Partitioning a new disk

  richierich 00:12 25 Jul 2003

About to replace a hard drive, win 2000pro.
Wondering on the benefits of partitioning. Do I partion the drive to have windows on one partition
other programmes on another and all data files on another? Is that the best way.Is the idae of this is that if i need to reinstall windows i can do so without messing everything else up?
Also do I need to buy a programme to do this or do I get this option when installing windows.

apologies for a long question

  Gaz 25 00:36 25 Jul 2003

Do I partion the drive to have windows on one partition other programmes on another and all data files on another? If you wish yes!

Is that the best way.Is the idea of this is that if i need to reinstall windows i can do so without messing everything else up? Yes, you can reinstall windows to the Windows partition without affecting your files. But make a regsitry backup too and save to a different partition and reload it so all your programs work again. You may even need to reinstall some.

Also do I need to buy a programme to do this or do I get this option when installing windows?

Partition magic is my favourate software for partitioning, it allows many features. Great software! Maybe other can suggest better, or even free ones.

apologies for a long question. No need to apologise, we are here to help.

Just ask if you need more help,


  Migwell 00:55 25 Jul 2003

I would be far happier with multable drives than having one split into three or whatever.

If you back up your files onto another drive and that drive is a removable one, you can swap them each time you back up and you will always be safe from drives failing.

If you Partition into 2 or 3 or whatever and that drive packs up, oh dear what will you do now, other than pull your hair out.

'C' for everything
1st 'D' for Downloads and Back-up 1
2nd 'D' for Copy of Downloads and Back-up 2

Swap 1st and 2nd 'D' Drive each week.

That is the way I do it and it never let's me down.

  temp003 01:08 25 Jul 2003

You can partition the hard disk during Windows 2000 Setup. Ultimately you'll be shown the partitions on your hard disks and asked where to install Windows 2000. At this stage use the up-down arrows to highlight the new hard disk. If there is already a partition on it, press D to delete it. Then press C (I think) to create a new partition. Enter the size of the new partition. Highlight the new partition, press Enter to install w2k.

When installation is finished (after a couple of restarts), the computer will boot into w2k proper. You can create further partitions from within w2k using Disk Management (Right click My Computer, select Manage, then select Disk Management).

When you install w2k on the new hard disk, I suggest you disconnect the old disk for the time being. Otherwise you'll create a dual boot of 2 w2k installations (unless that's what you want - it's actually very useful).

On partitioning the hard disk, it is certainly useful to have a separate partition for data (and maybe one for backing up).

As to a separate partition to install programs, that's up to you. Personally I don't see much point in it. If Windows is messy enough to require a format and reinstall, then I wouldn't want to restore a backed up registry (which may well be corrupt), which may still not work, because some programs put files into w2k's system folders (which will have been formatted).

  Gaz 25 01:29 25 Jul 2003

Has a good point, same set-up on my server.

temp003 is quite right, I suppose XP has this too? Never bothered with it you see.

  richierich 07:50 25 Jul 2003

thanks to all above help. Just wondering is it a good idea to buy another drive to just have windows and all other programmes and to have all data files (mostly digital images) on another drive. will this slow things down or speed them up.
Should they both be masters on seperate cables?

  temp003 00:34 26 Jul 2003

It depends on why you want a second hard disk.

With today's hdd sizes, only putting Windows and programmes on a single hdd is a big waste.

Migwell was talking about having a second copy of one's data on a separate hard disk (in his case a removable one). He's talking about backing up.

He was saying that having your data on a separate partition is not safe enough. He is quite right.

How you want to back up is a matter for you, but the important thing is to have at least one extra copy on a separate medium from your main copy. You can put the 2nd copy on the second hdd, or a removable hdd, or on CD-R or DVD+/-R

Having only one copy of your data on a 2nd hdd does not make that copy safer. Your 2nd hdd is just as vulnerable as the first.

If you're talking about speed, I don't think there's going to be much of a difference whether you have your data (digital stills) on the same hdd or 2nd hdd. If you're editing digital video, then having a separate hdd is a good idea, but video editing is a completely different thing.

If you are getting 2 hdds, set them as master and slave on the same IDE channel. Then you can keep your CD writer on a different one.

  xania 16:54 26 Jul 2003

YES - partitioning your hard drive does have advantages. Using WIndows 98SE, I have my current operating system (on C:\) and a nice clean copy of same further up the disk at M:\ - I also use D:\ for data (which I backup to zip drive) and so on. And then, when Windows throws a wobbly - and it will do sooner or later - partition magic to delete the C:\ drive and copy the M:\ drive and bingo - a pristine Windows installation, with all supporting software in less than 5 minutes.

By the way, with many downloads and freebies, oyu can have problems with installing and removing. What better way to protect yourself. Copy ypour C:\ drive to some space on the hard disk, do your worst and then use your copy to get yo right back to where you were. Partition Magic IS a wonderful toy!!

  richierich 18:11 26 Jul 2003

Wow, thanks for all your answers.
Another question, with a whopping great 120gb drive should I partition a small bit 2gb? for win2000, and then copy this, if so how? to another 2gb partition in case i need to replace windows, and then use the rest for other programmes and data.
If I do need to replace corrupted windows how do I swap partitions.
thanks in advance

  woodchip 19:56 26 Jul 2003

The problem is if you have to restor windows, you will also have to restore programs as some files and registry is on the OS partition

  Ken Ju-On 20:15 26 Jul 2003

Windows operating systems have a tendency to mess up, admit it.

Keeping a separate partition for Windows system files, one for installed programs, and another to store music and pictures is a wonderful way of sorting things out.

Recovering your system is less painful this way. No more wiped out programs and files after a clean reinstall. Although the Start menu shortcuts would be removed.

If you're rich enough to buy them and a more powerful PSU, having multiple hard drives is better of course. But I'm not rich, I have a pretty normal-sized 80GB hard drive, and partitioning is a great way to organize your stuff.

Use Partition Magic for an easy-to-use and understandable graphical interface partitioner. :)

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