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Thread: Confused with New System with both SSD and HDD Drives

  1. #1

    Default Confused with New System with both SSD and HDD Drives

    Hi,
    I'm not new to Flight Sim but have been away from it for several years. I finally got a new system with a 1 TB SSD drive and a 2 TB HDD drive. The computer came with Prepar3d already installed and ready to go. I'm new to a 2 drive system but so far have installed ORBX Global Base, Vector, N A Landclass, and Orlando city. I also downloaded but still have to install Global Mesh. I also installed 3 A2A aircraft. Everything installed to the SSD drive which is where the main program as well as Windows 10 are located. In Explorer it is clear that the SSD drive is the main drive and the HDD is the secondary or "X" drive. Everything I installed so far automatically installed to the SSD with no option to select another drive. I happened to look in Explorer and was surprised to see that 1/4 of the SSD drive is already used. I was advised to keep all Prepar3d files together on the same drive for more effficient loading, especially scenery files. I still plan on getting a weather program, more aircraft, and an AI traffic program such as Ultimate Traffic. Later on I also considered giving X-Plane 11 a try.

    The computer was supposed to come with a 1/2 TB SSD drive but to be safe I went with the 1 TB. I've read of several experienced simmers that have great looking systems loaded with many addons with less memory than me or the same.

    Am I doing things correctly? I thought I could use the secondary HDD drive for scenery or addon programs such as weather, AI traffic, etc. to save space on the SSD drive but I don't know how they connect with the SSD main program. What's more, everything I've downloaded so far automatically wants to install on the default, main drive. The only way I am able to load files on the HDD is manually and have read that's all it should be used for-storage and backup, and that everything Flight Sim related should be together on the same drive. One article even said when the main SSD fills up, get a bigger drive and transfer everything to it or get a second external SSD.
    Can someone please point me the right way before I get to far if I'm doing something wrong? Hopefully I'm on the right track and if I fill the SSD I just get another drive. Thanks, Tom

  2. #2

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    Rules:

    1: SSD is in almost all circumstances faster than HDD.
    OS and P3D/FSX should ALWAYS be on the faster drive: DO NOT install either in the default Program Files folder (it has extra protections which you don't need as they can slow things up and make installation of addons more difficult)

    2: HDD is useful for scenery and backups, and stuff which is only accessed at sim startup.
    ORBX may also be placed on the HDD by use of Symbolic Link (covered in these forums, search for it)

    All backups should be on the HDD, as you have noted.

  3. #3

    Default

    Thanks for the help,
    Tom

  4. Default

    I am in the same situation with a new system. I have only used single drive in the past. Now with the split install of 240 GB SDD (C) and 1TB HDD (D), I am not sure which way to go even after reading through some of the posts on the forum.
    As this setup is primarily for Flight Sim/games, for simplicity, couldn't I just keep ALL FS9 and gaming on the HDD? Just leave the SDD for the OS and security/anti-virus stuff?

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2005
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    Westminster, CO
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    6,875

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    for simplicity, couldn't I just keep ALL FS9 and gaming on the HDD? Just leave the SDD for the OS and security/anti-virus stuff?
    Certainly you can do that. And with only a 240 GB SDD that's not a bad plan, though the sim would be more responsive if it were on an SDD, but it's pretty small if you install many add-ons, so the larger drive can help in that respect.

    It's also possible to install FS on the SDD and most of the add-ons to the HDD, though it's not quite as simple.

    Larry N.

    As Skylab would say:
    Remember: Aviation is NOT an exact Science!

  6. #6

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    Quote Originally Posted by dutchman2 View Post
    I am in the same situation with a new system. I have only used single drive in the past. Now with the split install of 240 GB SDD (C) and 1TB HDD (D), I am not sure which way to go even after reading through some of the posts on the forum.
    As this setup is primarily for Flight Sim/games, for simplicity, couldn't I just keep ALL FS9 and gaming on the HDD? Just leave the SDD for the OS and security/anti-virus stuff?
    Update the SSD if that's an option: It makes no sense to have OS on the faster drive without the sim ALSO on the SSD, but you will need a bigger SSD - 512 GB as a recommended minimum, and even then some addons you might purchase would be better off on the HDD.

    Otherwise, OS on SSD, and Sim on HDD makes (ludicrous) sense...

  7. Default

    Thank you all for your input.
    Maybe I should have mentioned my previous system, then you may understand why the speed issue didn't occur to me until you all brought it up.
    The Dinosaur: Intel E8500, Gigabyte GAP43ES3G DDR2 1200, 4 GB, Geforce GTX 650TI, Win-XP.
    Since the issue was brought up I did a bit more looking and have been reading up on the Symlink thingy. This appears to be the path forward once I understand it better.
    If I understand the concept, the basic FS9 is on the SDD with symlink to the aircraft and scenery folders. I am presuming that the full aircraft and scenery folders are on the HDD.
    That brings up another item, which drive to put the thrustmaster file?

  8. #8

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    Quote Originally Posted by dutchman2 View Post
    Thank you all for your input.
    Maybe I should have mentioned my previous system, then you may understand why the speed issue didn't occur to me until you all brought it up.
    The Dinosaur: Intel E8500, Gigabyte GAP43ES3G DDR2 1200, 4 GB, Geforce GTX 650TI, Win-XP.
    Since the issue was brought up I did a bit more looking and have been reading up on the Symlink thingy. This appears to be the path forward once I understand it better.
    If I understand the concept, the basic FS9 is on the SDD with symlink to the aircraft and scenery folders. I am presuming that the full aircraft and scenery folders are on the HDD.
    That brings up another item, which drive to put the thrustmaster file?
    Thrustmaster file goes on the same drive as the OS.

    Yes, you understand the Symlink concept just fine. The main gain is from files only loaded once at start up, like aircraft and scenery.

    I would also suggest creating a separate folder for aircraft you AREN'T flying to avoid cluttering the SSD with addon aircraft you don't need - ALL defaults should be kept on the SSD, but create a folder called `Hangar` for temporary storage of any addon aircraft you don't need for that session - Just drag/drop the unneeded aircraft folders into the Hangar (dont worry about gauges, sounds or any other files) and you can quickly move it back if you need...

    This does not need to be Symlink-created, just a bog-basic folder on the HDD

  9. #9
    Join Date
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    I have the same situation with my new computer I have my addon scenery on 2 TB hard drive. But do I need to do anything for the SSD that has FSX steam on it know to go to th HD for the addon scenery?

  10. #10
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
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    Pontefract, West Yorkshire, UK
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    Quote Originally Posted by mrmark501 View Post
    I have the same situation with my new computer I have my addon scenery on 2 TB hard drive. But do I need to do anything for the SSD that has FSX steam on it know to go to th HD for the addon scenery?
    First, look at the thread that you created to ask about placing scenery on another drive - there are a number of answers to your question that answer this one.

    But to answer this question in general terms - FSX knows where to find the scenery via the scenery activation process carried out using the FSX Scenery Settings page. Each action you take here is written into the Scenery.cfg file which is stored OUTSIDE of FSX at C:\ProgramData\Microsft\FSX.

    Each time you start FSX the file is read into memory so that FSX can then locate and load the appropriate scenery based on a number of other factors determ9ined in other files which include such things as the saved conditions of your last flight (location, time etc).
    Regards

    Brian

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