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As I understand it, for SSD it's important to have partitions starting at the proper offset (i.e. correctly aligned). How can I check this offset under Windows Vista?

7 Answers 7

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Just run msinfo32 and find "Partition Starting Offset". It will be in bytes, divide the number by 512 to convert into sectors. On my SSD it is 1MB (1 048 576 bytes), but as far as i know, 128k is enough.

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    On my Windows 7 x64 system it is C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\MSInfo\msinfo32.exe
    – peter_mcc
    Commented Dec 21, 2011 at 21:53
  • On my Windows XP Pro x32 system it is C:\Program Files\Common Files\Microsoft Shared\MSInfo\msinfo32.exe too. Can't remember if it's part of the original XP install or not.
    – n611x007
    Commented Oct 13, 2013 at 10:06
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    With Windows, 4k alignment is enough because NTFS does not have any periodic structure larger than the cluster size (unlike, say, ext2)
    – kinokijuf
    Commented Aug 5, 2015 at 12:03
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    It's always msinfo32. Just type msinfo32 at a Run prompt (Windows-R). It's in your path. No need to go digging through directories. Commented Feb 11, 2016 at 5:36
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In Windows XP:

> diskpart -i <disk number>

should show HiddenSectors divisible by 64 and StartingOffest divisible by 32768

In Vista, 7, 8, 8.1 and 10:

> E:\Home>wmic partition get BlockSize, StartingOffset, Name, Index
BlockSize Index Name StartingOffset
512 0 Disk #1, Partition #0 1048576
512 1 Disk #1, Partition #1 53688139776
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    diskpart doesn't seem to work that way in WinXP. can you give more details? Commented Apr 23, 2010 at 14:53
  • I had to do a convoluted series of commands on WinXP: diskpart > select disk 1 > list partition Result: <blockquote> DISKPART> list partition Partition ### Type Size Offset ------------- ---------------- ------- ------- * Partition 1 Primary 49 GB 32 KB Partition 2 Extended 883 GB 49 GB Partition 3 Logical 883 GB 49 GB</blockquote> Commented Nov 9, 2011 at 19:50
  • That wmic works even on Windows 10
    – Csaba Toth
    Commented May 1, 2015 at 15:24
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You are right, but it does not work like that on Windows XP. There you can use diskpart:

diskpart -i (number of your ssd)

And you'll get geometry information and disk partition information.

I hope this helps.

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I use the Paragon Alignment Tool, which comes with Paragon products, or can be bought seperately.

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To check alignment, start "wmic" with admin rights, and enter command "partition get BlockSize, StartingOffset, Name, Index"

(wmic is available in Win7, possibly Vista)

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diskpart.exe and diskpar.exe are separate utilities from Microsoft. What is given above works with diskpar.exe only:

diskpar -i x

x as the drive number. You cannot retrieve the offset using diskpart.exe. Use msinfo32.exe as described above

diskpart.exe started be be bundled with Windows 2003 and Vista. diskpar.exe was a standalone utility released at the time of Windows 2000. It still works with Windows 7 and 8.

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WMI (wmic command) is available in Windows XP (SP3 or may be even early) (as a diskpart.exe btw). So in Windows XP you can use as Msinfo32 as Wmic to check offset. 1024K offset is the best choice for SDD and 4k disks or RAID.

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