Specialized Use for Audio Recording

Discussion in 'FirstDefense-ISR Forum' started by Chamlin, Feb 25, 2012.

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  1. Chamlin

    Chamlin Registered Member

    Referencing and following up on a previous, now out of date thread:

    I know I'm asking a lot of questions and I hope you'll bear with me; this is mission critical and will be an investment of many, many hours of work.

    I'm using SONAR software (audio/MIDI music production) on a PC (WinXP, SP3, Core Duo E6750 @2.66GHz, with 2 GB RAM).

    An audio environment "wants" very little else going on, otherwise all sorts of hell breaks loose, and many musicians have a separate dedicated PC for recording.

    Since I can't get another PC, I intend to do the following and I'm wondering if you guys can guide me on whether I've got it right, or if there is a more intelligent/easier way to do this:
    1. I'm going to replace my 4 1/2 yr. old hard drive, and do a fresh install of XP and fully update it;
    2. Take a snapshot and archive it;
    3. Add in all the audio system software, drivers, set up preferences;
    4. Apply all of the "Optimize Your Win XP PC for Audio Production" tweaks;
    5. Take a snapshot and archive it;
    6. Then load/customize my general PC work environment and re-customize the whole darn thing (oy!);
    7. Take a snapshot and archive it; and leave this one as Primary;
    A. Does this make sense? Or are any steps off or missing?

    B. Do I make the audio snapshot the secondary or should that be a copy of the primary?

    C. When should I add NOD 32 and Online Armor?

    D. As time moves forward, and Windows XP or NOD or Online Armor have security updates, do I have to add all of those updates to the audio snapshot? How often would one do that, because if I don't pay attention to that won't that system be out of date/vulnerable?

    E-1. When do I make image backups? Should I do one for each system; the main system and the audio system? Or just the main one which will have the archived FD-ISR snapshot of the audio system?

    E-2. Which image backup solution is most stable: I have ATI Home v11 but have heard Shadow Protect is more reliable. I've never had to use ATI so I don't know how it is on my system.

    Well I know this is a mouthful, but thanks in advance for your help. This stuff is kind of scary to me, but I'm always encouraged by your assistance.

  2. Chamlin

    Chamlin Registered Member

    Please? :)
  3. Peter2150

    Peter2150 Global Moderator

    I will try and come back to you later. In the mean time it would help to know if at all possible would your general work run in the audio environment, and what the major differences are if it won't.

  4. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

    My approach in new pcs is the following:

    1. First create 2 partitions (1 for the OS and one for data)
    2. Install windows and install fd-isr (also create primary and secondary snapshots).
    3. Install all the drivers, update windows and the activate it. After that you update your seconday snapshot and also create an archive (so that you won't have to repeate the procedure in case you want to restore to a clear state).
    4. Take an offline image of your system partition (and your mbr). If Ati works fine I don't see why you should change unless you want to go to something new.
    5. Rename your snapshots so that you can identify them easily.
    6. Customize your snapshots and create an archive for each one of them and make a copy of them to an external hd.
    7. Install security apps only to your general PC work environment and you are ready to go. (No need to install security apps in your audio enviroment.)
    8. Instead of using imaging software, just use FD-ISR's update archive feature to have an up date backup of both the enviroments (your initial image will be your base-line in case something goes wrong to restore the system and then update your snapshots from the archives).

  5. Chamlin

    Chamlin Registered Member

    Thanks, Peter. I envision a pure "audio recording only" snapshot environment which will have as few services running as possible; as little "stuff" loaded into memory, start up, etc. as possible. This, because I'm told that the less I have running, the better the flow of the audio recording / fewer pops, clicks, freezes.

    My general environment will include internet/email, Word/Excel, and the rest of the litany of software I'll load on. I will also likely add the audio software to that environment as well because there may be times when it will be necessary to get "audio recording guidance" from forums in the middle of a project and I'll need to access both.

    Not sure whether I need to add the firewall to the audio system either. Just trying to get clear on this, even as I write! :)

    Did this answer your question? Thanks!
  6. culla

    culla Registered Member

    get a pc solely for audio [no such thing as can't]
    don't need to worry then
    thats what i have
    i'm a musician for 40 years now
  7. Chamlin

    Chamlin Registered Member

    Thanks, culla. How about this languaging: I choose not to get a 2nd PC as it would be unwise for my financial sustainability at this time, and impractical in terms of space considerations. Thus, at this time, I won't be getting a 2nd PC.

    But in a bigger space, with a bigger budget, I'd be all over it. :D
  8. Chamlin

    Chamlin Registered Member

    Thanks, Panagiotis for your extensive and thoughtful input.

    I was planning on using the primary drive for OS and software; and a 2nd internal drive for audio data. I still want a dedicated drive for the audio data; but for general document, spreadsheet, etc. data, is there a big benefit to partitioning the primary drive in that way?

    What is the reason to install FD-ISR and create snapshots before updating windows, adding drivers and activating it?

    At this point, the secondary snapshot would be identical to the primary snapshot, right? And then the archive of that snapshot would be the one to come back to if I wanted to start all over again with a clean system, yes?

    So this would be for a dire emergency situation (machine horrendously infected/inflicted or major hard drive failure)? And this image would allow me to either format the drive or replace the drive and instantaneously have my complete system restored?

    When I want to switch between snapshots (from the general system to the audio snapshot or the other way around), which way would I be doing this:
    A. Have a primary snapshot, a secondary snapshot, an audio snapshot; then choose between the secondary (general system) or audio snapshot? or;

    B. Just have a primary and secondary snapshot; and archives of the current general system snapshot and audio system snapshot; then to switch back and forth...confused. o_O

    Thanks all, for your patience with me on this.:)
  9. pandlouk

    pandlouk Registered Member

    You are welcome. :)
    The main reasons are:
    A. Faster access for the OS. The first 25% of the hard disks (non ssds) is faster than the rest of the disk so is better to have the OS partition in that space instead of the whole disk.
    B. Smaller archives and images since all the other files data, photos, video, music, etc. are not included in the main partition.
    C. In case of disaster, e.g. corrupted system you won't loose your personal data when restoring the OS image.
    D. Faster defragmentations since data files will be in the second partition.

    For saving time. In case something goes wrong during the updates or the installation of the drivers, why start from the beggining when you can be up and running in seconds?
    The archive create it after you update windows and drivers and having them activated. Yes, you'll store this archive away and use it to create clean system or a new base snapshot that you want to customise.

    Yes this image will serve as a base for imergency. First you restore the image and then you update your snapshots from the archives.
    I prefer plan B... with the archives you don't need a secondary snapshot. (unless you want to instantly boot to your general system after a small disaster; in that case plan A is better)
    Thanks all, for your patience with me on this.:)[/QUOTE]
    No problem :)

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