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So I just recently got a new laptop (Inspiron 15z w/ i7 and non-touch) and it comes with a 500GB HDD like my old laptop but it also has a 32GB SSD.

Now, Ive been looking at the disks in Disk Management in Windows 8 and in Ubunut off a flash drive and the SSD has only one 8 GB partition on it and the rest is unallocated. I dont know what windows is using this partition for but I want to take advantage of the unused SSD space.

I'm going to install archlinux for sure so my question is during the install, what partitions should I put on the SSD for the best performance. I'm not going to be gaming too much in linux but I want it to boot as fast as windows 8 does.

I assume then that I would put the /boot partition here then, however, will that work with UEFI booting? The UEFISYS partition is on the HDD not the SDD so I'm confused how the SSD is being utilized unless I'm misunderstandin and UEFI is capable of cross-device booting.

Maybe I'm just rambling and over complicating things but some clarification would be nice, if at all possible.

Thanks in Advance!

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Before doing ANYTHING with the "unused" space on the SSD, you should check that your laptop has not been configured to use SRT (Intel Smart Response SSD Caching Technology). If SRT is enabled, all (or most) of the SSD is "hidden" from any OS by the hardware and the space is used to dynamically cache frequently used files. See PC World Article here - pcworld.com/article/248828/… for more info. I'm not sure how SRT affects a dual-boot system, as I haven't used it myself yet. –  PJC Feb 20 '13 at 7:59
    
At least 15% of SSD should be left unused, otherwise performance will drop. Also consider that Windows 8 boots very fast even on old-school HDDs (6 seconds on 7 year old PC), it's not only the drive speed but mostly the hybrid shutdown. –  gronostaj Feb 20 '13 at 8:14
    
Oh... well I should probably remove the partition I created on the ssd that filled up the remaining space then... That's good to know, thanks. –  Brandon Feb 20 '13 at 9:00

1 Answer 1

32GB is exactly the space that ReadyBoost can use, so I'd recommend turning on ReadyBoost to cache the hottest 32GB of files from your HD. I don't have first hand experience but lots of people report it gives them SSD-like boot and application startup times with HD-like storage space.

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Thanks for the tip but I've been looking for a solution that will also help me out speed-wise in archlinux, not just Windows. My SSD is still just sitting their even after 9 months. –  Brandon Dec 3 '13 at 22:41
    
You could mount your home directory, or your webserver (or whatever you do in linux) on the SSD. Heck you could even install archlinux directly on the SSD. –  Philip Dec 3 '13 at 23:48

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