash all non system accessed archives(Music, movies, pics, whatever) on the 2nd HDD with the static PF

    these are just my opinions and i cant say im 100 % right on all that but thats how i do it and have no trouble really at all.
     
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  13. IEMC

    IEMC Neighborhood screw up.

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    THERES a response I was looking for.

    Thanks a lot, eclipse. I think I'll do it that way.

    Thanks for all the input. Still accepting some, if you're wanting to give, though.
     
  14. mkk

    mkk Well-Known Member

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    I can't add much more than advicing further against having a separate partition for the pagefile. If the pagefile resides on the system drive then it's best for the performance of the drive to have that file as close to other often accessed system files, as access time is all important.

    Get another gig of RAM and the page usage should be so low that it won't really matter where or how you place the pagefile. On a modern system it is typically used so lightly that technical recommendations on pagefile optimisation while sound, may be of little practical use.

    Anyhow the new drive will freshen up the system a bit. :)
     
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  15. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -2 Great-grandsons

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    I don't know who 'most people' are but I still say what I said before. Just use the full size of the single HDD but put the pagefile on the 2nd HDD. When you run the Defrag program, it will optimize the drive so that those programs and apps you use will be located onto the faster portion of the HDD.

    Whereas 'many people' may have separated a large HDD into 3-4 partitions in previous OSes, I think the trend is moving away from that. But, I don't claim any credit for it, either. ;)

    Keeping the pagefile on the same HDD as the OS is requiring the communication to work on the same bus necessitating a tandem communication. Moving it onto a different HDD allows the communication to be simultaneous and, therefore, much faster.

    But, as mentioned previously, the pagefile, with adequate sytem memory these days, is almost an obsolete entity....but not quite.
     
  16. IEMC

    IEMC Neighborhood screw up.

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    I did forget to mention I'm also getting another gig for Xmas, too :p.

    Alright, I settled on keeping it as a set size instead of being dynamic, and I'm gonna have one on my boot drive along with one on my secondary drive just so my system can pick which one is gonna be faster (or so microsoft's site says).

    On my boot drive, I'll have 20 gigs for the OS, then the rest will be a partition for all of my other apps and games.

    On my second drive, which is the one I'm using now, will be for music, movies, pics, etc. This will all be on one giant partition.

    Sound good?
     
  17. mkk

    mkk Well-Known Member

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    In case you are looking to do Vista next year then 20GB will be short. :x In that case try 40GB. It might be irritating to have to repartition at a later time anyhow.
     
  18. [hobo]eclipse

    [hobo]eclipse ...just bummin 'round

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    is there a purpose to formatting a boot drive to 2 partions and putting OS on one and installing apps on that OS to the 2nd partion?
     
  19. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -2 Great-grandsons

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    I fail to see the logic, too. :rolleyes: :confused:
     
  20. RoyBatty

    RoyBatty Well-Known Member

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    With my OS (including pagefile and hiberfil) partition being only 4 GB I can make an image and burn it to a DVD. When something goes wrong I can restore it an I have the OS and all my programs like before. I don't need to care about my other data because they are on the other partition. And no more space wasted for the system restore function. It also takes less time to defragment that small partition.
     

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