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Posts Tagged ‘Gparted

Vista, Windows 7 and Gparted.

with 11 comments

I had the misfortune to be forced to use a Vista installed laptop recently. It was a very nice piece of kit, a bit outdated by today’s ever changing standards, but as a 1.86Ghz Celeron it was fine for the work I used it for.

The only problem was Vista.

What a dog, I had previously removed/toned down most of the junk and eye candy to make it more like XP than the bloated beast it was, but even then it still ran like a slow 486.

I know the machine is fast enough as I have Linux installed, but I had to get a funny piece of hardware set-up and doing it under Vista seemed a smart idea at the time. How wrong.

After browsing the various “How to tune Vista” forums and guides, I realised that I had done most of that before, and it still ran like a dog.

Now I don’t have any clever solutions as to how to boost Vista, but I managed to improve matters by 5-15%, or at least I would hope so, for the time taken.

Firstly, I install Vista SP1, downloaded direct from M$ site, after 2-3 hours it finished, just.

Next, a cheat used Tune Up 2008 , taken from a magazine DVD, and saw what that did.

Not bad but still sluggish. Still reading the guides I wondered about the Vista services, and this is NOT recommended, but Vista Services Optimizer worked.

A problem with this Vista laptop was not only the Service Packs taking forever and a day (I could have installed and upgraded 10 Linux systems and still have had time for a long lunch break) but the partitioning.

It was a mess, a massive C drive in NTFS format, a few others that I must have created ages back, with a paltry 14 Gb for Linux, only 3.5 used. Compare that with 26 Gb for Vista, and it still stunk. Not only that but the division of the partitions was annoying, too much *before* the extended partition and not enough after it.

Long story short, I shrank two NTFS partitions and then shifted the space into the extended partition, recovering about 33 Gb, enough for 4-5 Linux distros! I just defragged everything under Vista using an old copy of JKdefrag, booted up Gparted 4.6.1, checked the disks, back to Vista I re-scheduled a disk check on C: as Gparted complained a bit, after a bit of fiddling around I now have plenty of space for other things.

All a bit boring for the non-technical, but it shows that you can do things previously considered, difficult to impossible: shift an extended partition around, with a lot of data and not lose anything in the process, thankfully it was open sourced software that did the deed, I wouldn’t feel confident doing that with M$ junk and it would have costed, whereas Linux and Gparted are free.

Word to the wise, watch out for the drive assignment after the partition changes.

As for Windows 7, my advice is ignore the hype, wait for 6-9 months for the bug fixes to appear, instead download any one of the many great distros at distrowatch, and save a packet in the process.

Written by modernityblog

01/11/2009 at 21:11