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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am about to order the hard drives for the HTPC that I'm building. My case has 3 slots so I want to get one smaller drive for the OS and apps. the other two drives will be for media storage.


Has anybody ever partioned an 80GB drive for their apps and OS? I'm wondering if this is big enough. I don't know how many apps I will end up using for my HTPC and I don't how much space I will need. I'm thinking about doing 50GB for the OS and 30GB for the apps. Does this sound reasonable?


Also, I was planning on partioning the two 320GB storage disks. I was thinking about having one split in half and the other split in 4.


Does this sound unneccessary? I have never done this before, but I have read that it makes the drives faster.
 

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When I first bought my 80GB I partitioned it. Into 4 parts. IN these days 80gb was alot of space. I wouldn't say it makes them faster. Just helps with keeping things organized. Just a point, A few time I LOST the C partition. gone!! and when I ran a retrieval tool the other 3 partitions were still there. Once you start loading in media your 80 will fill up. YOu can always add more. I would definaltey advise you to partition. what sizes and how many are up to you. Hope that helps.

BTW, 300gb are very cheap these days. I added a 300 on to my 80..you can NEVER have too much space
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
I haven't ordered them yet, because I was afraid to get the wrong ones. That's why I posted here.


I am planning on one 80GB and two 320GB disks. The 80GB will be for the OS and apps. The other two drives will be for my music and movies.


I'm hoping 50GB will be large enough to facilitate the OS and the other 30GB will hold all program files for my htpc.
 

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Are you going to run media center? If you are, I would recommend converting the two 320GB disks into dynamic disks and creating a single partition of 640GB. Why?


MCE shows the videos you have in the 'My Videos' folder under My Videos, and although you can add other folders, if for example you have 50 folders containing films, and you add the folder containing them all to My Videos then the default display will not list the films without you having to go into the folder. You could add the films one by one but this is tedious.


Depends how you'll be using the pc i guess....
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I was considering using media center but I can't us my pc for the ati TV wonder card. It was sounding real good for a little bit, but then the bottom dropped out on me. I'll just have to keep my options open and keep using my DVR set top box from cox until a better solution comes along. That was my primary push for MCE 2005 but I think I will stick with windows XP pro for now.


How do you setup a dynamic disk? I'm not too savvy on most of this stuff.
 

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Your setup of the OS/Programs on an 80GB drive is exactly what I do. 80GB is more than enough for programs/OS. I am typically in the 20-30GB range for my OS and program files. The OS is 10GB or less, not 50GB as you estimated.


Dynamic Disk = Raid 0 (sort of) = no fault tolerance at all. The reliability of two disks is much worse than of one disk. Get a single 500GB drive instead of two 320GBs. The increase in speed is very slight and would not be noticeable.


I recommend Seagate disks because of their 5 year warranty. Also, get SATA, instead of the older IDE. Cables are smaller and more flexible.
 

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Quite easily - go to the control panel, open administrative tools, computer management, and then click on (if i remember correctly) Disk Management - you will see a line for each disk in your PC, and you just right-click and select 'Convert to dynamic disk' on the ones you want to convert. Once a disk is converted, you can create a partition which spans multiple disks (up to 32 drives!). The real beauty is that you can just keep adding disks, and expanding the volume.


I will mention that I'm not sure about the reliability implications if one disk fails. I imagine you only lose the material stored on the failed disk.


Note that you can't have the operating system on a dynamic disk - if you want to use some of the disk the OS is on as part of the volume, create a separate partition to house the OS, and then you can use the remainder of the drive as part of the spanned volume. This will make more sense when you have a look at the tool!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I have to buy the HDs first! I am going to buy a whole separate hard drive for the OS and my application and program files.


Thanks for the input on that. I'm going to go ahead and order the disks then.
 

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I run a 30gb 2.5" driver for my OS and apps, but I don't game much (just TW Golf 2006). But, IF you play games, I would look into a 160gb instead of the 80gb. The reasons being: 1) The prices are about the same, 2) You'll need the extra space since most popular games take up several gigs of space.


BT
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisk76 /forum/post/0



I will mention that I'm not sure about the reliability implications if one disk fails. I imagine you only lose the material stored on the failed disk.


Nope if one fails, you loose everything.



To the OP, if all you plan on using the 80 GB drive for is programs and OS, I wouldn't bother partioning the drive. If the OS goes you are going to have to reinstall all the programs anyway. The only reason I would recomend partioning those would be if you were storing the executables for the program installer and didn't want to lose them if you have to reinstall the OS.



For the other drives, I would not partion them either. If you were thinking about doing it to seperate data to differenct drives like Music on one partition and movies on another, I think you are much better off just setting up different folders on the same partition. It makes it easier to navigate if you don't have to go to different drives all the time.


Really the only time I partion is if I am storing data and the OS on the same physical disk. That way you don't have to worry about losing data if the OS blows up. Other than that, try to stick with the fewest drive letters as possible.
 

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Someone explain to me why you partition your OS from your APPS. Most (all?) apps these days when installed stick stuff in the WINNT folder/registry/all over the darn place, so if you want to reload your OS you are going to have to reload all your apps as well anyway. I'm all for segerating your OS/APPS from your data files but nowadays I can't see the reason's for seperating your OS and APPS on seperate partitions. You end up wasting space on one partition and running out of space on the other if you didn't pick your numbers correctly.


I usually load my BASE OS install with all my normally used apps, then mirror that to a backup Harddrive, when I need to refresh the OS, just mirror the backup HD to the live one or swap them out. No more clicking next in the window OS install screen, loading service packs/updates or installing common software and the endless reboots.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by white_2kgt /forum/post/0


Someone explain to me why you partition your OS from your APPS.

It's a holdover from the old DOS days where your OS came on two 1.44Mb floppy discs.

The OS went on a small OS only partition- no app ever messed with the OS partition because they were all standalone programs on another "apps only" partition.


No real benefit for OS partition & apps partition in the Windows era.

Actually some new programs don't like to be on anything other than the "system" partition.

There's still a good reason for a combined OS/apps drive/partition and a separate data only drive/partition, but but no real benefit for an OS partition and an apps partition with Windows.

Quote:
Originally Posted by white_2kgt /forum/post/0


I usually load my BASE OS install with all my normally used apps, then mirror that to a backup Harddrive, when I need to refresh the OS, just mirror the backup HD to the live one or swap them out.

I pretty much do the same thing, I get my "base setup" done then I do a Windows ASR backup and save it to optical media. If my system ever gets really hosed, I just boot up with the Windows XP disc in the CD drive then do a ASR restore from the optical media. It's quick & easy!
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I guess there is no need to partion the drives then. I appreciate you guys throwing down your 2 cents. I'm very disorganized and thoughy maybe partitioning drives would help me keep things sorted out. I just need to manage my files and folders better. Lucky for me, no matter how disorganized it gets all the information stays stuffed inside this nice little box on my desk.
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by replayrob /forum/post/0


I pretty much do the same thing, I get my "base setup" done then I do a Windows ASR backup and save it to optical media. If my system ever gets really hosed, I just boot up with the Windows XP disc in the CD drive then do a ASR restore from the optical media. It's quick & easy!

Could you please expand on this or provide a link to such a process? I'd love that option! Can the ASR restore disc be a DVD? That would save me from having an idle HD sitting around all the time!
 

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Just to give you guys some idea for the future, I'm running beta Vista 64 to see how it is and without any extra applications, no updates, just clean install takes about 23 GB on my hard drive. So if you ever expect to upgrade in the future, keep that in my mind. BTW due to higher density per each track/disc revolution, 320 GB disc most likely will be faster than 80 GB one and since system files are accessed more often than anything else, I would not install my operating system on the smaller drive due to slower performance that could follow unless that 80 GB drive is Raptor.
 

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I use my C drive for the OS and music files and 2 other big drives for video storage and swapfile. As Pete4 said, look at drive data density. Many single platter large drives outperform smaller drives in the same line and only cost $10-$20 more. I've liked Samsung and Seagate this last year or 2. Very low heat and noise from both brands with great reliability and warranty. -EL
 

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Quote:
Originally Posted by white_2kgt
Could you please expand on this or provide a link to such a process? I'd love that option! Can the ASR restore disc be a DVD? That would save me from having an idle HD sitting around all the time!
Yes the backup can be a DVD (4.7GB or 8.5 GB) and there are instructions included for the newer computers without floppy drives (needed for the two small .sif files created during the ASR-backup process that are critical to the restore process)...
http://www.oreilly.com/catalog/winsv...ter/hack98.pdf

 

hack98.pdf 173.3408203125k . file
 

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