Sunday, June 24, 2007

Disk Defragmentation

When Microsoft Windows XP stores files on your hard disk it does not lay them down in one spot. Instead, it stores parts of your file in different places all over your hard disk. This 'scattering' of the parts of your file is called fragmentation.

Why Is Fragmentation Bad?

Your hard disk reads the information on your disk by moving a 'head' (like a cassette tape head, only smaller) across the disk surface. If the data that the drive head is looking for is in several places (fragmented) on the disk it has to physically move to every location that the data is stored in. This physical motion of the drive actuator arm that holds the head takes time, so the more fragmented your files are, the longer it takes to read them, thereby slowing down your computer!

Defragging Your Disk Does Not 'Fix' Anything

Many new computer users seem to think that defragmenting their hard drive will fix problems. I Don't know why so many people think this, but they are probably confusing Microsoft's Defrag program with Scandisk. Scandisk can check your disk for errors and fix many common problems. Click Here to read more about Microsoft Scandisk. Microsoft's Defrag can help speed-up your PC, but it will not actually fix anything.

How To Run Microsoft Defrag On Your PC??

To defragment your hard drive follow these steps:

* Find the My Computer icon and double click.
* Find the icon for the drive you want defragmented (usually C:) and click it with your right mouse button
* On the small menu that pops up, choose Properties
* On the Properties window that appears, click on the the Tools tab at the top
* On the Tools window, press the Defragment Now button located in the center of the window
* After the Disk Defragmenter Window appears, press the Defragment button
(note that you may also have a Defragment icon in your start menu, under Accessories)

Go Take A Break While Windows Defragments Your Hard Drive

A severly fragmented hard drive can take hours to fully defragment, so plan on doing your defragging when you don't need your PC.

1 comment:

Unknown said...

The system can ever function at its best if the HDD is sick. And fragmentation makes it so,the HDD taking more time to seek file fragments will stress it out and slowdown all operations. Its a disease that impacts other parts of the system as well. Because if your HDD is not well maintained,a superlative CPU or anything else you install will not perform at their best.