General discussion

Defragging the Hard Drive

Apr 6, 2007 1:58PM PDT

I have a Gateway GT5220 with a 250 GB Hard Drive and i was just wondering how often i should run disk cleanup, ccleaner, and the disk defragger.

Any help will be appreciated!

Chris

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reply to: Defragging
Apr 6, 2007 3:56PM PDT

It very much depends on how you use the computer. If you do a lot of Internet surfing you may want to run Disk cleanup occasionally. I run it about every two weeks or so. Usually when my Temporary Internet files folder gets
about 60-70% full. I set my Temporary Internet files folder size to 100MB. Start > Control Panel > Internet Options > General tab > under Temporary Internet files click on Settings > set the Amount of disk space to use > OK > OK. While you're there it may be a good idea to select the radio button beside "Automatically.

A good way to judge when the Temporary Internet files folder is getting too full is that web Page loading will begin to slow down. These Temporary Internet files are cashed web pages and images of web pages that are used to speed up the loading of web pages that were previously visited. But the more files that are saved, the more searching must be performed before the page loads. On the other hand, when the files are cleared/deleted these pages must again be searched out by the ISP and completely downloaded.

While you are at Start > Control Panel > Internet Options > General tab, under History it is a good idea to set the number of days at three or less.

Also, at Start > Control Panel > Internet Options > General tab I would suggest using your best judgement when deleting Cookies. As some of these Cookies save login information such as here at the CNET Forums so you don't have to login every time you return. Also, many banking and shopping sites place special Cookies on the machine so they can recognize your computer so you only need to enter a password, and avoid having to answer special security questions.

When you run Disk cleanup I recommend placing a check mark beside each item in the list except "Compress old files". Compressing files, even just old files can greatly slow down the computers ability to access and close files. It only results in a big waste of time and overworks the Hard drive. That is, unless you are hard-up for memory space. In which case it's probably time to buy an additional or larger Hard drive.

As for Defragging. Unless you do a lot of installing and uninstalling of programs and play a lot of video games, at two or three months is probably plenty.

Sorry to get so long-winded. Hope you find something useful in this.

Charlie

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User specific.
Apr 6, 2007 11:34PM PDT

Ccleaner>I run it at startup>it only runs for a few seconds
so that's not much of an issue.

Defrag>Some folks run it daily>some folks never run it.
Play with the timing>maybe pick something in the middle.

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Defragging the Hard Drive
Apr 7, 2007 12:22AM PDT

Ccleaner - I run it daily. Why wouldn't I? It takes out the trash.

Defrag - I only run that when Windows tells me to. Just click the Analyze button, and windows will tell if it's needed. Anything more is a waste of time.

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I'd say never
Apr 7, 2007 1:10AM PDT

Disk cleanup is probably the single most useless program I've come across since the classic "Hello World" example traditionally used as a programmer's first program in a language. All it does is print out "Hello World". Actually, I take that back, Hello World helps to show some of the basic language constructs, so therefore is actually far more useful than the disk cleanup program.

ccleaner is moderately useful if you are making any of the following mistakes. Using any browser based on Internet Explorer (or anything that isn't Firefox, Seamonkey, or Opera), haven't been keeping up with your security updates for Windows and other Microsoft programs, and/or are using P2P file sharing programs. If you're not doing any of those things, there's very little need for a program like ccleaner.

As for defragmenting... If the majority of the time you spend on the computer can be described as web browsing, email, and maybe some gaming, and you aren't running any sort of database or web server, you don't do a lot of high end video or photo editing, or anything that might be considered along those lines... Then there's little to no need for you to ever defragment. You'd be looking at gaining a few tenths of a second performance wise, which would be right on the threshold of perception. Compared to the stress you put on the drive doing the defragmenting, it just doesn't seem like a worthwhile activity.

There are other ways in which it becomes an even less appealing decision, but I'm trying to keep things simple for the sake of others. I like to think that people are generally intelligent enough to be able to understand simple comparison constructs, but sadly there's a group of 3-4 people here who have demonstrated their inability to do so. I apologize if this seems rather dumbed down to you, it's not meant as any sort of reflection upon you, but those 3-4 others I mentioned. If there is a god, or gods, or even just some advanced civilization watching over us that we called gods, he/she/they will intercede and bestow a sense of understanding upon these people.

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Discussed Many Times
Apr 7, 2007 5:47AM PDT

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