Quote: Originally Posted by whs
Let me refer back to my original numbers and your questions:
2. In simple terms, a primary partition is really only needed for the active partition that contains the bootmgr. There are some exceptions like the recovery partition, but for your setup you would only need one primary partition - and that is the one where you plan to install Windows7.
I didn't mean to confuse (confused myself a bit!) I actually posted to partitioning propositions for two setups (one for an external HD of primarily just files) and then another question about partitioning an internal HD with at least two operating systems (windows7 and linux)
If you do, however, install Linux on the same physical disk, you will have the Linux bootmgr (called Grub) throw a monkeywrench into the whole setup. That is why I recommend you get 2 new disks of a smaller capacity. that has those advantages:
a) You get faster access times as per the explanations of Bill2
b) you can install Linux on the second drive (with the Windows 7 drive physically disconnected). Thus you get no interference from the Grub. Be aware that Linux usually defines a second partition for their swap files.
With that setup you can switch the systems with the boot order in the BIOS.
Umm, no. I've successfully triple-booted (macos, windows 7 home premium, and linux) on the same internal hard drive before with three partitions. It worked splendidly . I encountered absolutely none of the boot problems you mentioned, as I used rEFIt. I don't know the details of grub (gnu grand unified boot loader)
I like the idea of more hard disks
but sounds expensive.
I already have the external hard disk and it's 1TB and am quite satisfied with it. Just learning much more about partitioning to partition it properly.
If you had two internal hard drives (say of 1TB each) and installed a different operating system into each of them, would that have more advantages than partitioning a 2TB internal into 2 1tb partitions? It seems like it woudl be more efficient with two internals because of the read-write head seek time with partitions.
While I like the idea of two internal HDs, what you propose sounds unnecessary as I already ahve successfully triple-booted with zero boot problems (you just simply select which OS during boot sequence and that partition loads).
5) The active partition contains the bootmgr for all operating systems on the drive. The MBR (Master Boot Record) points to the active partition and it can obviously only point to one. When you boot, you have the following sequence (let us say there is only one OS on the drive):
You push the start button > that activates the BIOS > the BIOS looks for the MBR of the disk that you set as first in the boot sequence (Note: the MBR is always in the first 512 bytes of the disk) > the MBR looks for the one and only active partition and it's bootmgr > the bootmgr pulls in the OS from the partition that is indicated in the bootmgr (that could be the same or another partition where the OS resides).
Okay this part is sounding more helpful (especially with the additional task/project/dream of building my own rig!)
First off. When I was triple-booting (3 partitions, 3 operating systems) I remembering using some utility to examine the partitions (the SMART status of that drive started to fail by the way, which fortunately caused no data loss, but a lot of panic and me learning more about partions, sectors, and the like) and ther ewere at least two active partions. like the status of the drive sayd boot, active, and some other characteristics.
What exactly does "active" mean?
" The active partition contains the bootmgr for all operating systems on the drive. "
So the active system points to all the operating systems? Well how would you explain me having at least two active partitions?
Definitions I've seen are "the primary partition on a HD that typically contains the OS", well what about in dual/triple-boot of the same HD. I definitely had two or more active partitions. How does active partition apply to multiple OSes on same hd?
I learned more from Bill2's response.
"boo partitiont" = there's an operating system on that partition? or there's a bootmgr on that partition?
If you have several operating systems on this disk, there is a step in between where the bootmgr will ask you which OS to pull in.
After some research, this is the best definition I found on MBR, boot sector, and bios EVER (from a uk forum):
The partition table can only have 4 entries which can designate primary
partitions and/or extended partitions. Only a primary partition can be
given the attribute of "active"; i.e., you cannot make a logical drive
in an extended partition the "active" partition drive. The MBR (master
boot record) only knows how to read the partition table. It doesn't
know how to interrogate logical drives within an extended partition.
The BIOS loads a bootstrap program that loads the MBR into memory. The
MBR then reads the partition table to see which of the primary
partitions is marked with the attribute "active". The MBR then uses the
partitioning information to find sector 0 of the active primary
partition. This is the boot sector for that primary partition. The MBR
then loads the boot program in that boot sector of the active primary
partition and passes control to it to continue the boot process. None
of which has even involved Windows or any operating system at this point
(except that it is possible to replace the MBR with a customized version
for a particular operating system; the MBR normally can read the
partition table only on the same hard drive as where the MBR was read
which is usually the first physical hard drive, but replacement MBR
programs can read the partition tables on other hard drives).
- BIOS loads MBR from first physical hard drive.
- MBR reads partition table on the same hard drive as the MBR.
- MBR looks for a primary partition marked as active. If no primary
partition is marked active, boot stops with error.
- MBR loads the boot sector from the active primary partition.
- Boot sector (program) loads the rest of the OS starter files (the
program in the boot sector may itself be an OS starter file). This is
when the OS starts to load.
so clarifying and helpful!
I would also recommend to leave the program files with the OS (for a variety of reasons). User files, however, should be seperated from the OS. Whether you use a lot of itty bitty partitions for that or one big partitio with folders is your choice. In my book a one (or two) partition system is more flexible for managing the space.[/QUOTE]
You seem eager to ambiguously recommend a lot of things without good reasons or information (like what? I'm supposed to heed your recommendation when you have no signs of expertise other than many many posts in this forum?) in such a way that my only reaction is to flippantly disregard your recommendations (no offense).
'for a variety of reasons"??????????/
If I have steam folder that's 100gb+ which is more than the entire windows7 os, and I want to reinstall OS, it would immensely helpful to have program files separate from OS. How is that people aren't recommending separate program files from OS (on different partitions) so you then can reinstall OS without reinstalling possibly 100-300 gb of program files!!
No offense, but I have found your response(s) very unhelpful, obfuscated, and slightly haughty (haughty because of giving recommendations without logically validating them). No offense, this is just a personal preference.
bill2's response was very helpful as I did not know about access and read-write time. Also you, whs, mentioned bootmgr in a confusing way which did cause me to look up some of those definitions and find that exceptional definition of the interrelationship of BIOS mbr and active partitions, so that, indireclty, was very helpful, at least!
I'm entirely unsold on keeping OS and program files on same partition for the reasons I mentioned. It seems more intelligent to keep 100+gb of program files on its own partition from the OS so reinstalling OS (if necessary) would be a cinch. If someone could convince of why keeping OS and program files on the same partition would be wise (which was a large part of my OP) that would be helpful, but for the reasons I gave, it seems much more practical and useful to keep them separate. (if someone foresees a lot of hassles with this, I would be very appreciative if they would share them, but from my POV it seems that installing 100-300gb of program files on the SAME partition as the OS is wrought with hassles when it comes to reinstalling OS (if necessary).
Anyways, this thread has definitely helped (indirectly or directly) advanced my understanding of MBR, BIOS, boot sector, access speed time and read-write time of hds. thanks!