XP boot partition on larger drive?

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Bobby_M

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Ok, so I'm an electronics nightmare lately. First the compressor on a 6 year old refrigerator seized. I then fried the graphics chip on my 14 month old laptop. Now I have a virus that requires me to completely reformat and install winXP. I made the mistake of leaving my first 300gig HD as a single C: partition so I have a lot of data files intermixed with system/windows files. I have everything backed up to an external drive, but I'm rethinking my long term strategy.

Do any of you create a smaller boot partition on a single drive to isolate the OS?
I currently have two 300gig internal drives and a 750g external that auto backs up the two internals. How much of the current C: drive would you partition off for boot? Would this also be used for additional program installs like Office, etc? Pros/Cons of this strategy? Thanks.
 

Tenchiro

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If you haven't already reformatted you can use a Linux Live CD to clean that virus, such as Knoppix STD. Isolating the OS is the best way to get rid of a virus.

If you are still going to reformat I generally just do one partition per drive with windows. Especially if they are <500GB drives. Although getting one small <100G 10,000RPM SCSI drive is a fantastic way to separate the boot portion of the PC from the storage portion.
 

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I'd probably partition 80 GB or more.

You can repartition without uninstalling if you use Partition Magic, or one of those programs. I have a Floppy Disc and CD set that I can boot with and select different sizes of partitions and it will create new and resize without messing up your data.

I would def check into a Linux Live CD, or Barts PE that you can boot to and see if you can manually clean up that virus enough to be able to get your files or even repair windows. For that matter, you might want to try running a repair from the install disc and see how that works. I've had success that route before too.
 
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I don't think I've done a fresh install of XP since I built this machine 4 years ago. I'm pretty set on starting over because this virus is in some of the sys files. I'm going to take a guess that a windows repair isn't going to overwrite them. The machine always runs faster anyway because it gets rid of all the bloat in background processes.
I'm thinking about putting a new 160g drive in as my C: and reformatting the current drive for spare data.
 

Stef1966

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I Always make a separate System C: partition, then i install all the software i need following the D:\program files\"name of the software" instead of C:

Of course all my precious documents are also stocked in the D: or E: and so on extra partitions.

Then when all the OS, Drivers, software and fine tuning is done, i use Acronis true image to make an image file of my system partition, then is anything goes wrong, (virus, root kit, spyware whatever...) it takes about 20 minutes using acronis boot disk and my system is back to mint condition.

I. L.O.V.E I.T
 

Blender

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I use a separate drive for all data that I want to save. That way if the C drive or OS fails that data is still there on the other drive. I do not use the My Documents folders that are created with Windows but use separate folders for all my savable stuff.
 

Homercidal

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I Always make a separate System C: partition, then i install all the software i need following the D:\program files\"name of the software" instead of C:

Of course all my precious documents are also stocked in the D: or E: and so on extra partitions.

Then when all the OS, Drivers, software and fine tuning is done, i use Acronis true image to make an image file of my system partition, then is anything goes wrong, (virus, root kit, spyware whatever...) it takes about 20 minutes using acronis boot disk and my system is back to mint condition.

I. L.O.V.E I.T
+1 on this. I have a friend who does this and he can image his computer in minutes, and that installs all of his basic programs too. Then he just runs updates on a few things.

I've had the same install since I last upgraded my MOBO. I can't remember when that was. Years.

But I would consider doing what you wanted to do with using the 160 GB as OS partition and the 300 as data. Not a bad choice.
 

TwoHeadsBrewing

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I don't think I've done a fresh install of XP since I built this machine 4 years ago. I'm pretty set on starting over because this virus is in some of the sys files. I'm going to take a guess that a windows repair isn't going to overwrite them. The machine always runs faster anyway because it gets rid of all the bloat in background processes.
I'm thinking about putting a new 160g drive in as my C: and reformatting the current drive for spare data.
Fantastic idea, and that's what I do in my computers. Extra hard drives are so cheap anyways, it's a good way to avoid data loss in event of HD failure: have two drives instead of one. Not to mention that two drives can be accessed at the same time, so this configuration is fater. Once you've got your new OS installed, I'd buy/borrow/steal a drive imaging program and make a snapshot your OS drive. Next time you have to reinstall it will take you 20-30m tops.
 

JVD_X

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I've given up using separate partitions. Now I just go get the largest drive I can find (2 x 1 TB in a mirror right now) and put everything on the same drive. When a 2 GB drive is available at a decent price I will move up to that.
 

Stef1966

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My C: partition is only 20 gygabytes, all that goes there are windows system files and some resident drivers files.

My image file can be stored on a DvD data disk, but nowadays i put my image files on an external USB drive.

Takes me at most 20 minutes to recondition my OS with Acronis this way.

Viruses? rootkits? Ha! bring 'em on! :)

(of course, HD failure can always happen, thats why i try to burn the very precious data like familly pics and the like).
 

humann_brewing

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I like keeping things separate so I don't have to re-format the whole system when I want to re-install.

Also I have a Raptor 10,000K drive as my primary to help with that bottleneck.

Here is my setup (hard drive wise)

150GB 10,000K raptor drive as C:
500GB storage as one partition
1.5TB more storage as one partition

1TB external backups and such
500GB external picture backups
 

pen25

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to clean the virus get ultimatebootcd. learn how to use it and it will fix your problem.

if you want to try you can boot to safe mode then install the antivirus software from free-av.com it works great. and one of the free that runs in safe mode. 99% of all virus's are fixable. as for creating different partions. i stopped trying as a hd failure means lost data no matter how many partions you have. you can create a 10gig os only partion then do as others have said and create a second for apps but those all need to be reinstalled anyway so it doesnt save anything. i know of no way of rebuilding the links xp needs to be usable in the registry. and if you have virus corruption that registry is toast anyway.

what virus do you have or what is your computer doing?
 

Stef1966

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ghost

System Restore - PC Backup Software | Norton Ghost

I liked it before Norton got their hands on it, but oh well...
This is what i use:
Backup software for data backup and disaster recovery in Windows and Linux - Acronis

I used to use Norton Ghost... now it seems like a pale attempt compared to the outstanding quality and ease of use of Acronis products.

i know of no way of rebuilding the links xp needs to be usable in the registry. and if you have virus corruption that registry is toast anyway.
huuu... are we following the thread here? :) (im getting the feeling some folks just dont even bother reading a given thread without posting) this is exactly what Acronis true image does... it restores your system with all the registry entries and everything as you first fine tuned it. ;)
 

pen25

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ghost

System Restore - PC Backup Software | Norton Ghost

I liked it before Norton got their hands on it, but oh well...
that restores yuor registry? im not talking about loading a prior image. i try to keep backups regularly. i back up to a server then those backups get backed up to portable hard drive i carry with me. i do backups once a week. and monthly i back up those to the hard drive and delete the ones before. this occurs on 2 of my computers. the others at the house are my test computers and if anything happens to them i just format and load fresh from a default image for the machine. if this is the case then awesome. ill be out looking for some small 5400 rpm drives for sure.
 

pen25

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This is what i use:
Backup software for data backup and disaster recovery in Windows and Linux - Acronis

I used to use Norton Ghost... now it seems like a pale attempt compared to the outstanding quality and ease of use of Acronis products.


huuu... are we following the thread here? :) (im getting the feeling some folks just dont even bother reading a given thread without posting) this is exactly what Acronis true image does... it restores your system with all the registry entries and everything as you first fine tuned it. ;)
i understand that its reinstalling the image. what i was referring too is if its good to seperate the partions between os and programs and then doing a fresh install of the os if it ever has problems. if acronis does this by restoring a good registry after a fresh install then im all over it. if it only reinstalls the image captured in the backup of say last weeks machine then its exactly what i was saying and is not a fresh install.
 

humann_brewing

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i understand that its reinstalling the image. what i was referring too is if its good to seperate the partions between os and programs and then doing a fresh install of the os if it ever has problems. if acronis does this by restoring a good registry after a fresh install then im all over it. if it only reinstalls the image captured in the backup of say last weeks machine then its exactly what i was saying and is not a fresh install.
From what I understand of the program it takes a snapshot of your system at that point in time which then you can then restore back to.

So the idea is to set a schedule to create a new image every so often that way you can revert back to it if something goes wrong such as a virus and hopefully it wasn't that long ago since the image was created.
 

pen25

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no i understand that i guess i never thought about trying to use those snap shots to restore the links needed for the apps. looks like i am going to have to play around with this. i still have one test machine that has a small 20gig hd in it for the os and everything else is stored on a second drive strictly as a file server type setup. some time this week ill play around with acronis since it came with one of my external drives
 

Stef1966

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Of course if you make some changes in your registry by installing new software, change a video card or whatever, you would need to create a new image file if you want these changes to be recorded within the image.

Otherwise, it will restore it without your newly changed settings.

But Acronis has built in features to make weekly backups (or new images) and much more, i just never had to fiddle with these features, so i do not want too say to much about it, check out their web site for a more detailed description of the features.

Some could then argue that XP has a built in "System restore" function, but this can get infected by viruses and you just keep reinstalling your virus over and over... not that useful, while images stored on a separate drive or DvD are truly protected (assuming your system was clean when you made the image file of course).
 

bad coffee

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my 100 in my old laptop was set up as:
20gig windows C:
30gig Programs E:
50gig data F:

anytime I wanted to reformat C:/ I'd clean it up and not have to re-install all my proggies.

Now I own a mac, and just plug in my time machine drive.

B
 

pen25

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Of course if you make some changes in your registry by installing new software, change a video card or whatever, you would need to create a new image file if you want these changes to be recorded within the image.

Otherwise, it will restore it without your newly changed settings.

But Acronis has built in features to make weekly backups (or new images) and much more, i just never had to fiddle with these features, so i do not want too say to much about it, check out their web site for a more detailed description of the features.

Some could then argue that XP has a built in "System restore" function, but this can get infected by viruses and you just keep reinstalling your virus over and over... not that useful, while images stored on a separate drive or DvD are truly protected (assuming your system was clean when you made the image file of course).
true. this will truely save me a ton of time backing up each of my computers. its done automatically weekly and then i manually have to copy files to the portable hard drive from the server but the files are getting larger each time since i never clean my machines. i have way too many old programs i never use. and sometimes i pray for a failure so i can reinstall my os with a cleaner image. good info guys. i will be playing with acronis and see what all the server offering has.
 
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