How to deal with partitions

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Your Mac's Specs
MacBook Pro 2,33GHz C2D 2GB RAM 256MB video + LCD Samsung 20" 206BW + Maxtor OneTouch III 500GB
Guys,

as soon as I get my mac, I will transfer all my mp3 and pictures from my old pc to it. (and we´re talking of a lot of gigs).

In PC, I´ve always had either 2 HDD or a big one, partitioned, for backup purposes.

This way, I´ve never had any problem with formatting my PC to a fresh win install, as my documents were always there.

I´m not sure about the structure of OSX, should I be able to partition my HDD as soon as I put my hands on it? (I don´t have yet any external HDD for backup purposes).

If so, should I do a fresh install of OSX? I heard that I could partition the HDD without having to reinstall the OSX.

Please, advice on this topic.

tks in advance
 
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iMac 27" 3.4 GHz, 256 GB SSD, 2 TB HDD, 8 GB RAM
I am not sure that partitioning is really needed. Unlike Windows, you can do a fresh install of Mac OS X and have it preserve all of your existing user files. Windows dumbly deletes everything when it is installed; Mac OS X is smarter in this regard.

As a result, there really shouldn't be a need to partition. This means that you don't have to decide in advance how much room you want to leave for the OS and apps vs. room for your data, only to find down the line that you got the mix wrong and have to reformat.

My recommendation would be to go with one large partition. This is what I have done on my Mac, and it has worked well to date.

BTW, this doesn't eliminate the need for a good backup strategy. Remember, partitioned or not, hard drives can fail, and if the physical device fails, all partitions on it fail.
 

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