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View Full Version : Advice on using TWO Harddrives.... Any advantages?



SeaFireLIV
04-29-2004, 11:53 AM
OK, it seems I have TWO harddrives that work fine... (it`s a long story).

Anyway, I`ve decided to use them both. One`s an 80 gig WD and the other is 40 gig WD. I`ve cableed them together with the newer 80gig as Master and all`s well. Everything works. In fact, since I had my old stuff on the 40 gig I now have two of everything (including FB). No problems.

My question is does anyone have any hints/suggestions on how I can make full use of these drives to allow me to run programs, internet connections more efficiently? Any warnings, etc I should be aware of?

Thanx in advance.

SeaFireLIV...



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`FLY my children! FLY!`

SeaFireLIV
04-29-2004, 11:53 AM
OK, it seems I have TWO harddrives that work fine... (it`s a long story).

Anyway, I`ve decided to use them both. One`s an 80 gig WD and the other is 40 gig WD. I`ve cableed them together with the newer 80gig as Master and all`s well. Everything works. In fact, since I had my old stuff on the 40 gig I now have two of everything (including FB). No problems.

My question is does anyone have any hints/suggestions on how I can make full use of these drives to allow me to run programs, internet connections more efficiently? Any warnings, etc I should be aware of?

Thanx in advance.

SeaFireLIV...



http://img12.photobucket.com/albums/v31/SeaFireLIV/Sveno.jpg

`FLY my children! FLY!`

arcadeace
04-29-2004, 12:17 PM
It depends on how they are formatted and their particular use. If you have the same operating system on both drives and they are formatted the same, FAT32 or NTFS, then you could experience cross over of system files and reg entries. I have the setup you're describing. On one drive I have WinXP, this has my internet connection, daily accounting programs, multimedia etc.. On my other HD its partitioned and I have Win98 sleeked down on C, D is Forgotten Battles and E FS2004. My XP is formatted NTFS and 98 FAT32. There can still be some cross over confusion but I disable one drive in the BIOS all the time. Since my XP is my primary hard drive I can have complete access to the 98 HD (even though its disabled in the BIOS) but I cannot utilize programs on that drive that depend on its system files, ok?

You can only work one OS at a time, the other HD has to be disabled. I'm not an expert, I'm just speaking from my own experience. It was trial and error and these are the conclusions I have to deal with.

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oeqvist
04-29-2004, 12:27 PM
swap file on a separate drive surely helps. Else there isn´t much benefit of several drives if you can´t run them in RAID mode.

You could have one drive for junk and mp3s and such to keep your system drive tidy. The swap file on the separate drive helps with that too and shortens the seek times.

SeaFireLIV
04-29-2004, 01:00 PM
Yes, Arcadeace, I`ve noticed I can`t access XP on the other drive, but I thought there was a way you change `Accounts` with XP so someone else could use the PC, but not access your own stuff. Say like your daughter wants to use it, you could have all her stuff on the separate drive and just switch accounts after...?

I`ll have to try the Swapfile on a separate drive, again, I`m unsure of the exact process though... Anyway, interesting stuff.

arcadeace
04-29-2004, 01:13 PM
Yeah it is interesting, but be careful. Because of files crossing one drive to the next I've corrupted my system while learning and had to reformat.

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TgD Thunderbolt56
04-29-2004, 01:24 PM
I've used dual drives for years. Instead of running a partition, I just added another drive and used it for my "data" (games, video, pictures etc,...) and the original as my main OS drive.

At this point, I've acquired 2 sata drives and want to know the benefits of running it in RAID (which is new to me). Will RAID improve overall performance? Gaming performance? or little to nothing at all?

I certainly don't want to hijack this thread, but thought it was somewhat relevent.

TB



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SECUDUS
04-29-2004, 01:29 PM
I've been thinking of buying another drive and having a dual-boot system...one for gaming/backups/internet and the other for work
Then I can have one clean drive and another messy drive! (And not worry if it fails)

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arcadeace
04-29-2004, 01:44 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Thunderbolt56:
I've used dual drives for years. Instead of running a partition, I just added another drive and used it for my "data" (games, video, pictures etc,...) and the original as my main OS drive.

At this point, I've acquired 2 sata drives and want to know the benefits of running it in RAID (which is new to me). Will RAID improve overall performance? Gaming performance? or little to nothing at all?

I certainly don't want to hijack this thread, but thought it was somewhat relevent.

TB
<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

I've read numerous reviews on gaming with SATA, if you have enough memory there really won't be any difference. On certain programs, it can make significant difference.

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dieg777
04-29-2004, 01:54 PM
Seafire
There are advantages to having two drives-especially if you tweak a lot and disable the winXP backup service which is a big resource hog.
Use one drive for your OS (windows XP ) and frequently used programs and use the other to store backups and other programs.
I dont think that you can run two independant XP installs on 2 hard drives. The primary drive in your boot order will take preference and lock out the other, but you will be able to access the files and folders on the second drive.

I would suggest that you set up the 80 GB as your primary with 40GB as slave; make a new folder on your 80gb drive and copy over everything from your secondary (40gig )drive that you wish to keep(such as word documents,patches,drivers, save games ,favouries,e-mails etc) then format this (40GB)drive.
http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-surprised.gifYOU WILL LOSE EVERYTHING ON THIS DRIVE BY DOING SO http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/16x16_smiley-surprised.gif
so make sure you have backed up all you need on your 80GB drive
Then use XP to partition this drive (e.g. games partition, backup partition, office partition)and use it as you wish.

You will get a performance boost by setting your swop file and other files on your second drive -see black vipers pages and also
http://www.tweakhound.com/xp/xptweaks/supertweaks5.htm.

If you wish to set up a dual boot system then it is difficult to set up one drive for an older Windows OS now you have XP installed but possible -do a search on google.

hope this helps-you never know when you need a good backup until 2 secs after you do
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Supr
04-29-2004, 03:09 PM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Thunderbolt56:
I've used dual drives for years. Instead of running a partition, I just added another drive and used it for my "data" (games, video, pictures etc,...) and the original as my main OS drive.

At this point, I've acquired 2 sata drives and want to know the benefits of running it in RAID (which is new to me). Will RAID improve overall performance? Gaming performance? or little to nothing at all?

I certainly don't want to hijack this thread, but thought it was somewhat relevent.

TB



http://home.earthlink.net/~aclzkim1/sitebuildercontent/sitebuilderpictures/il2sig2.jpg <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

a raidO array will help with load times and data transfer rates. Game levels load like lighting, but as far as gaming goes, thats about it. It is very nice though, my 2 120gig sata drives transfer at about 75mb/sec. which is a little slow, compared to some similar drives, but Seagates are not the fastest it seems. But wow, windows still boots in like 10 sec, and games and applications open and load super fast. Well worth it in my book. But remember, raid arrays can be fickle and if you go raid0, any data corruption can cost you a reinstall and all your data. I have an old and slow 3rd hard drive to use as backup. I think its a good idea for anyone who uses raid0 ( especially with the sil image drivers) to keep a good back up system./ Good Luck

oeqvist
04-29-2004, 03:20 PM
What Supr said.

You can run RAID 1 which is just about as fast really but then you will only get half the storage but that means you won´t loose all data if one drive fails.

About gaming performance in game performance can actually be worse because of the longer access times drives in RAID configuration suffer from. But the difference is so small you would hardly notice it and the shorter load times is well worth it.

Me however got longer load times in win xp. I have the Silicon Graphics RAID controller and it take like half a minute to initialize on the win xp boot screen until they really start working http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/images/smiley/51.gif

However when they well are loaded I get transfer rates of like 110 mb/s with my RAPTORS.

SKurj2
04-29-2004, 03:41 PM
if you want to improve performance takem off the same cable. Put one on IDE1 and the other on IDE0.

Then put your game and OS on one drive and the paging file on the other. And btw, format them to NTFS


SKurj

SeaFireLIV
04-29-2004, 05:00 PM
Thnx, guys, dieg77`s info seems particularyly useful here, but all of you have helped. Cheers.

TgD Thunderbolt56
04-29-2004, 05:51 PM
Rgr that. Same here. thanks guys for your responses and Seafire for "sharing" your thread.



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XyZspineZyX
04-29-2004, 08:58 PM
Would there be any advantage/ disadvantage to running this setup ?

IDE Primary - master System Drive (512 Mb swap file)
IDE Primary - slave Page File Drive (1024 Mb swap file)
IDE SEcondary - Master CDRom
IDE Secondary - Slave empty
PCI RAID CARD 4ch Games Drive (no swap file)

1024Mb RDRam onboard

Rogodin
04-29-2004, 10:13 PM
I run two drives-going sata soon but have two 80gig WDs-I put only the OS on the master, everthing else goes on the slave-load times are okay-don't bug me too much but I've got to have the 10,000rpm WD sata http://ubbxforums.ubi.com/infopop/emoticons/icon_wink.gif

If things get wierd I always put the most important files on the primary as well.

Rogo

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dieg777
04-29-2004, 11:31 PM
Vagueout
Check black vipers site for best page file setup.
There are many arguements/opinions on whether to let windows handle the size or whether to set your own size.
I personally would have one page file of a set size (1.5 times ram) on a seperate drive from OS.
Make sure you defrag this and you should see improvements.

No issues with having 2 hard drives on primary IDE and CD on secondary unless you wish to add CD or DVD burners which should be on seperate IDE from other CD drive

The above is only advice and I appreciate others have differing views on swop file useage
but Black Vipers advice worked for me

dave

oeqvist
04-30-2004, 03:05 AM
<BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR>Originally posted by Vagueout:
Would there be any advantage/ disadvantage to running this setup ?

IDE Primary - master System Drive (512 Mb swap file)
IDE Primary - slave Page File Drive (1024 Mb swap file)
IDE SEcondary - Master CDRom
IDE Secondary - Slave empty
PCI RAID CARD 4ch Games Drive (no swap file)

1024Mb RDRam onboard<HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

Well there is no reason having several swap files unless you use several accounts in windows XP.

The only reason to use a fixed size would be to fight fragmentation but if you have the swap file on a separate drive on a separate partition that is a nonissue.

Xiolablu3
04-30-2004, 04:19 PM
Make sure that your swapfile/virtual memory is on the fastest drive.

Also try and install FB on one and have your swapfile on the other, then it can use the swapfile and load stuff at the same time.

I also have 2 drives and it works great. One 10 gigger and a 40 gigger.

oeqvist
05-01-2004, 04:38 AM
Nah operating system and games should be on the fastest drive. If you have a lot of RAM you don´t do much transfer from the swap file anyway.

SeaFireLIV
05-01-2004, 05:44 AM
Hmmm, well I`ve done all the partitioning and moving, swapfiling stuff. Can`t believe how much HD space I now have (and to think of the days when I thought 2.4 gig HD was a lot!)

Decided to stick swapfile on my 2nd 40gig drive (I have 1 gig ram anyway). And keep FB on my 1st drive partitioned since its fastest. But other stuff, downloads, etc, not so important games partitioned off (3 separate partitions)on the 2nd drive.

Seems good so far, no hiccups. Thanx as usual, chaps.

SeaFireLIV...



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`FLY my children! FLY!`