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I want to partition my c drive to create 1 partition for os (c:)and 1 partition (f:)for data prior to creating 3rd partition (g:)for 2nd os to allow dual booting (d: & e: are cd-r and dvd drives). help from this forun has told me how to go about creating partitions in general and installing the 2nd os but I am not clear on how I seperate my current os (xp pro) from current data on the first two partitions i create without causing problems for programs which automatically create folders for default storage (eg: pinnacle video) and exactly what goes in each. Any suggestions?
After resizing the C partition and creating the new F partition for data, following huggyg71's link, what you'll need to do about the data files and folders depends on the original storage location.
Many programs use "My Documents" as the default location (with or without a subfolder), which on XP Pro, is actually the C:\Documents and Settings\Username\My Documents folder.
The easiest way to transfer the stuff under My Documents to the F partition is to change the target of the My Documents icon on the desktop to the F drive, or a folder under the F drive.
For example, create a folder called F:\Documents (very unimaginative). Then right click the My Documents icon on your desktop, select Properties, and you'll see the target shown as C:\Documents and ... \My Documents.
Click Move. Then navigate to F:\Documents (or even just the F drive if you like). Click OK and so on. You'll be asked whether to move the contents of the current My Documents folder to the new target. Say yes, and all the existing files and folders will be moved for you. This way you don't need to manually transfer the data files, or change the settings of the individual programs which use My Documents as the default storage location.
For example, if (just an example, may not be correct) Pinnacle's default storage location is My Documents\Pinnacle\My Projects, then changing the target as above will (1) transfer the existing Pinnacle folder over to the new target on the F drive folder, and (2) future storage will be made under the new target, without you having to change the settings in Pinnacle.
For programs which have a 'default" storage location other than My Documents, a lot of them have settings options you can change. You just need to go through them and check if they allow you to change the default. For example, Real Player creates the My Music folder on your C drive to save certain music files. Move the My Music folder from C to F. Then go into Real Player's settings and change C:\My Music to F:\My Music (the difficult part is finding where the setting is supposed to be for each program).
Do the same thing on both your existing XP pro, and on your new OS. Just one thing to remember is when you change the target of My Documents on the new OS (which should have nothing except the default Windows subfolders like My Pictures), either choose not to move the contents to F, or when prompted, choose not to overwrite existing files.
Otherwise, if a program does not use My Documents, nor does it provide you with an option to change the default storage location, you just have to change the path for saving a file to the F drive every time. There shouldn't be too many of them.
Another thing which has occurred to me. When you install programs on the new OS (common to those already on the existing XP pro), they will create empty folders to the default storage location.
I don't know whether these programs are smart enough to warn you if the folder already exists. So to be careful, I suggest you set up your dual boot in the following way. Ignore the second last paragraph in my last post.
Resize and create all the necessary partitions. Leave the existing data on the C partition where it is, for the time being.
Install your new OS. After installation, change the target for My Documents immediately. Say yes to moving the contents. Then install programs. Programs which create a subfolder in My Documents will do so under F:\Documents. Let these be.
Programs which create folders elsewhere, such as G:\My Music for Real Player, move it to F:\My Music, and change the setting for storage location in the individual program to the correct F subfolder.
Then boot into existing XP pro, and change the target for My Documents. Say yes to moving contents. Say yes to all to overwrite existing files and folders.
Then move storage folders for other programs (such as Real Player example) to from C to F, overwriting existing files and folders on F. Then change the setting for each program to change it from C:\My Music to F:\My Music (in the Real Player example).
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