Partitioning Hard Drives: Advantages and Disadvantages

Partitioning Hard Drives: Advantages and Disadvantages

When we buy a new computer or hard drive today, it is normal that it has a high storage capacity included in a single partition. To avoid having to buy more storage devices, making different partitions of a single disk can be a good option to take advantage of the space.

When we talk about making a partition, we mean making a logical division of a hard disk, so that at a logical level they can behave as different storage units within the same physical unit. When it comes to talking about partitions, we find three different types:

  • Primary : they are the most basic and an MBR hard disk can contain up to 4 of these.
  • Extended or Secondary : Counts as a primary partition, but in turn can use the space to store data within other additional partitions.
  • Logic : they are divisions that can be found within an extended partition, up to a maximum of 32 in each one.

In general, on the hard disk where Windows is installed, it can contain a single partition, with the total size of the same, and in which it contains all the operating system files, installed programs, etc.

Partitioning has its advantages …

Partitioning a hard drive can provide us with a number of advantages that make it interesting to consider this possibility. For example, it can help us to keep the Windows installation files separately . Sometimes when we buy a computer, we may even find two partitions on the hard drive. One of them with a smaller size to store the recovery system, in case we have to reinstall the system.

Disco duro particionado

It can also help us to keep our data safe from malware or to place our files on a separate partition to easily manage their backup. In addition, if we make partitions they can help us to have a dual boot system with two or more operating systems running. It is also a good option to separate our PC from our virtual machine, with all its content separately.

… And also some disadvantages

Making partitions not only has advantages, but also has some disadvantages that we must consider. For example, it offers us a false sense of security. And it is that, although we have the files divided by partitions, the hard disk is still a unit. This means that, if it fails, we will still lose everything it contains. It also does not improve the speed or performance of the hard drive.

Administración de discos en Windows

We must also bear in mind that, with a disk partition, we will not have to worry about the total disk space , always having all the available space available. On the other hand, with multiple partitions it can happen that in some of them we run out of space, but in others we are over. Limited space can be a problem in the case of a major Windows update that requires space that we don’t have because it’s on another partition.

Partitioning can be something that the average user is not able to take advantage of since they do not have enough files to be interested in managing it on other drives, nor are they interested in installing other operating systems. It is therefore a function directed more towards advanced users.