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Thread: Defrag (Xp5.1)

  1. #1
    New Lounger
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    Defrag (Xp5.1)

    After deffagging there were still files left that were fragmented at least according to the report. How come? In previous versions was I just not informed that this was so?

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    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    Don't sweat it too much - it's not hurting the performance of your PC. <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    I copied the following from the retail edition of Diskeeper 6SE, which is the core engine that is included with Windows XP:

    <big>Why won't my volume defragment completely?</big>
    This can be the result of several situations:

    <UL><LI>If your disk volume is extremely full, there may not be sufficient free space to effectively defragment the files. In this case, we recommend temporarily moving some of the files off the volume, particularly large files. This temporary measure often allows Diskeeper the "working room" it needs to complete the defragmentation process. Also, this allows Diskeeper to defragment the free space on the volume, increasing the possibility that the temporarily-moved files can be moved back to the volume in a contiguous (or at least less fragmented) condition.
    <LI>Another cause of incomplete defragmentation is a fragmented paging file. Click here for more information on how to remedy this.
    <LI>A volume that has (at one time or another) been filled to capacity may have a severely fragmented Master File Table (MFT). There is a White Paper, entitled System Performance and File Fragmentation in Windows NT, available from the Executive Software Web site that describes the causes and effects of MFT fragmentation. To view this White Paper, click here.
    <LI>Another situation that can prevent complete defragmentation of a volume is the existence of a large number of directories on the volume. See Can Diskeeper move directories? for more information.
    <LI>Yet another cause for incomplete defragmentation can be a security access situation. It is necessary for both SYSTEM and ADMINISTRATOR to have full control over a file (or the directory folder it is in) in order for Diskeeper to have access to move the file. This is because the Diskeeper service runs under the Administrator account, and System access is necessary to defragment files safely. This is a security feature that is governed by the Windows NT/2000 C2 security requirements.[/list]
    -Mark

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    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    How ' bout this, Mark. In previous versions of Windows, I always ran Defrag in Safe Mode to keep all the TSRs from getting in the way as well as screen saver, etc. What's the thinking about XP along those lines? Would it be a good idea to boot into Safe Mode? If not, should one shut down everything running - is that even possible? I just remembered I've had XP Pro on here for six months and probably ought to run a defrag operation.....

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    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    Which previous versions of Windows, exactly? In WIn 9x, which was a different code base, that wasn't a bad idea. It allowed the defragger to work uninterrupted.

    In the NT platform, though, disk access is handled quite differently and the defragmenter that is included doesn't need to restart every time you shift in your seat. That being the case, I don't see any need to go into safe mode to defragement. In fact, I have been using the retail version of Diskeeper since the time of Windows NT 4.0, which didn't include a defragmenting tool (Microsoft believed NTFS was so good that you didn't need to do this). The retail version has many nice features that the basic version in 2000/XP doesn't, and will run in the background. They call this "Set it and Forget it" and that's exactly what it does. How would you like to never think twice about defragmenting again, because it's done automatically? <img src=/S/smile.gif border=0 alt=smile width=15 height=15>

    Executive Software
    -Mark

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    Plutonium Lounger
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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    As usual, you've told me what I was hoping to hear! Yes, I was talking about Win 9x, I've never run NT or 2000.
    <hr>...the defragmenter that is included doesn't need to restart every time you shift in your seat.<hr>
    That's the most nail-on-the-head thing I've seen in a long time! Thanks Mark, I think I will go give Diskeeper a look-see.

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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    OK my man, here's the request for a little more advice, that I bet you knew was coming! I went to their site and bought a copy of Diskeeper - the price is right. Boy, was I amazed at how fragmented my three drives were. I did not realize that when I told it to defrag what I thought was the C: drive, it really was starting the process on all three drives (four partitions, including the Page File one). But that's OK, I didn't need to use the computer this afternoon anyway. <img src=/S/grin.gif border=0 alt=grin width=15 height=15>

    First followup question: I set the thing to defrag every morning between 6 - 7 AM. Do you also let it do DAILY defragging?

    Secondly, I was surprised that the regular defrag didn't align all the directories at the front of the drive. Picking up on your excerpt, I read that the boot defrag does have a setting for aligning directories, so I did that too. What do you tend to do along those lines? Do you just not worry about directory alignment?

    Anyway, the process worked very slick and I thank you for the recommendation!

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    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    I set my schedule to defragment overnight, when I am not at the console. I leave my system running 24x7 (my primary desktop anyway). 6-7 is OK too. The only thing I avoid is allowing it to run in the background. "Smart scheduling" is the Executive Software name for that and no matter how I've tried to like it, and no matter what machine it's run on, it still gets in the way - just a little bit but that is more than enough to avoid the Smart Scheduling.

    Since it's on the scheduler for overnight use, it defragments daily.

    I've heard conflicting statements from Executive about the directory defragmentation. One tech told me that in 2000 and above, the directories were done as part of a normal defragmentation run, which isn't the case. I run that at boot time every six months, if I haven't re-installed Windows by that point. Directory alignment doesn't really hurt performance too much, so that's why I don't bother with it on a regular basis. I do not use the page/MFT guards that are built in either, but I have defragmented the MFT in the past - this is usually only necessary if you convert the file system to NTFS when it was originally FAT32. It's too critical to the file system for me to risk screwing it up with a boot-time defragmentation, even though the product has safeguards and I've never had a problem with it!

    Glad you like it. I was bowled over by the support I received from this company, and the product was the first, and IMHO still the best of its kind.
    -Mark

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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    I've been reading a lot about the pre-fetch process in Windows XP and how the pre-fetch folder (located at c:windowsprefetch) should be purged from time to time. I wonder if defrag in XP will purge that folder???

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    Uranium Lounger
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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    No - but it will optimize it. Remember that defragmenting will not remove any data, just reorganize it into longer, contiguous pieces for faster access. That's the theory anyway.
    -Mark

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    Re: Defrag (Xp5.1)

    I'm going to set scheduler to once per day...2 AM. Thanks.

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