Procedure partitioning drives using partition magic

Just bought Partition Magic 8.0.  It seems to me that, given the large hard drives one has today, it would always be adventageous to place the operating system on one drive, programs on a second, and data on a third, and maybe even a fourth for a backup copy of the operating system.  Most of the computers I work on run Windows XP, but there are also still some WIN98 and ME.  
1. Would you agree?  Are there drawbacks to doing this?
2. Is there any cookbook approach to laying out partitions like this using partition magic?
Alan SilvermanOwnerAsked:
Who is Participating?
I wear a lot of hats...

"The solutions and answers provided on Experts Exchange have been extremely helpful to me over the last few years. I wear a lot of hats - Developer, Database Administrator, Help Desk, etc., so I know a lot of things but not a lot about one thing. Experts Exchange gives me answers from people who do know a lot about one thing, in a easy to use platform." -Todd S.

Hi alanlsilverman,

I agree to most of what you said.
I personally create several partitions: OS,applications, User, Temp, Swap.
Depending on the OS I have (especially Win) "Temp" holds the temp dir, caches and downloads. Swap is always used only for a swap file.
After a clean install of the OS (with hotfixes and patches and major applications) I make a copy of the system partition. When I only had Partition Magic I just copied the partition to ANOTHER drive, setting it 'hidden'. This way it is always easy to get back and restart. Currently I use DriveImage to burn a image of the system partition onto CD, too. (Installing apps before the backup make it sometimes easier to get the right folders).

Experts Exchange Solution brought to you by

Your issues matter to us.

Facing a tech roadblock? Get the help and guidance you need from experienced professionals who care. Ask your question anytime, anywhere, with no hassle.

Start your 7-day free trial
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
That can make sense - if you are talking about physical drives and not partitions.  If you have to reinstall Windows, then you have to reinstall most of your programs.  So unless your looking for a little performance boost from having the programs on seperate spindals, splitting the OS and programs doesn't make much sense.

Having a mirror of the C drive is a great idea to guard against disk failure - but corruption is likely to take place on both drives so that won't help in that circumstance.  In addition, you can't mirror one partition to another on a same disk, so again, you need another set of spindals (drive).

The one area where it can make a lot of sense having a seperate partition is for data.  Again, a seperate drive would be better, a mirrored one, better still, but if you can't then just put your data on a seperate partition.  This is good because if you have to reinstall the os, you can format the partition and not loose any data.

I would say the most reliable way of doing things (assuming no server) is to get two identical drives and a hardware controller that supports mirroring.  Then partition the mirrored drives into one OS/Programs and one DATA.
Lee W, MVPTechnology and Business Process AdvisorCommented:
Just to be clear - having a mirror doesn't make corruption likely - but if it happens, it probably gets mirrored too.
Alan SilvermanOwnerAuthor Commented:
Thank you both for your excellent answers.  Upping the point total to 300 and splitting them evenly.
It's more than this solution.Get answers and train to solve all your tech problems - anytime, anywhere.Try it for free Edge Out The Competitionfor your dream job with proven skills and certifications.Get started today Stand Outas the employee with proven skills.Start learning today for free Move Your Career Forwardwith certification training in the latest technologies.Start your trial today

From novice to tech pro — start learning today.

Question has a verified solution.

Are you are experiencing a similar issue? Get a personalized answer when you ask a related question.

Have a better answer? Share it in a comment.