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Defragmentation RRS feed

  • Question

  • On v1 I always had a third-party Defrag app running. On v2 this is listed as an Issue -

    "Issue

    There may be compatibility issues between the server's storage system and low-level storage tools.

    Description

    Running low-level software storage tools, for example, defragmentation, full disk encryption, or volume imaging on server folders may cause issues. These tools have not been fully tested in this release.

    Solution

    Avoid running these tools on server folders."

     

    The Defrag application is in v2 and the app states on the bottom that it only shows volumes that can be defragmented, which it shows all drives, folders and DE areas.

     

    Is this going to be in the final release for use and/or how important is the Defragmentation process for v2?

     


    --
    Don

     

     


    • Edited by DonCarlson Friday, April 30, 2010 5:11 AM spelling
    Friday, April 30, 2010 5:07 AM

Answers

  • Defragmentation will be relatively ineffective in the storage pool. Due to the "chunking" of data into 1 GB blocks, handled at a layer under the file system, the actual data will be fragmented across multiple drives, no matter what you see on the surface.

    I would expect that defragmenting the system drive will be possible in a future release, though you should not expect that Microsoft will expose the built-in defragmenting engine in the Dashboard.


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, April 30, 2010 5:25 AM
    Moderator
  • This is not entirely correct. Most I/Os when they come down to the disk are less than 1GB, therefore even defragmentation in the 1GB chunks could be beneficial for performance. We are working to test the defragmentation effects, and also working with 3rd parties to enable these scenarios. Ken is correct, we will not expose the windows defrag App in the dashboard.

    thanks,


    This post is provided AS IS and confers no rights. Mark Vayman, Program Manager, Windows Home and Small Business Server Team
    Friday, April 30, 2010 5:56 PM
    Moderator

All replies

  • Defragmentation will be relatively ineffective in the storage pool. Due to the "chunking" of data into 1 GB blocks, handled at a layer under the file system, the actual data will be fragmented across multiple drives, no matter what you see on the surface.

    I would expect that defragmenting the system drive will be possible in a future release, though you should not expect that Microsoft will expose the built-in defragmenting engine in the Dashboard.


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, April 30, 2010 5:25 AM
    Moderator
  • This is not entirely correct. Most I/Os when they come down to the disk are less than 1GB, therefore even defragmentation in the 1GB chunks could be beneficial for performance. We are working to test the defragmentation effects, and also working with 3rd parties to enable these scenarios. Ken is correct, we will not expose the windows defrag App in the dashboard.

    thanks,


    This post is provided AS IS and confers no rights. Mark Vayman, Program Manager, Windows Home and Small Business Server Team
    Friday, April 30, 2010 5:56 PM
    Moderator
  • Hmm. I think defragmenting a disk isn't very helpful to begin with. With the new DE it's going to be even less so. :) But point taken, Mark.

    "I neither use, nor recommend the use of, defragmenting utilities for most home computers, in most scenarios. This includes Windows Home Server."

    — Ken Warren (many times)


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Friday, April 30, 2010 7:21 PM
    Moderator
  • Ken,

    If you really mean what you said above about defrag, your credibility just took a huge hit in my book.

    Defrag is beneficial on most all drives except where files have just been copied in and are not fragmented at all.

    Please tell me you didn't mean it!

    RevBc

     

     

    Sunday, May 2, 2010 2:30 AM
  • I mean it. I've done testing of defragmenting utilities, and there is a measurable performance improvement after defragmenting a "heavily" fragmented disk. It's very small, though, on modern disks (2%-3%), it doesn't last long because Windows is quite good at fragmenting files, and it works the disk pretty hard while it's happening. That last isn't a large factor in terms of disk life; I wouldn't expect significant reduction from defragmenting a drive even several times a day. But defragmenting can have an impact on overall performance. On old disks (several years ago) there was a much larger performance improvement, and there was evidence that the utilities of the time did significantly reduce disk life.

    You are welcome to think differently, but I still won't recommend defragmenting tools to anyone. :) I don't say there's no place for them, I just say that you won't see the difference in a normal desktop scenario. For desktop (or even Windows Home Server) use, you will see greater benefit if you keep all active volumes at least 30% free, leaving Windows plenty of free space for new files. Which is, come to think of it, an argument in favor of using a utility on a V1 server that will "balance" data between all your drives. Hmm. :)


    I'm not on the WHS team, I just post a lot. :)
    Sunday, May 2, 2010 3:24 AM
    Moderator
  • I've had  a lot of expierience with defragmenting programs, both good and bad Ken. But to lump them all together as ineffective is really quite wrong... If you do some reading, on Whitepapers on individual university sites, Microsoft, Diskeeoer and I could go on, regular defragmentation with a good program can boost system performance by as much as 15-30%. This becomes especicially evident as systems get older, 2-3-4 years as the slavk space grows and storage innificiency increases. Taking a typical 3 year old machine and defragging it with Diskeeeper Pro scheduled overnight regularly can/will quite obviously boost boot times quite dramatically, and in windiws throuroughput as well. I've seen it, I've done it, I've witnessed it, the crappy built in diskeeper in windows (incidentally made by executive software-the makers of diskeeper) won't touch freen space and directory consolidation much less the swap file. As far as Windows Home Server goes, the ball is still up in air on this one, but I there are several companies already collaborating with MSOFT on a program, Perfectdisk and diskeeper I've read of myself. As far a reducing disk lie, that's complete hogwash as well, study after study points to the on/off cycle of a machine does more  damage to HDD than any other thing, way way way down that list is defragmenting, after uninstalling programs! 
    Jeff aka Toyster
    Monday, March 7, 2011 4:09 AM