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  • Partitions: Good or Bad?

    Ok im sure someone has already thought of this or has done this, I would like to get a 20Gb-40Gb 2.5 Laptop HD for my carputer. My goal is to partition it into 4 parts, All mp3's videos pictures and other data will be on a 160Gb USB 2.0 HD that im going to hook up in my glovebox like a little docking station.

    Partitions:
    1 Windows 5-10Gb
    2 GPS 5-10Gb
    3 Front Ends + Skins 5-10Gb
    4 Other Misc Apps needed 5-10Gb

    I am looking on Ebay for a good HD and want to order and get all the Stuff on the HD So i dont have to do any install once the PC is in the car. The thing i am truely wondering about is the best way to lower startup time, i really want my bootscreen to be a Mustang Pic "since its going in my mustang" but does this add to start-up? I got Windows XP Pro SP2

    Thank You
    Racer
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    Planning

  • #2
    You don't need extra partitions in modern file systems. You had too before because as partition size went up, so did the cluster size (minnimum file size). So eventually you would get to the point where a 1 byte long file took up 100 K (about 100,000 bytes). That was a waste of space.

    If your using windows XP (or 2000) NTFS file system extra partitions are unnessesary. If you really want to divide out the space there is a variety of tools to simulate extra hard drives (dos command subst) or enforce restrictions on folder sizes.

    If you went extra partitions your going to be kicking yourself when your GPS partition has 100 mb free and you just need another 5 mb for a song on your mp3 partition. Yes, you can resize them with partition magic but thats always risky.

    The only practical reason I can see for multiple partitions is multiple operating systems (most linux distros will need an ext3 or reiserfs partition and a swap partition) or for specialized compatability issues (windows 98 cant read NTFS, in this case you would want a FAT32 file system as well)
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    • #3
      I can see having two partitions: one for the OS installation and another for data (like movie or music files).
      That way if you need to reload the operating system, you're not going to lose any of the data on the other partition.

      Teh computers that we sell to clients actually have three partitions. The boot partition is 20GB NTFS. There's a 'middle' partition of 10GB that is FAT32 which is hidden from view via the Windows Disk Manager. The last partition is the remainder of drive space formatted NTFS.
      We use Ghost to create an image of the computer in the FAT32 partition, and have a recovery CD that boots to Win98 and restores the image from the sole FAT32 partition.
      Tah-dah!
      Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
      How about the Wiki?



      Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

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      • #4
        I have my drive in 2 partions just a darque said xp on 1 and mp3s and vidz on the other this way if xp has to be reinstalled i dont need to do much work.

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        • #5
          I keep running out of numbers ..
          I Have all A-Z partitions, well, most of them anyway

          3 HD, DVD, 4 card reader.

          I usually chop them up in 20GB slices, and a few at 5GB for DVD staging and video capture raw space. I will have a partition for suites like Office2003, Adobe CS2, and all sorts of CAD stuff. Then, another for just APPS, then another for FILES etc ....

          On the CarPC, I have a 40gb laptop drive in 2 partitions. One thats the OS, and another thats all the files needed like mp3s and vids, as well as any installation apps. This way, If I have to reload the OS, formating "C" won't hurt anything cuz everything I need is on "D"...

          Don

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          • #6
            more partitions are better

            I'm a big fan of multiple partitions and it's not uncommon for me to have a dozen or more partitions on a single box. I generally recomend three partitions for a basic Windows install: one for Windows and program files, one for swap, and one for user data. There are a whole bunch of reasons for this:

            1. Backups.

            I use an image backup tool (partimage) to backup the OS + program files and a file backup tool for user data. Keeping user data and swap off the O/S partition keeps those images much more managable -- I can typically burn a backup onto a single DVD.

            2. Fragmentation.

            NTFS just sucks when it comes to fragmentation, so if you can separate static and dynamic data, your constantly changing user data won't fragment the O/S files so much. And when your O/S and program file space is small, defrag is much quicker.

            3. Speed.

            Drives are much faster at the beginning than the end. Keeping the OS and program files at the head end of the disk, and grouped together can provide sizable increases. I like to put swap as the middle partition, where head movement is minimized while still keeping it close to the head(fast) end of the disk.

            I typically keep *two* copies of O/S + program files on the same disk, so that when Windows decided to choke itself 1/2 hour before a project deadline I don't need to find my image file and re-install, I simply re-boot into a known-working partition.

            I also keep a bootable DOS partition for quick and easy flash updates. This partition contains the NT loader as well as GRUB. I've had trouble restoring partitions when they contain the NT loader, and I've never had any problems with restores when I go this route. I also allocate an 800 meg partition for the current compressed Knoppix image which I use as my swiss-army rescue tool. I use the "partimage" program to make the image backups of the Windows system partitions. And then I typically have some version of Linux and/or one of the BSDs on the box as well.

            It might sound a bit crazy, but this has sure saved my a** on many an occasion.

            -p.

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            • #7
              I also find too many partitions a pain in the rear. Especially when you want to move a large file(across drives) and find that you have to wait several minutes while the data is copied into the new file system table. I only use 4 partitions, 1 windows xp, 2 documents, 3 temporary files, and 4 longhorn.

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              • #8
                Originally posted by gnomad
                I'm a big fan of multiple partitions and it's not uncommon for me to have a dozen or more partitions on a single box. I generally recomend three partitions for a basic Windows install: one for Windows and program files, one for swap, and one for user data. There are a whole bunch of reasons for this:

                1. Backups.

                I use an image backup tool (partimage) to backup the OS + program files and a file backup tool for user data. Keeping user data and swap off the O/S partition keeps those images much more managable -- I can typically burn a backup onto a single DVD.

                2. Fragmentation.

                NTFS just sucks when it comes to fragmentation, so if you can separate static and dynamic data, your constantly changing user data won't fragment the O/S files so much. And when your O/S and program file space is small, defrag is much quicker.

                3. Speed.

                Drives are much faster at the beginning than the end. Keeping the OS and program files at the head end of the disk, and grouped together can provide sizable increases. I like to put swap as the middle partition, where head movement is minimized while still keeping it close to the head(fast) end of the disk.

                I typically keep *two* copies of O/S + program files on the same disk, so that when Windows decided to choke itself 1/2 hour before a project deadline I don't need to find my image file and re-install, I simply re-boot into a known-working partition.

                I also keep a bootable DOS partition for quick and easy flash updates. This partition contains the NT loader as well as GRUB. I've had trouble restoring partitions when they contain the NT loader, and I've never had any problems with restores when I go this route. I also allocate an 800 meg partition for the current compressed Knoppix image which I use as my swiss-army rescue tool. I use the "partimage" program to make the image backups of the Windows system partitions. And then I typically have some version of Linux and/or one of the BSDs on the box as well.

                It might sound a bit crazy, but this has sure saved my a** on many an occasion.

                -p.
                *cosigns* soudns a lot like my post about this same subject a year ago
                http://www.mp3car.com/vbulletin/showthread.php?t=37980

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by racerx3165
                  Ok im sure someone has already thought of this or has done this, I would like to get a 20Gb-40Gb 2.5 Laptop HD for my carputer. My goal is to partition it into 4 parts, All mp3's videos pictures and other data will be on a 160Gb USB 2.0 HD that im going to hook up in my glovebox like a little docking station.

                  Partitions:
                  1 Windows 5-10Gb
                  2 GPS 5-10Gb
                  3 Front Ends + Skins 5-10Gb
                  4 Other Misc Apps needed 5-10Gb

                  I am looking on Ebay for a good HD and want to order and get all the Stuff on the HD So i dont have to do any install once the PC is in the car. The thing i am truely wondering about is the best way to lower startup time, i really want my bootscreen to be a Mustang Pic "since its going in my mustang" but does this add to start-up? I got Windows XP Pro SP2
                  I think too many partitions is overkill.
                  With a 40GB drive, I'd recommend two partitions: A 10-20GB partition for Windows installation and the remaining free space as a partition for everything else. If you want to be anally-organized about all your data, then use folders to organize it.

                  And no, multiple partitions aren't going to have any effect on boot time.
                  Have you looked in the FAQ yet?
                  How about the Wiki?



                  Under normal circumstances, a signature would go here.

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                  • #10
                    My CarPC will have a 200gb USB2 HD just for music and Vids, and a seperate 40Gb Drive for XP & progs.

                    40gb drive will be partitioned as a 10gb Backup area, a 10gb XP, and a 20gb XP/Program/CD/DVD images backup & swap...

                    Might not work for everyone but I like to keep all apps and XP on different partitions and Media on seperate disks as a dead hd will lose all my music which I cannot re-install (and I have nothing big enough to tackle backing it up), and reinstalling after a format is much easier if only XP to rebuild.
                    My Nissan 200SX @ Silverstone
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                    My Car's spec list + pics

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                    • #11
                      I have a 250gb drive split into 3 partitions.

                      OS and programs - I figured this will change quite often and I was right. @ 25gb it defrags a lot quicker than the whole disk.

                      Data - Well media to be more precise. This rarely changes, just new files added occasionally.

                      Backups - Not mission critical, just a Ghost of the O/S and various device drivers and program archives. If I need to re-install anything I can do it from here.

                      The main reason I did it like this was to avoid defragging the whole drive too often.
                      www.debthelpexpert.org

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                      • #12
                        I agree with most users.... two partitions are good. One for the OS (programs & Windows) and one for the Data files (movies and music)..

                        I have 3 partitions... on the third partition i keep a backup of each partition. (1 and 2 seperate)...of course this requires a large HD, but now adays a 300G goes for less than $100..




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                        • #13
                          Partitioning just limits your contiguous free space for no reason if you ask me. If you install into a new directory, you really don't need to reformat when reinstalling the OS.

                          Besides, prices are 30 cents per GB on E-Bay right now. Use the entire old drive for the OS and buy a new huge drive for your media. Why not just have multiple HDDs (and network drives)? At home I have 3 computers (HTPC, Bedroom PC, Office PC) that share: a drive for DVD-Rips, a drive for TV-Recordings, a drive for current/recent Azureous Downloads, a drive for Emulator/Video-Games, a drive for Music/Music-Videos/Discographies, a drive for applications and ISOs, and 3 drives for the OS's. 1.5TB in all.

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                          • #14
                            Originally posted by roadhog
                            I have a 250gb drive split into 3 partitions.

                            OS and programs - I figured this will change quite often and I was right. @ 25gb it defrags a lot quicker than the whole disk.

                            Data - Well media to be more precise. This rarely changes, just new files added occasionally.

                            Backups - Not mission critical, just a Ghost of the O/S and various device drivers and program archives. If I need to re-install anything I can do it from here.

                            The main reason I did it like this was to avoid defragging the whole drive too often.

                            seems we have a similar opinion here road hog, here's me quoting my post in the previously mentioned thread.

                            Originally posted by Enforcer
                            I partition my drive in 3.

                            1 OS
                            2. DATA
                            3. Backup image (ie Ghost the base OS and one with all apps installed + Drivers)

                            3 is fat32 so I can ghost back the system should it get corrupted or just need cleaning out. the other two are NTFS.

                            However then new system wen it goes in will have two drives.

                            one for OS and one for data.

                            BTW it is recommended that the swap file be placed on a seperate disk to the system disk if more than one disk is installed. ALthough as the second disk will hold all the MP3's and DIVX's it might not be a goos idea, will have to look into that.

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                            • #15
                              Ahem. Well as much as it may look like a blatent steal it wasn't, honest! Great minds think alike, or fools seldom differ...
                              www.debthelpexpert.org

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