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MFT, page file location on hard disk (physical)

Discussion in 'General Software' started by newconroer, Jul 19, 2007.

  1. newconroer


    Jun 20, 2007
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    1) What is the, if any, correlation between System Volume information and the MFT?

    2) Should MFT be at the outer tracks of the hard disk, or more in, behind your main data i.e. Windows, Games, Programs, Documents etc ?

    3) The page file should be contigous, on the track right before your data i.e. Windows, Games, Programs, Documents etc?

    On my last install of XP, with all my usual programs going and installed my disk looked more like this :

    Pre-Note: Of the four provided pictures(two sets of two) the first of each set will show you green and white blocks. Green representing data, white representing free space. The second of each set will show all the data and information. Notice that in the first of each, the space where the MFT would be (seen in the final link/picture down below, is considered free space. Which, from my understanding of MFT, is how the drive sees it).


    Note: The contigous files on the outer tracks is the commonly used data, the contigous files at the inner tracks is non-commonly used.
    Note 2: There's no page file on this drive, but it would have been on the outer track before the contigous files.

    On my more recent install of XP, with all my usual programs going and installed my disk looks like this:


    Note: The yellow blocks are MFT, the dark green blocks are the contigous page file, and the following blue contigous blocks are the "Windows ..." etc normal data I use often. Ignore the compressed misc. data (light green) at the inner tracks.
    Note 2: That far outer string of blue contigous files, is odd to me. It should be with the other data behind the page file. It's not prioritized higher than the normal data, they all fall under the same category.

    I had considered using something like BCwipe, to clear the MFT and move the files to the outer track afterwards, but I wonder, in regards to the questions up above, if MFT is supposed to be placed before the data, even though the drives see it as free space.

    I'm thinking, that everything is as it should be, with exception to that outer rim of data that seems out of place on it's own.
  2. Namslas90 New Member

    Aug 27, 2006
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    MFT files contain internal information (data) about the "real" data stored on the volume.

    The are normaly located at the Beginning of the "partition".


    Resident Attributes: Attributes that require a small amount of storage space are stored within the file's primary MFT record itself.

    Non-Resident Attributes: If an attribute requires more space than is available within the MFT, is not stored in that record, the attribute is placed in a separate location, with a pointer within the MFT that leads to the location of the attribute.

    So a NRA MRT file could be located wherever it fits on the HDD.
    Last edited: Jul 20, 2007
    10 Year Member at TPU
  3. newconroer


    Jun 20, 2007
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    Yes, I've read about what happens when attributes require more space.

    I'm just looking for some confirmation, that MFT and the pagefile should be before the contigous data, and that wiping the MFT would indeed put it behind the physical data, but the system would have to rebuild that database; which isn't optimal.

    And as for that string of data to the far right outer track, I have no idea how to force the MFT to take up that space.
    Some of that data in that string is technically meant to be there, as it's manually prioritized to the farthest track, but it's mixed with data that shouldn't be. I suppose though that it's about as optimal as it can be overall.

    :smacked; myself about System Volume Information. Forgot it's just the data for restore points. Duh!

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