This useful utility defragments files stored on a hard disk to boost performance
Defraggler is a useful utility that reorganises the files on a hard disk so they can be accessed faster.
Contrary to what you might expect, Windows is rather indiscriminatory when it comes to writing files to the hard disk and uses the first area of empty space that it finds. If this isn't big enough the file is split and the next free space used as well. With large files this can lead to tens if not hundreds of fragments.
It is possible that this can lead to problems with files but this normally means it takes longer to read them.
Defraggler reverses this trend by moving files around so they are in one piece.
Installation is simple and the interface is easy to use. Select the disk, click on Analyse and then Defrag. There is a quick defrag option. The Disk Map shows how much of the hard disk is taken up with fragmented files and shows the progress once defragmentation starts.
The defragmentation process can take some time, which is true of all these utilities but we didn't notice any performance problems while it was going. It helpfully offers to empty the Recycle Bin before starting.
Large files can be moved to the end of the hard disk and folders excluded from the process if required.
There is also a portable version of Defraggler that can be downloaded from the Piriform website.
Defraggler now has better detection for solid state disks (SSDs). SSDs should not be defragmented. The different technology they use means that fragmentation does not affect performance and the process of defragmentation can actually reduce their lifespan.
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