Optimizing MSFS 2020 Installation: SSD or HDD, What's Best?

Pro Member Trainee
sterk03 Trainee

I currently fly FSX and FS9 but reading so many articles on MSFS it seems divided. As many love it hate it from the reviews...spending all the time downloading the MSFS? So could I get some honest reviews of how the MSFS is really working I see Steam has basic on sale so I'm thinking of purchasing the basic and trying it out for under $40 to me it's worth it. yes, I know 2024 is coming out but when?  Some say it will be different than 2020 and not a super 2020 version.  One last question which I have heard both. I have a 500GB SSD for the main C: and a second drive of 1TB on D: . With space limits can I install the program 150GB on D and still run the sim? Does the installation have to be run from the main drive C:  
Any info on these items will help me greatly.


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Pro Member Captain
Ian Stephens (ianstephens) Captain
Ian Stephens is an expert on this topic. Read his bio here.

Dear Sterk03,

I understand your curiosity and hesitation about transitioning from FSX and FS9 to Microsoft Flight Simulator 2020 (MSFS 2020). Let me address your concerns in detail.

1. MSFS 2020: A Leap Forward in Simulation
MSFS 2020 represents a significant advancement in flight simulation technology. The realism and detail, from the aircraft physics to the global scenery, are unparalleled. Many enthusiasts have found it to be a transformative experience. However, like any complex software, it's not without its nuances. Some users have faced performance issues or bugs, but ongoing updates continue to refine the experience.

2. SSD vs. HDD: Balancing Performance and Space
Regarding installation, MSFS 2020 is a hefty program, requiring about 150GB of space. While you can install it on your D: drive, there are some points to consider:

  • SSDs generally offer faster load times and smoother performance compared to HDDs. If your D: drive is an SSD, you'll enjoy a more fluid experience.
  • If D: is an HDD, you might experience longer loading times, but it's still a viable option if C: doesn't have sufficient space.

It's essential to ensure that whichever drive you choose has enough free space to accommodate not just the base game but also future updates and add-ons.

3. MSFS 2024: Anticipating the Future
There's speculation about what MSFS 2024 might bring, and while it's exciting to ponder, I recommend focusing on the current version. MSFS 2020 is a robust platform, and with its active community and ongoing updates, it remains at the forefront of flight simulation technology.

4. Installation: SSD or HDD?
To directly answer your last question: yes, you can install MSFS 2020 on your D: drive. The installation location doesn't need to be on the main C: drive. However, consider the type of your D: drive for the reasons mentioned above.

In conclusion, MSFS 2020 is a worthwhile investment for any flight simulation enthusiast. It offers a level of realism and immersion that's hard to match. If you decide to purchase it, remember that your choice of installation drive can impact performance, but it's flexible based on your system's configuration.

Feel free to reach out if you need more specifics or have further questions!

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