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Keeping programs on a separate partition from the OS

Keeping programs on a separate partition from the OS
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For many years (since Windows 3), I've been dividing my primary HD into three partitions - System, Programs and Data. Sooner or later, I'm going to have a FUBAR that forces me to fullyreinstall Windows, an SSD, or some other circumstance that forces me to rebuild from scratch.

Is there any more reason to continue keeping my programs on a separate partition from my OS? In the past, I did this for ease/clarity of backup; now, with programs "installed" by/into the OS, I'm thinking that program backup without OS backup is a waste of time.

Of course, Data and Backups will continue to be on separate partitions/disks.
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I need to reinstall windows 7 (restoring the one I have, after), but keeping programs on a separate partition with an operating system on it from being destroyed, thus keeping programs intact. I am just assuming there is no way to do it and I should quit while I'm ahead. Drive letters won't match for programs thus rendering them unusable.


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So, awhile back a made an error in judgement when I decided to split one of my hard drives into two partitions (that's not the error). I used the first partition for Windows 7 and programs that weren't games.

I then put all my games, videos, music, etc on the second partition. Looking back I probably should have made the first partition smaller and put everything else on the second partition.

At any rate, I don't feel like going through the first partition and moving programs to the second one (unless there is an easy way to do this without uninstalling programs). What I want to do is simply take some of the free space on my second partition and move it to the first (without having to delete the second one). I am wanting to find out the easiest/best way to do this.

I know I can shrink the second and free up a chunk, but for the extend option to work, I would need to move that freed up space next to my first is there a program that can do that?

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I only saw that all data recovery programs I used them(such as,Testdisk, Mini power data recovery, recovery my files and so on) recover the most recent data formatted, deleted from a partition. Are there any programs to recover all data written on a drive since it was purchased? In other words,First, I have data on a partition.

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I've created a partition on my windows 7 pc (d for storing data but I've discovered that it is set as a primary partition rather than an extended partition. This gives problems with acronis backup. How can I convert it to an extended partition?

What I was thinking of doing.
1. copy the files from d: to somewhere else temporarily (no programs, just data)
2. delete the partition.
3. increase the size of the c: partition to cover the whole disk again (using the windows 7 partition tool)
4. create the d: partition again being careful to specify "extended" this time round (using the windows 7 partition tool)

Is there an easier way?


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I just created a new partition in Windows 7 disk management(second partition on one sata drive). The C: partition reads Healthy(Boot, Page File, Crash Dump, Primary Partition). The one I had just created is Healthy(Primary Partition).

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My laptop already has 4 partitions (please refer to the attached screenshot) and I want to dual boot ubuntu. I was planning to create an extended partition of 20gb in D: I read this tutorial's method two (Partition / Extended : Logical Drives). But I'm not sure if it will work for my situation because it wrote :

"If you do not have the Windows System Reserved or a System Primary partition completely separate from the Windows 7 partition present that is marked as the "System" partition in disk management do not attempt this, if you do Windows will not boot as Windows will not/is not able to boot / start independently from an Extended partition Logical drive, the system boot files must be stored on a Primary partition to execute."

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I'm preparing a fresh install of Windows 7 Pro on a 2 disk system (90GB SSD and 1TB HDD). I'll be placing the OS/Apps on the SSD and Data and image restore files on HDD. Qs:

1. If I allocate ~60GB for the OS/Apps partition, and actual storage of the OS/Apps is 35GB.what size partition do I need on the HDD to save this image file? I assume the compressed file will be 45-50% of original. Will I want to store multiple image files created over the course of time as apps are added and system is further optimized, and hence need a partition that is a multiple of the OS/App partition size? What do you do?
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OEM installation already have four primary partition problem

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People come to me with brand new laptops with an OEM installation of Windows 7 that have already 4 primary partitions. Those are usually:

1. A 100MB active boot partition that contains the MBR (Master Boot Record)
2. The OS partition that contains Windows 7
3. The recovery partition
4. And often also a tools partition with the OEMs specific tool box

Since I always recommend to create a separate Data Partition (but also warn them of the dreaded dynamic partitions), they ask me how to fiddle the Data partition in. Now it is pretty obvious that #'s 1 and 3 must stay primaries because they are both boot partitions.

But one should be able to change #'s 2 and 4 to logical partition (possible with Partition Wizard - at least the 4.2. edition). I wonder though how this creates an extended partition container.

Does anybody see any harm done if one converts #'s 2 and 4 into logical partitions and are there any interim steps required to get the container? (I hate to try it on someones laptop and create a mess). I believe that BFK already stated in one of his tuts that #2 is a candidate.


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I have attached a screen-shot of my partitions. This is how it is out-of-the-box. From reading up, I know that a hard-drive can have maximum four primary partitions or three primaries and one extended, and that the extended partition can be sub-divided into several logical partitions.

You can see from my screen-shot that I have one tiny, 200mb primary partition (something to do with the boot loader I think?); the large, C: partition, which is marked as primary; the D: partition which is marked as logical; and an un-named partition for the OEM's back-up software which is also primary.

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