Hard Drive Help


I've just bought a new laptop and upon inspection it turns out i have 2 hard drives (or rather one hard drive with two partitions). I have my OS_INSTALL C: drive, and my DATA D: drive.

Now from what i've read on the internet my C: drive is used for my windows install and for OS data should i need to restore my system, and my D: drive is used for backing up data that i want to keep.

I've never really used this before so it's all a little confusing. What i want to know is should i use my D: drive to install programs & games, and store my music, pictures etc? And leave my C: drive alone as it contains vital OS data?

It seems a strange question but my C: drive is only 40Gb, whereas my D: drive is 240Gb, so if i used my C: drive it would fill up pretty quickly.

Ideally id like to just merge the two partitions and just use a C: drive but i dont know whats best, any chance anyone with more knowledge than me could help me out?

Much Thanks



Lantern Swinger
Use D:\ for media (photos, movies, music etc) and LARGE programs like games etc, use C:\ for smaller programs (MSN Messenger, Firefox, Thunderbird, CD/DVD writing software etc). Alternately yeah, you can just use D:\ for everything and leave C:\ as it is, you'll never run out of virtual memory that way! (don't ask about virtual memory it's really boring)

Using C:\ for day-to-day stuff doesn't place any system files in any risk at all, although you should of course have a decent antivirus program running at all times to prevent anything not day-to-day from happening to your computer.

Merging the two partitions isn't really possible, you'd need to delete both partitions and then repartition the disk as one large partition (~280Gb ish). If you've got all the install disks that came with your computer (Windows especially!) then this is relatively straightforward, though you WILL lose all data on both partitions.


Thanks for the reply!

I have got all the install disks, including windows! But would you advise just going with the first option and using both drives?


You can merge partitions if you wish...download a torrent called Partition Magic and you can merge it into one.

However, whats the point? When (I use when not if) Windows eventually fucks up, throws some corrupt error at you - you can just reinstall it and have all your movies, pictures and music still on your D:

By having only one partition (one c drive) your computer is a liability.


The 'Program Files' folder is on the C drive, as well as the 'My....' folders. Which seems a bit strange seen as its the smallest partition.


Lantern Swinger
you can move the 'My.....' folders quite easily;
Right click on 'My Documents' on the start menu
Select 'Properties'
Under the 'Target' tab there'll be a button for 'move', click it and you're good to go.

I'd advise just keeping your partitions as is, there's nothing wrong with the set up you've got there at all and it's just a load of unnecessary hassle to repartition a disk which doesn't need repartitioning.


War Hero
My new Dell came like that[Vista Home Basic] called them up and they told me they had placed the Op.sysytem on the wrong partition.
I had transferred a lot from my old computer and couldn't be arsed to start setup all again.
I used Partion Manager to increase the C part. and left it until I was ready to reformat and start setup again[result of trying Linux and ballsing up the whole computer!]
You can also use Disc management tool[in Admin I think] to set partition sizes.
I also bought a Spare USB HDD as abetter way of storing stuff.

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