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hard drive configuration

Discussion in 'Storage' started by moocow0463, Nov 21, 2009.

  1. moocow0463

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    im going to be the first to admit i have not a single clue on this topic so im going to need all the help i can get.

    basically i have a 250gb 5200rpm seagate and i will be purchasing a new samsung F3 1tb with my new upgrades. im going to run windows 7, this is mostly a gaming rig but i have some music and videos saved on it as well. i was wondering what the best setup for me would be and how to go about setting up the drives to do it.

    should i run my OS and media storage off the 5200rpm seagate while running games and misc software of the faster F3? how would i go about that setup if so?
  2. sneekypeet

    sneekypeet Unpaid Babysitter Staff Member

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    due to speed, I'd use the 1TB for os and all programs. Partition it for extra storage without loss if needed. Then if you even need the 250GB, you can slap it in anytime for mass storage, or tinker with other OS's on the extra drive.

    That's my 2 pennies
  3. JrRacinFan

    JrRacinFan Served 5k and counting ...

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    IMO

    Dual boot between XP on the 250GB Seagate and Windows 7 on 250GB of the 1TB. Leaving ~700GB left over for your personal storage.
  4. moocow0463

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    not sure i need xp most the things i run are win 7 compatible from what ive heard its always an idea though
  5. Jstn7477

    Jstn7477

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    I've had no problems using Win 7 x64 for newer stuff. If I really wanted to play games from the beginning of the decade or earlier, I have older machines that can take care of that. I haven't used XP at all on my main rigs for a few years.
    Crunching for Team TPU More than 25k PPD
  6. moocow0463

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    my main concern why i want 2 run 2 HDD's i forgot to mention is i do run fraps on occasion and id like to write the movies to a separate drive so the 1 drive isn't doing all of the work
  7. TheLaughingMan

    TheLaughingMan

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    Everyone is trying to be nice. I will be blunt. Your old HDD is crap. You should avoid using it for anything in your system because it will appear very very slow compared to a new drive like the Sammy F3, Seagate .12, WD Black regardless of the size.

    Best option, since you want two HDD is the replace the 5200 RPM all together. If you like Sammy, get 1 TB F3 and 1 500 GB F3. Run the OS, programs, and games on the 500 GB (single platter design should help access speed a little bit more), and use the 1 TB as storage.

    Buy a $15 encloser and put the 5200 RPM in it for an External HDD for storage or portability.

    If you are on a tight budget for now, wait till Cyber Monday for sales and stick with the 1 TB F3 for now. I still say the 5200 RPM should be dropped to external storage use only. You can worry about sorting out multi-disk use later on.

    During gaming, the HDD is accessed very infrequently, it won't be under any strain.
    JrRacinFan says thanks.
  8. moocow0463

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    the only reason i want the multi disk for (correct me if im wrong here) while gaming the HDD is used mostly for reading, when i engage fraps it will be writing as well, if i have one HDD dedicated to do the fraps/media storage (the slower drive) then the sam f3 can do all the work read/writing from the games and OS. thus increasing performance while using fraps. if you never used fraps having 2 drives increases the performance greatly. and thus my major concern is having 2 drives without spending too much money
  9. TheLaughingMan

    TheLaughingMan

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    I do not use fraps. I am not even sure what it is beyond it lower frame rate some. If two disks help, by all means use whatever two disks you have; however, in a game the HDD should only be accessed during loading screens. All in game action is reading from RAM not the HDD. The only reason it would read from the HDD on a consistent basis is automatic saves (next to no time or HDD usage), ad. bots like the one in BF2142 (updated once when the game is booted), and if you do not have enough free RAM space for the game (paging files suck).

    I see you have XP pro. If you are on a 32-bit OS you may be using paging files on the HDD which will slow the game down and any recording software. A second HDD will improve this, but so would switch to a 64-bit OS get get the rest of your RAM space available.
  10. moocow0463

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    well with the extra HDD getting win 7 64 bit, 6gig ddr3 ram , possibly an i7 cpu, basically fraps is a screen capture device it takes what is on your screen and records in in hi resolution so you can play back or share it. basically with a single HDD fraps will lower my fps from 100+ to around 30. its a complete bog on even high end systems
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  11. TheLaughingMan

    TheLaughingMan

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    Get the OS and the second HDD first. I stick to my guns and still say replace the 5200 RPM hard drive all together and just buy two new drives if you can. HDD's are really cheap right now. You can get a 1 TB and 500 GB F3 for a total of like $130 at newegg.com.

    A 5200 PRM desktop HDD has to be at least 5 years old, should have a continuous throughput of about 20 MB/s (thumb drive speeds). A new F3 will have a continuous throughput of about 100 MB/s.
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2009
  12. moocow0463

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    is the cache size going to matter the 500gb has a lower cache
  13. TheLaughingMan

    TheLaughingMan

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    cache on a HDD can make a different between two HDD of the same generation, but generally they get larger as the disk space is increased.

    My general rule of thumb.

    < 500 GB = 8 MB or more
    500 GB to 750 GB = 16 MB or more
    1TB and up = 32 MB or more

    Usually less cache for the size ranges means the drive is older, slower, but may be cheaper.

    I will shut up now.
    Last edited: Nov 27, 2009
  14. kyle2020 Guest

    Id create a 50GB partition on the F3 for your operating system, use the rest for programs / storage as the higher speeds of the F3 will be better, even for storage. Like Sneeky said, id dedicate the 5400rpm drive for alternative operating systems - maybe have a tinker with Linux? :)
  15. moocow0463

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    so ive decided to get the 2 f3 drives for a total of 1.5 tb of space. now for the noob question ive never had multiple hard drives how should i set the 2 drives up, was thinking use the 500 gb drive for my OS, media, and fraps, use the 1tb for games and programs. they are sata drives so pretty simple to install just wondering how would i configure them to do what i want >.<.
  16. TheLaughingMan

    TheLaughingMan

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    My setup, I use the 640 GB for OS, Programs, and games. The 1 TB is used for media, music, backups, etc.
  17. moocow0463

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    my media files arent that big i just have some music and videos that i am recording my self, no movies or dvd collections etc, most my space is filled with things like photoshop, dreamweaver, flash, games and some music. the bulk of my music is stored on a WD usb external HD.

    to setup 2 drives like that when i do the system install will it ask me wich drive i want to install on? then when i install programs instead of C: i will use something like F: ? sorry completely new to this
  18. TheLaughingMan

    TheLaughingMan

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    It will ask which drive to install the OS on. As for the programs, I don't know of any reason to install them on a seperate drives, but you will be asked for a download path. You most likely will have to find a way to change the actual default program install paths.
  19. moocow0463

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    heres some info i have found so far http://www.viper.dk/wow/fraps/fraps_setup.htm

    Choosing where to store your captured footage can boost your performance a bit when FRAPS is capturing. The basic thing is to simply choose a harddrive that isn't being used.

    When FRAPS is capturing video it is constantly writing a massive amount of data to your harddrive. If the drive has to do other things while this is going on you will experience slow-downs because your harddrive can't keep up.

    To explain what's happening, for those who wants to know, you have to compare a harddrive with a vinyl record player - yeah, the ones with the big, round and black records. How a normal harddrive works is much the same, in that it reads with a movable arm, like a vinyl record player, on a round rotating surface.
    So when writing data the drive is spinning along and everything is good. But if the harddrive suddenly has to switch position, because something else has to get read or written, this will interrupt the writing of the FRAPS data. The more this happens the greater the slowdown will be.

    Of course having a RAID (RAID0 or similar) setup that you can write the data to is ideal for obvious reasons.

    Not everyone has enough harddrives to give FRAPS its own, so failing that there's a few things to consider:

    * Don't have it capture to the same drive as the game you're running. For instance if you're playing World of Warcraft (or any MMOG really), you will find that these games have a lot of harddrive activity. This is because it constantly needs to load new models, textures and so on based on what you see (players, environments, armor, weapons and so on).
    * Don't capture to the drive(s) where your pagefile (the virtual memory swapfile) is located. This file will be used a lot, especially considering how Windows manages its memory and with big games like MMOG's that use a lot of memory.
    * Try to avoid your system drive (where Windows is installed), however the impact of using it shouldn't be too severe so it's a better alternative than the ones mentioned above.

    It's very important to note that when I talk about drives I mean physical harddrives. Having a harddrive partitioned into several different drives is not enough. The drive still has to do the same work as I wrote about a bit earlier in this section. So no, a partition is not enough and it has to be seperate physical drives.

    Last, but not least, it's always a good idea to have the drive defragmented. But of course you already do that on a regular basis to all your drives, right?
  20. Anusha

    Anusha

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    If FRAPS is your problem, I suggest you buy a faster CPU and/or use half resolution and FPS at 60, than fiddle about arranging your drives. Capturing with FRAPS @30 is like VSyncing at 30. Your game's FPS is artificially dropped to 30 (or less depending on the load).

    Capturing should only slow down gaming BECAUSE OF CONSTANT WRITES TO HDD is mostly if the pagefile is being used a lot because of lack of RAM. But you have 4GB RAM, so this *shouldn't* be an issue. Usually, when running (not at loading or at saving) almost any game, like said before, the hard drive is used very little.

    And...I would take the slow drive out of the system regardless.

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