Microsoft is preparing a fix for a Windows 10 bug that affects SSDs

nanoguy

Posts: 581   +8
Staff member
In brief: Windows 10 H2 is shaping up to be a minor release that fixes a lot of the headaches introduced by the Windows 10 May 2020 update. One such issue that's been fixed during the pre-release validation phase can significantly shorten the lifespan of your SSD.

SSDs are much more popular today than they were a decade ago, thanks to a significant decrease in price that has made them affordable even for people on a tight budget. They've made PCs more responsive, and it's practically one of the best ways to prolong the life of an old device.

Over the years, Microsoft has adapted the Windows operating system to take advantage of solid state storage, from supporting the NVMe protocol to updating the Defrag tool in Windows, so that it can optimize SSDs. With the arrival of Windows 10 version 2004 (a.k.a. the May 2020 update), the company brought several welcome changes, but the release has seen a slow rollout due to a seemingly endless list of problems as well

It turns out there's a bug affecting the Defrag utility app in Windows 10 2004 that decides to defrag SSDs a little too often, which could shorten their lifespan. Normally, the app will regularly send a Retrim command on a default schedule or one set by the user, which helps the drive perform writes more efficiently. It also defragments SSDs once a month, which is rarely necessary but can still make a difference in certain scenarios, mostly because of limitations inherent to the NT file system.

In the case of the Windows 10 May 2020 update, the Defrag tool doesn't flag the fact that it's done a scheduled defragmentation on your SSD. Depending on how often you reboot your PC, it can end up doing it many times over, which is detrimental for the high density cells found in most consumer SSDs.

The good news is that Microsoft is incorporating a fix for this issue in the next update for Windows 10 version 2004, and people enrolled in the Windows Insider Program can already see it with build 19042.487. Still, the latest version of Windows 10 doesn't play well with Intel Optane memory, and there's been no sign that the issue has been fixed.

In the meantime, you can also fix the issue by disabling automatic defragmentation.

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TheBigT42

Posts: 450   +352
Here is a hint...DON'T DEFRAG SSDs!

Defragging a hard drive puts all the data in one place to the read heads can access it faster with less seek time. SSDs don't suffer from seek time latency.

Turn Auto Defrag off and leave it off.
 
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antiproduct

Posts: 152   +173
Here is a hint...DON'T DEFRAG SSDs!

Defragging a hard drive puts all the data in one place to the read heads can access it faster with less seek time. SSDs don't suffer from seek time latency.

Turn Auto Defrag off and leave it off.
Pretty sure the defrag app in Windows 10 just runs the trim command on an SSD, it doesn't actually defrag it in the traditional sense. Running the trim command on an SSD occasionally can actually be a good thing.
 

cliffordcooley

Posts: 12,494   +5,868
Good thing I don't have May 2004 installed.
Good thing I run my machine 24/7.

I only wish I had control of my OS, so that I could turn this garbage off.

Now for the question: Why did Microsoft wait till the next build to offer a fix?
 
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zamroni111

Posts: 107   +47
Good thing I don't have May 2004 installed.
Good thing I run my machine 24/7.

I only wish I had control of my OS, so that I could turn this garbage off.

Now for the question: Why did Microsoft wait till the next build to offer a fix?
You can defer feature updates up to a year in Settings page. I still use 1903 now.
 
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Apogee777

Posts: 33   +6
Here is a hint...DON'T DEFRAG SSDs!

Defragging a hard drive puts all the data in one place to the read heads can access it faster with less seek time. SSDs don't suffer from seek time latency.

Turn Auto Defrag off and leave it off.
Auto-defrag doesn't work on SSD's, pop your bubble - it's called Trim.
 

Apogee777

Posts: 33   +6
Good thing I don't have May 2004 installed.
Good thing I run my machine 24/7.

I only wish I had control of my OS, so that I could turn this garbage off.

Now for the question: Why did Microsoft wait till the next build to offer a fix?
because it's not a big deal and you know the answer, because at school we learned pointing the finger at someone, we also have 3 fingers pointing back.
 
Yea I have never seen it actually try to defrag windows 10 on my machines has always just done optimize (trim run). In fact it wont even let me try to defrag my ssds. Maybe this is really just a small minority with this issue? a bug (either visual or actual). I have both mainstream ssds and off brand ssds and it doesnt do this for me.

There is a big difference in optimize(trim run) and defrag.
 

trieste1s

Posts: 29   +36
TechSpot Elite
Pretty sure the defrag app in Windows 10 just runs the trim command on an SSD, it doesn't actually defrag it in the traditional sense. Running the trim command on an SSD occasionally can actually be a good thing.
If set to a schedule, it does an actual defrag approximately every month automatically.

https://www.hanselman.com/blog/TheRealAndCompleteStoryDoesWindowsDefragmentYourSSD.aspx

No, Windows is not foolishly or blindly running a defrag on your SSD every night, and no, Windows defrag isn't shortening the life of your SSD unnecessarily. Modern SSDs don't work the same way that we are used to with traditional hard drives.

Yes, your SSD's file system sometimes needs a kind of defragmentation and that's handled by Windows, monthly by default, when appropriate. The intent is to maximize performance and a long life. If you disable defragmentation completely, you are taking a risk that your filesystem metadata could reach maximum fragmentation and get you potentially in trouble.
 

Getgone

Posts: 47   +69
That's why I'm trying to disable auto-updates.
I'm installing OS and I don't want any of these bs updates, I want MY computer to work.
 

arrowflash

Posts: 186   +160
All Windows 10 builds take an unnecessary wear on SSDs and HDDs, and it's not because of Defrag.
Only way to put an end to that is by disabling some services and scheduled tasks. The main culprit being Superfetch / Sysmain.
 
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Shadowboxer

Posts: 933   +553
Windows really is a pile of ****. The only reason I use it is for my gaming PC. For the rest of my personal computing needs Apple do a far far better job with my iPad replacing my laptop.
 

antiproduct

Posts: 152   +173
"Pretty sure?" Gee, that fills me with confidence!
I mean, you could have googled the answer yourself, but whatever. Here's your answer:
That being said, the Windows 10 defragmentation tool knows the difference between solid state drives and mechanical drives. Instead of automatically defragmenting an SSD, it instead uses the “TRIM” command, which is a specialized SSD optimization command, as well as some measure of fragmentation management, but nothing like the brute force defragmentation used on traditional hard drives.

Taken from https://helpdeskgeek.com/help-desk/should-you-defrag-an-ssd/

You're welcome.