Windows 8 and 8.1 Forums


Partition or Map drives?

  1. #1

    Partition or Map drives?


    I am shortly replacing 3x 2Tb hard drives with a Western Digital Black 4Tb in a major reorganisation of my system. Currently my drives are not partitioned and folders have become badly organised as I was led to believe that partitioning wasn't a good idea nowadays. A few folders are mapped to drive letters and I have a 3Tb NAS drive on my router for backup.

    My question is whether to partition the new 4Tb drive or to create a folder structure and map some to drive letters?

    I have a Win 8.1 setup with 16Gb RAM, an SSD boot drive and SATA6 and am a photographer so have very large files to move around at times.

    Any comments welcomed.

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  2. #2


    Hafnarfjörður IS
    Posts : 4,376
    Linux Centos 7, W8.1, W7, W2K3 Server W10


    Hi there.

    Whatever else you do keep the OS and pgms in its own partition (On the SSD is good) -- you only need at the most around a 60 GB partition even for a large windows system. That way if you re-install the OS or recover from a backup image you don't have to recover your data.

    I'd then create another partition for multi-media say music / video / photos (or split that into two - Music and other multi-media depending on the amount you have), and a final partition for all your user data such as documents, emails etc.

    Having a dedicated partition for your photos is a good idea - then you can re-arrange those to suit - if you've got a pro type DSLR the data from the digital photos EXIF data should help you create sensible folders for these. There's several decent programs around to read data from the embedded EXIF data for PRO type digital images.

    Finally format the drive as GPT - then you can see the whole 4TB initially and it's then easier to work with it -- use something like GPARTED to create the partitions - or even Windows itself.

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  3. #3


    Posts : 151
    Win8 Pro


    This is just a personal opinion, and your experience may be different, but in all honesty I would stay away from Western Digital. Maybe their manufacturing protocols have improved by now, but when I was the Systems Administrator for a manufacturing company and in charge of all the engineering dept.'s custom CAD system builds, we had about 60 engineers, and during a specific generation of machines we had used all Western Digital drives, and I would say that more than 60% of them failed within the first year of service.

    You can take it as you want, but if there are other options, I would stay away from WD. The build quality is just severely lacking in my own personal experience with large numbers of them.
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  4. #4


    Ah yes GPT. I'd forgotten that, thanks. My OS and apps are on the SSD as you suggest. I use Lightroom to manage my photos and have a dedicate drive already so that will become a partition on my new drive.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  5. #5


    Thanks for your comments lastof. I've already ordered the WD drive and my NAS drive is WD too. I've used all makes of HD over many, many years and never had an early failure from any. However I am also aware that at one time or another, a manufacturer may slip and get a bad name for a while. It seems to go in cycles so it seems to me to be pot luck. As this isn't mission critical, I'm happy to go for value for money and performance - $260 for 4Tb seems good value.
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

  6. #6


    Hafnarfjörður IS
    Posts : 4,376
    Linux Centos 7, W8.1, W7, W2K3 Server W10


    Hi there

    Also remember whatever system you have - to take a backup too of your photography - especially if it's professional work -- if you are using Lightroom I suspect you are doing some pro gigs -- you can't afford to lose any work .

    Unlike the OS you don't need to back up the complete set of your photography regularly -- take an archive and then just back up changes ("incremental backup"). Every so often do a complete backup of the changed / new data.

    I'd advise a decent commercial backup program like Acronis for this - it has all sorts of scheduling / incremental systems built in and for around 50 EUR is well worth it. The FREE programs are obviously better than nothing but usually are quite basic often not having facilities for incremental backups and ability to schedule jobs regularly.

    Cheers
    jimbo
      My System SpecsSystem Spec

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