programs and second hdd

By SystemCheck ·
i have one hdd with vista i have another internal hdd blank, can i install my programs and games to that drive? if so when i format my os hdd and reinstall will the program and games on the second hdd still work and or what would i have to do?

This conversation is currently closed to new comments.

Thread display: Collapse - | Expand +

All Answers

Collapse -

Yes and No ...

by OldER Mycroft In reply to programs and second hdd

Yes - you CAN install your programs and games to the 2nd HDD


No - if you reinstall your OS, the (majority of) programs and games will NOT still work. This is because they rely on Registry entries which would have been destroyed in the reinstall.

There might be an occasional program or game that didn't have a Registry entry, therefore be unaffected by the OS reinstall.

Collapse -


by SystemCheck In reply to Yes and No ...

how come i hear people do it all the time, are they just wasting their time?

Collapse -

I don't quite understand that comment ...

by OldER Mycroft In reply to so

You're hearing that people do it all the time - because people do it all the time. There are a few very good reasons for doing so too/

#1 - Any OS performs far better on a HDD that remains (to a certain degree) uncluttered by other programs. It allows for certain OS-dependant programs like an Office Suite, custom utilities for Printer, Scanner, Camera together with the 'My Documents' sub-directories (Docs, Music, Vids, Photos) to be installed close to the OS itself on the same drive. Also for the 'My Documents' folders to expand over time.

#2 - The OS begins to slow down and stutter if the Free Space becomes less than 15%. Free Space is used by the OS for a variety of purposes hidden to the user, including Temporary files and for the space required to move file-chunks around when performing a Defrag routine.

#3 - All hard drives only have one Read head and one Write head and the OS requires many reads and writes for every clock cycle / fraction of a second. So, installing a Game's Program to a secondary hard drive allows for accessing of the Game without interfering (slowing down) with the normal Read/Write processes of the OS.

#4 - The second and/or third and/or fourth hard drives can be used for storing the 'My Documents' directory, by moving it from the OS hard drive. That way, when the OS is reinstalled all your Document files and sub-directories remain unaffected since they are not destroyed by the format/reinstall, then can be incorporated into the newly installed OS. Many users, including myself, have a non-OS hard drive set aside for nothing but MP3s or Photos - this hard drive is a constant (unless it fails some day - then I'd restore my MP3s from DVD data storage).

So, in response to your second point - No, they're NOT "just wasting their time".

Collapse -


by SystemCheck In reply to I don't quite understand ...

well that makes alot of sense. so pretty much it works good if ur using it right and if format/reinstall os drive prolly should format/reinstall the second drive with just installed programs and in the end should gain performance on the os for less access for other programs from the same drive? and also if installing to second drive to i have to find and place a shortcut to the program on the os drive or will most programs do that by themselves?

Collapse -

Most program installs inquire where to install to ...

by OldER Mycroft In reply to oh

Usually you'll have 2 types of install option

This option assumes you wish to install to the C: drive - historically, users only had a single hard drive. Sometimes this option will launch straight into the install without further user input. Occasionally it will result in a further filepath box where you simply change the INITIAL DRIVE LETTER.

This option assumes the user knows what they're doing and gives options as to which of the various components of the install should be or shouldn't be installed. At this point you can prevent wasting hard drive space by installing unnecessary language packs and stuff like VoIP utilities or maybe GameSPY or stuff like that.

Whcihever option you elect to choose, all you need to do is change the drive letter in the filepath address line and let the install continue.

When the game has finished installing, the desktop icon (and the Start Menu entry if you chose to have one) will already point to the other hard drive and you are good to go.


Collapse -


by SystemCheck In reply to Most program installs inq ...

then i think ill give it a go

Collapse -

Another thing you might care to try ...

by OldER Mycroft In reply to sweet

On the basis that 2 heads are better than 1 - you might care to consider partitioning your second hard drive slightly, by creating a partition that is slightly bigger (by a couple of hundred MB) than your current C:\pagefile.sys.

You can then navigate to 'My Computer' > Properties > Advanced [TAB] > Performance (Settings) > and relocate your Pagefile (Virtual Memory) from the C drive to your second hard drive within its own little partition.

One benefit of this move, is that because the Pagefile is now alone within its own partition, the read/write heads have less distance to travel when accessing the Pagefile. It also prevents the Pagefile from becoming fragmented since no other data is allowed anywhere near it.

If you choose to do this (I've been doing it for years) DO NOT set the Pagefile to be 'System Managed' - just specify the Custom routine, making the lower and upper levels to be exactly the same 1.5 or 2.0 times your available system RAM (I use the 2x ratio).

For the sake of safety, don't kill the C Pagefile completely but reduce it in size to the same size as your system RAM. This is because if your system ever crashes, there will be sufficient Pagefile on C for a memory dump when the crash occurs. Computers only ever save the memory dump to the primary drive.

Moving the Pagefile to the second hard drive will provide a noticeable boost in speed, particularly when the Pagefile is heavily involved.

Collapse -

for your last post about the pagesys

by SystemCheck In reply to Most program installs inq ...

That is a good idea see how my current pagesys is causing about 15% defragmentation.

i have 8gb of ram and 1gb of video about how big should that small partition should be and are there any cons for moving the pagesys from os drive to another drive?

Collapse -

Check your existing pagefile for size ...

by OldER Mycroft In reply to for your last post about ...

It should following the rule of thumb I have already discussed.

There are NO CONS against moving the pagefile - quite the reverse. Just make sure you leave sufficient pagefile on the C drive for any memory dumps.

Collapse -

As for the possible sizes of Pagefile ...

by OldER Mycroft In reply to for your last post about ...

Since a Gigabyte is 1024 Megabytes ...

12GB + 200MB = 12488MB

16GB + 200MB = 16584MB


Related Discussions

Related Forums