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Received a new laptop from Santa!:D

Have a question about partitioning the hard drive. I have a 500 gig hard drive. I want to partition the drive into two; System C: and Data D:. I know there are probably personal preferences but how big should I make the C: partition and the D: partition?

Thx
Jim
Windsor Ont
 

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Depends on what you mean by data.

Many programs store their data in Documents which is on the C: drive and includes photos, videos and music. If you just want a data drive for documents, a 100 GB might be fine but if you want to store media on the D:, make it bigger.
 

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Depends on what you mean by data.

Many programs store their data in Documents which is on the C: drive and includes photos, videos and music. If you just want a data drive for documents, a 100 GB might be fine but if you want to store media on the D:, make it bigger.
I plan on moving My Documents, Pictures, etc from the C:drive to the D:drive. There is a function in Win 7 which allows you to do such a function. That way, I will only have applications on the C: drive. But the way some applications use space, I want to ensure that my C:drive is large enough
 

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That way, if I have to do a system restore, I do not lose my personal data.
Are you sure about that?
 

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I agree with Hugh, if your hard drive dies, you lose all partitions, if you have to do a factory restore, you lose those partitions....I would leave the partition as is and buy an external USB or eSATA drive to put your personal stuff on...you can leave it plugged in all the time and if your OS or hard drive dies, all your important data is on the external drive.
 

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Personally, I wouldn't partition, I would just back up the entire computer.

If you must partition, I'd go 25-35% on C: and 65-75% on D: but I'd recommend looking at your current computer and using that as a guide.
 

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You can image the whole drive with Win 7 backup and create an emergency DVD to boot from. You do not need cloning software.
The problem with "data" and partitionoing is that a lot of personal data is kept under c:/user/xyz... or whatever user .... and other is under documents, so you have to know where all of it is to manage the way you suggest.

I would however keep photos/videos on another partition if there are a lot because you can easily back that up separately and if you "image" C: you don't have those multi-gigabytes included in the image.

BTW guys a lot of hard drive problems are unable to boot type stuff where some of the drive is still readable as a second drive, so an image on a separate partition could sometimes do the job for recovery.(No guarantee though)
Win7 imaging to another drive is the best(or other software).
 

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jmcKDLEX700, I am going to give you the exact opposite advice. Never use the entire disk for the O/S. As you said, loss of the system partition can be catastrophic if it has all your personal data on it. I always use a separate 55GB partition for Win7. A separate disk is even better but that's not easy with a laptop. Don't worry about filling up the C: partition as large apps can be installed on the D: drive as well. Why to do this:
1. It's easier and more efficient to make a bootable image of the C: drive for recovery.
2. It's easier and more efficient to make incremental backups of personal data.
3. Performance. Putting system files together at the beginning of the disk improves O/S performance.
4. I've lost the entire C: drive a few times too often (along with personal data) even though backups were made.
5. Since I started putting personal data on the D: drive, I've never lost any personal data due to an operating system crash. If the whole disk goes, that a totally different story but I've seen O/S system disk crashes much more often.

Windows 7 appears to be quite stable so the loss of the system drive should not be a common occurrence. There are much better recovery tools in Win7 as well. However, Win7 also provides much better means of keeping application data and personal data separate from O/S files, so why not use them.
 

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when i buy a new computer first thing i do is partition the hard drive, if windows crash, you can alway restore to that state, and not loose personal data. as others have said, this does not protect against a hard drive crashing, but does protect against windows crashing.

my tyipcal process for a new computer
-erase all existing partitions, including the recovery partition
-create two new partitions, typically 50gig for windows, and the balance on my 'data' partition
-install windows fresh and download/install drivers from the manufacture website. avoid all bloatware. (download the drivers and put them on a usb drive prior to partitioning, typically you need drivers to get your network working, so you wont be able to download them after you wipe the computer)
-on a laptop ill usually encrypt the data partition
-relocate all personal directories onto the data partition (documents, pictures, etc.) by right clicking on these directories you can change the location. you can go to the extreme and relocate your firefox/thunderbird profiles as well
-activate windows, as it is a fresh install of an oem version, you will have to use microsoft's comnputerr phone system
-install basic software ie office
-insure all updates are up to date
-image the windows partition to a portable hard drive so you can alway recover to this exact state, with your personal data intact

my software of choice is
-gparted for working the partitions
-clonezilla for doing the imaging work
-truecrypt for encryption
-unetbootin for loading the the live iso's onto sd cards
-winsetupfromusb 0.1.1 (0.2.3 never worked for me) for putting windows onto a sd card

note this is technically challanging, the hardest part beging getting the correct version of windows off a dvd and onto a sd card. you need to havee the correct version of windows to be able to install it wtih your oem serial on the bottom of your computer. all the other software is opensource and easily found with google. if you have the wrong windows oem dvd (ie you want to change from win7 home preium to win7 ultimate), you can change the version by editing the ei.cfg file when you copy it to your hard drive before you put it onto the sd card. what version you put in the ei.cfg file must match the version on your genuine serial number sticker. if you have the correct oem disk and a dvd drive on your system, the process becomes somewhat easier, but is still not for the technically challanged. YMMV.
 

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for whats its worth, i though i would add, if the bloat ware with the new computer doesn't bother you and you want to do it on the easy, windows will let you re size and create a new partition, so you can create your new partition without reinstalling windows. be warned it is slow, to re size the existing partition will take a couple hours.
 

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As Zorac said, shrinking the original, large partition to somewhere between 50GB and 75GB may be the easiest solution. There are a number of free and pay tools that will do this. GParted Live is free and very good but not the easiest to use. Acronis Disk Director is easier to use but costs money. It may also be possible with Windows 7 native Disk Management tools.
 

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You might want to check whether there is a manufacturer's partition which you might not want to delete (as it will include manufacturer-specific files and programs).
 

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There might be an option to create system restore discs. Personally, I prefer to install a retail version and download the necessary drivers from the laptop maker's site. The ability to do that may vary with make and model.
 
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