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Old 10-08-2009, 11:11 PM   #1
shawn
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Default program, games installation question

I was wondering if I had 2 drives and each had 2 NT partitions each "4 total" what is the possibility of installing games and programs on another partition on or off the drive with the primary partition.

I know that in Photoshop they recommend a separate swap partition but what about regular programs. Will the use of both IDE connections and 2 drives be faster than a single IDE connection and make up for the fact that drive access is slower than the CPU or is it just faster to keep everything on the primary partition where windows is installed. Also if installed onto a different drive I'm assuming the first logical partition would be best for access speed.

I tried using google but the responses were short and incomplete and very basic since the people that asked the question had from the wording seemed not to have any hardware knowledge.

BTW I am not using a SCSI setup and my motherboard doesn't have a SCSI interface just so anyone answering this won't recommend that or ask if I have that capability. I can also move stored files to another partition if it would be better to have a virtually empty partion to installs programs/games onto.

You can get somewhat technical with me since I'm not a beginner by far though I am definitely not an expert either. I can get by though using normal tech terms with ease.

I'll appreciate any help answering this question and maybe it'll help others here keep windows running faster without getting bogged down in a full partition if it's a viable option.
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Old 10-09-2009, 12:00 PM   #2
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I was wondering if I had 2 drives and each had 2 NT partitions each "4 total"
NTFS. NT is the name of the kernel, not the file system.

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what is the possibility of installing games and programs on another partition on or off the drive with the primary partition.
You can install something anywhere you want: The location is usually looked up via the Registry (Which is on the same partition as Windows itself).

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I know that in Photoshop they recommend a separate swap partition but what about regular programs.
I keep most of my non-registry using programs on a separate partition from the OS, since I re-Ghost my Windows installs so much to ward off malware/general Windows rot. Some that *do* use the registry have all their entries exported to *.reg files I can click to restore functionality.

I only give my OSes very minimal slices of my HDDs.

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Will the use of both IDE connections and 2 drives be faster than a single IDE connection and make up for the fact that drive access is slower than the CPU or is it just faster to keep everything on the primary partition where windows is installed.
Um, no. You need RAID hardware/software to do this. You're SOL for hardware RAID if your MB doesn't support it (Unless you buy something like a SATA/SCSI card with such functionality).

Software RAID is actually pretty good assuming you have a CPU made within the last six years. Under Windows NT soft RAID is called "Dynamic Disks" (You can create these under Logical Disk Manager) and under Linux LVM is what's typically used.

Note that you will see a very tiny performance boost from running a game/whatever off a separate physical drive from the OS, since Windows won't be making the read heads have to seek around doing R/W operations on the same drive you're running said game/whatever off of.

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Also if installed onto a different drive I'm assuming the first logical partition would be best for access speed.
Yes, but it's not going to be all that noticeable.

Last edited by Sliver-X; 10-09-2009 at 12:23 PM.
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Old 10-09-2009, 12:42 PM   #3
shawn
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Note that you will see a very tiny performance boost from running a game/whatever off a separate physical drive from the OS, since Windows won't be making the read heads have to seek around doing R/W operations on the same drive you're running said game/whatever off of.

Yes, but it's not going to be all that noticeable.
That is exactly what I was looking for. I like the game mod Median XL for Diablo2 Expansion. It's very graphics intensive with tons of textures and a lot of action. It basically makes my hard drive work like hell to keep up between running windows in the background, fetching the files for the game out of the system folder, and fetching game data like textures and settings and then writing them while in play.

This will help out a lot though in taking some of the work off the drive. It'll also help me free up space on XP partition since now I'll just move all the files in that other partition. I think for something like this a new install is in order and repartitioning the Drive C: is on into 2 partitions with a very small one for XP and a bigger one for storage and then take all my files stored on the 2nd drive and move them onto that new big partition so I can use the new space for all my game and apps.

I really don't mind reinstalls. I keep all programs for reinstall in a folder on a logical partition so there is no need for any CD's/DVD's to be pulled out and I can usually have full functionality including most games reinstalled and programs within 3 hours and I'll just watch TV or read while that's happening.

Thanks Sliver-X, I appreciate the clearing up of that question, and you gave me all the little nuances of the process that I was unsure of.
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Old 10-09-2009, 05:18 PM   #4
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That is exactly what I was looking for.
Glad I could help.

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I like the game mod Median XL for Diablo2 Expansion. It's very graphics intensive with tons of textures and a lot of action. It basically makes my hard drive work like hell to keep up between running windows in the background, fetching the files for the game out of the system folder, and fetching game data like textures and settings and then writing them while in play.
This sounds like a lack of RAM issue. How much system RAM and VRAM do you have in your machine?
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Old 10-09-2009, 08:52 PM   #5
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Glad I could help.



This sounds like a lack of RAM issue. How much system RAM and VRAM do you have in your machine?

1.5 gb ddr2 ram and 512mb ddr2 vram but the problem is it's a PCI card and I haven't been able to afford an AGP card at this time. I figure though using 2 drives might take some of the work and I do want windows on it's own partition. It seems to bog down after 6 months or so and I figure this will give me a year between reinstalls. It'll also make my programs run faster if windows is not bogged down.
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Old 10-10-2009, 02:20 AM   #6
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Thanks again Sliver-X. I just moved some files and repartitioned the size of Windows and then reinstalled. I installed a bunch of programs on another partition and then just defragged everything. Windows is running faster than after the last install by far. Probably because the partition is loaded with a bunch of crap Windows doesn't need.

I am so glad I asked this question.
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Old 10-10-2009, 04:29 PM   #7
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For anyone considering doing this with a system still running EIDE hard drives I would like to let you know this. HOLY FUCK, I have NEVER seen Diablo 2 run at even close to this speed. My characters are like greased lightening and run smoothly also without any video jitters or hesitation like I have always had no matter how I set up this game. So basically I have Windows installed at C: and all my games and programs at D:. I usually during install when they give a choice of install location like C:\Program Files\game for example I just change the C to D for a new location of D:\Program Files\games or whatever location it originally indicated. I have not also have any programs not install and run so far. I did though install codecs on the C: partition since I wasn't sure if Windows would find them easily but they only took minimal room so it was no big deal as in bloating Windows.

If you don't mind reinstalling Windows and but realize that it won't split a partition like when doing a Linux install then worry no longer. I found a freeware and very nice partition manager that will even move/resize your windows partition without reinstalling. The reason this is nice is because if you just feel like uninstalling your programs and shrinking your Windows partion and reinstall your programs onto another drive like me "that's the trick to making them run fast" then this is a utility you need.

This link is to download dot com and I actually used this program to resize the windows partition before reinstall with this, works just like partition magic but doesn't cost a cent.

http://download.cnet.com/Easeus-Part...-10863346.html

Hope everyone's games and programs run as fast as mine do now.

If anyone is interested I used Defragler to defrag the drives after I moved all the files and reinstalled. It's a really good free defrag program that no only defrags but consolidates all your files automatically by sorting the files by putting the used first at the beginning of the partition. It is slower than a few of the other defrag programs but gives better results and is upgraded very regularly. A big plus is you don't have to uninstall the old version before installing the upgrades, just run install and it does it all automatically.

http://download.cnet.com/Easeus-Part...-10863346.html
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Old 10-11-2009, 06:31 PM   #8
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Tried something else that I'd never tried before. I though about how linux has a separate swap partition and most techs recommend putting the swap/page file on a separate drive. Well I already have my programs on a separate drive and I got a huge increase in speed by doing that. All I really wanted was to have the page file continuous without fragmenting so much.

Well I took that partition manager I used before and partitioned off 2GB of space off the end of the C: drive. I then disabled the page file on C: and made a swap file of everything but 50MB of the new partition. I disabled recycle bin, added a hack to disable low disk space checking to the registry, and disable system restore on the new partition.

Seems to run a little smoother though I'm not seeing a speedup in general just more stable. I also now have my windows files also now all together without the pagefile breaking them up by expansion and contraction.
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Old 10-12-2009, 04:28 AM   #9
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Actually, I just found Easeus myself recently. I was surprised by how well it worked, and that it was free. I wanted something like this for Windows (normally I'd boot up a Live CD and use Gparted).

And yep...having the swap on it's own partition is a good idea. I always do this with my installs.
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Old 10-12-2009, 04:46 AM   #10
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Actually, I just found Easeus myself recently. I was surprised by how well it worked, and that it was free. I wanted something like this for Windows (normally I'd boot up a Live CD and use Gparted).

And yep...having the swap on it's own partition is a good idea. I always do this with my installs.
It is and I feel so stupid for never doing it since I've installed linux on a few machines and have been using windows since 3.11. I just never thought of it and I've had 2 drives on all my machines for around 6 or 8 years now.

I can't believe how smooth Windows runs on a small partition like Sliver-X recommended with a separate partition for the pagefile and another for my programs. Everything is staying less fragmented also which is a huge bonus.

I can't wait till I can afford to upgrade to all sata drives and a pcie video card. If I install with this kind of a setup the speed will be amazing.
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