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Old 6th June 2019
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Re: W10 peek-a-boo for Junes update

Originally Posted by Keith-369 View Post
If I was to shrink 'C' drive (leaving space for any new programs I want to install of course) and expand the new section (let's call it 'D' for now), presumably I would move My Documents, Downloads and everything else except programs before I shrank it. Would I just drag and drop Documents etc or is there a better way?

If I was to install my 480Gb SSD as a second drive, is it just a simple drag and drop to relocate the Pagefile.sys file to it, and where is Pagefile.sys?

Thanks again


Coming back to Keith's questions, as I said earlier, I would start by creating a 'Disk Image' of your system drive so that if anything goes wrong, which is always possible, you can easily restore everything. I keep a disk image of all of my machines so that I can turn the clock back if needed. Provided you have the space you can create multiple disk images as you go along, and then simply delete those you don't need.

A quick note about disk images. These create a snapshot of your disk at the moment the image was created, and will recreate that image, byte for byte on the target drive. If used some time later these disk images are quite uncanny as you will see the same part-written emails, web pages and documents that were open when the image (or clone) was created.

A disk image will also recreate exactly the same file system as the original so regardless of which format you use (or none) the disk image will be an exact clone of the original. Needless to say the disk image will wipe everything from the target drive and will only install on a disk of the same size or bigger irrespective of how much data was on the original.

Moving on, my philosophy for a long time has been to utilise the System drive (C:\ Drive) primarily for the operating system and programmes only. Apart from security concerns the OS and programmes can always be replaced. My data is irreplaceable. As far as possible I like to keep my data elsewhere; either on a separate file server or on separate physical drives. Apart from anything else, it can be frustrating having files on one computer that cannot easily be accessed elsewhere.

As an added bonus, not storing data on C:\ drive reduces fragmentation which was a problem in the days of spinning hard drives.

The Windows Library system (My Documents, My Music, Etc.,) may be convenient but you don't have to use it. You can create an entirely separate folder and file ecosystem set it as a default location for Word, Excel, etc. You can also create shortcuts to regularly used locations in Explorer. Finally, you can easily move the library folders to different locations and can add other locations to the Library. It isn't a fixed feast.

To get started, if you want to move your Windows Library files go to Windows Explorer, locate My Documents and right click on it. Select the Location tab then Move to find a new location and to move files there. Repeat this for Pictures, Music and so forth.

It isn't good practice to put everything into a root drive so for consistency I create a 'Users' file on a separate drive. My file locations therefore look like this:


And so on....
One Drive:

By default the contents of Microsoft OneDrive are located on C:\ drive, but that too can be moved. However, be careful where you move OneDrive to as it will effectively 'mop up' everything in the target location. For example, I made the mistake of moving it to the 'E:\Users\Nigel' folder where it automatically synchronised everything in Documents, Pictures, Music and everything else in that location which I did not want! You may want to create your own location for OneDrive such as E:\Users\Nigel\OneDrive or simply leave it where it is which may be easier.

Moving Pagefile.sys

This job should be left until last. Pagefile.sys is Windows 'virtual memory' and by default is located in the root of C:\ drive. This is used to store less-used data if there is insufficient space in volatile RAM, and also to store some driver data for faster boot ups.

Read-write speed of individual drives is limited so you will get better performance if your Pagefile.sys file is located on a separate physical drive. However, this data might be needed by Windows which is why I said this stage should be left until last, and when it is unlikely that you will need to restore from a disk image.

Go to Control Panel, System, Advanced System Settings, Advanced, Settings, Advanced, and then select Change under Virtual Memory. (This is quite tortuous.)

Deselect 'Automatically manage paging file size for all drives' and then select Custom Size. You will then be prompted to enter the size and location of the Page File. I prefer to set the both minimum and maximum values to the 'Recommended' value shown; that way the PageFile is always the same size and doesn't move around or get fragmented.

Finally, make sure you have installed software to maintain your new SSD. This is needed to update the firmware and in many cases can greatly accelerate performance.

Naughty Nigel

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