Save space when using two drives or dual-booting

Scott dunn
By Scott Dunn

You may be able to free up some valuable space if you’re using two disk partitions, using two physical drives, or dual-booting between XP and Vista on the same machine.

I’ll show you several steps you can take to eliminate duplicate files and get more out of your disks.


Decide on your multiple-partition strategy

Years ago, it was common for users seeking more reliability to divide a hard drive into two or more partitions: portions of a disk, each with a different drive letter. Back then, recovering data from drive d: was easier than from drive c: if the primary partition (containing Windows) became corrupted.

That configuration is rare today, because backup programs and disaster-recovery services have improved. But there are still three situations in which you might find yourself handling two or more partitions or physical disks:

1. Multiple physical drives (internal or external). When space grew scarce on your c: drive, perhaps you added an additional drive d: to get more room;

2. Separate code and data partitions. You created separate c: and d: partitions on a single hard drive, installing Windows on the first partition, but c: is now running out of space and you don’t wish to run partition-management software to change the size of the partitions;

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All Windows Secrets articles posted on 2008-02-28: