Should external HDD ever be Defragmented?

Discussion in 'Acronis True Image Product Line' started by Roy22, Nov 1, 2007.

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  1. Roy22

    Roy22 Registered Member

    Oct 30, 2007
    I backup my entire PC (as 'My Computer') weekly to an external HDD, presumably as a disk image. After just a few weeks of running this differential backup, Window's Defragmenter says that the external HDD is almost completely fragmented.

    Should I defragment the HDD, or is Windows misinterpreting the way True Image writes an entire disk image to an external HDD?
  2. MudCrab

    MudCrab Imaging Specialist

    Nov 3, 2006
    Opinions vary on this, but there is no advantage to running a defrag on TI image files and in several rare cases doing so has caused corruption to the image file. As a general rule, I wouldn't bother.

    If there are other files on the external drive and your defrag program lets you exclude files, you could exclude the TIBs and defrag the rest.
  3. nb47

    nb47 Registered Member

    Dec 15, 2006
    No , not from what I've read on here-supposedly can make the size bigger. However I DO defrag the hard drive on computer right before I make a backup. Good luck!
  4. shieber

    shieber Registered Member

    Oct 27, 2004
    Defragging, while it can noticably help on very badly fragged drives that have little unused space, is generally the most overhyped, least productive thing one can do to improve or maintain PC performance, esepcially if one is talking about a few very large files that take up the better part of used disk space.

    If you have, say, a 10GB file that you're going to read, say, to do a restore, then defragging it from 20 frags down to one will probably cut maybe 10 ms off of the 10-20 minute restore time. Why would anyone bother -- how could you ever notice the "improvement"? and why spend hours of defrag frag time to save a few ms?

    Defragging shouldn't change the file size -- clusters is clusters, after all, and so many bytes of file will take up jsut so many clsuters. But suppose defragging somehow did at a cluster? Maybe that would add a couple a few nanoseconds to the restore time -- so, so what?

    Defragging really large files, like disk image files such as TIBs is a very slow process. It makes sense to just leave the tibs on the disk alone unless they are extraordinarily fragged, each tib in hundreds of frags. Even then, it might make more sense to just delete a bunch of them to clear up a lot of unused space, which would only takes seconds, and start accumulating a new batch of tibs.

    I have Perfect Disk wake my PC in the middle of hte night to run a defrag on my system drive, which gets fragged pretty quickly -- but I don't bother with the disk that holds the tibs. It's just ain't worth runnin all the way to the well for a little ddrop of water.
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