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  1. #1

    giulio's Avatar
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    Lightbulb Best hard drive configuration for performance
    Hi All,
    How is everyone today?

    Over time, CPUs get more powerful and ram more inexpensive. So the bottleneck of working has shifted to the hard drive. I've given a lot of thought of how to minimize that. So here is my idea...

    This assumes you have one 128GB drive. This idea uses partitions instead of physical drives. More drives would give wwaayy more performance (I think). But we are not all so fortunate.

    Partitiion the drive as so:
    50GB - System and Applications
    5GB - System swap space
    5GB - Application scratch space
    68GB - Users folder (docs, preferences, movies, photos, etc)

    The system would be on the inside of the platter. That is the fastest area. Everything should react really snappy. It would not be affected by user preferences, files, scratch, etc.

    The system swap space is for virtual memory, temp files, system caches, etc. This area would see lots of read/write usage. Being on it's own partition, it cannot muck up anything else.

    The application scratch space would also see lots of read/write usage. Any program that has a scratch disk location preference would use it. Being on it's own partition, it cannot muck up anything else.

    The Users folder would contain all the user home folders. Every file and preference gets stored here.

    This kind of configuration stops different types of files from mixing physically on the disk.

    After coming up with all this, I remember that Red Hat Fedora creates several partitions when installing. I suspect it would be for the same reason.


    WHEW! So, what do you think? Please... no posts/links about OSX automatically defragmenting and optimizing. The above is a different and proactive approach.
    schweb This has to be one of the best threads ever in MF history...
    Cherokee This gets my vote for most innovative thread on Mac-Forums... ever.

  2. #2


    Member Since
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    interesting approach. when i first clicked the thread, i thought it would be about setting up a RAID 0 with multiple drives.

  3. #3

    giulio's Avatar
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    Thanks. I was thinking of using different virutal drives, each with it's own function. Instead of having one drive do everything at once.

    But I wonder more... this is still one physical drive. So does it matter? Or worse?

  4. #4


    Member Since
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    Quote Originally Posted by giulio View Post
    Thanks. I was thinking of using different virutal drives, each with it's own function. Instead of having one drive do everything at once.

    But I wonder more... this is still one physical drive. So does it matter? Or worse?
    imo, hardware RAIDs would perform best. so i would think one physical drive, although faster than normal, would be slower than having multiple physical drives on a RAID.

    I'd be curious to see benchmarks though.

  5. #5

    giulio's Avatar
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    If I had time, money, and a spare machine, I'd love to experiment.

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