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  1. #1
    5 Star Lounger
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    New big drive - what next? (XP Pro SP1)

    I took advantage of the post-turkey day sales and picked up a new Maxtor 80gig 7200rpm drive for my home computer, but now I have to decide what to do with it. It will be the main boot drive, but do I partition it or keep it big? It'll be replacing a 20gig 5400rpm drive; would this old drive be useful for a big permanent swap file, or would I lose performance due to the difference in speeds? Also, my system has been changed considerably since it was first set up about 8 months ago; one old HD removed, DVD added, RAM type changed and boosted, and lots of programs installed and uninstalled -- maybe it's time for a fresh start with a clean install? I also have my work pc to think of; I would have no problem using just the new drive at home and dropping the old one in my work computer to use as a backup device. I'm open to any suggestions. <img src=/S/thankyou.gif border=0 alt=thankyou width=40 height=15>

  2. #2
    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: New big drive - what next? (XP Pro SP1)

    David, partitioning the drive is something you will need to decide based on your personal needs. Personally, I always create a partition just for the operating system, and a smaller one for the swap file (to prevent fragmentation). You can also place the swap file on the same partition as the OS; the difference in performance is so small as to be nearly unnoticeable. The rest of the space gets divided based on the system's usage.

    I'd use the second drive for data storage, but it will be slower, and probably noticeably so. Perhaps you could use it to back up your operating system or data, which mitigates the speed factor to a degree. Again, consider your needs and use the drive where it will provide you with the most benefit.

    You might also want to try placing the swap file on both drives. Since XP manages IDE drives well, it might provide a small boost. Experimentation will yield the best results for you.
    -Mark

  3. #3
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    Re: New big drive - what next? (XP Pro SP1)

    I decided to just go with one big partition on the new drive and copy my old drive to the new one. I used Maxtor's software to copy everything over, but had problems when I tried to run on just the new drive -- System Information could not pull any information on the system, giving me error messages instead of information. So I tried again, using Norton's Ghost run from a bootable floppy. This time I couldn't even boot Windows up; Windows couldn't verify its Activation and would just hang mid-boot. Again I tried Maxtor's software, using slightly different settings, and when I tried to boot I'd get a insta-flash blue screen (gone so fast it took a while before I even saw the flash of blue) before the computer restarted.

    What could be going wrong? I thought this was supposed to be an easy process. The drive setup I have now is cable-selected, new drive as master on primary cable, old drive as slave on primary cable, dvd as master on secondary cable, and cd/rw as slave on secondary cable. Would a different arrangement help? Bios is set to boot from HD0, then HD1, then CD.

  4. #4
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    Re: New big drive - what next? (XP Pro SP1)

    You are correct, it should be an easy process. But if everything worked thiis forum would not exist either. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15> Try setting it up without cable select. I have never been fond of it, perhaps it is part of the problem. Swap IDE cables as well, to eliminate that possibility. Also consider disabling/disconnecting any IDE devices you absolutely do not need, perhaps there is a conflict that Windows cannot get around. For my money, I would go with a clean install instead of using a ghosted image, but that is a personal preference. I have always taken any opportunity to set Windows up fresh instead of dealing with the odd situations that invariably crop up from doing it a different way.

    It is also worth noting the file system you are trying to use. Windows 2000 and XP have a hard limit on FAT32 partitions of 32GB. They cannot format a partition larger than that size in FAT32. Try using an alternate file system, and consider breaking up the drive's space by partitioning if for no other reason than to eliminate it as a potential problem.

    A last consideration: I would set up your master/slave configuration as:

    Primary Master: 80GB (new drive)
    Primary Slave: DVD ROM
    Secondary Master: CD-RW drive
    Secondary Slave: hard drive 2 (old drive)

    The reasoning here is that you want the burner to be a master so you don't make coasters, and you should try separating the hard drives.
    -Mark

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    Re: New big drive - what next? (XP Pro SP1)

    I havn't bothered with FAT or FAT32 for either drive, but straight NTFS for both. I will try the fixed master/slave setup instead of using cable select, since I'm open to any option at this point. (Unfortunately, those ribbon cables are not the easiest to work with; makes me think investing in some of the 'streamlined' types could be worthwhile.) I could even try disconnecting both optical drives, and set each hard drive up alone on its own cable to have the simplest possible setup for them, though that would only leave me with Ghost to run from the floppy -- I could run the Maxtor software from the HD but when I tried that it missed copying some files (like my AV).

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    Re: New big drive - what next? (XP Pro SP1)

    David I use nothing but Maxtor Hard Drives, and I have had nothing but problems with Maxtor's transfer software. So I don't use their software any more to do transfers, I use PowerQuest Drive Images "Drive Copy" option. Works great every time.

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    Re: New big drive - what next? (XP Pro SP1)

    <hr>investing in some of the 'streamlined' types could be worthwhile<hr>
    They do look nicer, are easier to work with. and they help the airflow, but they are not any different except in shape.
    -Mark

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