View Full Version : Reformatting: to partition or not to partition

26-11-2001, 11:11 PM
Counting down to Format Day. Running Win 98 and currently have just one drive: C on the 6 gig (don't laugh!) hard disk.

I want my disk to be really nice and tidy this time and I notice that a lot of people partition their disks into at least two drives but do I really need to? I still have 5 gig of that 6 gig free and will reclaim a lot of that back since I won't be reinstalling a lot of the stuff.

If I do partition, what should be on each partition?

If I don't partition, how should I arrange folders on the drive? Should I just let the programs install everything into Program Files and all my data into My Documents, or what?

Thank you!

26-11-2001, 11:37 PM

There are a few options, depending on what you want to do...

Firstly you could create a partition for windows stuff (the install folder etc) and one for everything else. You could also create one for saved documents, and just format the others regularly. Another smart move to keep windows from buggering up so quickly is to create a swap partition. You're needs will obviously differ from mine, but here's what I'd do with a (not laughing) 6gb drive:

Partition 1: 800mb for windows 98 install.

Partition 2: 500mb for swap file

Partition 3: 500mb for saved files.

Partition 4: 4.2gb for program files.

500mb is a pretty chunky swap file by most people's standards, but it's awesome for gaming, if you have a small amount of ram, or if you often have a lot of windows open.

Hope this helps...

27-11-2001, 12:00 AM
i found that a 1 gig partion for windows98 to small. u will not be able to 'install over the top'.

for a basic setup go for a main drive c with windows and all progs on it but make a data only drive of about 2 gig. this is so you can store your data so you don't lose it next time you format c.

if you partion at 500meg wouldn't it be in fat 16. i can't remember if fat16 was faster or slower than fat32.

27-11-2001, 12:08 AM
It is suggested that people with larger harddrives (say 20gb+) partition not for ease of storing stuff in different places, but because partitions bigger than 4-6gb (I can't remember exact figure, but its around there) tend to lose file information etc. and get fragged a lot quicker, and take longer to defrag. Having smaller partitions somehow keeps the info on your drive tidier and makes things load faster. So keeping that in mind, you don't need to partition. In your case you'd partition just cause you want to or cause you wanna see what fun it is screwing with your disk :)

27-11-2001, 09:39 AM
Why not split it into 2 - 3Gb each. Install Windows and anything else that writes to the registry on C: and on D:\ make an 'apps' folder (for programs that don't write to the registry); a 'zips' folder (for all those downloaded zip files); and MOVE 'My Documents' to D:\.

Moving My Documents rather than creating a new folder for files means that Windows still points to it at it's new location.

In My Documents I created an 'Email' folder and directed Outlook to use that. Makes it easier for backups.

Having things split this way made it easier on the last reformat.

27-11-2001, 10:19 AM
Hello Susan,

BM hit the nail on the head when he said that many Windows programmes dont like being installed on anything other than the C: partition, this is especially important with CD burning software and is one of the reasons people run into problems with them, if you read the tech info supplied with most of the new drives of 12 write speed plus you will see that the minimum recommended amount of free space for the drive to work efficiently is 1GB.
I mention this because I see in some of your other posts you are keen to install a CD Writer, although I don't know if it's for this machine or not.
My preference would be just to leave it as one 6GB drive.
On systems I build / install I would never contemplate having less than a 3GB C:Drive
unless the user is very certain what he\she is going to be doing with the PC, otherwise it is just far to restrictive and just involves a lot of time moving cleaning etc to keep things running smoothly.


27-11-2001, 01:01 PM
i have yet to find a prog that dosn't like being installed on another drive. some simply don't give you an optoin of whih drive to install on. but most are happy enough. the ones like nortons that require parts on c drive the installer will install what is required.

the number one reason these days for partioning a drive is easy mantanice/recovery after windows has died. why lose 20gig of movies/mps just because you have to redo windows.

27-11-2001, 11:22 PM
I have a 10gig HD and have it partitioned C:\ windows; D:\ Programs; E:\ Data; F:\ Archive and G:\Swap. Have not had any problems with progams on D:\ writing to the registry or using the temp directory. By rights a program writing to the registry should be unconcerned as to where it is installed. I zap my C: drive every few months because I try a lot of programs from cover cd's and it is the only way to get rid of all those dll's etc. As yet I have not been impressed enough by the likes of cleansweep etc.

27-11-2001, 11:46 PM
Was actually thinking along the lines of things like Word. It gets it's hooks into Windows in a big way. If you end up reformatting the partition with Windows on it Word and it's kind need to be reinstalled anyway as they won't run. So doing the OS and the 'sticky' type of programs is reasonably tidy.

29-11-2001, 07:37 AM
I had a 8gb drive in a older computer recently but the same could apply to a 6, 50% each way, all your programs and Windows install to C as usual, all your data, downloads, images, etc save to D. In D if you are the only user, just create a folder for each item, one for music, one for doc's etc,. If windows falls over and you need to format at least you still have your data on D