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Improved Disk Defragmenter in Windows 7 with Status Report and Free Space & Parallel Concurrent Defrag Support

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Windows operating system comes with a built-in basic Disk Defragmenter, that can perform disk defragmentation process properly, which is performed to increase read and write access speed by rearranging files stored on a disk to occupy contiguous storage locations, minimizing disk read travel time and maximizing transfer rate. However, Disk Defragmenter in Windows but does not usually provide advanced configurable settings.

The release of Windows 7 (and Windows Server 2008 R2) saw further improvements and enhancements to Disk Defragmenter utility. Since Windows Vista, Disk Defragmenter already includes an option to automatically run at scheduled times using Task Scheduler. This ability is continued in Windows 7 (download Windows 7 RTM ISO) and Windows Server 2008 R2. Disk Defragmenter also uses low CPU priority and the low priority I/O algorithm so that it can continue to defrag using reduced resources (less CPU and disk read/write activity) when the computer is in use.

In Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2, users can now start both analyze disks and defragment disks process on all or selected disks from Disk Defragmenter GUI. The graphical user interface of Disk Defragmenter also includes more detailed progress status such as percentage of consolidation and defragmentation already done, although there is still no map of disk defragmentation. One major feature added is ability to simultaneously and concurrently parallel processing and defragmenting more than one disk drives or volumes.

How to Concurrently and Simultaneously Defragment Two or More Volumes or Partitions in Windows 7

Just click on Defragment Now button for each and every volumes, disks, or partitions that end-user wants to start defragmentation right away to perform parallel defragmentation among those volumes. Alternatively, user can also use /m switch of defrag.exe command-line utility to run the operation on each volume in parallel in the background.

With various new features added, Disk Defragmenter command-line interface, defrag.exe, has also included several new parameters or switches which can be used when running the defragmentation operation to locate and consolidate fragmented files on local volumes to improve system performance. For example,

/E – Perform the operation on all volumes except those specified.
/H – Run the operation at normal priority (default is low).
/M – Run the operation on each volume in parallel in the background.
/T – Track an operation already in progress on the specified volume.
/U – Print the progress of the operation on the screen.
/V – Print verbose output containing the fragmentation statistics.
/X – Perform free space consolidation on the specified volumes.

By using “defrag” command line utility, user has additional control ability of running defragmentation operation at higher level of priority so that defragmentation runs faster with more CPU and system resources.

For example,

defrag /c /h /u /m

Command above will defragment all volumes in parallel in the background at normal priority with progress status displayed on screen.

More parameter and usage example can be seen by typing defrag /? in Command Prompt window.


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