Partitioning hard drive for windows & own files

  matt-few 07:18 01 Jun 2007

I'm going to reformat my hard drive this weekend and reinstall windows xp pro, as for the past few weeks my machine has been running really slow.

A friend suggested to parition my hard drive into two drives installing windows and software on the C: drive and own files and folders on D:.

Is this a good idea, and is there any obvious advantages rather than just everyone on my C: drive.


  €dstowe 07:44 01 Jun 2007

I don't see any justification nowadays for partitioning hard drives.

What does your friend think the improvement will be?

Before doing anything as drastic as format/re-install, have you removed all the junk that must have accumulated, defragmented the drive, thoroughly checked for any malware? You may be surprised at what a few simple procedures like that are able to do towards improving performance.

  matt-few 08:15 01 Jun 2007

I use my computer mainly for photo and video editing aswell as email, internet and office software. My friend thought that by partitioning the main hard drive into two it would increase pc performance and keep own files away from windows xp. All my large video files I keep on a separate raid drive anyway.

I use F-Secure Internet Security and that has found no spyware but did find a virus it can't remove. With all my files already backed up, I thought the reformat would be the best option. Is there any other decent A/V and Internet Security combined suite that's worth looking at.


  Simsy 08:16 01 Jun 2007

if you

  Simsy 08:16 01 Jun 2007

if you

  Simsy 08:26 01 Jun 2007

There is an advantage if you use an Image program such as Acronis True Image to back up your SYSTEM, (That is as oppossed to your data).

If you use such a program to back up the C drive, the following benefits accrue...

The image file will be smaller, as it contains no data.

Restoring the C drive, in the event of a system problem, (virus or other problem), using the image file will therefore be quicker

Restoring the C drive will have no effect on your saved data.

The C drive will not suffer from as much fragmentation.

Defragging is therefore needed less often, and is quicker when it does take place.

However, doing this does not absolve you from making a SEPERATE backup of your DATA, using whatever method you choose. An external medium is best, such as an external hard drive.

The one disadvantage that I can see is that the HDD is working slightly harder as the read head had to cover a greater distance during normal use. I do believe this to be an insignificant consideration however, given the benefits above.

You will find many who are against partitioning and argue that it's "Not neccessary". That's true... it's not necessary, but I have found it invaluable for the reasons outlined.



  matt-few 09:05 01 Jun 2007

Thanks Simsy & €dstowe for your advice so far. I have used Norton Ghost for years and now laterly Norton Save and Restore with an external HDD. I like the thought of keeping windows files and own files separate especially in view of less defragging and smaller system backup files. With a SATA hdd, hopefully the increased work on the hdd will not slow it down too much.


  dth 09:12 01 Jun 2007

I would agree with your friend's advice. Having all your data on a Drive D is a much cleaner system.

Easier for back-ups (of data) - plus if you need to re-install windows again in the future you simply wipe Drive C, re-install Windows and all your data will be already there.

  matt-few 10:39 01 Jun 2007

I'm going to split the drive now to C & D Drives. My main HDD is 114GB formatted, so is 20GB large enough partition for average windows xp pro user as not using many large hefty programs?


  Simsy 13:18 01 Jun 2007

and a guess a fairly standard spead of software, Office, some audio and picture manipulation stuff.
I don't have any games...

My C partition is 24Gig with about half used... that's with quite a few restore points and not having "tidied" it for a while.

If you have games I expect they take quite a bit of space, but otherwise I would think that 20Gb is large enough.

However, if you anticipate upgrading to Vista you might want to make it bigger now rather than later. I think I've read that Vista needs at least 15Gig, so programmes will make that requirement bigger.



This thread is now locked and can not be replied to.

Elsewhere on IDG sites

Fujitsu Lifebook P727 laptop review

11 best portfolio websites for designers and artists

Office for Mac buying guide: Price, Office 2017 rumours & new features

Comment désactiver les programmes qui s'exécutent au démarrage de Windows 10 ?