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Windows 7: which hard drive to buy?

17 Aug 2011   #11
essenbe

Windows 7 Enterprise X64/Windows 10 Enterprise X64/Windows 10 Pro X64/Linux Mint
 
 

If your mother board has sata hard drives then yes it can accept one. You will just need to have a 2.5' to 3.5' adapter. Many of the SSds will come with one, but if you had to buy one they are extremely cheap. SSDs are for speed not for storage. You run your OS and apps from the SSD and your user files from the mechanical hard drive. As WHS said, you can run it that way with a $100 60GB SSD. I am right now. But, my computer boots in less than 30 seconds and apps open instantly.


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17 Aug 2011   #12
Britton30
Microsoft MVP

Windows 7 Ultimate X64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bumpyme View Post
Not really sure what the diference between SSd and my Sata hard drive is
SSD is Solid State Drive, it has no moving parts as a normal HDD does. A SSD is composed of memory (MLC or SLC) and is nearly as fast as the RAM in a system.
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17 Aug 2011   #13
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Quote:
and is nearly as fast as the RAM in a system
Gary, that is "slightly" optimistic - LOL.
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17 Aug 2011   #14
FisseDanny

Windows 7 32-bit
 
 

I can recommend the SSD drive too, even its low in GB its a joy to work with. And then get a regular hard drive for storage and backups.
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18 Aug 2011   #15
bumpyme

Windows 7
 
 

Thanks, but I already have several external hard drives for storage and backups. If I got a SSD, then would I need another drive also in the MB, and I take it that I would have to re install windows or could I just clone?

At the moment I have 286GB used on my hard drive, and it needs space to work, does a SSD need space to work?

How big does it need to be to just install windows?

Would I put all the other programs on a second drive that I connect to the MB?

Would all the other programs work fast as well?

Sorry for all the questions, but if I am going to spend out on a SSD, then I want to be sure of things first
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18 Aug 2011   #16
essenbe

Windows 7 Enterprise X64/Windows 10 Enterprise X64/Windows 10 Pro X64/Linux Mint
 
 

As I recall Windows takes up 16-17GB. You should install the OS and programs on the SSD and move all user files to a mechanical hard drive. On my current install I have 25GB on the SSD. Most programs need to be installed on the SSD as they write entries into the registry. If you are a gamer, many games can be installed to a mechanical HD.
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18 Aug 2011   #17
pparks1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bumpyme View Post
If I got a SSD, then would I need another drive also in the MB, and I take it that I would have to re install windows or could I just clone?
You can clone, however you might run into trouble since your current windows partitions are probably going to be larger than your new SSD. Honestly, when moving to an SSD, I suggest a format and reinstall. This way you can be a bit more critical of what you actually install onto your rig and you can ensure the best performance by not installing a bunch of stuff you don't use.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bumpyme View Post
At the moment I have 286GB used on my hard drive, and it needs space to work, does a SSD need space to work?
Of the 286GB on your hard drive, how much can be attributed to things like music, internet downloads, videos, isos, games, etc. It's surprising when you look at Windows and the majority of apps that you install and use...aside from games...they usually aren't huge. Even with a game or 2, my SSD usually has about 40GB installed at any point in time.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bumpyme View Post
How big does it need to be to just install windows?
20GB of so for the install, and plan space for updates and such. Honestly, I would earmark no less than 40GB.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bumpyme View Post
Would I put all the other programs on a second drive that I connect to the MB?
You could, but for best performance, you want to install the applications themselves directly on the SSD. This way you benefit from the speed increase. Unless you buy and run a ton of commercial software and games, the amount of space used by programs probably isn't that huge.


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by essenbe View Post
As I recall Windows takes up 16-17GB. You should install the OS and programs on the SSD and move all user files to a mechanical hard drive.
I'm unsure why everybody suggests moving their user files to the mechanical hard drive. In most cases, I would think things like word doc, excel spreadsheets, text files and the like are all going to be pretty small and not amount to a lot of used space. The things which take up the most space are music files, picture files, videos and downloads. You can easily just save these to your mechanical drive and set your browser default download location to your mechanical drive.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by essenbe View Post
Most programs need to be installed on the SSD as they write entries into the registry.
Actually you can install these programs usually on any drive you like. Writing files into the registry has no bearing on what drives you can install software to. If you install a piece of software onto your mechanical drive, the registry keys for that software will simply point to the drive letter of the mechanical drive.
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18 Aug 2011   #18
seth500

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

When you get an SSD the best thing to do and what I always follow is this guide by whs:

SSD Alignment

An SSD doesn't get slower as it fills up with data like a normal HDD you don't need to defrag it and it doesn't require superfetch to run as well it actually hates these types of operations as they will cause media wear out.

I use an 80gb SSD for my windows partition which is sufficient but you can even get by with 60gb. What I do and have done in the past , is I own 2 ssd both of which are 80gb but I have a lot of programs I split up the programs when setting up large program like office and adobe products. I just change the drive letter to my secondary SSD during a customized setup of the programs. Or you can put them on a mechanical drive.

Also a 1tb drive that your looking at isn't a bad choice my wife has one in her computer and it's surprising fast for a mechanical drive if you need the space. What I did was make 3 partitions on the drive the operating system resides on a partition of 160gb and the other 2 are divided up equally and are used for her music and all kinds of other stuff like pictures and such. The main thing is if you use a HDD for an operating system always keep it small enough so access times can be somewhat short an SSD you don't have to worry about that.

Also in answer to you last question I have put my programs on a HDD like you were wondering and had been quite happy with how the system worked the main thing is to keep the operating system on something fast like an SSD or a fast small HDD which in themselves can be quite expensive if you get into 10000rpm drives and the better choice IMO would be an ssd over that.
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18 Aug 2011   #19
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

You may want to reaf my little tutorial on how to move the OS from your HDD to the SSD. SSD - Install and Transfer the Operating System
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 which hard drive to buy?




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