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Windows 7: Do we still need drive letters...?


16 Jan 2010   #1

Windows7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 
Do we still need drive letters...?

As the title says, do we still need drive letters to "label" our storage?

In my humble opinion, drive letters are the legacy DOS left us that needed to be leave and let go, it belongs in the past. At this time of age, when people can have many disks that stores multi gigabytes of data, drive letters are liability... What if you (like me) have too many disks, plus external storage(s), plus some SAN/NAS volumes that needs to be attached... Giving those volumes drive letters will backfire when you ran out of letters (1), or you forgot that you statically bind a folder to your iTunes Database (example of some app that statically bind to a folder within a partition), and the volume ran out of free space(2). Expanding the volume is out of the question because the free space is already taken by the next partition...

Please share your opinion...

zzz2496


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

16 Jan 2010   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Wow.. how much space do you need? lol.
I currently have 4.25Tb of hard drive space + backup of the same. I am about 800Gb off filling them all up. The reason I use so much is that I use my main pc as a media centre, currently containing 1000's of episodes of various television series, documentaries, music vids and hundreds of movies. So at present I have used 5 drive letters + 2 more for a dvd-rw drive and a virtual drive. This leaves me with just under 20 more drive letters to use in the future. I really can't see me using all these even with all my 'greed' in data usage! Unless I have ALL my media in HD, then of course I would use a lot more storage space.

To be honest, the answer (for now) is to make sure that you have larger hard drive capacities. I'm certainly open to the idea of not having drive letters, as long as I know which files are on what hard drives.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2010   #3

Windows 7 Ultimate Signature Edition
 
 

the letters are good for organization, but i suppose that a dive name or number would work just as well.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


16 Jan 2010   #4

Windows7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

Hi ukgovsucks,

In my setup, I have 8 harddisks, 2 internal optical drives, 2 external optical drives, 2 card readers (each needed at least 3 drive letters). I had drive letter up to "S", that leaves me somewhat little slack to use, not to mention I have several VHDs shared over network, and several iSCSI disks. When everything online, and in use, IF I put all in drive letters, I should need drive "AC" (as in after "Z"-> "AA"->"AB"->"AC"). It was a PITA before I re-mount everything in folders... By mounting each into folders, I can now have as many volumes as I want. I even have seperate folders for remote disks, virtual disks, and directly connected disks. Fortunately Microsoft still provides "subst" command, so I can still have a virtual drive letter off my folder mounted volume just to keep backward compatibility with my preconfigured Database server process/iTunes/and several other apps...

Now, I'm rearranging everything using larger volumes (testing a 4TB volume right now) to maintain order of my data chaos. Drive letter really is a legacy, Microsoft should just leave it behind, use WinFS instead (where did that FS go anyway?). Unix style is still the best (everything is in a directory/file).

zzz2496
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2010   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by zzz2496 View Post
Hi ukgovsucks,

In my setup, I have 8 harddisks, 2 internal optical drives, 2 external optical drives, 2 card readers (each needed at least 3 drive letters). I had drive letter up to "S", that leaves me somewhat little slack to use, not to mention I have several VHDs shared over network, and several iSCSI disks. When everything online, and in use, IF I put all in drive letters, I should need drive "AC" (as in after "Z"-> "AA"->"AB"->"AC"). It was a PITA before I re-mount everything in folders... By mounting each into folders, I can now have as many volumes as I want. I even have seperate folders for remote disks, virtual disks, and directly connected disks. Fortunately Microsoft still provides "subst" command, so I can still have a virtual drive letter off my folder mounted volume just to keep backward compatibility with my preconfigured Database server process/iTunes/and several other apps...

Now, I'm rearranging everything using larger volumes (testing a 4TB volume right now) to maintain order of my data chaos. Drive letter really is a legacy, Microsoft should just leave it behind, use WinFS instead (where did that FS go anyway?). Unix style is still the best (everything is in a directory/file).

zzz2496
Phew! What can I say? lol.
I don't mind the idea of removing the drive letters, just as long as I know which drive has what data on it. Always open to a little change with Windows, as long as it's an improvement!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2010   #6

Windows7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

By the way, have any of you guys tried mounting a volume to a NTFS folder?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2010   #7

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

personally, i find that having a drive letter is more friendly than the Linux Sda1 type, but i suppose a simple numbering system would be just as good
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2010   #8

Windows7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by severedsolo View Post
personally, i find that having a drive letter is more friendly than the Linux Sda1 type, but i suppose a simple numbering system would be just as good
Err... you got that a bit off... Linux's "/dev/sda" assignment is the equivalent of "Device Manager/Disk Drives/[some_harddisk]". The one I mean is (if you're familiar to Linux) ==> "/mnt/windows" assignment. In Linux (or UNIX), Devices are inside "/dev" directory, that's your hardware right there.
"/dev/sda" is a block device, the same as "Device Manager/Disk Drives/[some_harddisk]" in Windows, to use the block device, you need to "mount" it to something, in Windows - we have drive letters(and NTFS folders), in Linux or UNIX, we have folders/directories. Now, letter runs from "A" to "Z", folders/directories runs as much as the limit of the File System allows, which is quite plentiful

zzz2496
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2010   #9

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

my apologies, its been a while since i used Linux, obviously getting a bit confused in my old age
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jan 2010   #10

Windows7 Ultimate 64bit
 
 

Ahahaha, no worries
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Do we still need drive letters...?




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