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I am building a new computer (already purchased the parts, just waiting on them to arrive), and I am planning to use a SSD as the boot drive. My dad suggested moving the Program Files (and Program Files x86) and the Users directory to my secondary hard drive. So here are my questions:

  1. Will I see a performance hit by moving these off the SSD? I had thought that the point of having my program installations on the SSD was to reduce the load time of common programs.

  2. I have seen at least one discussion on here about moving the Users folder to a secondary drive. Would this process also work for the Program Files and x86 folders?

  3. My plan is to put Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit on this machine. A friend of mine said he'd read about tweaks that you need to make when using a SSD with Windows. Is this the case? If so, what do I need to do differently from a traditional HDD? (I'm used to just plugging the drive in and starting to use it).

Thanks in advance for all the help. If it helps, here is the list of parts that I have ordered from Newegg. I'm excited for the new system (considering it's my first really powerful computer), but also want to get things started right.

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Unless an application is so poorly written that it constantly writes to Program Files, I would rather enjoy the fast load time of running applications off of the SSD. –  kmarsh Sep 9 '10 at 12:26

3 Answers 3

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  1. This part of your question is best answered with another that it is a duplicate of.
    Basically - keep Program Files on the SSD, and kept data on your mechanical drives (so, potentially UserData and ProgramData, or subsets within those, plus your media files, etc go on the mechanical drives).

  2. You can use symlinks to put any file or folder pretty much anywhere you want, with the symlink creating a transparent "shortcut" that the users and programs can use seemlessly. So yes, you can. The instructions from the question you link to are valid.

  3. Windows 7 has good support for SSD's, so you won't need to do anything special. Older versions of Windows did not utilise the drives as effectively as possible, and in particular do not use the additional commands unique to SSDs.

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Thanks for the advice. I had a feeling that there wouldn't be much benefit to moving the Prog Files folders off, but I'll follow the other link's instructions for moving the Users folder. Thanks again for the detailed answer. –  ChimericDream Sep 9 '10 at 21:39

Just make sure you have Ahci (Advanced Host Controller Interface) enabled in the bios first.

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In short: Don't listen to you Dad, kid. It's bad advice, as some programs may get confused.

Basically, put all static read-only data on the SSD - it's made for this.

Your own data you can put on the second disk, which may require small adjustments.
For example: changing the default directory of Word.

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