Disk defragmenting in Vista

By dms96960 · 5 replies
May 2, 2008
  1. In XP the disk defragment did an analysis and showed you a graph. Then, if you decided to defragment, you actually saw something happening.

    JKDefrag also shows you something actually happening while it is defragmenting.

    I went to defrag with Vista Ultimate and was shown no analysis, no graph, no nothing except that little wheely thing spinning. How am I supposed to know that anything was happening? Am i doing something wrong?

  2. kimsland

    kimsland Ex-TechSpotter Posts: 14,523


    I must agree that the missing Gui is a little difficult, when all that you can see is this little orb turning around

    Here's everything relevant I could find.

    Vista computers may experience more fragmentation than WinXP-based systems because of all of the disk swapping that takes place. Consequently, it is important that Vista users defragment frequently to preserve their computers’ performance

    Microsoft automatically schedules a defragmentation to occur every Wednesday at 1am

    Manually defrag C: -a -v

    The defragmentation engine itself is more powerful in Windows Vista and Windows Server 2008 than in earlier versions of Windows

    If there is any free space at all, Defrag will make an attempt to defragment the volume. (ie does not require 15% Minimum like Xp did)

    Why was the defrag progress indicator removed?
    Part of the problem with the Windows XP defrag tool was that percent complete was not accurate or meaningful. Depending on the phase of defrag, 1% of progress could take from several seconds to minutes, which made the progress indicator highly unreliable. The difficulty here is that since defrag is a multi-pass process (multiple iterations of file defragmentation and free space consolidation) there is no way to accurately predict when defrag will complete since the number of loop iterations and how long each takes are highly dependent on the layout of the files on the volume, the level of file and free space fragmentation, and the other system activity. While I agree that having no progress is bad, misleading progress I believe is worse. Also, the idea behind the new automated defrag is that users will not have to think about it not worry about the progress it is making. With defrag running regularly, the system will be close to optimal levels of fragmentation, and subsequent defrag runs should not take long.

    Turn off Vista Defrag: (Not Recommended)
    1. Click Start.
    2. Click OK to the UAC if it appears.
    3. Click Control Panel.
    4. Click OK to the UAC if it appears.
    5. Click System and Maintenance.
    6. Click OK to the UAC if it appears.
    7. Under the Administrative Tools section at the bottom, click Defragment your hard drive.
    8. Click OK to the UAC if it appears.
    9. Click or unclick Run automatically (recommended) depending if you want this feature enabled or disabled.
    10. Click OK to the UAC if it appears.
    11. Click OK
    12. Click OK to the UAC if it appears.
  3. drjulian

    drjulian TS Rookie Posts: 44

    ...dms...I've used Iobit ,Auslogic defrag (both free) with Ultimate. Much faster,you might like these better. Good luck....Don
  4. krait

    krait TS Rookie

    Kimsland, that is a very informative post. Thanks.
    I do find the lack of a GUI in vista defrag quite lacking, but that is only one of the reasons why I moved to the third-party auto defragmenter. Unlike Vista which grinds away at the disk for hours at end trying to finish it's scheduled defrag, my automatic defragmenter does the job quickly and beautifully in real-time. Once the disk has been defragmented properly the first time, it simply kicks in for a total of only a few minutes a day to clear up the few fragments. Super convenient and highly effective in keeping the drives healthy and clean from fragmentation :)
  5. dms96960

    dms96960 TS Addict Topic Starter Posts: 297   +59

    Thanks kimsland as usual. I'm glad that it wasn't me, but the operating system.

    krait, by 3rd party defrag are you referring to lobit and Auslogic as suggested by drj or something else?
  6. krait

    krait TS Rookie


    I use Diskeeper 2008 Pro. Very nice defragmenter, especially with the latest build*. It's not free, but you can get the free trial downloads from their website. Although it also has a manual defrag mode, it runs best in auto.

    * Boot-time defrag for Vista has been temporarily disabled in the latest build (781) due to some incompatibilities with SP1, but it's not a problem since most of the MFT defrag is done without the need for a boot-time defrag now.
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