Need info about defragging

I defrag my drive (D:) that my data is on that i burn onto DVDs. My question is that if the C drive also should be defragged before each writing of a DVD. I do not like to defrag often and I know it can shorten the lifetime of a drive if you do it often enough.

I would think that only the drive the data that needed to be burned needs to be defragged before a burn to avoid errors since most the stuff from the C drive is loaded into RAM already. Just want to check with you guys.

btw, I already did make a lot of DVDs by doing this method, and IF only defragging my D: drive is not enough, what is the likelyhood of the DVD+Rs getting errors down the road? I use Taiyo Yuden DVD+R 8x.


you only need to defrag once every six months unless you install uninstall and delete files constantly if so do it once every month…

i’d defrag your system drive once a month unless you’ve installed and uninstalled deleted or moved around a lot of files…then do so more often.

the drive with the temp files for your burning programs and the dvd files themselves, i’d defrag whenever you’ve deleted/added quite a bit of data or every 5 or 6 burns (just to keep those temporary dvd files in check)

I’m hesitant to even give any sort of timeframe or number of burns before defragging as the opinions on this cary widely.

there was recently a VERY heated thread about defragging.

personally, I’m of the opinion that the more you defrag the better. theoretically I guess all that work isn’t good on your drive, but i’d rather have a drive that is in its peak condition but might not last quite as long than sacrificing current performance for longevity of the drive.

First of all, get you a good defrag tool. M$ windoze defrag is not the best one out there and never been. I use Diskeeper.
But even more important is a good registry cleaner if you wan’t your system running at top notch.

Defrag intervals depends on many factors as already mentioned above. Users that download and install a lot should run defrag at least once a mounth IMO. Clean your temp folder regularly.

Defrag also depends on HDD type/bus/size and size used. A old small and slow ATA HDD will be fragmented faster than a new big SATA drive.
Ofcourse, your main “C:” has also to be defragmented at same intervals as said above.

Shorten the lifespan of a drive? Where did you hear that?

What is fragmentation?

The file system that Microsoft Operating Systems use partitions and a formatting that can cause fragmentation of files. In a nutshell new files are added at the end where the old files end. (Like taking a train and each time adding a new part to the train).

However, if you delete files, gaps will be created, then the file system starts to fill in those gaps with new files. (The train misses a part in the middle, fils it with another part again, if it’s full, it adds on the en of the train again).

The end result is that a lot of these files are scattered all over the harddisk; this results in long reading times since the file system has to read several sectors all over the disk. That is fragmentation.

How to deal with it?

By defragging you take this entire file system apart and reallocate the files in a normally ordered fashion, so that reading is optimized. Depending on the degrafmentation program you can even give give extra priority to special files (such as the windows swap file).

If your C: drive is just used for reading in and maintaining the Operating System, you would not need to defrag this disk for the sake of writing dvd’s.

If your D: drive is just used as a temporary storage to make backup of dvd’s, defragmentation is pretty useless. (since those files will all be added on the end, then removed again). However if the dvd would contain a lot of small little files, it may casue slower reading.

I would think that only the drive the data that needed to be burned needs to be defragged before a burn to avoid errors since most the stuff from the C drive is loaded into RAM already. Just want to check with you guys.
Nah, it doesn’t really matter.

btw, I already did make a lot of DVDs by doing this method, and IF only defragging my D: drive is not enough, what is the likelyhood of the DVD+Rs getting errors down the road? I use Taiyo Yuden DVD+R 8x.

Most dvd writers also have a buffer underrun protection to make sure that the files will be written correctly. If the buffer isn’t filled up quickly enough (because the harddisk is still reading those pesky little files), it will wait for the harddisk.

Yea my C drive is only used for running programs, D is used for data stroage (i record a lot of digital videos). I usually defrag my D drive before i start writing a bunch of DVDs (all the files i’m writing are from the D drive). I defrag my C drive just when it needs it badly.

So my understanding is to just keep the D drive as contiguous/defragged as possible? The C drive won’t need it AS much as for the sake of writing successful DVDs/CDs and such?


There is no set time period for defragging. It depends on how many temporary files your pc adds then deletes, the size of the files, software installs and uninstalls, etc… I usually defrag mine after I’ve burned 3 or 4 videos, when I’ve deleted a bunch of stuff, or when I uninstall some apps, prior to installing new apps, or when I’m getting ready to capture large video files. Sometimes that is weekly, and sometimes it is quarterly. There are many thoughts on whether to defrag or not defrag. The basic principle is, that if your data is spread over various sections of your hard drive, the drive takes longer and has to work harder to access that data. When the data is all together and on contigous cylinders, it is much faster and easier to sequentially access that data. Would you rather run 100 yards in a straight line, or run 10, come back 10, run 10, come back 10, etc…

I guess my question really is if defragging the D drive (where the media/data is stored that i would like to write onto dvd) is the only priority when it comes to writing DVDs (so nero or whatever doesn’t have to search all over the drvier for different segments.

I prefer not to defrag my C drive except when it gets to about 40% fragmented.

I defrag when I swap out or move alot of data on my d-drive, but never really had a bad burn to the best of knowledge fragmentation. If I see nero stuggling, and remember been awhile, I’ll do the defrag, I’ll also do it when I want to keep the wife off the computer for a day…:slight_smile:

Regarding defragging, I also rip my files to the D: drive, I always do a defrag before I rip. May be unnecesary but I’d rather be wrong on the cautious side.

I can tell you this about intervals of defragging, I have two Western Digital hard drives that I defragged just about every day for the last 4 years and have never had a problem. The reason I like to do it daily is speed, usually takes me only 15 seconds if not alot of activity was done that day.

I don’t use Windows defragger, I use Diskeeper Pro, much faster.
BTW Executive Software makes the Windows defragger only in a diluted form, Executive Software also makes Diskeeper.
In addition I run Acronis Drive Image and I have restored well over 200 images to my C: drive without ever corrupting a file.

I don’t know if I’m just lucky, just relating my experience. I’m a stickler for keeping my PC at peak performance so I go the extra mile.
My wife thinks I’m anal, she’s usually right. :iagree:

Thanks for the replies, but my question really hasn’t been answered except a little bit by mr. belvedere. Sorry, I’m never good at explaining what I’m thinking, I’ve gotten a lot dumber since i actually used my mind a lot back in high school. Basically:

Would not defragging the C drive (where NONE of the files i want to burn are) even if it’s fairly fragmented cause any errors on a DVD? The files integrity seems to be fine on the DVDs. I just wonder if not defragging the C drive while i burned all those DVDs i made would shorten the DVDs archival life down the road as I’m really in no mood to go and burn them all again.

I did have the D drive (where the data/media was) defragged nicely prior to writing all the DVDs

The answer to your question is no.

What will affect your DVD’s archival life is using poor quality media.
Use quality media and you should be fine.

Ah, okay. Thanks izbinnice.

You’re quite welcome, sorry I didn’t reply properly the first time, I think my brain needs a good defragging, just too much information these days for this feeble mind to absorb.

Umm ok just a couple quick words of advice:

Don’t use disk keeper under any circumstances. There are several reasons for this.

  1. It’s written by creepy scientologists.

  2. It has been known to munch people’s partition tables.

That’s all.

I can only speak for myself, doesn’t matter to me who wrote it, (maybe Tom Cruise wrote it):rolleyes:
I can only state it’s always worked for me without issues and gets an extreme workout. I understand Raxco Perfect Disk is a fine product, but when something works for me I’m reluctant to change, just a creature of habit I suppose.

The reason for my question is I always wonder what the tests are for, for jitter and such on CDs and DVDs recordable media.

Is this to just test how well the media is? or does the amount of jitter and all that other stuff those tests test actually affect the archival life of the media?

I mean no offense. If it works for you then by all means stick with it if you like. I simply can’t recommend it for new users because of the inherent “could f*** up your hard drive” dangers. Also your money is, sadly, already in the coffers of the scientology freaks. Let’s not help them any further. :wink:

No, how well your media holds up has nothing to do with how well it tests.

The quality of a burn CAN be impacted by the drive doing the burning, but it’s also highly dependent on the media itself. How fragmented your hard drive is has little effect, given that modern drives all have burn-proof or the equivalent.

Pinto…can you recommend a “good registry cleaner”?