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Windows 7: Separate drives for programs & data ?

01 Dec 2018   #1
Mike99

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 
Separate drives for programs & data ?

Currently Iím using only a single drive for everything but want to change & use an SSD for the OS & programs and an HDD for my data (documents, photos, etc.). Then I can make an image of the SSD with all the programs and make a separate backup of all my data.

Somewhere I read that making a copy of the C:\ Users folder will make a copy of all my data. That makes sense because a folder with my computer name contains all my data folders such as My Documents & My Photos, However my computer name folder also contains the AppData folder which contains the Local & Roaming folders which contain all sorts of program folders & files.

If I do a fresh install of Windows & programs on the SSD, where does the AppData folder end up? Does it stay on the SSD with the programs or end up on the HDD with the data in the Users folder?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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01 Dec 2018   #2
F22 Simpilot

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

You would need to do a clone to an external drive. Just a copy and paste of C drive won't work.

I use AOMEI Backupper with an external USB HDD for clones. The program is straight forward. Chose source which would be C and destination which would be your external HDD. If you clone a SSD chose the align option. You don't need sector by sector unless you want to copy deleted files over I suppose. Use sector by sector for forensics.
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01 Dec 2018   #3
dg1261

Windows 7/8.1/10 multiboot
 
 

Simpilot, either you misread Mike or else I'm misreading what he is asking. He did say "If I do a fresh install..." , so I think he meant if/when he separates his data from his OS, does the AppData folder go with the data or with the OS? My interpretation is that he's going to separate his data so he can back it up by different means, and wants to know if those backups will also capture the AppData stuff (for better or worse).

Mike, it could be setup either way, dependent on how you install the OS. If you want both AppData and user docs to be on a separate drive or partition, you need to install it that way from the get-go, with a tweaked installation disc. If you want AppData to stay with the OS and just have your user docs on a separate drive or partition, then just install the OS normally and redirect the user folders after the fact.

There are two schools of thought on which strategy is better. Some people like to have the entire c:\users folder on a separate partition, while I prefer to leave c:\user\...\AppData on the OS partition. My rationale is AppData is app customizations so belongs with the apps, and so an image of the OS+apps partition will be incomplete without the AppData folder. A backup/restore of the C: partition is less useful to me if it doesn't include the contemporaneous AppData customizations.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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01 Dec 2018   #4
Mike99

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

dg1261 -

Correct, and I already have a clean install of Windows 7 on an SSD along with all the Windows updates & drivers for my PC. I want to make an image of this before I add any programs. I also have a new HDD that I want to use for data.

Since the AppData is needed for the programs I'll keep it on the C: SSD drive.

Regarding making an image of the SSD. Since the image will be on an external HDD, is there anything special that has to be done since the SSD does not have sectors like the HDD?

Thanks
My System SpecsSystem Spec
01 Dec 2018   #5
dg1261

Windows 7/8.1/10 multiboot
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Mike99 View Post
Regarding making an image of the SSD. Since the image will be on an external HDD, is there anything special that has to be done since the SSD does not have sectors like the HDD?
Nothing is different, from an imaging standpoint. The SSD may not have physical sectors, but the SSD's controller presents itself to the system like any hard drive, with logical sectors. You can make and restore images back and forth between HDDs and SSDs at will. And the content (source) of the image has no bearing on where you store the image.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
02 Dec 2018   #6
Mike99

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by dg1261 View Post
Nothing is different, from an imaging standpoint. The SSD may not have physical sectors, but the SSD's controller presents itself to the system like any hard drive, with logical sectors. You can make and restore images back and forth between HDDs and SSDs at will. And the content (source) of the image has no bearing on where you store the image.

Thanks for the information.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Separate drives for programs & data ?




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