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I just bought a Dell Vostro 3450 notebook whose drive was already partitioned when I got it. It has a 500GB hard drive: 100GB used for the Dell programs and Windows while the other 400GB is not used by anything. I thought of using the 400GB partition for data - however since I am using Windows 7 I cannot move the Users folder (i.e. My Documents, My Pictures, etc) to the 400GB partition, so I'm thinking how I could use the 400GB partition.

I'm considering using the 400GB partition for installing my software but I'm unsure if it will be healthy for my computer to have my new software installed in the other partition.

Should I instead shrink the 400GB partition and increase the C: drive (100GB) which is currently the system drive? If so, how can I do this?

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There's no reason you can't install software in the other partition, if you want - just select Custom installation if necessary and direct the installer to place the program in a folder on D:.

In your case though, I would recommend just removing the D partition and expanding C since you don't have any real use for a drive partitioned in that manner. OEMs sometimes provide drives that way with the idea that it will make it easier to recover the machine, but understanding how most users actually use their systems that benefit is rarely achieved.

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