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 them.
- Extended or secondary: Counts as a primary partition, but in turn can use the space to store data within additional partitions.
- Logic: they are divisions that can be found within an extended partition, up to a maximum of 32 in each.
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 files of the Windows installation in a separated way. 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.
It can also be used to keep our data safe from malware or to put our files in a separate partition to easily manage your 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.
We must also bear in mind that, with a disk partition, we will not have to worry about the total disk space, always having available the totality of the available space. On the other hand, with multiple partitions it may happen that in some of them we run out of space, but in others we are over. Limited space can be a problem if there is a major Windows update that requires space that we don’t have because it is on another partition.
Partitioning can be something that the average user is not able to take advantage of it does not have enough files to be interested in managing it on other units, nor is it interested in installing other operating systems. It is therefore a function directed more towards advanced users.