By default there is no disk partition alignment on
Windows 2003 Server. This cause accessing 2 tracks of
HDD instead of 1 for each & every I/O request!
It happens due to wrong partition start offset value.
In combination with stripe unit size & file allocation unit size,
it is possible to increase the SQL Server I/O throughput
by 10%, 15%, 30% or more.
Check the Jimmy May`s blog,he describes it very good:
For more information:
Disk Partition Alignment Best Practices for SQL Server: