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I want a new large capacity Hard Drive, and I need your help. (Choosing/Partitioning)

post #1 of 26
Thread Starter 
I am looking to buy a 400 or 500 gigabyte hard drive, but I don't know which one I should get. I like Western Digital as they have been much quieter than Maxtors I have owned.

Right now it looks like 400 will cost about $120 and 500 will cost around $150. This is $3.33 per Gig for both of them. This seems to be the sweet spot.

I want something quite and reliable with 7200 rpm and 16mb cache.

This is the drive I am seriously considering, even though it carries a slightly larger price tag. It is business-class (whatever that means ) and has received good reviews.

The only problem is I don't know anything about partitioning. I want to create a section for windows and another for files (mainly music and photos). I would like it so if I need to reinstall Windows I won't have to erase all of the music and files. (I have a 250gb and 160gb right now that I will use for back-up purposes).

Any advice on what I should buy and how I should set up my system would be much appreciated.

Thank you,

Wyatt
post #2 of 26
What I do and what I suggest is to have two different drives. I have an 80 and a 300 and have windows on 80 and music on the 300. It has worked wonderfully and is really easy.

Setting up partitions is also pretty easy if you're doing a new windows installation. It is fairly self explanitory in the setup, I would make about a 50 gig or so partition for windows and the rest for music.
post #3 of 26
Maxtor = Highest failure rate. Stay far far away.

Seagate are the best in my experience, but WD aren't bad either. I don't know what the "sweet spot" on harddrives currently is, but check if 2x 300GB harddrives will be cheaper than 1 500.
post #4 of 26
when you install windows make sure you give it a good amount of space (30 gigs or so)- some programs will pull from your swap on your C:. you might also want to install most if not all your programs on that drive because if you have to reinstall your windows installation it will break the installations of things on your other drive.

my recommendation would be to get a fast but small raptor drive for your programs and windows and move the other stuff to external storage.
post #5 of 26
Thread Starter 
I can't get a Raptor, they are too loud, and my music collection will be over 250gb by the end of the year.

I need the extra space to back up my music if one of my drives fails.

Is there a program that makes partitioning the drives simple? I want it so after I install windows on the partitioned 500gb I see the C: drive where windows is installed at ~50gb and then a D: drive at ~450gb that is free to put files in.
post #6 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cid View Post
Maxtor = Highest failure rate. Stay far far away.

Seagate are the best in my experience, but WD aren't bad either. I don't know what the "sweet spot" on harddrives currently is, but check if 2x 300GB harddrives will be cheaper than 1 500.
Isn't it ironic how Seagate now owns Maxtor?

If the entire drive is filled by the Windows OS partition, it will be much harder to repartition it. If that is the cast, you will have to find a program that can move the files around and shrink the partition down. You are better off starting with a small windows partition and then use the OS's disk management system to repartition the rest of the empty areas.

The easiest solution is to make one small hard drive dedicated to Windows OS files and make the second larger drive a dedicated media drive.

I think partition magic can repartition disks, but I haven't read any positive reviews about it. If you want something free and risky, you can like try using an ubuntu linux installation disk and have it shrink the Windows OS partition.
post #7 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by pedxing View Post
(...) I think partition magic can repartition disks, but I haven't read any positive reviews about it. (...)
Works just fine, as a lot of computer hardware reviewers/test engineers (myself included) can confirm.

Greetings from Munich!

Manfred / lini
post #8 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by pedxing View Post
Isn't it ironic how Seagate now owns Maxtor?
I wasn't aware of that. Did this just happen recently or has it been like that for a while?
post #9 of 26
Cid: It was announced December 2005 and finished Q2/2006. Seagate had already taken over Conner in 1996, btw - whereas Maxtor took over Quantum's hard division in 2001. And Hitachi's take-over of IBM's hard drive division started in 2002 and completed Q4/2005.

Greetings from Munich!

Manfred / lini
post #10 of 26
That Western Digital drive you linked is an excellent choice, perhaps even the best available in it's class. I would recommend it, and will likely also purchase two of them myself for music storage and conenction to my upcoming Slim Devices Transporter system.

It was chosen in the light server class by Storage Review, which is the bible concerning such things. Here is the comparison review.

http://www.storagereview.com/articles/200607/500_1.html


JC


Quote:
Originally Posted by wnewport View Post
I am looking to buy a 400 or 500 gigabyte hard drive, but I don't know which one I should get. I like Western Digital as they have been much quieter than Maxtors I have owned.

Right now it looks like 400 will cost about $120 and 500 will cost around $150. This is $3.33 per Gig for both of them. This seems to be the sweet spot.

I want something quite and reliable with 7200 rpm and 16mb cache.

This is the drive I am seriously considering, even though it carries a slightly larger price tag. It is business-class (whatever that means ) and has received good reviews.

The only problem is I don't know anything about partitioning. I want to create a section for windows and another for files (mainly music and photos). I would like it so if I need to reinstall Windows I won't have to erase all of the music and files. (I have a 250gb and 160gb right now that I will use for back-up purposes).

Any advice on what I should buy and how I should set up my system would be much appreciated.

Thank you,

Wyatt
post #11 of 26
western digital, buy.com has some great deals and you can use google checkout and save some dough. Sign up for their newsletter and they will send you deals.
post #12 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by wnewport View Post
I can't get a Raptor, they are too loud
yes, that's not good advice; but a small drive for windows, and another one or two NTFS drives is good

what i'd do is buy a samsung spinpoint of about 80gb's and put windows on it plus whatever other random files and data

then grab a 500gb seagate for storage

sata would be nice, depending on your motherboard
post #13 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Nightfall View Post
That Western Digital drive you linked is an excellent choice, perhaps even the best available in it's class. I would recommend it, and will likely also purchase two of them myself for music storage and conenction to my upcoming Slim Devices Transporter system.

It was chosen in the light server class by Storage Review, which is the bible concerning such things. Here is the comparison review.

http://www.storagereview.com/articles/200607/500_1.html


JC


that's a pretty compelling review, i guess that's the one to get; and it would also be quieter to get one drive rather than two i can admit
post #14 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by uzziah View Post
that's a pretty compelling review, i guess that's the one to get; and it would also be quieter to get one drive rather than two i can admit
Ditto... but does that really make a difference for the purpose of listening to music at home? Why wouldn't something cheaper do just as well? Especially if it will only hold music (and there will be a separate hard drive for the OS)...

-rob

*edit*
I don't mean to say that getting the cheapest (one extreme of the spectrum) is better... it's just that there may be something for $20 cheaper that won't make a difference for the purpose of listening to music files.
post #15 of 26
Quote:
Originally Posted by Cid View Post
Maxtor = Highest failure rate. Stay far far away.
Besides the whole Seagate-Maxtor thing, where'd you pull that from? I'm still using a 4 year old 160GB SATA hard disk..
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