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Last post Author Topic: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?  (Read 18181 times)

urlwolf

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alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« on: September 30, 2007, 08:55:09 AM »
Hi,

Partition magic salutes me with a "error 1556 while executing batch" when trying to move a partition to unallocated space.

Paragon doesn't even let me move the partition because it's in a different HD.

Any idea how to go about this?

Thanks

tinjaw

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2007, 09:27:00 AM »
Gnome Partition Editor

You can get in in LiveCD and LiveUSB form for easy use.

sri

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2007, 10:49:24 AM »
Stay away from Partition Tragic. Use Acronis Disk Director instead.
<a href="https://sridharkatakam.com">My blog</a>

Armando

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2007, 11:01:40 AM »
or  : BootIt NG.

urlwolf

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2007, 11:26:42 AM »
Ok thanks.
Actually, I should discuss my partitioning strategy here.
I have a OS partition, a data partition, a music partition and 2 HDs. Right now, OS and Data are in the same HD. These are the two most accessed partitions.

The idea is to put the music partition together with the OS partition on one HD and then the Data partition (pretty accessed) in the other HD... this should give me some faster boot times (well, not boot, but the entire HD activity frenzy once you log in) and general a faster-feeling system.

I'm not sure how much speed improvements I should expect or if it's worth the trouble. Any idea about this? these are 2 160 Gb 5200rpm drives (laptop).

Also, any other recommendations for faster HD access overall? Is it true that you should leave 20% of disk space empty? I have a defragmenter running periodically already.

Thanks

Lashiec

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2007, 05:49:16 PM »
Unless you resource to expensive solutions (namely RAID 0 and/or fast SCSI drives), there's no much you can do, really. The 20% sounds like another myth to be (there are so much :() as I worked during years using a drive with a 15% of free space. It helps on defragmenting, but nothing else. There's some truth in trying to avoid the free space to fall below 10-5%, as the computer starts to feel much slower, but nothing else regarding specific free space percentages.

Carol Haynes

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2007, 06:36:20 PM »
20% free space is really only recommended to allow your drive to be defragmented easily. I have some drives that are just about full (files that are just read) and access is just as quick as on a half full drive.

Obviously if you have a near full drive disk writing will get slower as files have to be squeezed into randomly spaced gaps all over the disc - they are then slow to read again. It therefore makes sense to keep near full disks fully defragmented and organised properly - use a defrag app that runs every time the screensaver starts such as PerfectDisc, and regularly run a boot time defrag on the partition. It doesn't really help to use a defragmenter that doesn't do some organising too because you need the free space on the drive optimised into a single chunk if possible otherwise the first file write is fragmented again. The built in Windows defragger just defrags files and leaves stuff scattered all over.

I would also recommend keeping some free space on your system drive as programs are constantly wring temporary files on the system disc. You can move your temp files to another drive (See Control Panel > System > Advanced > Environment variables), point your browser cache to a folder on a different partition and move your pagefile to a partition on a different physical hard drive to the system partition. These will help somewhat with system speed - especially when it is under load - and reduce fragmentation on the system drive.

It isn't a panacea though as many programs don't behave well and use their own temporary files - usually stored in your user profile hidden "Applications" or "Local Settings" folders and I haven't found a way to move those off the system drive yet.
« Last Edit: September 30, 2007, 06:38:10 PM by Carol Haynes »

tomos

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #7 on: October 02, 2007, 01:46:00 AM »
Ok thanks.
Actually, I should discuss my partitioning strategy here.
I have a OS partition, a data partition, a music partition and 2 HDs. Right now, OS and Data are in the same HD. These are the two most accessed partitions.

The idea is to put the music partition together with the OS partition on one HD and then the Data partition (pretty accessed) in the other HD... this should give me some faster boot times (well, not boot, but the entire HD activity frenzy once you log in) and general a faster-feeling system.

I'm not sure how much speed improvements I should expect or if it's worth the trouble. Any idea about this? these are 2 160 Gb 5200rpm drives (laptop).
I had that idea too.
Seeing as they say moving paging file to second hdd is faster, it seems logical to move your working files there too..
But I havent done it (yet) & dont know if it's worth the trouble
(I mentioned it at another forum & got no direct response to idea)


Also, any other recommendations for faster HD access overall? Is it true that you should leave 20% of disk space empty? I have a defragmenter running periodically already.

I put the paging file on first partition of second drive*,
a FAT32 partition & on the same partition I now have tempfiles & internet caches for IE & Opera (havent looked at FF yet)
Paging file is fixed size so no fragmenting

*(I also had small one on C drive but was having difficulty with some programmes &
hibernation till I got rid of the one on C..)
Tom

Carol Haynes

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #8 on: October 02, 2007, 03:28:41 AM »
Moving your working files (I presume you mean documents) to a separate partition will make your system less defragmented and so a bit quicker and also a bit quicker to run a defrag pass on. The only time moving stuff to a separate hard disc will make a huge difference is if you are dealing with enormous files (such as large RAW images from digital cameras and video files) - most other docs will be happy wherever you put them as there isn't a big overhead accessing them.

If you use software (such as PhotoShop) that uses scratch discs then it is worth have three separate hard discs - one with your system, one with your page file, and the third with a dedicated scratch partition (you could share the scratch partition between multiple apps). That really does make a big difference.

f0dder

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #9 on: October 02, 2007, 03:42:51 AM »
Imho there isn't much reason to have your pagefile on a separate disk - ideally, it shouldn't be used very much... stuff more RAM in your PC if it is.
- carpe noctem

tomos

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2007, 04:05:21 AM »
Imho there isn't much reason to have your pagefile on a separate disk - ideally, it shouldn't be used very much... stuff more RAM in your PC if it is.

with 2GB of ram & for some reason the pagefile wasnt being accessed (I believe that was the problem)
I couldnt go into hibernation with FF + 40tabs open.
dunno did it say "not enough resources" or "not enough virtual resources to .... your API"
apologies about the vagueness of text :-[

but it's sorted now, one fixed size paging file on hdd2
as I said above:
Quote
(I also had small [paging file] on C drive but was having difficulty with some programmes &
hibernation till I got rid of the one on C..)

which makes me think I'm sticking with a paging file, but with all that I suspect it is used very little while I'm working..

Oh yeah,
I added Photoshop Scratch disks to the partition with paging file (& temp/internet stuff as well) -
at least that way they're all out of the way  :)
Tom

Carol Haynes

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2007, 04:38:10 AM »
Imho there isn't much reason to have your pagefile on a separate disk - ideally, it shouldn't be used very much... stuff more RAM in your PC if it is.

It's true that if you have lots of memory (2Gb+) then PageFile shouldn't be used much but it is used. Here is my current system:

sc.gif

You can see that all apps still grab at least a small slice of the pagefile - so it may as well be in the fastest place possible.

I suppose if you want it really fast you could put it on a fast Flash Drive!

f0dder

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2007, 06:26:13 AM »
"Paged Pool" doesn't mean it uses pagefile memory - it's kernel mode memory that can be paged out to disk (as opposed to memory from the nonpaged pools). Here's quoting the "explain" box from perfmon.msc (a really useful tool - start->run, performon.msc, <enter>).
Quote
Pool Paged Bytes is the size, in bytes, of the paged pool, an area of system memory (physical memory used by the operating system) for objects that can be written to disk when they are not being used
- carpe noctem

Carol Haynes

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2007, 07:42:06 AM »
"Paged Pool" doesn't mean it uses pagefile memory - it's kernel mode memory that can be paged out to disk (as opposed to memory from the nonpaged pools). Here's quoting the "explain" box from perfmon.msc (a really useful tool - start->run, performon.msc, <enter>).
Quote
Pool Paged Bytes is the size, in bytes, of the paged pool, an area of system memory (physical memory used by the operating system) for objects that can be written to disk when they are not being used

Here is mine (OK the CPU is under load - green trace). The thick red trace shows the Page reads/sec. so th Page file is pretty active with 2Gb of RAM on my system. All that is running (apart from a few tray icons no doing much) is a bit of downloading from the web and a DVD recoding in process (which takes up the CPU cyles)

By the way it is PERFMON.MSC

sc.gif
« Last Edit: October 02, 2007, 07:43:41 AM by Carol Haynes »

tomos

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #14 on: October 02, 2007, 07:44:54 AM »
I've read though (sorry couldnt tell you where)
that if these apps want the option to page out to disc,
it can cause trouble if there's no paging file there at all..
(sort of like they just need the reassurance :) )

were you saying somewhere f0dder that you don't use a paging file?

EDIT sorry Carol didnt read your last post before posting this
Tom

f0dder

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #15 on: October 02, 2007, 09:42:15 AM »
Hm, I don't have a "Memory" performance object in perfmon.msc (I need a reinstall soon >_<), so I can't check the "Page Reads/sec" description - but my guess is that it's general paging (not pagefile!) operations - memory mapped files, for instance, depend on the processor's pagefault mechanism to work.

tomos: yep, I run with pagefile disabled, and things generally run hunky-dory (2 gigs of ram). Applications that depend on the pagefile are generally ill-behaved resource pigs that don't manage memory themselves. I had a few problems when I had one gig of ram, the game painkiller would crash sometimes, but with 2 gigs I haven't had problems yet :)
- carpe noctem

Carol Haynes

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #16 on: October 02, 2007, 09:59:40 AM »
You could always have a small fixed size pagefile just to keep naught apps happy. On the settings page it suggests an absolute minimum size of 2Mb - but I'd guess you could donate 100Mb without missing much.

[deXter]

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #17 on: October 02, 2007, 12:08:40 PM »
It isn't a panacea though as many programs don't behave well and use their own temporary files - usually stored in your user profile hidden "Applications" or "Local Settings" folders and I haven't found a way to move those off the system drive yet.

 • Head over to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders

 • Edit the Local AppData string.

I've been changing my %tmp% and %appdata% since Win2k and haven't faced any compatibility issue yet.
One Script to rule them all, One Script to find them, One Script to bring them all and in the web bind them
In the Land of The Net where the Hackers lie.

Carol Haynes

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #18 on: October 02, 2007, 03:12:14 PM »
Yep - I knew about that reg key

Does any one know a way to move the whole user profile to a different partition,

eg. move C:\Documents and Settings\Carol and everything in it (including the user profile files etc)

to D:\

[deXter]

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #19 on: October 02, 2007, 10:15:35 PM »
^
 • Head over to HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\ProfileList

 • Select your account's sub-key by looking at the ProfileImagePath string on the right-pane.

 • Once you've found the appropriate key for your account, just edit the ProfileImagePath string.
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In the Land of The Net where the Hackers lie.

PhilB66

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #20 on: October 02, 2007, 10:55:40 PM »
Yep - I knew about that reg key

Does any one know a way to move the whole user profile to a different partition,

eg. move C:\Documents and Settings\Carol and everything in it (including the user profile files etc)

to D:\

1. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/236621 (Windows 2000 & 2003) and an article based on this KB but adapted to work for Windows XP @ http://www.dennislaz...ocumentsandsettings/

2. Another guide... Storing Windows profiles on a different partition

BTW, here's a great portal to search for KB articles
« Last Edit: October 02, 2007, 10:58:29 PM by PhilB66 »

tomos

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #21 on: October 03, 2007, 01:58:25 AM »
Yep - I knew about that reg key

Does any one know a way to move the whole user profile to a different partition

1. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/236621 (Windows 2000 & 2003) and an article based on this KB but adapted to work for Windows XP @ http://www.dennislaz...ocumentsandsettings/

2. Another guide... Storing Windows profiles on a different partition

i wonder if it's worth all that...? or is it more a feel good/tidy up thing ??  :)

EDIT: odd, in guide two there it says make new "mover" account,
login & change registry settings (steps 8 to 11)
then it says:
13. Do a cold boot of your computer.
14. Use the "mover" account again.
15. Go through processes 8 until 11.*
* again !
wonder do they mean go through it again simply to double-check the changes you've made ...
Tom
« Last Edit: October 03, 2007, 02:12:10 AM by tomos »

tomos

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #22 on: October 03, 2007, 02:04:45 AM »
with 2GB of ram & for some reason the pagefile wasnt being accessed (I believe that was the problem)
I couldnt go into hibernation with FF + 40tabs open.
dunno did it say "not enough resources" or "not enough virtual resources to .... your API"
apologies about the vagueness of text :-[

but it's sorted now...

a bit off topic but that wasnt sorted (just pretended to be for a while...)
error was (when going into hibernation):
"Insufficient system resources exist to complete the API"
is related to xp sp2 struggling with too much memory (odd reaction though!)

solution is ms hotfix, see page
http://support.microsoft.com/kb/909095
or
if that doesnt work the more recent comments here may help:
http://www.ntwizards...2004/10/13/hibernate
Tom

Carol Haynes

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #23 on: October 03, 2007, 05:59:01 AM »
Yep - I knew about that reg key

Does any one know a way to move the whole user profile to a different partition,

eg. move C:\Documents and Settings\Carol and everything in it (including the user profile files etc)

to D:\

1. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/236621 (Windows 2000 & 2003) and an article based on this KB but adapted to work for Windows XP @ http://www.dennislaz...ocumentsandsettings/

2. Another guide... Storing Windows profiles on a different partition

BTW, here's a great portal to search for KB articles

Thanks that's really useful.

I tried a number of things a couple of years back but never got profile moved to another partition.

My original plan (though it requires a full reinstall so I can't see me trying it again any time soon) was to set up my system so that Windows is installed to partition C: but so that each of the following are on their own individual partitions (* on separate hard disks):

*Pagefil.sys
*Temp folder (including browser caches etc)
*Software scratch folders
\Program Files
\Documents and settings (including My Documents etc. for each user)

This would separate out all the clutter and allow for a small lean "System" partition with all the sprawl neatly contained in its own places which are easy to defrag and backup.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2007, 06:05:23 AM by Carol Haynes »

nosh

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Re: alternatives to partition magic/paragon?
« Reply #24 on: October 07, 2007, 06:33:48 PM »
Stay away from Partition Tragic. Use Acronis Disk Director instead.

I really wouldn't recommend trusting any Acronis product for managing partitions. I had a big catastrophe today when I tried to use the Acronis HDD boot function (the one that offers to show a True Image screen on boot so you can run recovery right off the HDD).

It tried to create a partition, failed and abruptly exited. When I logged on to Windows all the partitions seemed to be in place but Windows prompted me to reboot coz "changes had been made". After reboot compmgmt showed me that a small partition (unlettered/ unused space) had indeed been created. A peep via partition magic showed the whole disk merged into one "bad" partition! I tried to allocate the unused space back via compmgmt and boom! it exits with an error and the free space has been merged with two of my logical data drives, making them both unusable. I know people don't think very much of PMagic but it was the only app that recognised that things had been badly fxxxed up.

I managed to get everything back, thanks to most of it being mirrored daily on another HDD and a gem of a utility called 'Find and Mount', free for home use. It lived up to its name and found both lost partitions and the chunk of unallocated space. It let me mount both partitions to their respective drive letters and I'm moving data to my other HDD as I type this. The free version lets you read data off the mounted drives at 512 KB/s, it'll take me half a day yet to get everything out of there but I'm not complaining, this thing saved my ass.

Partition Find and Mount - highly recommended! Acronis for partitioning, NOT!

One thing I'd like to add is, whatever tool you're using for partitioning, if it's not screwing up, stick to it! Managing partitions via multiple apps really seems like a bad idea.
« Last Edit: October 07, 2007, 06:50:53 PM by nosh »