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Old 08-12-2007, 09:19 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Laptop with two HDs or partition?

Hi,

I want to buy a laptop. My main requirement is:

Two people use it. I want installed programms, login passwords are different for both users. Say if 'person1' logs in with his password, he goes to his programs, his files and HE CAN'T SEE 'person2' programms and files and vice versa.

Any advice please? How to go about it. Order two HDs or one HD with partition?

thanks much!
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Old 08-12-2007, 09:52 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop with two HDs or partition?

Hello,

Firstly, not many laptops come with two hard drives. Even so, two hard drives isn't the best solution, so I'd mothball it.

So what about the 'two partitions' idea? A user could install all programs and store all files to a separate partition which he/she only has permission to access (by configuring the security settings in Windows). The benefits? Other users can't gain access to the partition, and if the OS partition needs to be formatted, then the user files will be intact since they're stored in a separate partition. However, a separate partition is unneeded to achieve your goal. What about the other user's files and programs? Will you create another partition and have three partitions in total (OS+partition1+partition2)?

The simplest solution is just to have one partition (the OS partition), and instead of installing programs to a public directory (e.g. 'c:\Program Files\'), install the programs which you want exclusive access to in a private directory which you only have permission to access and modify. Other users will not be able to access any of your programs which you've installed into that private directory. For this to work, each user must have a user account that is passworded, and set as private.

You can create such a directory and modify the permissions, or simply just install the programs to a private directory which already exists, this being 'c:\Documents and Settings\*User*\' where *User* is the user's account name in question. Create a new directory in that folder such as 'Program Files' and install your programs there.

Similarly for personal data files, as long as each user stores his/her files to a directory within the 'Documents and Settings' user account folder, then other users cannot access those files. For example, the 'My Documents' folder resides within the user account folder, therefore all files inside that directory can only be accessed by that one user.
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Old 08-12-2007, 10:10 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop with two HDs or partition?

============quote==============
The simplest solution is just to have one partition (the OS partition), and instead of installing programs to a public directory (e.g. 'c:\Program Files\'), install the programs which you want exclusive access to in a private directory which you only have permission to access and modify. Other users will not be able to access any of your programs which you've installed into that private directory...
===============================

Good idea. thanks! But can you apply your example to the following scenario please?

If I am admin of the computer (I am also person1), and my friend is person2.

As admin and person1, I can access person2 programs and files. But person2 after login, he can not see/access mine. Only his programs and files. How to create folders in this situation?

AND MY ANOTHER Q: If person2 logins, he sees my programs when he clicks on 'Start' > 'All programs' ?

thanks for your insight!
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Old 08-12-2007, 10:51 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop with two HDs or partition?

Quote:
Originally Posted by heguru View Post
If I am admin of the computer (I am also person1), and my friend is person2.

As admin and person1, I can access person2 programs and files. But person2 after login, he can not see/access mine. Only his programs and files. How to create folders in this situation?
So as person1, have you installed your own programs to your own private directory?

As for person2, firstly, ensure that his user account is an administrator account, which is passworded and set as private, following the steps outlines here: Create Password - How To Create a Windows XP Logon Password - New Password (step 7 is important).

Next, person2 will need to install his programs to any directory inside his documents and settings user account folder (which is 'c:\Documents and Settings\*User Account*\' where *User Account* is his folder.

Following this, when you (person1) is logged into your user account, you should not be able to run person2's installed programs.

Quote:
Originally Posted by heguru View Post
AND MY ANOTHER Q: If person2 logins, he sees my programs when he clicks on 'Start' > 'All programs' ?
So can person2 actually run and use the programs which you (person1) have installed?
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Old 08-12-2007, 11:15 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop with two HDs or partition?

Hello,

Alright I realised I've made a mistake :freak: :embaressed: . My apologies.

Administrators have permission to access all user areas. OOps.

So...you'll need to change the security settings of the user areas ('c:\Documents and Settings\*User*\' where *User* is the user's account name) so that only the user can access it.

Instructions on folder permissions here: How to set, view, change, or remove file and folder permissions in Windows XP
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Old 08-12-2007, 01:51 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Default Re: Laptop with two HDs or partition?

Thanks Alvin. I am gonna try it ...
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