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(tool, file system)
/dee-frag(-ment)'/ (Or "defrag") To coalesce files and free space on a file system; to reduce fragmentation.


To reorganize the disk by putting files into contiguous order. Because the operating system stores new data in whatever free space is available, data files become spread out across the disk as they are updated. Large files may be broken into thousands of fragments, causing the read/write head to move back and forth numerous extra times to read the data. A "defragger" or "optimizer program" rewrites all the files and stores them in adjacent sectors.

Windows comes with the DEFRAG.EXE utility, which can be activated by the Run dialog from the Start menu. Other popular defraggers, such as Diskeeper, offer enhanced capabilities.

Users Run the Gamut
Some users are fanatical about defragging their disks on a regular basis. Others rarely do it, if ever. After defragmenting, performance increases are most noticeable on very large databases that had been heavily fragmented. Because today's computers are so fast, users may not notice any increase in speed with routine applications such as word processing and spreadsheets, especially if the files are small.

A Good Habit
Nevertheless, defragmenting disks regularly is good practice because it reduces wear and tear on the drive mechanism. In addition, should the hard disk ever crash and you did not back up important files, data recovery experts will tell you that a defragged disk is much easier to restore.

Before and After
Diskeeper is one of the most popular defraggers on the market. The red in the drive map at the top shows all the fragmented files. After defragmenting, the new drive map was pasted on the bottom for comparison. Diskeeper can be set up to defrag the disk whenever the machine is idle. As soon as the user clicks the mouse or presses a key, the defragging is suspended.
References in periodicals archive ?
Condusiv(TM) Technologies, formerly Diskeeper Corporation, the leader in high-performance software optimizing technology, people and businesses, has announced the world wide availability of Diskeeper(R) 12, Windows application and storage performance software for servers, operating systems, desktops and laptops.
Diskeeper helps optimize the efficiency in all storage platforms, including SANs and SSDs.
He further states: "We tried and tested numerous products and found Diskeeper had the best results.
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The defragmentation software included with recent versions of Microsoft Windows is a stripped-down edition of Diskeeper (DK).
0 eliminates site-wide installation costs by allowing a System Administrator the ability to `push' the installation of Diskeeper in a single and simple operation, from one place," said Joe Osgood, Diskeeper Program Manager.
The first utility to earn "Certified" status was Executive Software's Diskeeper 5.
Condusiv customers and channel partners expect the highest standard in application and storage acceleration from our new Diskeeper 12.
There is an upsurge in Diskeeper product demand at every enterprise level by CIOs desperate to drive cost efficiency down in their IT sectors.
With more than 38 million licenses sold Diskeeper Corporation supports customers worldwide including more than 90 percent of Fortune 500 enterprises, and nearly 70 percent of the Forbes Global 1000, as well as thousands of enterprises, government agencies, independent software vendors (ISVs) and original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).
This offer is for online purchases of the workstation versions of Diskeeper and Undelete.