Installing OS X (partitioning question)


Hello people,

I shall explain the whole case. I have an iMac Indigo 500 Mhz Slotloading early 2001. Now I really am fed up with the constant crashes in OS 9.2.1, I have decided to go to OS X, now that 10.1 seems to be usable for example in speed, which OS X's previous editions weren't. I currently have no partitions on my hard disk, and 1 system folder, 9.2.1 that has already been used frequently. 20 GB is my hard disk, and I now got about 10 GB free.

What do you advise me to do?
- 1 partition (1. OS X and 9.2.1)
- 2 partitions (1. OS X, 2. 9.2.1)
- 3 partitions (1. OS X, 2. 9.2.1 (used by Classic), 3. 9.2.1 (not used by Classic)

I guess it's also preferable if I start with a clean hard disk, isn't it?
So I can burn everything necessary on CD's, and then erase the disk, and make it 1, 2 or 3 partitions, first install OS 9.1 1 or 2 times, update those 1 or 2 to 9.2.1, and then install OS X 1 time. (as above)

Or do you advise me something different?
i'd recommend you clean your harddisk, make two partitions (one for x & classic, one for 9) and then do a clean install... :)

check this thread for details ... :)

I plan to have 640 MB physical RAM neaer or soon, so what if I make two partitions:

- OS 9.2.1 (640 + 1 + 380 - current size of system folder = about 1 gig)
- OS X (with OS 9.2.1) and all my other applications, both classic apps as os x apps and so on. (the rest)
Originally posted by Jerommeke

I plan to have 640 MB physical RAM neaer or soon, so what if I make two partitions:

- OS 9.2.1 (640 + 1 + 380 - current size of system folder = about 1 gig)
- OS X (with OS 9.2.1) and all my other applications, both classic apps as os x apps and so on. (the rest)

I may be missing something here, but why the 640+1+current system folder on the OS 9 drive? If you're thinking having that space for the virtual memory swap file, I would strongly suggest against cutting it that close. If you copy anything to the drive at all extra, you will start getting fragmentation in the swap file and kill performance. You should leave a lot more space than that!

On the other hand, you can just use the OS X drive for swap space when you are in OS 9 - since when you reboot, that file should go away. (Actually, I'm not sure I'm right on that point...)
ok, I will make the 9.2.1 OS non-classic partition about 1.5 GB, is that good to do?

I think I love to have seperate systems, as I think I'll use a minimized system with classic, and a full system when I am booting with os 9.2.1
I tend to agree that having seperate partitions is kind of nice sometimes. On the other hand it can get difficult to predict how much space you'll need.
I would like to do something similar - have a bare bones OS 9 for Classic and a tricked out one for dual boot use, which would be easier to do (for me) with seperate partitions.

One other note, having a seperate partition for swap space probably doesn't help much (like testuser suggests) - in fact, it may hurt a little by putting the swap further away from where the rest of the data is. As far as I know, though, it may still be of some help to have it on a seperate physical disk. Basically, that allows the memory swap files to read/write while the apps are reading/writting to the main disk at the same time. Otherwise paging can cause the read head to jitter back and forth across the disk. (Read the article on Ars Technica for a lot more info.)
about the os x thing, I read some advice from some guy on versiontracker:


"Anyone having permission problems, or thinking they lost a hard drive: Logout, then login as ROOT. Hopefully you can now see all contents of your hard drive again. Go to your hard drive(s), right click and select Show Info. Go to Privileges in the drop down. Change the selection EVERYONE to READ & WRITE. Click Apply to All Enclosed Folders. Wait while it copies the privileges. Now logout and login as yourself. See if that resurected your data. "

don't know if it works myself
and for the os x thing: I don't have money for an additional hard drive I guess, but can FireWire drives be used for VM too? (maybe when I get rich someday......) but when I'm in OS X I am planning to use VM on the OS X partition, not on OS9's, is that OK?
Originally posted by testuser
All this talk about partitons... it can get confusing.

Basically when OS X was a Public Beta, no one wanted to take risks with their data and "real" OS. Safest way to to this was to have OS 9 on a separate partiton, and a Classic OS9 and OSX on another (in case OS X messed up the Classic OS).

With OS X 10.0.0-.4 speed was a big issue. And having a swap file on a separate partition sped up OS X app launching by 20% (other operations were not sped up).

Now with 10.1 the OS feels responsive. These are my general observations. <li>OS X does not mess up OS 9. It is not necessary to have a Classic OS 9, and a regular OS 9.</li>
<li>OS X 10.1 does not benefit from having a separate swap partition. There is no noticable difference in speed of apps launching wherever you keep the swap. (At least on a G3, iBook)</li>

I agree! I have been using OS X 10.1 WITHOUT a hitch. I have only two partitions (three is NOT necessary; and while two is not either, I like the idea of a separate Mac OS 9 Desktop folder, etc.). I have an 800MB partition for OS 9.2.1 (which leaves me with about 300-400MB free for whatever [just in case] -- but if you leave TOO much it is just wasted space) and an 28GB (yup!) partition for OSX and *ALL* my other files (X Applications, Classic Applications, Music, Photos, blah blah). I switch between "Classic" OS 9 and BOOTED UP *real* OS 9 all the time. Never a problem; never had OS X corrupt OS 9 yet (knock on wood).
Ik heb gelezen dat je een toffe Mac heeft, overtuig me en ik verkies er ook zo een boven een pc. In ieder geval nog veel geluk met je bezigheden.
Hervé uit Heverlee. :)
Dank voor het antwoord.

Use multiple partitions!!!

Mac OS X is maturing but still is riddled with bugs. I have had an iMovie import repeatedly royally f*ck up my drives. I don't know if this is X's, iMovie's, La Cie's, or Cannon's fault. Having two partions saved my butt.

If any SW or HW, including a still new and buggy OS, screws up a drive then you can boot into the other partition by holding the option key and run various disk saving utilities. These utilities will not operate on the boot volume. I don't want to blow my own horn, but ten years of supporting and diagnosing Macs says to play it safe and leave the options available. The logical seperation will protect you when something eventually goes wrong. BTW, Disk Warrior is the best disk utility available.

On a personal note-
I still have to boot into MacOS 9 for scanner and media card support. Having the logical seperation into partitions reduces clutter. I just like having the "old stuff" seperated from the "new stuff".

I have a third partition for the swap file. I did it for three reasons, to tinker with the OS :), to reduce disk fragmentation, and a temp, if I really need it, storage space.

The partition sizes are

1GB for 9.2.1.
350MB for swap
I have 320MB RAM and have never reached that limit.
The swap files, by default, increment in sizes of 80MB.
The remaining 8GB for X