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Windows 7: Partition Size on 2nd HDD used for Image Files of OS/App Partition?

29 Dec 2010   #1

Win7 Pro 64-bit
 
 
Partition Size on 2nd HDD used for Image Files of OS/App Partition?

Hi,

I'm preparing a fresh install of Win 7 Pro on a 2 disk system (90GB SSD and 1TB HDD). I'll be placing the OS/Apps on the SSD and Data and image restore files on HDD.

Qs:

1. If I allocate ~60GB for the OS/Apps partition, and actual storage of the OS/Apps is 35GB...what size partition do I need on the HDD to save this image file? I assume the compressed file will be 45-50% of original. Will I want to store multiple image files created over the course of time as apps are added and system is further optimized, and hence need a partition that is a multiple of the OS/App partition size? What do you do?

2. Also, an 8GB RamDisk will serve as scratch disk space for some apps (RamDisk +) which can save an image of the session's writes upon shutdown. I plan to save this image to the 2nd HDD. Is it recommended that I save this to same partition that stores the OS/App image in Q #1 above, or a separate partition? If a separate partition, what size?

Thanks!



My System SpecsSystem Spec
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29 Dec 2010   #2

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Riotubes View Post
Hi,

I'm preparing a fresh install of Win 7 Pro on a 2 disk system (90GB SSD and 1TB HDD). I'll be placing the OS/Apps on the SSD and Data and image restore files on HDD.

Qs:

1. If I allocate ~60GB for the OS/Apps partition, and actual storage of the OS/Apps is 35GB...what size partition do I need on the HDD to save this image file? I assume the compressed file will be 45-50% of original. Will I want to store multiple image files created over the course of time as apps are added and system is further optimized, and hence need a partition that is a multiple of the OS/App partition size? What do you do?

2. Also, an 8GB RamDisk will serve as scratch disk space for some apps (RamDisk +) which can save an image of the session's writes upon shutdown. I plan to save this image to the 2nd HDD. Is it recommended that I save this to same partition that stores the OS/App image in Q #1 above, or a separate partition? If a separate partition, what size?

Thanks!
You are correct about approximate sizes of image files. But I don't see why you would want to put the saved images on a specific partition, although obviously you could do that.

I have 3 images at any time: the first that I made the day I installed Windows and 2 from recent periods. I make a new one every couple of months and delete one at that time. So, yes, as the system is optimized, you continue to make images so that your newest one is never very old.

I consider images as just another very valuable file and keep them in an "images" folder on my primary data drive. And I back them up to another drive just as I would any valuable file.

I know nothing about RAM disks, but I'd think ANY image file should be considered as another valuable data file to be stored as normal data and backed up.

You can of course make an image of C only, D only, or C and D combined. I image only the C drive and backup all data through other means. I don't want images complicating my access to my data.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2010   #3

Win7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Thanks for the quick reply! I see your point about the image files just being another important data file. I've never used partitions and am trying to understand their use beyond segregating the OS/apps files.

I wonder if backup software is any easier to run if a few multi-gig image files are absent from the other data files (i.e. in a separate partition), from a time perspective. Perhaps backup software is easily configured to ignore the folder the image files are placed in?

Finally, I want to use synchronization software because I am forgetfull what I've backed up both in terms of which files and even versions I've backed up. I'll be using this with just the data disc/partition I suppose (image app for OS). Does a sync app provide all the basic backup functionality one needs to perform essential backup?
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29 Dec 2010   #4

XP / Win7 x64 Pro
 
 

Windows 7 has a great built-in backup utility (just type "backup" at the start menu) for most users' needs. If you are set on third party software, though, I've used syncback se with great success.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
29 Dec 2010   #5

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Riotubes View Post

I wonder if backup software is any easier to run if a few multi-gig image files are absent from the other data files (i.e. in a separate partition), from a time perspective. Perhaps backup software is easily configured to ignore the folder the image files are placed in?

Finally, I want to use synchronization software because I am forgetfull what I've backed up both in terms of which files and even versions I've backed up. I'll be using this with just the data disc/partition I suppose (image app for OS). Does a sync app provide all the basic backup functionality one needs to perform essential backup?
I have never noticed any difficulty at all in running backup software on a partition containing OS images. They are just another file.

Any backup (synchronization) software worth talking about can be configured to EXCLUDE whatever you want--certain directories, certain file extensions, etc.

Backup software usually has "routines" or "profiles". You can have one or several profiles. You could have a single profile that backed up everything you wanted to backup and run it once a day.

Or you could have several profiles, where each profile backs up a certain type of file. I have 5 profiles: data/text, mp3, pictures/video, email, and bookmarks. Between those 5 profiles, 100% of my data is backed up. Some profiles I run daily, some I run every week or so. You could certainly make one for images if you wanted, but I don't see any reason to do that. My images are backed up with my data/text profile, which I run daily.

I don't run any profile on an automated schedule. I run them all manually--whenever I want to with a single mouse click. They can be scheduled to run every 2 hours, 6 hours, at shutdown, at boot, etc. But I have found that running backups at shutdown or startup can interfere with those procedures, so I use manual.

Such software typically takes quite a while to run the first time---because it has to back up ALL files in the profile. But thereafter it runs much faster--because after the first time, it has to back up only CHANGED or NEWLY CREATED files. The first run might take several hours--pretty much like a drag and drop.

My daily data backups virtually never take over 30 seconds. I use Second Copy, but there are many similar apps---none of them use images.

I have a 2 partition primary drive: C and D. D contains all of my data. I have a single partition backup drive E. My images of C are saved to D and then backed up to E. Images are isolated, but only by being in a separate folder--not in a separate partition.

Unless you have a major over-riding reason, I'd advise you to minimize the number of partitions when possible. If you split stuff by a bunch of partitions, you have to make judgments about partition size and rate of growth--and you will guess wrong about at least one partition and run low on space on it----even though you have plenty of space on other partitions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Dec 2010   #6

Win7 Pro 64-bit
 
 

Thanks to both FliGi7 and Ignatzatsonic for the very helpful information. I have read positive feedback on syncback but if Windows 7 has a comparable app I am happy to keep it simple. Ignatzatsonic's post was definitely enlightening...the notion that you can add multiple profiles with different backup routines and to organize folders around these profiles is epiphinal. I will do this and see no reason for separate partition for the image files on the 2nd HDD. I think I'll just partition the SDD into two: OS/Apps vs Scratch Space and just a single partition on the HDD for data and backup. On the data I'll have different folders for FLAC, MPEG, MyDoc, Email pst, etc.

Is there a compelling reason to save "downloads" to OS/App partition or data disk? I'm just thinking about an inadvertant download (due to my ignorance) that could more readily corupt my system if I kept this folder in system partition?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Dec 2010   #7

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 SP1, Home Premium, 64-bit
 
 

Not sure I am following you, but........

If you are referring to a garden variety download---an mp3, a new program you want to try, a video clip, a jpeg, then to me that is just more data. I have a downloads folder on my data drive and everything lands there.

The downloaded item is eventually re-routed elsewhere after I decide I am going to keep it, process it, edit it, delete it, or whatever.

In other words, I personally NEVER download anything to C. Always to D.

Sometimes an application will choose to download something to somewhere in C:\Users, but I never put anything on C other than the OS and installed applications.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Dec 2010   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post

In other words, I personally NEVER download anything to C. Always to D.

Sometimes an application will choose to download something to somewhere in C:\Users, but I never put anything on C other than the OS and installed applications.
I have found that 99% of the applications (programs) that I install can be done on Drive D and still will run fine from C. The advantage here is to keep the size of C minimized and thus easier to image.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Dec 2010   #9

Windows 7 Professional 64-bit SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by oldtraveler View Post
Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by ignatzatsonic View Post

In other words, I personally NEVER download anything to C. Always to D.

Sometimes an application will choose to download something to somewhere in C:\Users, but I never put anything on C other than the OS and installed applications.
I have found that 99% of the applications (programs) that I install can be done on Drive D and still will run fine from C. The advantage here is to keep the size of C minimized and thus easier to image.
Thats what I do C:\ partition is just Windows 7 and all applications are installed on my second hard drive first partition D:\ ... works very well
My System SpecsSystem Spec
30 Dec 2010   #10

Windows 7 Ultimate x64 SP1
 
 

Your image files are compressed, so you don't need to do any special partitioning on the data drive. I'd make that one solid partition and then store everything there. I have a similar setup where my data drive is a 750 GB internal drive. Everything gets stored there, and anything that normally goes on C:\, like game saves, gets synced to the data drive using SyncToy. Then I keep an entire backup of the data drive on a 750 GB external.
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 Partition Size on 2nd HDD used for Image Files of OS/App Partition?




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