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My Documents, My Photos etc.

Community Veteran
Posts: 1,236
Registered: 02-08-2007

My Documents, My Photos etc.

Why is "C:\Documents and settings\username\My documents" the default place for storage of digital photographs etc? Honestly would it not just be better to take the memory card from the camera and throw it in the bin?!
Why since the invention of larger hard disks have computers not been sold with two partitions and the "My Documents" on the non Windows partition? It is so simple but so useful in the event of a reinstall. I am just in a bad mood about this because I am now in the process of retreiving "My documents" from the third non booting Windows XP machine in a row. Thankfully I discovered that freenas is great for this! Grin
23 REPLIES
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

its not even that simple as each user has his own - agreed under the blanket Documents
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,030
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

Very simply when a new user account is created windows automatically creates a My Documents folder in the Documents and Settings user account in the C; drive and it is then up to each user to move it if they wish.
techguy
Grafter
Posts: 2,540
Registered: 12-09-2008

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

When you dominate the market you can do what you want, it probably made sense to Bill.
I think the idea was so that novice users did not lose their photos (MS software can be a bit over helpful, remember annoying Clippt?)
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,236
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

Yes, but there is no reason why Microsoft and computer suppliers could not put this on a seperate partition. In Linux the option is in setup (and recomended) to put "home" on a seperate partition which is equivalent to "My Documents" in Windows
techguy
Grafter
Posts: 2,540
Registered: 12-09-2008

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

You can change default locations using the TweakUI utility http://www.microsoft.com/windowsxp/downloads/powertoys/xppowertoys.mspx
MrC
Grafter
Posts: 523
Thanks: 2
Registered: 17-07-2008

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

Quote from: Sean
Why since the invention of larger hard disks have computers not been sold with two partitions and the "My Documents" on the non Windows partition?

Because it would introduce more problems than it solves, especially for non-technically minded people who just want to get on and use their PC rather than have to fiddle with it?
Mike
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,236
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

You would'nt have to fiddle with the computer if Windows was automatically creating the "My Documents" folders on the second partition.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,576
Thanks: 3
Registered: 13-04-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

The one word says it all BACKUP. No one ever seems to do it though I must be one of the few which actual does it for all pc's in the house. A robocopy script runs at startup and copies all my docs,photos email etc and then once a week Acronis takes a new image once setup you just forget it.
If there is a problem 15 mins and the pc is back working from the image.
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,236
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

You are not the only one. I keep copies of my important stuff like digital photos on 3 separate machines, one of which uses a RAID 1 array for that particular disk. I also regularly copy the photos off onto DVD and store them in the safe bolted to the floor under the bed. Lets face it though, we know a bit about this stuff while most people just save it in My Documents or even worse, on a usb external hard disk so their kids or pets can knock the thing over when it is running and loose everything in one go!
Community Veteran
Posts: 1,236
Registered: 02-08-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

Quiite funny that after copying the "My documents" (14Gb) from the third computer of the day I was ready to reinstall Windows. I thought something was up during the format so I ran Maxtor Powermax only to find that the 160Gb SATA disk is about to lie down. Explains why Windows wasn't booting in the first place. Isn't that person lucky that I now have a copy of their stuff! Grin Looks like a trip for a new disk tommorrow.
pnf
Grafter
Posts: 266
Registered: 07-11-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

Quote from: techguy
You can change default locations using the TweakUI utility ...

You don’t need TweakUI to relocate My Documents to another partition.  In XP, if you right click on My Documents, either from the Start Menu or from the folders pane in My Computer, a window appears entitled My Documents Properties.  From here you can move My Documents to another partition very easily. (see screen dump attached)
I don’t have any user files (including email, favourites and the like) on the C: drive, so I am able to restore Windows from a backup without it affecting any of my personal files.
Community Veteran
Posts: 38,460
Thanks: 1,030
Fixes: 62
Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

Quote from: Sean
You wouldn't have to fiddle with the computer if Windows was automatically creating the "My Documents" folders on the second partition.
On my machine the second partition is 10GB and is used entirely for the swap file - on the disk as opposed to the letters allocated by windows i have in order Vista, swap, data and  future XP dual boot partition
techguy
Grafter
Posts: 2,540
Registered: 12-09-2008

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

Quote from: pnf
Quote from: techguy
You can change default locations using the TweakUI utility ...

You don’t need TweakUI to relocate My Documents to another partition.  In XP, if you right click on My Documents, either from the Start Menu or from the folders pane in My Computer, a window appears entitled My Documents Properties.  From here you can move My Documents to another partition very easily. (see screen dump attached)
I don’t have any user files (including email, favourites and the like) on the C: drive, so I am able to restore Windows from a backup without it affecting any of my personal files.

You can relocate my docs that way too but as Sean was referring specifically to pictures I thought that maybe more useful.
Unless you know what you are doing like most of us on here your average mass produced PC buyer won't bother with partitions which is why Windows does not use them by default, linux and its ilk are built and used by the tech savvy, Windows is a consumer product built to serve a diverse customer base.
In addition, older apps can get some distressed if multiple partitions are used (I support some apps like that)
Not applicable

Re: My Documents, My Photos etc.

My last laptop had a sizeable, virtually empty D partition which I didn't wish to use for backup in case of hard drive failure.
Also, didn't feel confident enough to move the Documents and Pictures folder myself.
Although I try to backup regularly, I agree with Sean that it makes sense to locate these away from the OS right from the outset.