The Windows XP defragger - is it good enough for the enterprise?. I've been running the XP defragmenter quite a bit on the video machine. Man, is it slow. Also doesn't seem to speed things up much. So I'm off to try some commercial defragmenters. Here's a quick review:
* "O&O Software":http://oo-software.com. This is another defragger. Got a good review from majorgeeks.com. I like the user interface quite a bit. Lots of control over how the disk gets laid out. Its interesting to see XP layout files. Particularly for big video ones, doesn't make much sense to me. You can have 40% free drive (over 50GB), but in creating a 2GB AVI file, it creates something with over 100 fragments. So a defragger is almost mandatory. I'm going to try this on a dual partitioned disk, maybe it has to do with the fact that I have just one gigantic partition on my video edtiing machine.
* "Diskeeper":http://executive.com. This review says it is 30% faster than the builtin utility. This is the grownup version of the bundled version in XP itself. Now in Version 8. Have a 30 day trial too. Doesn't have much configurability compared with O&O, but it does do a boot time defragging of the MFT (the file table) and other system files.
* "VoptXP":http://www.vopt.com/VoptXP.htm. This is the number one hit on google for defragmenters. Giving it a try now. This one is OK, but doesn't give many diagnostics or configurability.
* "Bootvis":http://www.softpedia.com/public/cat/12/2/12-2-1.shtml. A Microsoft tool that lets you see why it takes so long to boot. This thing actually did work for me. Complained about a file not being around.
Now to repartition an NTFS hard drive with real data in it. That is quite a trick. The default XP partitioner is destructive. You can buy Partition Magic (now owned by Symantec) to do a dynamic repartition, but it costs $60. One good suggestion is to use the NTFS repartitioner in Mandingo Linux. You can start the install, repartition then cancel before the install. Clever.