17 September 2011

Keep Personal Files on a Different Drive to your Operating System

Windows keeps all your personal files on the C drive along with the operating system. This is a really bad idea because when (not if!) you need to reinstall the operating system you have to sift through and find all your files to move them off.

However, Windows will allow you to move these folders to a separate drive. Here’s how:
  • Select a new location: Before beginning select a new location for the User folders e.g. I use E:\Users\[username]\ and create the folders you are moving e.g. Documents
  • Show system folders: If you want to move the AppData folder which I recommend as it contains things like your Outllook address book then in Explorer select Tools\Options\View tab and in the list under “Hidden files and folders” select “Show”
  • Move the files:
    • In Windows Explorer (press Windows key and E) go to C:\Users\[username]\ and right click on one of the personal file folders and select Properties. On Win 7 that’s the folders in  like Contacts, Desktop, Downloads, My Documents
    • Click the ‘Location’ tab, and select Move. Browse to the new location.

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