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Windows 7: How to increase size of a partition?

16 Jun 2013   #1
Kratos Aurion

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 
How to increase size of a partition?

Hi.
I was planning on doing a fresh Windows 8 install on my ASUS N53Jq, with all the necessary/recommended drivers/software on an external flash drive. And I was wondering if it would be possible to up the size of my OS partition? (C) Because it's only 149GB, and the apps I need to install there are quite huge (office, vegas, premiere, photoshop, illustrator, corel, etc.)

But before I do it, I also wanted to know if there's any advantage in having two partitions (OS and DATA, on my laptop). Does it decrease performance, since it makes the disk read stuff back and forth? Maybe I should just stick with only one partition for everything, is that better or worse?

Sorry for all the questions, I wanted to ground myself better with this:
- what free software can I use?
- Do I change partition sizes before or after the fresh Windows 8 install?

Here's my HDD specs, if needed (SIW Home Edition 2013):

Property Value
JOAO-PC (ASUSTeK Computer Inc. N53Jq)
Disk 0
Manufacturer Western Digital
Model WDC WD6400BEVT-80A0RT0
Size 640.1 GB
Firmware Version 01.01A01
Serial Number WD-WXB1A3079876
Rotational Speed 5400 RPM
Form Factor Not Available
Interface Serial ATA
Standard ATA8-ACS | ----
Advanced Format Supported Not Available
Transfer Mode (Current / Max) SATA-300 / SATA-300
Features S.M.A.R.T., APM, 48bit LBA, NCQ, AAM (Disabled)
Power Cycle Count 2055
Temperature 38 C (100 F)
Drive Letter(s) C: D:
Controller Buffer Size on Drive 8192 KB
Queue Depth 32
Removable No
Cache Enabled (Read / Write) Yes / Yes
SMART Support Yes

I think that's it. I'd really appreciate if someone could help me and, maybe, explain to me what's the best partition setup for a app heavy user (vegas, photoshop) but also a heavy file storing user (game recordings and other personal files).

Thank you for your time.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
16 Jun 2013   #2
bobafetthotmail

Win 7 Pro 64-bit 7601
 
 

Ah, you again.

For a conventional HDD it does not impact performance (Cannot speak for SSDs as I never had a big enough one to be worth partitioning). I have a 320 GB HDD partitioned with a C of 100 GB and the rest in D.

You can install stuff to any partition and it will work fine. I have bulk of games and programs in D.

I personally think it's better this way because you are sure that the system files remain confined in the faster areas of the disk (the closer to the beginning of it the better), and because it helps dramatically reduce the disk check and defrag downtimes (as to run a good disk check and defrag of C your PC is not usable until it has finished, while non-system drives can be checked and defragged while the PC is in use, although a disk check will prevent the use of programs installed on the checked partition anyway)

There is nothing wrong in having 3 or even 4 different partitions if you want to keep installed stuff separate from dumb data, but I think a two-partition setup is best.
C at less than 100 GB with system and critical apps (internet, office, odds and ends)
D at whatever else with non-critical apps (games) and other random stuff.

Note, D is set as logical partition, not primary partition. Technically if you have the 100 MB "system reserved" partition you can turn C into a logical partition as well, as you can only have 4 primary partitions per MBR disk (any HDD with less than 2 TB is a MBR one) but any number of logical partitions you want.

Quote:
- what free software can I use?
AOMEI partition assistant is a good one. EASEUS partition master has more features but adds quite a bit of bloat (the trial of their data-recovery app and other stuff from EASEUS, and adds itself to startup for no reason).

Quote:
- Do I change partition sizes before or after the fresh Windows 8 install?
You can do both. Either will ask to reboot as it will be altering the system partition, and will boot themselves instead of Windows to do the task at hand, then reboot into Windows again.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jun 2013   #3
Kratos Aurion

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Hahah hi, how's it going? xD

Thanks for all the info. So from what I understood is that with two partitions i can install any app where I want and it won't impact performance, either for the better or worse? I always had the notion of apps on the OS partition functioning faster than if in a seperate partition :S

What is the logical reason for making the OS partition so small? Doesn't the PC get slower the less free space the OS partition has? Maybe the reason why I have these notions is that i'm looking at partitions like they were actual seperate HDD's xD

I wanted to do this with an SSD, don't know if you remember, but the one I want is still insanely expensive and maybe i'll wait for it to drop when the new version comes out. That idea of having an SSD in my HDD's place and the HDD in my DVD writter's place would be PERFECT for me, but I guess that idea will have to wait a bit...

Thank you so much for the info. Have to spread rep around before giving you, gonna take awhile...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

16 Jun 2013   #4
bobafetthotmail

Win 7 Pro 64-bit 7601
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Kratos Aurion View Post
I always had the notion of apps on the OS partition functioning faster than if in a seperate partition :S
There is no reason for that. Data still comes from the same hardware through the same ports. The difference from C and D in the examples above are only in the file addresses that windows 7 uses to know where stuff is. For example in D I have a Program Files and a Program Files x86 (the default folders where programs are installed in C, in your case should have a Portuguese name)

If D was another disk, then it could be theoretically faster, as whatever is coming from D does not have to share the same bandwith as the stuff the OS is doing with C at the moment (which is not a lot actually, unless you are indexing, but that's a temporary thing as it eventually finishes)

Quote:
What is the logical reason for making the OS partition so small?
Speeding up maintenance, mainly. It did save me some headaches back in XP days when the OS was far less stable, and I carried over the practice.

Every now and then I do a full checkdisk and a defrag (and every time it finds some stuff placed in the wrong place or wrong index entries or whatnot). Both put out of commission the PC until they are finished (as you cannot do either on the C system partition if windows 7 is loaded). Doing this on a 100 GB partition is 5x faster than doing this on a 500 GB partition, for obvious reasons. If you have a 2 TB HDD the process can literally take days.

This also allows me to defrag and full checkdisk D and other BIG partitions/HDDs while I am surfing the net or doing other stuff, as I have installed critical programs (Internet browsers, VLC, whatever) in C.

Also, in case windows 7 dies for some reason, I can format C and reinstall windows and all my data in the other partition won't be touched. Programs will require reinstallation but I'll have all my settings intact (although some programs like to put their settings and savefiles in My Documents folder).

Again this is useful in case I suddenly decide to dual-boot, as I only need to resize the Data partition and drop a new partition in the free space. While I am resizing D I can still use programs I installed on C, so I can watch a movie or surf the net while it is doing its job.

Quote:
Doesn't the PC get slower the less free space the OS partition has?
This is true to some extent, but as long as there is 10-15 GB of free space in C you are fine. When you see the blue bar in My Computer turn red, it's time to remove some stuff if it's C. For other partitions it's better to leave 5-10 GB of space free for defrag to work at a decent speed (as defragging is basically moving data around, and needs some space to use as cache).

In some cases that was due to imperfect technology in the first few generations of SSDs.

This is a pic of my PC's My Computer window
How to increase size of a partition?-my-computer.jpg
As you can see, 100 GB is more than enough for C. Then there is D that is the Data 200 and another 500 GB disk called Data 500 containing all backups and other dumb data.
ALBY HDD is a usb drive I use as secondary backup for my stuff.

Quote:
Maybe the reason why I have these notions is that i'm looking at partitions like they were actual seperate HDD's xD
Yeah, it's weird. It doesn't help that the OS treats every partition as if it was a different disk, even when it is not.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jun 2013   #5
Kratos Aurion

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
 
 

Hmm, that basically answers all my questions...once again, thanks for everything.

I'll make the OS partition about 80GB (C) then, and all the bulk to another one (D). With this setting I should be okay right? I always hate when Windows starts filling up my OS partition over time for no reason, with god knows what, that's why I get worried with making C so small...

I'll make it after I install windows 8, using the app you said. I'll get back after i'm done
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jun 2013   #6
bobafetthotmail

Win 7 Pro 64-bit 7601
 
 

it should fill some % of it with restore points, but it should not use more than 5-10 GB for restore points on a partition of that size.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Jun 2013   #7
pallesenw

Windows
 
 

The performance differ depending on where on the platters the data is located. The outer tracks performs better than the inner ones. So the first partition will always be the fastest.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jun 2013   #8
bobafetthotmail

Win 7 Pro 64-bit 7601
 
 

uhm, I think you have a typo. You swapped "inner" and "outer" in your post. The tracks closer to the beginning of the platter (HDD's spinning disk) rotate faster than the tracks at the outer rims of the platter. They are shorter and have to do a full rotation in the same time as the longer ones at the rim of the platter.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
17 Jun 2013   #9
pallesenw

Windows
 
 

No swapping occurred. The speed is the same, but the number of sectors in each track differ. More sectors per rotation means more data.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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