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Windows 7: Which programs and data should I keep when I install smaller SSD?

27 Dec 2014   #1
lbeck

Win 7 pro 64 bit
 
 
Which programs and data should I keep when I install smaller SSD?

My desktop computer has a bloated 500 GB boot drive and a 1 TB drive that I use for storage of large video files. I have ordered a 128GB SSD to decrease boot time and increase performance - especially for video editing.

I have read this article and that has offered great help. I suspect that I will need to keep the following directories:
  • Windows - 27.6GB
  • Program Files - 4.5GB
  • Program Files (x86) - 11GB
  • Program Data - 3.3GB

But what others are essential, like:
  • System Volume Information
  • Recycle Bin (25GB)
  • pagefile.sys
  • hiberfil.sys

The real quandary comes when I look at the Users directory, which is 254GB! I can take the music, photos and video from here but even the My Documents folder is 45GB.

I know that some of this is subjective, but performance-wise is there a disadvantage to moving all of my "Users" files and folders from my boot drive to my large storage drive?

I may purchase "Paragon Migrate OS to SSD 4.0" to help with the essentials, but most of what that appears to do is move the system files to the new SSD.

Can you give me some advice or direct me to a paper on what to move to the new SSD and what to move to my storage drive? Any help will be appreciated.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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27 Dec 2014   #2
indianacarnie

 

I would highly suggest you turn Hibernate off when you install the SSD. Though I guess, its not as important as it used to be.
Heres a link to a tutorial on how to install/migrate to an ssd that you might be interested in : SSD - Install and Transfer the Operating System

When I switched to my SSD , I didn't change very much at all as far as changing files/folders. Of course I moved all my media files to a spinner, but as for Windows itself, I didn't change much at all.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2014   #3
lbeck

Win 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

Yeah, the article that you reference is the one that I cited @ "This article" in my post. It looks helpful and I will print it out.

My main area of concern is whether I should move all of my Users directory, which is 254GB, to my storage drive. Or whether the SSD may operate more efficiently if it doesn't need to access that mechanical drive. If so, I may parse my most used files from "My Documents" to the SSD.

Generally, I'm wondering what I lose in performance if I transfer ONLY my OS and program files to the SSD. Also, I don't know what other directories are essential to have on the boot drive. Like the ones cited in my second set of bullets. I see a "drivers" folder, config.msi, Boot, and others that look suspiciously essential. That's why I'm thinking that I aught to spring the $20 for the "Paragon Migrate OS to SSD 4.0" so that I'll at least have a bootable drive after installation.

I've cloned my HDD a few times when moving to a larger mechanical drive, but this is my first foray into downsizing an almost full 500GB boot drive to a 128GB SSD.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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27 Dec 2014   #4
indianacarnie

 

You won't lose any performance, in fact you will most likely be overjoyed at the speed increase. I was expecting alot when I switched, and I was not disappointed. I kept most of my stuff right where it was. All the windows things anyway, but have moved my documents/music/movies to my spinners. No performance issues in the year(?)(2?) that I've had mine. Enjoy!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2014   #5
ignatzatsonic

Microsoft Community Contributor Award Recipient

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1, 64-bit
 
 

I'd either use that $20 Paragon application or instead get your 500 GB drive split into 2 partitions, C and D.

If you go with the second choice, you would:

Move your data (the stuff in your users directory) onto D.

Leave Windows and applications on C.

Transfer C to the new SSD via imaging, probably with Macrium. It looks like C at that time would be easily under 100 GB. You'd also have to transfer any small partitions marked as "system" if they exist. Might be named "System Reserved".

I'd probably run Disk Cleanup and/or CCleaner to make sure there was as little extraneous "junk" on the 500 GB drive as possible.

When you can then boot from the SSD, do what you wish with your data that stayed behind on the 500 GB drive. You could just leave the data where it is and use the 500 GB drive as a second internal drive for data only or move it to an external or whatever. The point is that the SSD would not be used for data.

Your problem is complicated by the fact that you now have data and Windows mixed together on C. Transfer by image is typically of the COMPLETE contents of a partition and your complete contents clearly won't fit, so you have to thin it out. The thinning out can be done through the method I suggested above or through certain specialized applications such as Paragon that will let you transfer only SOME of the contents.

I'm not sure how reliable the Paragon app is, so you have to be prepared for the worst---a clean install onto the SSD. The only downside of a clean install is the time it would take. Paragon applications are usually quite good.

I have to ask: why are you packing around 25 GB in the recycle bin?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2014   #6
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

1. Get rid of the hiberfile. The command is powercfg -h off
2. Reduce the pagefile to 2GB
3. Keep the rest of the OS on the SSD - including all programs. There should be enough space. Most of my PCs have 60GB SSDs and I never ran out of space.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2014   #7
lbeck

Win 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

Okay. You've convinced me to spring for "Paragon Migrate OS to SSD 4.0". I've read the description more closely and it appears to do what I need.

A final question - Will apps be hobbled by the data they need residing on the mechanical drive? My most frequent and most resource-demanding computer use is video editing. I will of course put the editing software on the SSD. The video files are typically 5-15GB and currently reside on my 1 TB drive. Since I'm hoping to speed up my video editing would it help substantially to move the file(s) being processed to the SSD so that the SSD won't need to fetch the data from the mechanical drive? I would of course move the data (video files) back to the TB drive after the project is completed.

Quote:
I have to ask: why are you packing around 25 GB in the recycle bin?
Beats Me... I apparently set this up during my WIN 7 install if I had a hand in it (as opposed to allowing default settings). If I did it my thinking likely was I have enough capacity and do not want to get burned by accidentally deleting a large video file.

Thanks again for your help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2014   #8
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

There will be no video editing speed-up with a SSD. Video encoding is mostly dependent on the CPU muscle and the amount of RAM. If you have a 4GHz 8-core CPU and 16GB of RAM, then you will see performance. The involvement of the disk is minor. Sorry to disappoint you.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2014   #9
lbeck

Win 7 pro 64 bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by whs View Post
1. Get rid of the hiberfile. The command is powercfg -h off
2. Reduce the pagefile to 2GB
3. Keep the rest of the OS on the SSD - including all programs. There should be enough space. Most of my PCs have 60GB SSDs and I never ran out of space.
Thanks for that great advice. Just today I learned what the hiberfile is. I'm not proficient enough to evaluate pagefile settings, but if 2GB is all I need then I'll review and change that setting if it's much larger.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Dec 2014   #10
whs
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8
 
 

Pagefile and hiberfile are appr. the size of your RAM - each. With e.g. 8GB of RAM, you can save 14GB of SSD space.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Which programs and data should I keep when I install smaller SSD?




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