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Thread: Going vista, need hard drive advice plz

  1. #1
    ZZDMAN's Avatar Dude!...Sweet!
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    hey people,

    i've decided that it's vista time. Backing up my stuff before i format and i have some questions:

    1) since i bought this pc i've been running my 320gb is 1 partition which i know is bad. My question is: i know that u should leave 15% of ur disk space free for optimum performance. Does this mean 15% on each partition therefore making me effectively lose more space by making more partitions?

    2) Based on the answer to question 1, can anyone please recommend me a partitioning strategy? i was thinking of making 2 partitions, 1 being windows, programs and page file and the other being games, movies, music etc etc

    3) i just did an hour of research on the topic and STILL haven't managed to get a straight up answer! Should i enable AHCI mode in the bios for my hdd thus making NCQ active? the general consensus is that NCQ for single drive pcs like mine is not recommended but there are exceptions out there.

    thanks!

    EDIT: i see that i forgot to include my HDD in my signature, it's a 7200.10 320gb seagate 16mb sata2
    Intel E6400 w/Scythe Infinity @ 3.2ghz on Gigabyte DS3 - Patriot 2x1gb @ 800mhz (4-4-4-12, 1.9v) - Sapphire Radeon x1900xt 256mb @ Stock - OCZ GameXstream 600w

  2. Software & Hardware   -   #2
    clocker's Avatar Shovel Ready
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    I think you'd be better off just getting a second, smaller drive (say, 40-80GB) and putting Windows on it. Then use your current large drive as storage.
    "I am the one who knocks."- Heisenberg

  3. Software & Hardware   -   #3
    ChotaZorro's Avatar Arsenal Fan BT Rep: +1
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    I say you better make two partitions of your Hard Disk. One being the Windows and all the important files that should be installed. Second being all that junk you have like game images, movie files, music, etc. Keep the necessities in the first partition with Windows Vista and the unnecessary stuff in the second partition.

  4. Software & Hardware   -   #4
    lynx's Avatar .
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    If you want to split a single drive into partitions, I'd say 40GB for the system partition is about right for Vista.

    Going by your 15% rule that means at least 6GB free space on the system partition and 42GB on the data partition, compared to 48GB on a single partition.

    Although that looks the same, in practice you will probably have more free space on the system partition since you don't know in advance how much you will need.

    If you don't feel you can afford to "waste" that space you should simply follow Clocker's suggestion, which is a better solution in the first place.
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  5. Software & Hardware   -   #5
    ZZDMAN's Avatar Dude!...Sweet!
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    Well, buying another HDD isn't an option right now so i gotta work with what i got.

    Thanks for the partitioning recommendations, gonna make 2 partitions. anyone know about my other questions?
    Intel E6400 w/Scythe Infinity @ 3.2ghz on Gigabyte DS3 - Patriot 2x1gb @ 800mhz (4-4-4-12, 1.9v) - Sapphire Radeon x1900xt 256mb @ Stock - OCZ GameXstream 600w

  6. Software & Hardware   -   #6
    mbucari1's Avatar Poster BT Rep: +35BT Rep +35BT Rep +35BT Rep +35BT Rep +35BT Rep +35BT Rep +35
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    Well, your performance will be degraded if everything is on one HDD. I personally like to have my os installed on a smaller HD and use another physical HDD for apps/games and storage. That way you not only utilize the rpm's offered by 2 HDD's, but you also don't loose everything if you need to reinstall windows (especially cuz mosts appz and almost all games can run on just the program files)

    For you, I'd make a 40GB partition on installation as clocker suggested, and save the rest for storage. Then, get diskeeper and allocate more space for your MFT. This will keep it from getting tight and fragmented.

  7. Software & Hardware   -   #7
    lynx's Avatar .
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    AHCI mode is better theoretically, though I doubt whether you will see any difference. The only time NCQ is effective is when there are multiple concurrent requests for different areas of the disk, something that's not likely on a single user system.

    I'd still go for it since it should be directly supported under Vista. On XP I'd recommend caution - many systems don't have a floppy drive and you need one to install the drivers.
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  8. Software & Hardware   -   #8
    ZZDMAN's Avatar Dude!...Sweet!
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    Okay based on the info i've gathered from u guys and from other forums, here's the plan:

    40gb partition: windows,swapfile,apps
    80gb partition: installed games
    178gb partition: images,mp3s,movies etc etc

    Gonna put the drive in AHCI mode and disable NCQ (if i can figure out how to). Is this a wise move?

    any last words before i go for it?

    thanks everyone u've been very helpful
    Intel E6400 w/Scythe Infinity @ 3.2ghz on Gigabyte DS3 - Patriot 2x1gb @ 800mhz (4-4-4-12, 1.9v) - Sapphire Radeon x1900xt 256mb @ Stock - OCZ GameXstream 600w

  9. Software & Hardware   -   #9
    tesco's Avatar woowoo
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    You don't need 40gb for vista.
    It will install on a min of 14 (or maybe that was just the betas ) and when completely installed uses less than that. A swapfile is usually about 1gb.
    How much are you planing to use for apps?

    My total vista partition is 15.3gb and i have 4gb free with all the apps I need installed. The rest of my drive is for games, movies, music, etc.

  10. Software & Hardware   -   #10
    A service pack for vista is likely to be issued this year. I'd allow a couple of GB for that. 4Gb free seems a bit low to me for the long term.
    "I went over to a friend's house the other day. He was having problems with his computer and he asked me to look at it, and I realized he had Windows Me and it's like, oh no—that's your first problem."-Michael Dell, founder and CEO of Dell.

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