Defragment

Discussion in 'Windows Vista Performance' started by WTan, Feb 7, 2007.

  1. WTan

    WTan Guest

    Is defragmentation using XP is okay?

    I tried on Vista RC1 or Beta 2 (can't remember which. I tried them both). I
    defrag it using XP - the drive where i installed vista, and the Vista can't
    load afterwards.

    I don't want to try this on my Retail vista yet. I found the defragmentation
    program in vista disappointing.

    I also read in help and support, that you can get a more advance view by
    using file called defrag.exe

    where I can get that file?

    Thanks
     
    WTan, Feb 7, 2007
    #1
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  2. Defragging in XP may have caused system files that should never be moved to
    be moved in Vista. Any other hypotheses are welcome.

    The defragmentation program in Vista is mostly an improvement on XP (low
    priority IO, etc) with the inaccurate GUI taken out.

    You can call defrag.exe from any administrator command prompt. From an
    administrator command prompt type defrag /? and you will get a help
    printout. I use defrag /v <vol>: to defragment from the command prompt when
    I need to defrag from the command prompt. Defrag /a /v <vol>: is useful as
    well.

    I believe this attempts to answer your questions/issues.

    Thanks!
    -Victoria
     
    Victoria House [MSFT], Feb 7, 2007
    #2
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  3. WTan

    Leo Guest

    Could you please explain why it is MS cannot provide and accurate GUI for
    the defragmentation program?

    Is it the MS position that all the third party defrag applications contain
    inaccurate GUI's?

    --
    Leo

    When I was young and adventurous, I wanted to join a violent,
    armed group with no regard for the law, but the IRS wasn't hiring.
     
    Leo, Feb 7, 2007
    #3
  4. WTan

    Robert Moir Guest

    I'm curious as to why this matters.

    If I want to see little pictures move about the screen while my computer
    runs a defrag I go and watch a video.
     
    Robert Moir, Feb 7, 2007
    #4
  5. Because for the average user, they don't care. For the average power
    user, they use something else (O&O Defrag, etc.).
     
    Dustin Harper, Feb 7, 2007
    #5
  6. Why the old Windows Defrag UI was inaccurate:

    Say you have a 100GB volume.
    To be truly accurate, defrag would display 1 colored bar for each cluster on
    the volume (4k/cluster on most). Anything else is inaccurate.
    Your screen may be about 1900x1280 pixels, so you can fit about 1900
    clusters in the width of your screen, graphically.

    You need about 26214400 bars of 1 cluster each to display your disk
    accurately, cluster by cluster on your 100GB hard drive. (ie each cluster
    that is free is white, each that is part of a fragmented piece of file is
    red, and the rest are green or blue). If defrag took up your whole monitor,
    we would need about 13797 rows of volume data to be accurate. That's a lot
    to scroll through for a picture of the volume.
    The old UI could be expanded to nearly screen width. So that means each bar
    in the old UI, on a 100GB volume, would have been nearly 14000 clusters
    (taken from row calculation above.)
    That is to say, 54MB+.

    Therefore, our UI was inaccurate. I don't know the calculation for a pixel
    width in the old code....
    BUT if for example, we went by "winner per pixel width", then one
    single-pixel-width bar's color would be determined simply by whether there
    was more free space, fragged space, non fragged space, or unmovable space.
    So in the 54MB example, if 10MB was free space, 10MB was fragged space, and
    10MB was unmovable, with the rest being non-fragmented space, the entire bar
    would be blue. This problem is of course twice as bad with a 200GB volume.

    With storage sizes increasing so quickly, there is not a good way to be
    accurate enough to provide a decent picture. Admittedly, once defrag has
    been running on a schedule on your computer for a while, the volume will be
    largely separated into big blue and white chunks, but for less frequently
    defragmented volumes, the UI is still no good.

    **
    You can view the accuracy problem yourself by resizing the defrag analysis
    window in XP (in computer management) a few times and watching red bars
    "magically" disappear with the resizing. Sometimes they even migrate. I
    have one on an XP box that magically appears when the window is slightly
    wider than my screen, in the middle of an otherwise "free" space.
    **


    As to 2nd question:
    I can not speak for Microsoft as to the accuracy of other defragmenter UIs,
    only our own.
     
    Victoria House [MSFT], Feb 7, 2007
    #6
  7. WTan

    Leo Guest

    That is not the point.

    The MS representative said the XP defrag GUI was not accurate. Why is it MS
    can not produce an accurate defrag GUI for those who may want it.

    Is the MS representing hinting that third party defrag application with a
    GUI are not accurate?

    --
    Leo

    When I was young and adventurous, I wanted to join a violent,
    armed group with no regard for the law, but the IRS wasn't hiring.
     
    Leo, Feb 8, 2007
    #7
  8. WTan

    Leo Guest

    Thanks for that answer.

    --
    Leo

    When I was young and adventurous, I wanted to join a violent,
    armed group with no regard for the law, but the IRS wasn't hiring.
     
    Leo, Feb 8, 2007
    #8
  9. Glad to help, or at least satisfy the curiosity and perhaps show everyone
    that we're not just fooling around, we did have a reason.

    We get this question a lot, and now I can just copy/paste that answer in
    when I get it. I've been thinking about posting it for a while.

    -Victoria
     
    Victoria House [MSFT], Feb 8, 2007
    #9
  10. WTan

    CZ Guest

    Defragging in XP may have caused system files that should never be movedbe moved in Vista.

    Victoria:

    Are you stating that defragging Vista via XP does cause problems, or may
    cause problems?
    What Vista files should not be moved and why are they tied to a cluster?

    TIA
     
    CZ, Feb 8, 2007
    #10
  11. Defrag via XP may not know system files from regular files on the Vista
    partition, and some system files are never allowed to be moved if they are
    on the sysvol.
    I don't know off the top of my head what shouldn't be moved. I will ask and
    see if anyone knows what they are and if XP defrag moves them. If so we
    should know anyway.



    As far as clusters, I may have been answering Leo's question when I
    mentioned them. Clusters are sections of disk, and the default cluster size
    is 4k. Any more detail on them can be found on msdn...
     
    Victoria House [MSFT], Feb 8, 2007
    #11
  12. Leo

    They always were representations of what was happening..
     
    Mike Hall - MS MVP Windows Shell/User, Feb 8, 2007
    #12
  13. WTan

    Ken Gardner Guest

    For these very reasons, I love the new defragmentation program in Vista. I
    love Vista's new memory management system even more.

    I continue to be amazed at how so many people obsess about defragmentation
    and almost never consider how they are using RAM or the CPU. These people
    have their priorities exactly backwards. :)

    [...]

    Ken
     
    Ken Gardner, Feb 8, 2007
    #13
  14. Talked to the dev, he said there should not be any files in Vista that are
    moved by XP's defragger that should not be for any safety reasons, and it
    should be perfectly safe to run either defragmenter from either OS.

    That said, WTan, I wonder what else may have happened on your machine that
    made Vista not work after the XP defragger was run.

    If I hear or find out anything else I'll let you know.
     
    Victoria House [MSFT], Feb 8, 2007
    #14
  15. WTan

    Leo Guest

    Victoria provided some great info in response to my question. Now I plan to
    ask the same question to makers of third party defrag applications.

    --
    Leo

    When I was young and adventurous, I wanted to join a violent,
    armed group with no regard for the law, but the IRS wasn't hiring.
     
    Leo, Feb 8, 2007
    #15
  16. WTan

    Mickey Segal Guest

    It would be good to add to the pasted material an explanation for why there
    is no report of the extent of fragmentation. The defragmenter gives no
    indication of whether the process will take 7 minutes or 7 hours.
     
    Mickey Segal, Feb 8, 2007
    #16
  17. WTan

    WTan Guest

    WOW, I am impressed and shocked that actually I already got 20 response. I
    did not see my post from browsing the discussion, until I use search.

    Thanks a lot for all of you, especially victoria.
    So, it is best to defrag vista with vista, xp with xp?
    BTW, defrag in win9x is the best. It is very detailed. Second best is XP. I
    need an estimate on how long the defrag will take, and what is happening.

    I tried defrag.exe command (without anything after it), and it did not work.

     
    WTan, Feb 8, 2007
    #17
  18. BTW, defrag in win9x is the best. It is very detailed. Second best is XP.
    With respect, no you don't. Defragging is a low-level housekeeping matter.
    Vista runs it when needed at a very low priority. You don't need to
    intervene. Basically, you can forget about disk fragmentation with Vista.

    It's really weird what some people get obsessed about.

    Thack
     
    Steve Thackery, Feb 9, 2007
    #18
  19. WTan

    Leo Guest

    It is really weird that some posters get in a snit because other people
    expect more from software than they do and even resort to telling those
    people they don't need what they want. How dare you want something that the
    self important have decided you don't need?

    It is useless to comment because your defrag belongs to us!

    --
    Leo

    When I was young and adventurous, I wanted to join a violent,
    armed group with no regard for the law, but the IRS wasn't hiring.
     
    Leo, Feb 9, 2007
    #19
  20. WTan

    CZ Guest

    It is really weird that some posters get in a snit because other people
    expect more from software than they do and even resort to telling those
    people they don't need what they want. How dare you want something that the
    self important have decided you don't need?

    Leo:

    Well said.

    I use Perfect Disk and I love watching the color spots move around!
    Not really, but I disable Vista's defrag, as I like to limit background
    tasks.
    When I want to check defrag status, the Perfect Disk interface is excellent.

    One of the MS targets for Vista appears to be a dumb down approach to
    computing similar to the Mac.
     
    CZ, Feb 10, 2007
    #20
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