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Windows 7: Is performance affected by dual booting?

19 Jul 2013   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x64, Windows 8.1 Pro x64 (on laptop)
Is performance affected by dual booting?


Just a quick question of if I was to dual boot another OS with windows 7 such as windows 8 or Ubuntu, would it have any ill effects on performance?

I'm fully aware that they boot from different partitions and don't both run at the same time. However. I remember hearing that it can affect how constant the disk transfer speed is and I don't know how true that is.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Jul 2013   #2

Windows 7 Pro 64 bit

Performance would not be effected in any significant way. What sometimes comes up in this situation is that the beginning of the disk will have a higher transfer rate than the rest. This is true but transfer rate is not the only factor in disk performance and is rarely the most important one. Under real world conditions the differences would not be significant.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Jul 2013   #3

Windows 7 32 bit

The main impact, assuming you have plenty of space for the swap file, and free space on the Windows partition, would be defragging. When I had XP on a drive with only 20% free space, very "light" or "less than thorough" however you want to describe it, defrags would take a long time. As I went along I kept more and more free space on C:. I've come to the non-scientific anecdotal conclusion that having about 70% free space during a defrag is optimal, for my usage.

If you shrink C: to partition the drive, then you could be in a position where defragging C: can be very slow. It might be worth the effort to put the other OS on another physical drive. Or if not that, then try to leave a lot more free space on C: than you think you need.
My System SpecsSystem Spec


 Is performance affected by dual booting?

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