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Vista size?

By ingeborgdot · 44 replies
Dec 13, 2007
  1. I just want a concensus to the size of everyones partition for vista. I am going to dual boot xp pro and vista 64. I made xp 45gb because I will not be putting a lot of info on that partition. I was wondering what you thought a good size for vista will be? I was thinking around 100-120gb. I have many large programs to install like adobe CS3, office 07, etc that take up a lot of space. I want to future proof it for size. What is your take on this?
    I have seen some people say 20gb. Do you not put anything on this partition? That seems so small.
  2. Daveskater

    Daveskater Banned Posts: 1,687

    How big is your hard drive in total?

    I have a 160GB hard drive and have about 40GB free space but if i was to get rid of some of my big files I might be able to get it up to 50GB. I also have Photoshop CS2 and 3, Office2007, Flight Simulator 9, The Sims 2, Counter Strike: Source, Nero 7 Ultra Edition and UT GOTY version, among lots of other programs ;)
  3. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    I have at this time two 500gb hdd. I have xp on a partition of 45gb right now. I will use what is left over from the vista install for music. On the other hdd I will use that for documents and video and pics. I also have an esata 500gb external. I will be changing that to a 1tb shortly and adding another internal later (not sure what size yet).
  4. Daveskater

    Daveskater Banned Posts: 1,687

    With a 500GB HD, personally I would do it this way: 100GB XP, 200GB Vista, 200~GB Music (obviously this won't be exactly 200GB because of how HDD's are made)
  5. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    Why xp 100gb? Not questioning but just curious. I won't be using xp much. I won't use it for anything unless I can't get it to work on vista. Just curious though. Thanks for the info.
  6. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    The way I did it(and been doing it for years) is to use 1partition for only the OS, then another where I install my applications and then the leftover of the harddrive for things I download/Games + my documents

    On my WinXP machine i did it like that(old 200gb hd):
    OS => C:\ => 5GB
    APPS=> D:\ => 15GB
    GAMES+REST=> E:\ => 165 GB

    For Win Vista(new 500gb hd)
    OS => C:\ => 20GB
    APPS=> D:\ => 30GB
    GAMES+REST => E:\ => 416GB

    I'm a heavy downloader(+-50GB/month(ISP monthly limit)) and never ran out of space. After I downloaded stuff I store them on my other hd's that are ment for storage.

    I have found this way to be the best, I took a backup(used norton ghost) of my OS partition with apps installed on D:\, so without all the apps taking GB's of space. If I remember correctly my bakcup was less then 2GB and had office/my games/nero/photoshopCS2/visual studio 2005 and many more stuff installed.

    This way if my OS fails, or even my primary hard drive, i won't lose much. And restoring windows takes about 5 to max 10minutes and your back in windows with all your apps already installed
  7. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    So if the os goes bad will I have to reinstall the apps too?
  8. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    The way I described it, is installing everything you need before making the backup.
    And by installing them on a different partition the backup size is WAY smaller.

    So, lets say after a few months, you want to restore your backup, after the restore you'll be able to use all the applications you installed before that the backup was created. And some programs don't even require reïnstalling.

    The most enoying and time consuming about new installs is the time it takes to instal the OS and then the drivers and the programs. You're able to do all this in like 10min in stead of an entire day.
  9. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    I have 2 500gb hdd and 1 external 500gb hdd. I have xp on c but have about 2gb of apps on right now. D will be vista and the rest of the hdd E will be for music. F drive will be the full 500gb hdd with video and pics and docs etc. Where should I put the apps? Should I get rid of the apps that are already installed on c and put them on E or F or just leave them and finish installing the rest on one of the partitions? Is there anything special I will have to do now to install the apps? Most like to be loaded in C.
  10. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    The way you describe it you'll use use 1partition for WinXP and 1 for Vista.
    I have it like this:
    ofcource i have allot more harddrives to work with:

    I only installed vista 2days ago, so i still have the XP drive like it was
  11. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    So on my xp side should I uninstall the programs I have already installed and put them to a different partition or should I just leave them where they are? I have about 2-3gb of software right now. Just started installing yesterday, so not much yet.
  12. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    What do you have in mind now?
    What are you going to use the winXP for?
    I'm running vista x64 now and i don't really have problems running anything. So I don't really see much need for keeping the XP.
    If you decide to do a dualboot(like you have :) ), and only use it for 1 or 2 small things, then you imo should use a smaller partition with only the apps/games installed you want to run on it.

    The way i would do it in your case is(I'm talking about a complete new install xp+vista):

    1st hard drive
    Vista => C:\ => 30 or 40GB
    Software=> d:\=> 30 or 40GB
    Leftover => E:

    2nd hard drive:
    F:\ => 450gb
    WinXP => G:\ => leftover should be 15 to 20gb or something

    The reason being that you won't be using the XP much at all.
    Allot of ppl say vista(x64) is bad is because of driver issues.
    Vista itself works very well and fast(thanks to prefetch).
    You can only start to appreciate vista once you've configured it to your needs :)

    What are your system specs?, try looking for drivers before you start to install vista.
    Especially your sound card, try to look it up in advance.

    Hope this helps
  13. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    I do a lot of video editing and I hav esome very expensive software that I just can't part with at the moment. Not a lot of the big software is vist 64 qualified yet. That is the main reason.
    I have all the 64 bit drivers ready to go when I install vista.

    Did you install vista first or second?
  14. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    Don't think it make a big difference with what you start.
    I recommend with the vista, because later if you want to delete the winXP and format the drive... you won't be able to boot :)

    Are you only going to use it for vid. editing?, then they way i sugested before would work pretty good. All software combined would not take more then 4GB + the os 2GB. Make sure to put your temp directory's and files on other partitions and you you'll have plenty of room :)
  15. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    It won't boot if I uninstall xp. Why? Will I ever be able to make it boot?
  16. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    Mine is 8 GB, for the OS and all applications except the largest ones (such as Visual Studio). No big problems, as I know how to deal with temporary files.
  17. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    I don't have much experiance with multi boot(i use virtual machines), but it has something to do with bootsector & boot manager?, don't really know what i'm talking about there :>, i'm sure someone with more experiance in this is reading this and will correct me if i'm wrong :). Thats why you should start with the vista and make sure that partition is set as active.

    In short: if the XP is set as the active partition and the Vista isn't, when formatting the XP, you won't be able to boot the vista.
  18. Mictlantecuhtli

    Mictlantecuhtli TS Evangelist Posts: 4,345   +11

    You can boot with Vista DVD, there are repair options. It even recognises and fixes simple boot problems (such as missing boot menu) with just one click.
  19. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    So you are saying that it won't boot but all I have to do is put in the vista dvd and do a repair and all will be fixed?
  20. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    Yep, forgot that the repair in vista if allot better, it's really easy.
    If you have errors(and that is IF), put in the disk, press repair, it will analize your install and locate the problem.
    Just press yes after that and it automaticaly repairs it :), easy right?;)
  21. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    Yep, sounds easy enough.
    Now, one last question. I have my xp at 45gb. I really don't want to reinstall so I will probably just keep my apps in with my os on this one but on my vista side let's say I do this. I decide to be lazy and just make my vista 120gb and keep my apps on the os also. Well, one day it gets full can I start putting my program files on another partition?
    Will I really notice a performance benefit if I put my programs on another partition to start and make vista around lets say 30gb to make room for SP1 and SP2 when they come out? Just looking to the future.
  22. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    performance wize, if it's on the same hard drive, you won't notice any difference. But by putting your apps on another hd, it would speed up read times.

    The question is, are you going to be making a backup?, an image, like I did with norton ghost?, if you'll be making one, then it's better to install(at least those apps you install before making the backup) onto another partition.
    This gives you a smaller backup size(& restore time).

    If you don't care about backups and know you'll just be lazy and install everything on your OS partition. Then there is no need to use a seperate partition for software.
  23. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    I use acronis 11 to do my backups. I have another hard drive so I could put them on that one. Do I have to make a program file or will it just do it by itself. I have not done it this way is why I am asking.

    With my back up I guess I am a little confused. I think earlier you said that if I do it this way I would not have to reinstall my programs. I thought if the os went that the registry was affected and reinstallation was a must of programs.
    When you say by putting the apps on another hdd you get a smaller backup size and restore time. What about the apps? Are they not going to be just as big no matter where you put them? Don't you back them up also. That is where I am confused. I think I may be misreading what you say. So sorry about that as I am also taking up your time.
    What time is it there right now. I have to go for a short period of time but will be back in an hour. Thanks for all your help Crazy. I really do appreciate your time and patience with me.
  24. Crazy

    Crazy TS Rookie Posts: 139

    A simple example, starting with a fresh install:

    Install you OS & drivers first, then you start to install the big software like CS3/office/visual studio + anything you will always use.

    If you install them all on your OS partition and then make a backup, it will take up 10/20/30GB. Not really efficient is it?

    By installing the files on another partition you don't have to worry about that. This cuts the size of you backup to like max 2 or 3gb or something for a winXP.

    Now, lets jump to 6months/a year into the future. Your OS crashes, you take your backup, and restore it.
    You now have your OS and apps/settings back to when you took the backup.
    And the files, they are still on your D:\ drive. unless ofc you removed the application. Thats why I said, programs that you'll always use(f.e. firefox, photoshop etc).
    Stuff you installed after you took the backup is lost partially, the registry settings and everything on you C:\ drive. But the files remain.
    The advantage of this is, some programs don't even require reinstalling.
    Best example I have is a game "Soldier of Fortune 2", I've been playing it since 2002 and only installed it once, back in 2002. Everything is still sitting in my E:\games\soldier... folder.

    Shortcuts etc will have to be remade ofcource.
    And you can just install reïnstall above the old files, you might even be able to keep some of your old settings, depending on what software it is.
    Like my apache/php/mysql etc, I only have to remake the services and the settings remain the same.

    I haven't used acronis 11, but I gues when making the backup it'll ask you several things, where to back up/name of the backup/compression etc.
    I recommend putting it on your 2nd hard drive, this for 2 reasons,
    1. your hard drive crashes => still have the backup.
    2. speed, it's much faster to create & restore

    Hope this clears things up
  25. ingeborgdot

    ingeborgdot TechSpot Paladin Topic Starter Posts: 441

    Can I not take more than one backup? I have info that I put on periodically that is important and needs to be saved.
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