Has your computer become slow lately? Possibly, it’s time for you to defrag your hard drives. This will help you increase the performance and speed up your PC.
When we delete certain files on our computer, spaces are created in the disks. So, while installing new documents, these items are stored as fragments. To deal with them, we need defragmentation.
Fortunately, Windows has in-built features to help you defrag your hard drives. In this article, you will learn the importance of defragmentation and simple ways to do it in Windows 11.
Defragmenting Windows Hard Drives: What’s the Point?
When we add or remove documents from a certain hard disk, unwanted spaces remain. Well, they might create problems in the long run when we try fetching a file. This could also be the reason why our computer freezes from time to time.
Therefore, we can use defragmentation to rearrange the disordered files properly. This way, the hard disk space is managed well, and it assists our computers to function smoother.
Basically, defragmentation is required only on HDDs. So, if you have a computer supporting an SSD, we recommend getting one. To get more information on this, you can read our other article on the differences between Fusion drives, HDDs, and SSDs.
Does Degramentation Help to Free Up Disk Space?
The defragmentation process is only for rearrangement of the unordered files or programs. So, it has nothing to do with disk space. Therefore, it’s safe to say that defragmentation doesn’t free up disk space.
But if you are looking for ways to free up your disk space, you can refer to this article.
How Do You Defrag in Windows 11?
To defrag in Windows 11, we do not require a third-party tool as it can be done from the in-built features. This section covers the basic techniques anyone can use to optimize their hard drives.
Disk Optimization on Windows Interface
There’s a special tool available on the Windows interface that lets you optimize your disk drives. You can follow these two simple steps to defrag in Windows 11:
Open Disk Fragmentation Tool
Well, there are three methods to open Disk Fragmentation tools. The first one is from system Settings:
- On your Settings window, select System and visit Storage.
- Scroll down and choose Advanced storage settings.
- Now, choose Drive optimization. This will take you to a dialogue box that helps optimize your drives.
Another method to open the Disk Fragmentation tool is from a preferred drive’s properties. Here’s how to do it:
- Navigate to the drive you wish to defrag.
- Right-click on it and choose Properties.
- Finally, select the Tools tab and click on the Optimize button. Well, this opens the same window you accessed earlier from Settings.
Alternatively, you can open the dialogue box from the Start Menu. To do so, simply search for Defragmenter or a relative keyword. Then, open the Defragment and Optimize Drives application.
Optimize Your Disk Drives
After successfully launching the defragmenter tool, you can now easily optimize your preferred hard disks. Follow this guide to defrag your hard drive:
- Firstly, select a drive or multiple drives in the Status window. Interestingly, you can even select the Advanced option to choose other drives from your PC.
- If you select only one drive, click on Optimize. If you choose multiple disks, press Optimize all.
- Now, wait for a few moments. This depends on the hard drive you’re using and the number of files that needs to get optimized. Once done, click on Close.
Well, there’s an option that lets you check whether your disk needs defragmentation or not. To do so, choose the Analyze option. However, this feature remains disabled by default if your drive doesn’t require optimization.
Disk Defragmentation on Command Prompt
Very few of us know that we can defrag using Command Prompt too. Follow these general commands to optimize your hard drives:
- At first, launch Command Prompt from Start Menu or Run.
- Then, type defrag [Your Drive Name]: and hit enter. This will take a few minutes to perform defragmentation. Once completed, you will receive both pre-optimization and post-optimization reports.
- If you want to perform other actions, try defrag /? to view all the commands you can use. For example, typing defrag C: /a will invoke analysis on your C drive.
Create a Batch File to Defrag Your Hard Drive
Another technique to defrag an HDD is creating a batch file with a .bat extension. Go through the following steps to learn how to do it:
- Firstly, open Notepad.
- Now, copy and paste the code provided below:
defrag.exe c: -f
- If you want to defrag multiple drives, simply use this code after the above one.
defrag.exe [your drive name]: -f
- Once done, save the file in .bat format.
- Now, launch the program you just created.
- Then, wait for several minutes until disk defragmentation is completed on your PC. Once done, the process will close automatically.
How Can I Schedule Defragmentation on Windows?
Generally, Windows recommends you defrag your drives weekly. Nonetheless, you can change this setting from the defragmenter tool itself.
Here’s how you can schedule defragmentation on Windows so that you do not need to do it yourself:
- Open the Defragmenter tool from the methods we explained above.
- Under Scheduled Optimization, select Change Settings.
- Now, set the frequency to Daily, Weekly, or Monthly. Also, you can choose the drives you want to defrag automatically.
- Finally, press Ok to make the desired changes.
Do We Need to Defrag in Mac?
Mac uses a file system that automatically defrags a disk drive when necessary. So, we do not need defragmentation here. Nonetheless, you can find plenty of third-party software if you are looking to defrag in Mac.
Is It Safe to Defrag C Drive?
You might hear rumors claiming defragmentation harms our HDDs. But, that’s not true, as the system has a default way of defragging disks weekly. Hence, it is safe to defrag the C drive or any other hard drive.
What Do You Mean by 0 Fragmented?
Basically, 0 fragmented means 0% fragmented. This means none of the files in your drive is defragmented. Often, you see this when you haven’t defragged your HDD for a long time. Thus, we recommend you defrag your drives as soon as possible.
Is There Any Difference Between Defrag and Optimize?
When you search for defragging or optimization in the Start Menu, you will see an app called Defragment and optimize drives.
However, defrag means combining fragmented files, while optimizing means making the best use of something. Although they have different literal meanings, their denotation remains the same in Windows 11.