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  1. #1
    Star Lounger
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    I'm going to re-install Windows XP on my PC, but I'm preparing it for future installation of Windows 7. I'll partition one of my hard drives NOW for that, so I wanted to know what is the recommended size for that partition/folder(including extra free space for extra memory to run Windows 7 properly)?

    TIA

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    Super Moderator CLiNT's Avatar
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    I've got about 80 GBs for mine, but anywhere from 30 to 50, at least 20 GB is recommended.
    It also depends on your pagefile settings and or sleep/hibernation settings as well.
    I have Windows 7 manage mine with 8 GBs of physical RAM, it sizes it for an approx 8 GB page file.

    If your coming from XP, think bigger, you'll need it.
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    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    Hi rfe777,

    I take it you have two hard drives in your PC. What capacity is the one you plan to partition into an XP and a Windows 7 installation?

    Are you planning a dual boot system or are you going to remove XP when you decide to install Windows 7?

    I have a dual boot setup on my desktop. I have one physical 320GB hard drive, divided into two NTFS partitions. My XP partition is the original OS and is now sized at 120GB. My Windows 7 partition spans the rest of the hard drive. I wanted plenty of room for Windows 7 Pro 64 bit so I would not run short on disk space for some time. I only opted for dual boot because of some XP era games that I could not run on Win7. I have been a little slow in finishing those games!

    A good rule of thumb is that there should be 15% of free hard drive space set aside for use by Windows for various requirements such as Clint mentioned and for Disk Defragmenter operations (anything less than 15% free space and Disk Defragmenter will only partially degrag your drive).

    Microsoft lists the minimum hard drive space requirements for 32 bit Windows 7 as 16GB, and 64 bit as 20GB, so it is beefier than XP.
    Deadeye81

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    5 Star Lounger
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    I used to use a 50-60GB partition for installing OSes. But I kept on running out of room due to the number of apps that I installed and the size of those apps - Office, photo editors, video editors and games take a lot of disk space! I am now using a 120GB partition for Win7 Pro x86 and I have it about half-way filled. I also have a 20GB XP partition, but I use it for only one purpose and have installed only the minimum amount of software for that purpose - i have about 10GB free on that partition. Of course, all of my data (including my Documents, Music, Pictures and Video folders) exists on other non-OS partitions.

  5. #5
    Star Lounger
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    Quote Originally Posted by Clint Rossmere View Post
    It also depends on your pagefile settings and or sleep/hibernation settings as well.
    I have Windows 7 manage mine with 8 GBs of physical RAM, it sizes it for an approx 8 GB page file.
    What are pagefile settings and sleep/hibernation settings?

  6. #6
    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfe777 View Post
    What are pagefile settings and sleep/hibernation settings?
    Hibernation has a file in the root directory called hiberfil.sys that can occupy 3 GB space or more when hibernation is enabled. If hibernation is disable this file can be deleted so that large space is recovered. To disable hibernation follow this procedure.

    The page file is a type of memory Windows allocations from your hard drive to supplement RAM. Since the HD is much slower than RAM, this is a slowing point. AGoogle search for Win 7 page files returns a lot of info. Here is a link to make the system quicker by moving the page file.
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    4 Star Lounger
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    If it is any help, my Win7 Ult partition is using around 32Gb of a 100GB I allocated it. My main (larger) apps are Office 2010 and Photoshop CS4. The criteria is really what apps you intend to install; but I wouldn't risk anything less than 50GB.

  8. #8
    Super Moderator Deadeye81's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rfe777 View Post
    What are pagefile settings and sleep/hibernation settings?
    Hibernate is the mode, as Ted related, that writes all the contents of ram to your hard drive in a file called hiberfil.sys. When you awaken your computer from hibernation, the contents of hiberfil.sys are read back into ram so you can resume your work. The advantage to this compared to sleep mode is that your data is not endangered with hibernation. In sleep mode, all data stays in ram and some electricity is required to maintain the data in ram. In a laptop, sleep mode can be a drain on your battery charge, whereas hibernation does not use any power. If your power source fails during sleep mode, the data held in ram disappears.

    A disadvantage of hibernate mode is that it does require a large chunk of disk space, at least as large as the amount of ram on your system. Another disadvantage is that it takes almost as long to come out of hibernation as it does to cold boot your computer.

    Both hibernate and sleep modes have their advantages and disadvantages. If you determine you would never use hibernate mode, then removing the hiberfil.sys can save some disk space. If the computer is a desktop, I would opt to remove the hiberfil.sys in favor of capturing that disk space if I needed more room.

    There is another power saving mode in Windows 7 called Hybrid Sleep, and it maintains data in ram as well as writing it to your hard drive. It offers the best features of both hibernate and sleep modes. Keep in mind that this mode is enabled by default in Windows 7 when you choose to enable sleep mode, so if you remove the hiberfil.sys file you will not be able to use Hybrid Sleep as well as hibernate mode.

    You can find these options in Control Panel | Power Options | Change plan settings | Change advanced power settings.

    As far as the pagefile is concerned, relocating it has potential benefits; what you never want to do is completely eliminate it. Windows was designed to work with a pagefile in its memory management, and no matter how much ram you have installed, completely removing the pagefile can cause system instability.
    Deadeye81

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