Need help picking out Partitioning program.

Discussion in 'ten-forward' started by Acadia, Jul 25, 2003.

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  1. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    Ok, I’m going to be purchasing a new pc in several months. I want, for the first time, to partition my hard drive. I would like opinions on the best partitioning software to obtain for MY needs. Most important thing to remember, I’m new to partitioning so it is going to have to be simple. My needs: to simply better organize my hard drive. Let’s assume I will be using XP Home and that I will have an 80GB hard drive. I will NOT be loading two OS so I will not need to dual-boot. Besides better organizing my programs I will also be using a partition or two to store backup images of my C:drive. (Don’t know what imaging backup software I will be using, that is not important to me at this point). I am hoping that I will only need to create the partitions one time and will never need to “redo” anything, resize, or merge any partitions. I don’t do any video or music so I never need a lot of storage, for example, after 4 years on my present pc my 9GB hard drive is only half full and that INCLUDES a compressed backup of everything. Therefore, I just plan on creating a whole lot of partitions in the beginning and if a lot of them never get used, that’s just fine with me since 80GB will leave me plenty of spare space. I use my pc mostly for surfing the Internet, taking care of finances, and the MS Office programs, especially Word. At this point PartitionMagic is the leading contender but only because it has been around the longest and has the most users. I know it is the most expensive but when it comes to keeping my pc stable, price is no object.

    So to sum it up, whatever program I get MUST be simple enough even for this idiot to use and be able to back out of any mistakes that I might make setting up my partitions, must be stable and reliable. Thanks for all opinions. (Hopefully this will not turn into an all out war like it would if I were to ask, “What is everyone’s favorite antivirus”).

    Acadia.
     
  2. DolfTraanberg

    DolfTraanberg Registered Member

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    If you are installing XP on a new harddisk you don't need to have a separate partitioning program. You can choose from the XP setup how much space you will assign to XP. From then you can use the remaining free space in XP to create more partitions.
    Dolf
     
  3. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    Yes, I just discovered this on another news forum. I did not know that XP had this capability. Don't know how easy this would be but it should be more reliable than using a third party program. Thanks.

    Acadia.
     
  4. DolfTraanberg

    DolfTraanberg Registered Member

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    Just make sure you setup XP from CD, because sometimes XP has been pre-installed and then you would not have that option.
    Dolf
     
  5. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    Uh oh. Do you happen to know how Dell ships its pc's? Is XP already installed or do I install it?
     
  6. Jooske

    Jooske Registered Member

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    Didn't something equal happen if you from inside one windows version install another version beside it, say win2000 or win98 or does this count only for special versions or should the order of installing be different, for instance first win98 and after win2000 or XP f.e.? Taking care of the whole partitioning and double boot etc?
    I've seen somebody's system from 98 with XP beside it and it seems rather ok, only he has a third partition, not sure if one gets choices for extra partitions along the way?
     
  7. DolfTraanberg

    DolfTraanberg Registered Member

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    I suppose Dell has pre-installed the OS, but they should ship it with the Windows CD and a CD with specific Dell drivers as well.
    Just boot the computer with the XP cd and start over.... :D
     
  8. FanJ

    FanJ Guest

    Some other suggestions:

    Acronis Partition Expert

    VCOM Partition Commander (this one comes with System Commander, optional to install, which lets you choose between different OS's).

    [hr]

    Based upon my own experience with Acronis TrueImage, which is extremely user friendly, I expect the same of Acronis Partition Expert. I do have PartExpert too, but I have to admit that I have not played very much with it.
     
  9. Pieter_Arntz

    Pieter_Arntz Spyware Veteran

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    Hi Dollefie,

    I don't know about Dell in Acadia's country, but some OEM computers come with a Restore CD or the same data (OS and drivers) on a hidden partition. Especially the last case can be tricky, when you are trying to repartition a HD.

    The Restore CD's are different from Windows CD's in that they can't be used to extract files or do a "dirty" install.

    Regards,

    Pieter
     
  10. Acadia

    Acadia Registered Member

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    Maybe I ought to head on over to the DellTalk forums and see what people are saying there. Thanks to all, I've learned a bunch already (enough to make me even more nervous about partitioning than I already was!)

    Acadia.
     
  11. root

    root Registered Member

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    I have three Dells. The OS comes installed, and they have been shipping an OS CD and a driver CD plus others for the programs.. I have not used one for a long time, so I can't vouch for it being a complete OS install CD from scratch. It should be.
    If you reinstall Windows and then have to install all the drivers and re activate XP it is a lot of work.
    Easiest to do is to use Partition Magic. It is easy enough to use and I have been using it for years. It is really simple now.
    I haven't tried the ones FanJ mentioned so I can't speak for them.
     
  12. DolfTraanberg

    DolfTraanberg Registered Member

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    Yes, this could be a problem, but Dell is specialized in selling customized PC's.
    You can even choose your OS, so in this case I suppose you get the original CD's
    But it could not harm to check first.
    Dolf
     
  13. DolfTraanberg

    DolfTraanberg Registered Member

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    This is the reason I pointed out the Windows way. Personally I've bad feelings buying a program to use it only once or twice, when there is really no need to. In the past I've used PM, but it has too much whistles and bells, especially when you only have to create some partitions (i'm not talking about moving resizing etc.).
    Dolf
     
  14. FanJ

    FanJ Guest

    I myself have in fact only used Partition Magic on my W 98 SE system in the past.

    I agree, you don't use a partitioning program that much.

    First times I was happy with PM.
    Later it did some strange thing, at least on my system (could of course have been my own fault!):
    when I asked it to make a partition of -for example- 6 GB, then it tried to make a partition of 60 GB (in which it didn't succeed cause my HD is not that big).
    I emailed Powerquest about it, and they told me that they never heard about this issue....

    Some other remarks:

    I myself -but that is only a personal opinion- don't like the support of PowerQuest that much.
    Compare that with the support of Acronis which is great.

    If I remember me well, Luv2bsecure told once that Partition Commander from VCOM has a good reputation.
    But here comes again my own personal opinion:
    I have from V-COM System Suite and PowerDesk (both formerly from Ontrack). Although I haven't used their support very much, I don't like it that much. But once again: that's only my own personal opinion. Of course others might have well different opinions!

    I do have experience with the support of Acronis, and I like it! Very easy to get email support from them. For me that IS an important issue.


    Now here comes a contradiction:

    ALWAYS make a full backup image before using a partitioning program. It is always possible that something goes wrong, and then you ARE in great troubles (at least: that could be the case, but you might be lucky)!
    So before using a partitioning program it is advised to make a full backup image.
    But hey, where do you put that image? On a special partition? How did you make that partition?
    Well, there you have the "contradiction" o_O
    Solution: write that "first" backup image directly to CD-R(W), an external HD or something like that.

    In my next posting here I will try to give you links to Partition Commander and Partition Expert.
     
  15. FanJ

    FanJ Guest

  16. dee

    dee Registered Member

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    I am very happy to hear that 3rd party partitioning programmes are not needed for WinXP, because I read somewhere that XP was limited in what it could do with partitionong. I intend to get a new system with WinXP Pro, & network it to my present Win98 one. It will be built to my spekkies with full XP installation CD.

    My previous partitioning experiences may be of interest here - limited to Win98 of course. My first involved format, fdisk, & clean install - no sweat. I liked fdisk despite its limitations, but those days are past.

    I wanted more partitions, some re-sizing, & to install an "alien" O/S. Bought a shrink-wrapped System Commander after checking V-Comm's website, where I was impressed by its claims & the fact that it could handle BeOS nicely. This was System Commander 2000 though. Perhaps it has improved since then, I would hope. It created havoc, too unpleasant to recall all the details here, but my partition tables overlapped, the whole thing was hell. End result = format,fdisk & clean install.

    Last year, I got Partition Magic 8 - marvellous, have used it 3 times for partitioning, re-sizing, & changing cluster sizes. Alas, it's now been bought out by Symantec, kiss support goodbye. And it doesn't seem happy to change cluster sizes in my new 2nd hard drive, so I haven't proceeded with this.

    Since then, I've been concerned whether P.Magic can work as well for me with XP, particularly if I go NTFS. If it's a fact that XP can do all this stuff, I'll be very pleased indeed - but will the partitions it can create, be OK for storing O/S images on? This is vital for me.
     
  17. bigc73542

    bigc73542 Retired Moderator

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    I have used several partitioning tools and I have found partition magic to be the easiest to use. I have had as many as seven partitions with a different os on each one. And also easy to delete a partition and reclaim the space.

    And it handles ntfs fat and fat32 and all linux partitions with ease. You can change cluster size in a flash. Very easy program I highly recomend it.
     
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