A Few Defragmentation Tools

Jun 15, 2008
Updated • Feb 6, 2013

My defragmenter of choice has always been Auslogic Defragmenter, I have no idea how effective it is compared to other programs but it’s simple enough and looks pretty.

However I came across Piriform Defraggler the other day and I was interested in one feature it had… individual file and folder defragmentation. At first I thought this was pretty superfluous considering it would be difficult to notice much of an effect defragmenting a single file or folder…  however I have a laptop and not a huge hard drive so a complete defragment doesn’t take huge amount of time anyway.

If you have a large hard drive however then this could be a very useful tool. I’m thinking of large music collections or DVD rips which go into the hundreds of gigabytes worth of space.

Using Piriform Defraggler to defragment just your music or video collection could have some kind of small effect on performance. Apart from this it has all the other basic features and even a nice monitoring tool which for some strange reason was omitted from the Vista defragmentation application.

Unfortunately there are no scheduling options but it’s simple and works fast enough to keep most people happy.

For anything more advanced I recommend IOBit Smart Defrag. This has the kind of scheduling options you may be looking for as well the ability to defragment and optimise multiple hard drive partitions.

The best thing about Smart Defrag is that it can be set to start up whenever the computer is left idle. I think schedules are a pain as you might in the middle of something when a scheduled task starts up so instead running when the computer is idle is the best solution.

You can check out our defragmentation category for additional program reviews. The link is at the top.


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  1. Smith said on July 5, 2008 at 12:19 am

    I also have tried many such utilities and finally found one that is extremely fast, tipically will defrag my hard drive in just over 30 minutes, most other tools out there can take over half a day to do the same job.

    The tool is called Power Defragmenter and is made by excessive software. The tool is nothing more then a GUI that runs a sysinternals CMD line utility called contig. Up to build 1.82, contig was embended into Power Defragmenter itself, but since they have been forced to remove it, and now you need to manually/separately download contig from Microsoft and save it to the same folder as Power Defragmenter GUI.

    Here is the location where you can download it.

    when you run Power Defragmenter it will prompt you to go and download contig from Microsoft.

    I think the reason why it seems to be so fast is because contig defrags files under a certain size, where other tools try to relocated huge files over and over and that just wastes time.

    This tool surely is a recommended one for your portable toolkit. Enjoy.

  2. Chooky said on June 22, 2008 at 1:37 am

    I found those options so it makes this defragger perfect for me or anyone else I think!

    I just wish I hadn’t paid for Vopt last week! Oh well whats another $40.

    Makes Diskeeper and the rest look pretty sad doesn’t it?

    Thanks again, Lethal!

  3. LethAL said on June 21, 2008 at 1:51 pm

    @Chooky: It can do that, too. Tools\Options, High Performance, Custom, Select Files. Choose your folder, then move it to the left. Then you can use any defrag method (consolidate is the one they recommend for this) to move it there, as long as you select “Respect high performance” in the options of that method.
    It also works like bootvis if you select “Respect Layout.ini” in the options, butt boot files at the start.

  4. Chooky said on June 21, 2008 at 1:39 pm

    Thanks LethAL! I don’t know how this one escaped my attention! Its certainly the best looking defragger out there! And its file placement should increase speeds! But what I was after was a defragger that will move a particular folder and all files within to the fastest place on the disk just like Microsoft Bootvis optimize putting the boot files at the fastest place.

  5. LethAL said on June 21, 2008 at 3:07 am

    @Chooky: UltimateDefrag allows you to put the folders next to the MFT, which isn’t necessarily the front of the drive; it’s still a performance boost, though.

  6. Chooky said on June 20, 2008 at 11:39 pm

    I watch the visuals too. Its fascinating! I don’t get all you diskeeper fans I’ve tried it and don’t like the overhead, the interface and there are free defraggers that are just as good if not better. It is the only one I have seen that will work with the MFT though. Has anyone seen one that will allow you to move a folder to the front of the disk.

  7. persian said on June 20, 2008 at 12:49 pm

    I’m a Diskeeper user and have no complaints absolutely. Its not that I watch the defrag visuals like a movie, but I would always want to know whats happening on my defrag, whether its running/hanging.. which I cant on the Vista tool.

  8. Jojo said on June 18, 2008 at 1:16 am

    Yeah maybe OAlexander. But who cares? I use between 0-2% of my CPU power on average, so I have plenty of free cycles sitting around doing nothing. I schedule defrags for when I am sleeping, so they don’t impact me at all. And I do notice a bit better responsiveness after defragging, which is why I do it 3 times a week.

  9. OAlexander said on June 17, 2008 at 6:16 pm

    Defragmentation is an overrated issue – the more so on todays fast harddrives. It makes sense however, to ensure that all programm files, dll’s and the like are given the odd once over. Once they are defragmented they stay so, unless replaced.

    Data file defragmentation basically makes only sense if the files are kept stable, such as video and mp3 collections. Volatile major database file may benefit from a regular seeing to.

    Most people simply end up wasting their time defragging browser cache file – tons of them at browser standard settings.

    I basically these days only defrag after program installations and updates. My tool of choice happens to be OO-Defrag, but surely I am nor religious about it.

    For most, defragging with the on-board tool after Windows and programms install will do perfectly. It was of more significant importance when harddrives were slow and small – and the deraggers were shitty and slow. To defrag NT 4.0 with “only” 25% free diskspace was a challenge at some stage ;).

  10. Varla said on June 16, 2008 at 6:01 pm

    I use Diskeeper 2008 pro, and it’s excellent. Of all the major defraggers I tried, it was the best, and easiest to use…all you have to do is to simply enable it’s background defrag mode for the relevant partitions! It works really well and keeps all 4 drives on my desktop and the single drive on the laptop in excellent shape.

    I personally don’t like any of these ‘free’ defraggers…too risky to let some unknown program shuffle the data around on my hard drive. Besides, most of them are rather crude and primitive anyway.

  11. Rob said on June 16, 2008 at 8:41 am

    I’m trying out Disktrix Ultimate Defrag (www.disktrix.com). Pretty happy with it so far, it has several strategies and a interesting view of the sectors as they are arranged on the disk

  12. Tehmul Ghyara said on June 16, 2008 at 8:09 am

    I use JKDefrag in conjunction with PageDefrag to defrag the registry – it can be scheduled with Task Scheduler.

  13. C.T. said on June 16, 2008 at 4:04 am

    For ‘quick cleanups’, once or twice a day, AusLogic Defrag ROCKS! It’s fast, does a decent job, MUCH faster than XP’s defrag, and it sees my USB external drives that some others don’t. :-)

    For more SERIOUS Defragging, I use PerfectDisk or DisKeeper – Both are excellent!

    But when I want to ‘Get Everything Right’ (once or twice a month) JKDefragGUI cannot be beat! The GUI version even defrags your SwapFile and Registry, if needed, it can be scheduled, optionally runs as a screen-saver, it can also run CCleaner, and it can run off a ThumbDrive! :-D

  14. Chooky said on June 16, 2008 at 3:09 am

    I’ve tried most of them and found vopt from http://www.vopt.com/ to be the best.

  15. Jojo said on June 16, 2008 at 12:29 am

    I’ve used JKDefrag for a couple of years. It works fine and I run it automatically 3 times a week. The only real functional weakness is that it can’t move or defrag the MFT.

  16. LethAL said on June 15, 2008 at 9:54 pm

    I used to like Diskeeper, but it seems to be highly marketed now, with loads of gimmicks. I’ve been using UltimateDefrag for a year or so now, and it’s been brilliant, simply for what it does over other defragmenters: organises data, by rules set by the user. It’s good for putting games at the start of the drive, where they’re read faster.

    Alternatively, JkDefrag organises, but moves <50MB files away, and only does path/atime/mtime sorting, if memory serves.

    They’re both much better than simply changing red blocks to blue ones.

  17. Grimskallen said on June 15, 2008 at 9:47 pm

    Been using JKDefrag for quite some time, excellent tool. It does the job very throughly and has an ability to set it as a screensaver
    Check out the “GUI” version, which has some really nice extra features and tools incorporated as well:

  18. turnip said on June 15, 2008 at 8:33 pm

    I am using Diskeeper 08 now and its very good.

  19. Brent said on June 15, 2008 at 8:17 pm

    Or, you could use the one built right in to Windows that does have scheduling…

    The monitoring was omitted from Vista, yes.

    In Windows Vista, defragmentation runs in the background when the computer is idle. You don’t even realize when it is running.

    Call me silly, but I tend to have better things to do than to monitor the progress of defragmenting my hard drive.

    I have used 3rd party defragging apps, and have run into problems because they do not always defrag the same way that the Windows defragger does. This can create a problem, which is why I am hesitant to recommend them to people. I am just as hesitant to recommend registry cleaners, but if you must use one, I suggest the one from the Windows Live OneCare safety scanner.

  20. Brian said on June 15, 2008 at 7:26 pm

    Diskkeeper works awesome as a real-time defrag, and so does Ashampoo’s Magical Disk Defrag 2, which is what I currently use. It offers a 40 day free trial, but for some confusing reason they also offer a key which activates for good?


  21. Jonathan said on June 15, 2008 at 4:36 pm

    I prefer to use diskeeper. The only ‘problem’ is if you are running a x64 system, you have to purchase the pro version which can cost $70 or more, but I really like the real-time defrag, that it offers. Prior to using diskeeper, I used Raxio Perfectdisk, which was a good program and offered some features that are hard to find in your average defraging program.

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