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Run twice Defrag, etc...

Posted on 2004-09-16
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With WinXP Home, I found that running Defrag twice produced a better result(at least in the graphical representation) When I ran it a third time, a very, very slight improvement was noted. On the fourth, none.
So, my question is: Why does not Defrag do it's very best on then first run? And, should these types of utilities be run more than once to fully optimize?

Thank you.
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Question by:Fermion
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SheharyaarSaahil earned 500 total points
ID: 12080136
Hello Fermion =)

Let me explain it in my own way... hope u dont mind it :)

Now consider u have a study table, Full of Mess !!
Lots of books, pens pencils, coffec cups, papers, blah blah blah !!
Now ur mother gave u last warning to clean it....
so u will start cleaning it....
at first u will arrange all the One-Kind things at one place
means keeps the Books at one place, keep the pens at once and etc etc
and when u think its all arranged u will say, ah OK its DONE and everything is clean now :)

But think ur mother will ask u again to have it clean once more....
now think how will u do this time, when u have all the things already arranged
i mean it will be faster than before, coz now u have already all the things in an arranged manner
so u dont need to repeart the whole process, u will just think that books shud be here, pens shud be in drawer and etc etc
now ur table will look more arranged than the first time

now if u rmother will ask to clean it third time,,, u will be unable to find anything to arrange or set now
coz u have already set them in proper locations,,,
but still u can find one or two things to set again

but in the Fourth time,,,, NOTHING WILL BE LEFT,, and ur table will be FULLY arranged, all the things are arranged and are set in their proper locations !!!

Same case with Defragement.... first time it has lots to do.... it just arranges the things...
second time it has already the arranged(fragmented) drive, so it will improove their queality
third time it does only a small duty,,,
fourth time it has nothing to do, coz All is Set and Arranged !!

lol... sounding stupid :D
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by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12080142
>> And, should these types of utilities be run more than once to fully optimize?

If u have time u can,,,,, mostly Defrag takes a lot of time, so people think One time is enough !!  ;-)
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by:Dexstar
ID: 12080314
Fermion:

> And, should these types of utilities be run more than once to fully optimize?

I suggest you run them once a day.  To extend Sheharyaar's anology, if you spend just a little bit of time each day cleaning your room, it never really becomes a huge job.  If you let the mess build up over time, then it does become a big job (too big to do all at once, you'll have to do it several times).

Here's what I do:
    1) Create a batch file in your System32 directory, called "RunDefrag.bat".
    2) Add one line for each drive letter you have, like this:
            @defrag.exe C: -f
            @defrag.exe D: -f
                (If you only have one drive, then just use one line...)
    3) Use the scheduled tasks or the AT command to have it run once a day.  If you don't turn your computer off at night, then have it run when you're not using your computer, like 3am.

Then you never have to think about defragging, but your system is nice and clean (and your "mom" is always happy).


Hope That Helps,
Dex*
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by:Huseyin1
ID: 12082598
SheharyaarSaahil , I think you have missunderstood Fermion question.
When he says 'I found that running Defrag twice produced a better result' I think he/she means the PCs performance is better, not the performance of the Defrag utility. I mean of course the defrag will be guicker the 2nd time because the fragmented edata on the HDD is defragmented!

If this is the case the my answer to Fermion is: no the PC wont be faster the 2nd time you defrag because the fragmented data parts are in the best place on the HDD, the 2nd time you fragment the HDD is a wait of time because the tool will do exactly what it did the first time, it put data fragments in exactly the same place (unless dta has changed (if you have added anything)).

SheharyaarSaahil, you also said ' fourth time it has nothing to do, coz All is Set and Arranged !!'
I dissagree with this, it should say the SECOND time it has nothing to do, coz All is Set and Arranged !!
The toold does the same thing all the time as long as the data on the PC has not been mooved of changed in anyway.

One time is enough.

Do you really want me to defrag my full 200gig HDD 3 times? and what about my other full 180gig HDD?

when I say full i mean nearly full.

H
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by:sevie
ID: 12084615
To avoid running by yourself disk defrag install  a program like Diskeeper - http://www.executive.com/diskeeper/diskeeper.asp
That program loads on startup and keep your machine optimazied

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by:SheharyaarSaahil
ID: 12084923
Huseyin1, Fermion is right ..... if he is claiming that if we run Defrag twice, the performance of PC increases,,,,, have u ever tried running it twice or thrice,,,, i was used to to run it, when i had a small drive, 1.6GB !!

and this is true that everytime it does the SAME thing,,,,, but u can see a gradual increase in performance,,,, and if u defrage daily,,,, the performance will get more better,,,, by performace i mean, the time it takes to open a file or folder, or moving and deleting files etc etc !!

I think it was just a lack of understanding between me and u,,,, i meant to say that if u will clean ur clean ur tabel twice, it will look more better, and second time it will take less time,,,, so as if u will run defarg, ur system performace will increase and it will take less time than before :)

and abt fourth time,,,,, i meant to say if u run it on the same time,,, i didn't mean to say that if u run defrag fourth time after 10 hours so that it will have much more data to rearrange :)
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by:Fermion
ID: 12088483
For both Huseyin1 and Shehar: I will clarify the situation.

In WinXP defrag utility there is a top and lower graphical representation of the drive. The top shows the "before" current defrag, and the lower shows the changes made during the defrag process.
If you run defrag immediately AGAIN after completing the first run, what WAS the end result of the first defrag shown on the lower window now moves to the top window as the new "before"
What I observed with my 4 runs was this:

1st Run: Took 20 minutes on my 80Gig HD, 53GIGs free space. Moderately fragmented. While observing the process, I noticed that when defrag ended, there were still a small amount of files(shown graphically as vertical color-coded lines) scattered on the right side of the window. None at that location were color-coded as "un-movable" So, just for the heck of it I decided to see what would happen if I ran defrag again immediately.
2nd Run: Took about 12 minutes. Amazingly enough, I observed probably a good 25% of the files being shifted again, with the left part of the window becoming increasingly solid blue, and the right side showing more "white" space.
3rd Run: Took about 8 minutes(or less) I observed probably 5-8% of the files being shifted again to optimization on the lower graphical window.
4th Run: Took about 5 minutes. No changes at all were observed by me.

These 4 defrags were run right after each other.

I did not do this in SafeMode, so I do realize that it is possible that background running processes could have accounted for this. But, I doubt that happened, as the 4th run showed no activity. Then again, maybe defrag on third run finally optimized the background running processes.
I wonder if the WinXP defrag utility is not "robust" enough to take care of all business in one pass(with moderately to heavily fraged drives), much like Shehar alluded to.
When I had Win98se, I also noticed that running ScanDisk twice caught things that the first pass did not.

Anyway, I hope this clarifies the Q.
I would be curious to know if Microsoft has an official position on multi-pass defrag/scandisk/checkdisk.
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