That’s where De-Fragging comes in. It acts like a Valet and shuffles around the filespace so that files are returned to a ‘Contiguous’ (unbroken) state.. making them load up faster next time you need them.
Every PC comes with a free Defrag program. In Windows XP/Vista you can start it by going to;
START ==> All Programs ==> Accessories ==> System Tools ==> Disk Defragmenter
In Win7, you can go to the Control Panel and locate it there.
In Win8 and Win10 simply press the Windows key on your keyboard.
Or you can load a very nice little program that will automate your Defrag program to start at a time convenient for you. In Win7, it already comes with a scheduler. (Pre-Vista operating systems don’t have this feature.) To automate Defrag in WinXP, use the link for “Defraggler” from the Cnet.com website. It installs and runs very easily and is fully functional.
Get ‘Defraggler’ Here
How often should you Defrag your hard-drive?
The ‘average’ user should Defrag the hard-drive every three months. Doing it more often with average use will not make a noticeable difference. But if you tend to save and delete either lots of files or very large files such as downloading lots of music, movies or working with video files or large resolution photos on a regular basis.. you would do well to do a Defrag at least once a month. Using a program like”Smart Defrag” means you can just ‘set it and forget it’ on a schedule.
Things to know when doing a Defrag..
In the ‘old’ days, Defragging was a major deal and they recommended you back up all your data in case something went wrong. Given the small amount of memory back then, things often went wrong and files just disappeared. But these days there is such a large cache and with program improvements, Defragging is a pretty reliable process. However, you are asking your PC to do alot of work, so the best rule when doing a manual Defrag is to start it as you go to bed so no other programs are using up PC resources. Using your PC during a Defrag, you may notice some sluggishness.
If you really want to do a decent Defrag.. use CCleaner (see earlier video posted on CCleaner) to remove all your Temp files first so the Defrag is more efficient. Another thing you can do is Restart your PC and start it up in SAFE MODE, by pressing the F8 key during Startup and choosing ‘Safe Mode’. This way the Defrag is completed with the absolute minimum number of programs running in the background. Some files cannot be shuffled about when they are system files in use. Safe Mode gets around this.
And finally, check your ScreenSaver ==> Energy Settings, to make sure your PC is not set to go into Hibernate or Shutdown Mode for at least 3 hours. Depending on the size of your hard-drive, your processor speed (Khz) and the number of files needing to be Defragged.. doing the Defrag could take anywhere from 30 minutes to 3 hours.
And that’s it! Do your Defrag on a scheduled basis using “Smart Defrag” or the Scheduler in the Vista/Win7 Control Panel / System Options and you will keep your files in the best form possible to ease the burden on your PC.
Author: Henry The PC Guy
Since 1983, Henry The PC Guy has been working with the most basic of computers and continued to today’s Win10 operating system. From 2007 until 2012 was the owner/operator of ‘Up&Running PC Repair’ in Southern California until moving to a life in the Philippines in 2012. He has been building websites since 1993 and is well versed in various aspects of blogging, vlogging and podcasting.