Question How to install OS on one drive and everything else on another.

classicbigmike

Prominent
Oct 5, 2020
3
0
510
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Hi all.

I am about to reset my computer entirely and install new drives. My plan is to:
  1. Drive C: (256 GB NVMe M.2 SSD) - OS only
  2. Drive D: (1 TB NVMe M.2 SSD) - everything else
In the past, I have a hard time understanding how to configure Windows such that by default I am working with my D drive. As a developer, my current setup is pretty messy. How can I set this up properly? I will be completely wiping the computer, so it will be fresh install of Windows 11.

Help/link to guides/videos would be much appreciated. Thanks.
 

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
Remove 1TB drive. Install 256GB drive, install OS.

Install 1TB drive, format.

C and D are arbitrary, though typically the OS is on C.

Only reason to only have one drive installed at installation is to prevent boot files and swap files from being on the other drive and making the dual drive configuration mandatory.
 
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Unfortunately, there's no one-click solution for this. You'll want to change the default location for your documents/downloads/pictures/etc. folders, change the default download paths in whatever browsers you use, change the installation folders when you install programs, and change the working/data folders that some programs use that default to the C: drive. Even with these set, your system will still use the C: drive for temp files (unless you change that too).

See here for some of those steps - https://www.c-sharpcorner.com/article/how-to-change-the-download-location-in-windows-10/
 
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classicbigmike

Prominent
Oct 5, 2020
3
0
510
0
Unfortunately, there's no one-click solution for this. You'll want to change the default location for your documents/downloads/pictures/etc. folders, change the default download paths in whatever browsers you use, change the installation folders when you install programs, and change the working/data folders that some programs use that default to the C: drive. Even with these set, your system will still use the C: drive for temp files (unless you change that too).

See here for some of those steps - https://www.c-sharpcorner.com/article/how-to-change-the-download-location-in-windows-10/
Unfortunately this is how I thought it was. I'm tempted to just use the 1tb drive for everything (except games, ill throw those on a sata ssd). I really wish I could just merge both NVME M.2s into a dynamic 1256gb drive, but pretty sure Windows won't let you boot from a dynamic drive :/

EDIT:
Or maybe you can't install the OS on a dynamic, but perhaps I can make them dynamic afterwards?
I was originally wanting the OS on the smaller drive purely for optimization- but with all the path changes I rather just use the larger drive for everything now. Just seems a shame to have a 256gb NVME with a few things and such on it.
 

Eximo

Titan
Ambassador
Unfortunately this is how I thought it was. I'm tempted to just use the 1tb drive for everything (except games, ill throw those on a sata ssd). I really wish I could just merge both NVME M.2s into a dynamic 1256gb drive, but pretty sure Windows won't let you boot from a dynamic drive :/

EDIT:
Or maybe you can't install the OS on a dynamic, but perhaps I can make them dynamic afterwards?
I was originally wanting the OS on the smaller drive purely for optimization- but with all the path changes I rather just use the larger drive for everything now. Just seems a shame to have a 256gb NVME with a few things and such on it.
Well these days, maybe one or two AAA game titles that have long load times.
 
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