A million little pieces of files

The only thing close to a Metalaw of Computing I’ve ever come up with is “There’s always a reason to put off defragmenting,” and you can be sure I practice what I preach: it’s been nearly thirteen months since I bought this desktop box, and I’ve managed to run the standard-issue Windows Defrag exactly zero times.

Until today, when I got the preposterous idea that the time I spent soaking up the sun, fixing dinner, and taking out the trash might somehow equal the time it would take to move around the 400,000 or so files on this box. And if you count washing the dishes, it did: the defrag (I have a single SATA 250GB drive, 27 percent full) took 64 minutes. Not as scary as I thought it might be. I suppose I should do this more often, but then there are a lot of things I should do more often.


  1. Mister Snitch! »

    14 May 2007 · 11:28 pm

    One would think defragmenting programs would be built-in to these machines by now, part of the OS. Also, auto-backup over the ‘net.

    Let me get Steve Jobs on the phone. Damn slacker.

  2. Winston »

    15 May 2007 · 6:15 am

    It is amazing the improved performance brought on by defragging. Equally amazing as baffling is that in Windows 95 and 98 the builtin defrag could be easily scheduled to run auto at night. W2K and XP include the defragger, but no convenient way to run it on a scheduler. There’s a little utility called StartDefrag that will do just that. Check it out.

    Better yet, pick up a copy of the desktop version of Diskkeeper. Set it and forget it.

  3. McGehee »

    15 May 2007 · 7:12 pm

    W2K and XP include the defragger, but no convenient way to run it on a scheduler.

    And on top of that, the scheduler on my XP bugbox doesn’t work at all.

    I was supposed to come back to the computer the next day and find a nice set of backups all done and put where I wanted them. The scheduler still had them scheduled, and blinked at me uncomprehending as I tried to explain that an event scheduled for a moment in the past doesn’t belong in the scheduled column, but in the completed column.

    Stupid computer.

  4. McGehee »

    15 May 2007 · 7:13 pm

    And no, the jobs had not been done. Because the scheduler apparently only grasped the concept of “future” but not the concept of NOW.

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