Windows 2000 Defragmentation Tools: Diskeeper 7.0 Workstation
Five ways to fight the inevitable disk slowdown.
Diskeeper is an institution in the defragmentation software arena. It
was the first defragmentation software that I ran into many years ago
and it continues to live up to expectations. Like everything Executive
Software produces, Diskeeper is an excellent software utility that does
what it says it is going to do, plus a little bit more.
When you run Diskeeper, you'll see a screen with two panes. The top pane
lists all of your drives that are available for defragmentation. The bottom
pane looks like a spreadsheet without the vertical lines-this is the details
pane. From here defragmenting your disk is simple. Just right-click the
drive and select Defragment. Figure 1 shows the results.
Pros: Lots of useful added features
Cons: Misses some files during defragmentation
Verdict: Definitely one to consider
To schedule defragmentation you highlight the drive and, from the Action
menu, select the Set It and Forget It menu; then, choose Disk Volume Scheduler.
You can manually select the times you want the defragmentation process
to run or you can choose Smart Scheduling, an innovative technique that
allows Diskeeper to figure out just how often your disks need defragmenting.
You can also schedule Boot Time defragmentation, which will defragment
your system files (paging, MFT, directory consolidation). You can even
control the priority that the process runs in by selecting Priority from
the Action menu.
Another useful feature is Frag Guard, which runs as a service in the
background to keep your system files defragmented at all times. Every
time you write to the disk, Frag Guard will try to keep your MFT and paging
files contiguous. To turn on this feature, just select Frag Guard from
the Action menu and then enable it for the paging file and any volumes
where you want to keep the master file tables defragmented (Figure 2).
|Figure 1. Defragmenting a disk with Diskeeper.
(Click image to view larger version.)
|Figure 2. Setting up Frag Guard.
I only ran into two problems. First, when I enabled Frag Guard, I noticed
a small performance hit. It was well within acceptable levels but I did
notice it. The second issue has been around for a while: Diskeeper is
not as thorough as you might expect. Every time I ran Diskeeper, I had
11 fragmented files left over. I would have expected the software to defragment
these files because they were not in use and they were not system files.
No matter how many times I ran the process, the files remained fragmented.
I have seen this behavior on other systems as well. The drive still gets
sufficiently cleaned, though.
All things considered, this is a great piece of software. If you're in
the market for a new defragmentation package, then you definitely need
to consider Diskeeper.
Joseph L. Jorden, MCSE, MCT, CCNA, CCDA is Chief Technical Officer for Dugger & Associates (www.Dugger-IT.com). He was one of the first 100
people to achieve the MCSE+I and one of the first 2,000 to become an MCSE under Windows 2000. Joseph frequently contributes to books from Sybex and various periodicals.