I am confused about partitioning a hard drive.
Recently I have been trying to install Windows 7 on a new computer, and I noticed that Windows setup will attempt to automatically partition the hard drive while giving you very few options to finetune the partition layout. Additionally, there will be quite some unpartitioned space left on the HDD i.e. the first partition starts on sector 2048 (as opposed to sector 63), there is inter-partition space present between primary partitions, and the HDD ending also has some unpartitioned sectors. Unhappy about this, I decided to use a live Linux CD to manually partition the HDD, and then run the Windows setup on existing partitions.
My question is why are the partitions not packet tightly together? What is the reason that windows setup will leave such gaps (inter-partition space) on the HDD? Is there a benefit for using such segmented partition layout?
Wishing to keep the unpartitioned space to a minimum, are there any drawbacks, if I manually partition the HDD in such a way that the first partition starts on sector 64 (not 63), that there are no gaps (unused sectors) between primary partitions, and that there is no unpartitioned space left at the ending? All given sector numbers are divisible by 8... If 1 sector = 512 bytes, 8 sectors = 4096 bytes. The partition boundaries are divisible by 4096.
Device Boot Start End Blocks Id System /dev/sda1 64 409600063 204800000 83 Linux /dev/sda2 409600064 976773167 283586552 83 Linux
Total sectors: 976773168