Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

User avatar
BobH
UraniumLounger
Posts: 8330
Joined: 13 Feb 2010, 01:27
Location: Temple - Deep in the Heart of Texas

Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

Post by BobH »

I'm trying to come up with a better data management scheme for using my internal HDD on this laptop. It has a single 1TB drive. That drive has been partitioned with 4 recovery partitions and one partition for everything else. This was done by someone else; so I have no idea why it was partitioned like this, maybe something to do with HP tools and recovery schema.
Disk Partitions.PNG
The C partition has 907 GB allocated and contains the Windows 10 o/s and all the data in folders as shown.
C drive folders.PNG
I am considering further partitioning of the HDD. The existing C partition would be made smaller and would contain Windows and its folders and the Program Data content, and a new partition would be created for the Users folder and its contents. I am also considering yet another partition to contain 'other' data . . . things that I would like to keep around but are not critical for daily backups. The challenge is to size the partitions to optimize backups and restores. If I follow this plan, how large should the Windows and components partition be? Let's say 100GB would be sufficient (probably way more than sufficient) leaving about 800GB for the other 2 partitions which I would probably split into 600 and 200GB partitions. Please critique this plan and give me your recommendations.

My thoughts are to backup the OS and programs and related files weekly, data files (Users) daily, and a full backup of all partitions monthly. I was thinking that I can probably create an image file weekly as well on a thumb drive. I have a 1TB external HDD for the other backups. Should I partition this device as well? If so, should it mirror the internal HDD allocations? Should I have an additional partition for a system image (in addition to the thumb drive backups) so that I would have everything on this device without having to have any other in a recovery situation?

I'd be grateful for your advice which will be greatly appreciated.

:cheers: :chocciebar: :thankyou:
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
Bob's yer Uncle!
(1/2)(1+√5)
Intel Core i5, 3570K, 3.40 GHz, 16 GB RAM, ECS Z77 H2-A3 Mobo, Windows 7 >HPE 64-bit, MS Office 2016

User avatar
StuartR
Administrator
Posts: 11501
Joined: 16 Jan 2010, 15:49
Location: London, Europe

Re: Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

Post by StuartR »

I have a 1TB drive on my laptop, and it is partitioned like this...
Partitions.png
I think that 100GB for a C drive and all your applications is a bit too small, you should aim to keep at least 40% of the drive free for optimum performance.
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
StuartR


User avatar
ChrisGreaves
PlutoniumLounger
Posts: 12327
Joined: 24 Jan 2010, 23:23
Location: paused.undefined.exposed

Re: Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

Post by ChrisGreaves »

Bob> I am considering further partitioning of the HDD. The existing C partition would be made smaller and would contain Windows and its folders and the Program Data content, and a new partition would be created for the Users folder and its contents. I am also considering yet another partition to contain 'other' data . . . things that I would like to keep around but are not critical for daily backups.

Hi Bob. My laptop has one hard drive 465 GB and that’s it.
Untitled.png
The C-partition is 60 GB used/free at 34 GB / 26 GB. Win10 Professional and Office 2003.
The encrypted data partition is 404 GB split used/free as 218 GB 185 GB. This is all my data – application templates, writings, photos, music tracks. The lot!

Why bother with an upper-class and a lower-class of data? I take the view that whatever the data is, if I have spent valuable time keying it in, then it is worth backing up tonight, or else why did I key it in?

My nightly backup takes less than 5 minutes and is done with RoboCopy.
(1) The C:\Users\ tree is RoboCopyd to the data drive T:, and then
(2) The data drive T:\ is Robocopy’d to an external USB drive Y:.
The nightly backup (T to Y) takes less than five minutes – the time it takes me to put away the shovel and rake and lock the shed, or to pour a fresh cup of tea.

On Sunday nights the backup batch file does the standard daily T: to Y: backup and then:-
(3) Robocopys the Y: drive to another external Drive Z: Drive Z is an accumulation of everything ever written nightly to the Y drive
(4) Robocopys a “mirror” copy of the data drive T to the daily backup drive Y. Drive Y now contains an image of my data drive T. It is therefore never cluttered with debris from weeks past. When I recover from drive Y to drive T I will have at most a week’s worth of odds and ends, not a hundred copies of each of my application template.
The weekly backup takes ten minutes, but it runs while I am settling myself on the couch with a book and a hot supper.

Once a month I whip out a third external drive and make a (Control Panel) System Backup of the C drive.

I hope this helps.
Cheers
Chris
You do not have the required permissions to view the files attached to this post.
In Physics you don't get anything for nothing
In Yorkshire you don't get owt for nowt

User avatar
BobH
UraniumLounger
Posts: 8330
Joined: 13 Feb 2010, 01:27
Location: Temple - Deep in the Heart of Texas

Re: Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

Post by BobH »

Thank you, Stuart and Chris!!

I should have included this information in the op. My C: partition takes up the 78.1 GB shown in the data management image. The Users folder (data) takes up 29.3 GB; so the system and software currently take up about 48 GB. I thought that 100 GB would allow enough room for growth, but I think I'll double that to 200 GB.

As for having lower priority data, it is the more static, less frequently changed data that I was thinking about. Being an old mainframe bit-twister, I was thinking about maybe making the backup faster by not doing the entire 1TB every night. Perhaps I need to shed my old mindset, eh?

Thank you again for the responses.
Bob's yer Uncle!
(1/2)(1+√5)
Intel Core i5, 3570K, 3.40 GHz, 16 GB RAM, ECS Z77 H2-A3 Mobo, Windows 7 >HPE 64-bit, MS Office 2016

User avatar
DaveA
GoldLounger
Posts: 2549
Joined: 24 Jan 2010, 15:26
Location: Olympia, WA

Re: Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

Post by DaveA »

The problem with partitioning the drives is that where there is a hardware failure, then in most cases all of the partitions are non accessible.

If any thing a separate hard drive is best.
I am so far behind, I think I am First :evilgrin:
Genealogy....confusing the dead and annoying the living

User avatar
BobH
UraniumLounger
Posts: 8330
Joined: 13 Feb 2010, 01:27
Location: Temple - Deep in the Heart of Texas

Re: Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

Post by BobH »

I agree, Dave, but this is a laptop not a desktop unit. There is no room for separate hard drive.
Bob's yer Uncle!
(1/2)(1+√5)
Intel Core i5, 3570K, 3.40 GHz, 16 GB RAM, ECS Z77 H2-A3 Mobo, Windows 7 >HPE 64-bit, MS Office 2016

User avatar
ChrisGreaves
PlutoniumLounger
Posts: 12327
Joined: 24 Jan 2010, 23:23
Location: paused.undefined.exposed

Re: Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

Post by ChrisGreaves »

BobH wrote:
11 Sep 2021, 23:20
I should have included this information in the op. My C: partition takes up the 78.1 GB shown in the data management image. The Users folder (data) takes up 29.3 GB; so the system and software currently take up about 48 GB. I thought that 100 GB would allow enough room for growth, but I think I'll double that to 200 GB.
Hi Bob. I remember Gord Campbell's advice when I was thinking of a new desktop PC back in the early 90s: "Buy the biggest (capacity) hard drive that you can afford, then hook a monitor and keyboard up to it", and he meant hard drive, not chassis.
Nowadays we buy a laptop rather than several pluggable components, but I think the logic remains sound.
As for having lower priority data, it is the more static, less frequently changed data that I was thinking about. Being an old mainframe bit-twister, I was thinking about maybe making the backup faster by not doing the entire 1TB every night. Perhaps I need to shed my old mindset, eh?
I don't see that you need to shed your old mindset; I haven't done so, and if it was good enough for my father, it's good enough for me :smile:
The ICL 1900s (GEORGE3 os) did reel-to-reel tape backups of the hard drive, and some took a whole day, because the backup system purged deleted files from the backup, which meant consolidating tapes, which meant reading tapes onto the disk drive you were trying to backup, which meant you had to shed some of the hard drive files onto fresh tapes to make room for the files being dragged in from backup tapes so that you could reduce the number of tapes that needed to be mounted so that ...

In other words, yes, backups were time-consuming. They were that too in the 90s when we made backup copies of our floppy disks. Even when we used tape backup - those chunky little tapes that were smaller than a door stop and larger than a packet of cigarettes.
But today it is all random access for us, disk backed up to disk, and who cannot justify a pause for a cuppa at the end of the day while the backup does its thing (five minutes, tops)?

Neither you nor I are in charge of a mainstream bank's servers in the basement of the office building.

Cheers
Chris
In Physics you don't get anything for nothing
In Yorkshire you don't get owt for nowt

User avatar
Argus
GoldLounger
Posts: 3018
Joined: 24 Jan 2010, 19:07

Re: Partitioning for Better Back-Up and Recovery

Post by Argus »

BobH wrote:
11 Sep 2021, 20:19
I'm trying to come up with a better data management scheme for using my internal HDD on this laptop. It has a single 1TB drive. [...]
I am considering further partitioning of the HDD. The existing C partition would be made smaller and would contain Windows and its folders and the Program Data content, and a new partition would be created for the Users folder and its contents. I am also considering yet another partition to contain 'other' data . . . things that I would like to keep around but are not critical for daily backups.
Not looking at this from a laptop or single drive perspective, but I think there are some things that are universal.

I agree with the topic, although I have my data on a separate disk (as in doc, pic folders etc. simply pointed the OS in that direction); i.e. some say it's no idea with different partitions if the whole drive goes south, but that's not the point. With a good layout you can make backups and recovery easier, and also save space on the backups etc.

So even if I have separate disks for system and data, it could have been different partitions, since I then could also use different backup schedules, and knowing I can replace or clean the drive and restore them separately. I have, for example, excluded Downloads from backups, by pointing them to a folder (and partition) on a separate disk. Obviously, if anything downloaded is worth keeping in backups etc. I move it to the Data drive, or at least that is the idea ... I also have virtual machines outside the partitions included in the backup schedules. It's all about space and what is really worth saving, as for most of us. (I understand that with only one drive there is perhaps not much idea moving Downloads from partition A to B, they will be included in one of the backups anyhow, but one can also have a third scratch partition sort of.)

I agree that the system partition perhaps should be a bit larger (but I had 100 GB a long time when on Win7, using around 55), but it all depends on installed software.

I don't think an external HDD needs to be partitioned; I don't know about your backup software, but my software creates images in different folders (Data & System).
Byelingual    When you speak two languages but start losing vocabulary in both of them.