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Thread: Locking a Solid State HDD to OS only

  1. #1

    Default Locking a Solid State HDD to OS only

    Hey guys,

    I'm thinking of a little Mod/Upgrade on my PC. Has anyone here installed a small solid state hard drive for the sole purpose of running the OS.

    I'm thinking it would result in a faster boot, but am not sure what percentage gain I'd have or if it would be worth the trouble.

  2. #2


    Which kind of SSD do you plan to get? You can get a 840 evo 120gb for $80 on amazon already, so I wonder if there are still any smaller versions around today.

    But anyway, if you lack a bit of money but want the speed of an SSD just go for it. Using it solely for the OS (+Cache, + Programs you use the most) + a big chunky HDD storage raid has been the old purpose of them.

    Conventional hard disks are typically the biggest bottleneck in any computing environment, so a solid-state drive makes a difference in the overall performance easily.

    Subjectively from my experience: The responsiveness is just amazing.

  3. #3


    Running a fast drive for OS and a large slower setup for data is actually pretty common but for gaming you need to keep an eye on where stuff installs to. I know some gamers who copy heavily used files to their SSD and use links in the game folders. Alternatively you could look at MSATA devices as cache or if you are short on drive bays there are still some hybrid drives out there that have a small SSD built in that acts as a cache to speed up OS and SW.

  4. #4


    You can't really "lock" a hard drive to using only OS files... What counts as an OS file, anyway? Just the kernel? The window manager too? Basic shell utilities?

    The easiest thing to do is just to install programs and save your personal files on the new drive.

    It's probably a good idea to keep your personal data on a separate partition. That way (so long as you don't mind reinstalling the OS and programs if everything goes tits up), you only need to backup the drive(s) containing your data.

  5. #5


    I did this exact same thing on my laptop with a 128GB Crucial M4 hard drive. I have my OS, and a handful of frequently used games on it, and am loving the setup.

    I had to sacrifice my DVD drive to make room for my storage hard disk, but ah well. CDs are going the way of the dinosaur anyways I suppose.

  6. #6


    I used to do this when I had a small SSD.
    I installed the OS onto the SSD and had a 1TB magnetic drive for data. Disabled the Windows Pagefile on the SSD and placed it on the magnetic drive.
    Then logged in as the Administrator user, and used ROBOCOPY to move C:/Users to the magnetic drive, and 'symlinked' it, (or directory junctions in Windows) from C: to the magnetic drive (D: in my case).

    Then it was just a matter of watching where programs installed to. It's an alright method of doing it, but with the new Samsung Evo SSD's the price of larger drives is coming down. Assuming you are talking about purchasing a drive you could even wait till one that is capable of holding all of your data is more in your price range.

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