If you have been using a computer for a long time or even for a year, chances are that you have definitely heard about defragmentation. Yes it is that process which is extremely essential and should be performed at least once a month, if not every two weeks. It is also that process which we forget to perform each time and the hard disk keeps getting fragmented and thus becomes slower. Fragmentation occurs if the operating system is unable to allocate a contiguous memory location to a file, which is then stored in smaller pieces across the hard disk. The process of defragmentation tries to counter this by bringing together all file fragments and also grouping the free space together through compaction. The disk defragmenter that comes with Windows 7 is great but lacks the shedule and automation features. You can use third party software for the same, but what is the need if the inbuilt software can do the job. However, if you directly schedule the disk defragmenter in the Task Scheduler, it merely starts the disk defragmenter and not the actual defragmentation. So, let us see how to automate and schedule defragmentation in Windows 7.
- Start the Task Scheduler from Accessories -> System Tools.
- On the right most pane, select Create Basic Task.
- Enter a name for the task. The description is optional, then click next.
- In task triggers, select the option which is suitable to you. We are going for weekly defragmentation, and click next.
- Choose the day and time according to your preference when you would like the defragmenter to run every week, and click next.
- Choose start a program among the actions, click next.
- Enter defrag /c /v /u in the script/program text box and select next and then OK.
- Review the task settings and finish the task. The defragmentation will now be carried on the time and day that you have specified every week.
- The argument /c implies all volumes, if you want to defrag only a single or selected partitions replace /c with the drive you want to defrag i.e. c: d: etc. The argument /v and /u display fragmentation output and current progress in the command window respectively. These may be omitted but then you will not know how far the task has progressed.
It does not make sense getting a third party utility for performing a task, which Windows performs admirably with an inbuilt tool. Try it out and tell me how you fared.
Written by Siddharth
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