New Disk Configuration


Setting up a new PC, thinking about what the best configuration and types are for the disk drives?

I have put my idea into logical groups below, but I can only put 6 drives into the PC max.

  • Operating System Drive - Pro 850 500GB SSD
    Program Drive
    Sample Drive 1
    Sample Drive 2
    VST (Instruments) Drive
    VST (Effects) Drive
    Projects Drive
    Windows Paging File Drive

So first off, should I keep the o/s separate from the programs drive?

I’m looking here to find the best physical configuration that I can fit those groups in - without using a logical partition.

My thinking on the two sample drives is, if a project is using a lot of samples via different VST instruments, would it not be better to spread the disk load, and therefore avoid any potential bottleneck?

I prefer to have my projects on a separate drive. That way, audio data that is local to the project folder is read from one disk, and any samples from a library from another disk, again avoiding any bottlenecks.

With the paging file, Windows (v7 64-bit pro) and certain applications will make use of the paging file, even if you have lots of RAM installed. I have 32GB installed. I would prefer to keep this on a separate disk, and am considering a modest size SSD just for the paging file. I’d still keep a small paging file on the system drive for any potential crash dumps etc .Any thoughts on this?

I have put the VST Effects in a group on its own above. But I am thinking that these could go with the Programs or o/s drive, as, if I am not mistaken, most VST effect plug-in are simply loaded into RAM, so there would be no extra disk workload for them on playback or mix-down/export ?

I am wondering about going SSD for all the drives. Any thoughts on this?

I was also thinking, would I be creating any other bottlenecks by separating things onto so many different disks? That is, for example, would it be faster reading and getting audio data from 2 separate SSDs than 1 SSD?

So those are my thoughts. I’d welcome any suggestions, help or advice on this. Thanks.


I’ll try to answer some of your points,

I have always installed everything, except large sample libraries and project/audio files, on the system drive/OS, that configuration has always worked very well for me. I believe the best location for all your VST plugs and instruments is the system drive, especially seeing as you have a 500GB SSD, plenty of room!

Not really worth mucking around with the page file, just leave modest 1 or 2Gig on your system drive but make the max. and min. size the same.

Having an all SSD setup is great if you can afford it, programs and sample libraries load very fast.

My setup looks like this:

250GB SSD 1 W10 x64 Pro Cubase and content, all VST(i)s
250GB SSD 2 Sample libraries
250GB SSD 3 Sample libraries
250GB SSD 4 Cubase projects/audio
125GB SSD 5 W7 x64 Home Premium, mainly for Internet access.

Cheers :slight_smile: .