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HELP ORGANISY MY SYSTEM PARTITIONS


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#1
Mebster

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I have two Hard Drives:
1) 250GB (SATA), 2) 160GB (IDE)

I'm not sure how to partition my drives after I format my PC. I'm trying to take into consideration that OSX can only read NTFS and not write to it. It can read and write to FAT32 but file sizes must be <4GB (I think).

I currently mainly use Windows and so need that as the main system but want to try and give OSX a good amount of my time also hoping I will get into it. I would prefer to use Hard Drive 2 to store important stuff as well as stuff that will take ages to get again.

This is what I’ve got so far:

Hard Drive 1 - 250GB (SATA)
60GB - Windows XP [NTFS]
40GB - OSX
10GB - Windows XP - Backup [NTFS] (maybe-not sure yet)
100GB - Downloading Folder [NTFS]

40GB - REMAINING (*) (can be broken into further partitions)

-------------------------------------------------------

Hard Drive 2 - 160GB (IDE)
120GB - Entertainment [NTFS] (movies, TV shows, music)
5GB - Work [FAT32] (don't need much)

35GB - Programs and Other Stuff I Need [NTFS] (*)


What I’m struggling on is that I think I will need a large FAT32 formatted partition if I’m really going to be serious about using OSX. This is so that I can share files between Windows and OSX and I guess I will need it in Hard Drive 1. Problem is if it’s a swap area then I don’t know how much space to allocate and not be wasteful. But it seem if I’m only going to be using it every now and again as a swap area then it will just end up being wasted most of the time. I was also thinking of putting games on this partition.

Also uncertain about the 35GB in Hard Drive 2.

My main problem is what to make of the (*).
Anyone have any ideas of what I could do? Maybe based on what they've done.

Thanks :angel:

#2
Kompakt

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I would use the 160GB IDE for all your OS files and keep the 250GB SATA for data and make all its partitions in FAT32 so you could access them from any OS. In the future, if you wanted to, you could add more 250GB SATAs and make them a raid w/o affecting your OS installations.

#3
quixos

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i suggest a minimum of 3 partitions for OS X.

one for the main OS X installation
one for your User files, (Mail, iTunes libraries, Documents and Pictures, bookmarks etc.)
and one 7 Gig partition for a second "emergency OS X installation)

the reasoning it thus...

you can then install OS X on your main OS X install partition and the 7G partition
after a perfect installation of OS X, dmg it to a backup in your User partition
if any problems arise, or you just want a fresh installation of OS X, you can boot into your
secondary OS X installation and in 10 minutes "restore" your system to a working or restored state, while keeping all your personal stuff intact.

as you add programs to your main OS X installation, you can occasionally dmg a perfectly working restore backup to your Users partition.


this also allows personal settings and serials of programs to be retained.

i've not had to waste time installing from a slow DVD since 10.4.4 using this partitioning
strategy. and, no matter how much i tweak, i'm never down for long
.

remember fat32 doesn't allow files over 4 gigs.

40 gigs for a main OS X installation is perfect for many reasons, if you keep your personal stuff on other HFS+ partitions.
i use OS X as my main OS, i recommend 40 gigs to everyone that'll listen as the minimum AND maximum size for the OS.

#4
free30

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Sata is your quicker drive so keep your operating systems on there, and then keep OS backups on the IDE along with all that data that can be accessed slowly.
Keep your Windows partition as small as possible and install programs elsewhere, keeping your backup nice, small and quick to restore.
Putting OS X on the IDE drive will slow it down a bit but setting the partition active you can boot from boot.ini straght into OS x desktop.
free30

#5
Mebster

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one for the main OS X installation
one for your User files, (Mail, iTunes libraries, Documents and Pictures, bookmarks etc.)
and one 7 Gig partition for a second "emergency OS X installation)

the reasoning it thus...

you can then install OS X on your main OS X install partition and the 7G partition
after a perfect installation of OS X, dmg it to a backup in your User partition
if any problems arise, or you just want a fresh installation of OS X, you can boot into your
secondary OS X installation and in 10 minutes "restore" your system to a working or restored state, while keeping all your personal stuff intact
.


as you add programs to your main OS X installation, you can occasionally dmg a perfectly working restore backup to your Users partition.
this also allows personal settings and serials of programs to be retained.

There are a lot of very interesting opinions here. Quiet a lot of which I had never considered and has given me something to think about.

I wanted to use the SATA drive for all my OSs because well as free30 stated, it’s faster. But another major reason is that I think I might sometimes remove the IDE drive (taking large files to other PCs, etc). I admit this is unlikely to happen often (if every) but if it did my system would wonder where the OSs went. For this reason it also means they will all have to be on the same drive.
------------------------------
quixos you suggestion is a quiet interesting one. The idea of having to OSX partitions is one I have never considered and as you've stated, it has major benefits.
I failed to understand a large portion of it (probably dude to my lack of knowledge) so forgive me, but would you please help clarify them.

What did you mean by dmg it when you said “dmg it to a backup in your User partition”?

“if any problems arise, or you just want a fresh installation.....” (full quote to what I’m referring to is coloured blue above)
This sound great as OSX on Intel is a long process of tests which often messes up and needs restoration so some sort or a fresh installation as you know. What I was interested in knowing is how exactly you could use the secondary OSX to restore to a working or restored state. Please would you be able to give me some insight into how I could do both, “restore to a working state” and “knowing state”? This would be a great help.

“as you add programs to your main OS X installation, you.....”
Once again not sure what you mean here. Do you mean it’s possible to save some sort of image OSX system on the User Partition which I can then later access from the secondary OSX to restore the primary if needed? If so would you please try and help me out my explaining this.

Because I use XP mainly having the OSX User Partition as HFS would be a problem accessing files from Windows so not sure what to do there. Do you have any recommendations as to how large that are should be given I will also use Windows?

#6
quixos

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"What did you mean by dmg it when you said “dmg it to a backup in your User partition”?"

after a successful installation of OS X, you can using Disk Utility, create a "dmg" (compressed file format) of your working OS partition. briefly, you select your working OS partition in Disk Utility and click on the "New Image" icon in the Toolbar of Disk Utility. the dmg file can be saved to anywhere, and you would save it to your dedicated User partition.

“if any problems arise, or you just want a fresh installation.....”

you can restore your saved dmg of your fresh and working OS X install from your secondary, installation. it is important to say, that you must NOT erase the drive you want to install on if it is on a partition that contains the MBR.

from a secondary installation, i do...

sudo rm -R -f /Volumes/volumename (this deletes all the mess you've created on that partition, but leaves the MBR intact, so you can boot your machine.

it will give you the error message that a "resource is busy" that is your booting area.

then using Disk Utility, "repair partition"

then restore from your dmg to the partition. google for information on this. become knowledgeable. ;)

“as you add programs to your main OS X installation, you.....”

after you've installed and backed up a basic fresh working installation of OS X, for emergency repair purposes from a secondary installation. you will add programs and games, and install many things.

i make a second dmg backup of my main OS partition after i've gotten all my programs working just right. and occasionally i add more, so i keep a current dmg snapshot of my system.

"Because I use XP mainly having the OSX User Partition as HFS would be a problem accessing files from Windows so not sure what to do there."

there really isn't much you can do about windows not seeing HFS+. there are programs that add support to windows for HFS and HFS+ but i don't trust them, there are also drivers for Ext2 filesystem for OS X and Windows. the Ext2 filesystem is definitely a better choice than fat32, you won't have any file size problem, and it's a free driver. :)

i don't know much about it, (i've used it, but i'm incredibly busy, and no memory). Domino is the man to talk to about this i bet. perhaps he'll see this post. i'd be interested to hear what he has to say about it. :)

don't know how clear i've been, but, we can go back and forth. i'm interested in the Ext2 thing now. :) i've basically stopped using Windows except for gaming. but would like to be able to share torrents between OS's, and i think it would work.

#7
bliss

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Hi there.

I had such a problem once.

now my partition is:

PRI 40 GB OSX (HFS+)
PRI 192 GB Files (HFS+)
PRI 40 GB Windows (NTFS)

I Use Macdrive to use the Files Partition just like a normal partition under windows with read/write.

On this way i can read/write my files under windows and osx and don't have the 4 GB Problem. It works great.

Also because Windows is a Pri i can rezise and create an extended to install linux ord bsd or something other i like. i think osx and windows alsways need a Primary Partition. or not?

#8
quixos

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found domino post in Genius Bar area reguarding Ext2

http://forum.osx86pr...showtopic=20165

i'll edit this post with the Ex2 windows driver when i find it later today. :(

#9
Mebster

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Guys thanks for the help.

I'm somewhat confused about what to do. I don't know what Ext2 is, but it sounds like a good option. It seems to have all the benefits (OSX and XP can read/write to it) and none of the problems (<4GB issue).

Using Macdrive seems like a reasonable option also. Once again i'm not familiar with it but i'm guessing it's a program. And what slightly puts me off is that i'm assuming everytime i need to write something to the HFS+ partition, i'll need to open Macdrive and drag and drop the file or something similar. Instead i would prefer both OS's having easy access to a partition.

For example (just an idea) i would like torrent programs in windows and OSX both using the same partition to save incomplete and downloaded files.

#10
schale01

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I have a 160GB SATA Drive that I partitioned
25GB NTFS (WinXP)
25GB OSX (HFS+)
100GB (FAT32) DATA
I plan to change this 100GB drive to HFS+ and use MacDrive (This integrates with Windows and allows you to use the HFS+ drives through Explorer or any other windows program.)

I don't see a need to have a billion partitions on your Harddrive. My rule of thumb for partitioning is 1 partition per OS plus one DATA drive. A backup partition doesn't make much sense to me since if your harddrive fails all the data is gone anyway.

I would suggest
60GB - NTFS (WINXP)
60GB - HFS+ (OSX)
130GB - (HFS+) using MacDrive for DATA

120GB - Entertainment (movies, TV shows, music) (HFS+ if you want to see from both) NTFS if you only need it from Windows

i suggest a minimum of 3 partitions for OS X.

one for the main OS X installation
one for your User files, (Mail, iTunes libraries, Documents and Pictures, bookmarks etc.)
and one 7 Gig partition for a second "emergency OS X installation)


If you wish to do this you can accomplish this with 2 partitions.
-one for OSX Main installation
-One for User files (Just Store the backup DMG here, and use install DVD if you need to restore)





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