by compbugs - 1/19/05 1:38 PM
Defrag runs for 2-3 minutes maybe and the computer freezes or defrag stalls. I have checked for viruses. I have run defrag in safe mode. Suggestions for an amatuer?
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by: compbugs January 19, 2005 1:38 PM PST
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Total posts: 42 (Showing page 1 of 2)
try disk clean first ... then defrag.. also please make sure every application is closed before... then defragger see how it goes
close down any screen saver, and firewall, but disconnect from the internet before closing down the firewall.
In safe mode with disks cleaned and screen saver off and firewall off defrag now gets to "50% compacting files" and stalls.
It can reveal if there is a heat buildup issue.
If that doesn't make a difference, the DRIVE FITNESS TEST would be run. ONLY DO THIS IF IT OFFERS A NON-DESTRUCTIVE MODE!
DRIVE FITNESS TEST ?
What is a "Drive Fitness Test"?
Sorry to butt in, have you heard of Diskeeper? What is your opinion of it?
I saw the same thing on my XP Pro over the holidays. After extensive deletions and conversion CD's to MP3 files I had really fragged my disk. I ran defrag and it just sat at 50% for almost an hour. Since nothing appeared to be wrong, other than the excessive time it was taking, I just let it run and it eventually went to 51% and stayed there for a fair amount of time. Then after one quarter of NFL it was finishing up. Due to the overnight defrags that were necessary on my ME machine I have become a very patient man. I realize tha you would expect more from XP, but this could be what you are seeing if you have not done a defrag in a while. Just start it up and see if it finishes in two or three hours, provided of course, you are also following the other suggestions, which were all good and seem to indicate that there is no real problem with the drive.
Disconnect from the Internet.
Check Event Viewer (Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Event Viewer) for possible errors.
Disable all system utilities you may have (Norton System Utilities, etc.)
Scan it for errors, and try again (in Safe Mode):
It may also be a hardware problem In that case youll need to get a drive diagnostic utility from your disk/pc manufacturer/website.
Hope this helps!
You may also want to try a third-party utility:
http://www.raxco.com/ (free for 30 days)
How much HD space do you have? You need about 20% free to do a defrag.
In additional to what has been suggested, try a chkdsk /r before defag, and if you have a Quick Launch bar, choose not to have it shown.
In addition to trying chkdsk or other utility you can also schedule scandisk to run on restarting windows to find any bad sectors, if you do have enough space and disk cleanup doesn't improve anything.
I find that being on cable modem causes the computer to be "hit" by packets of info, and it causes something called system write, thus making defrag start all over again. So I disconnect the cable modem whenever I do a defrag. See if that might help. I'm not sure if this is the same problem you're having or not.
I notice while running my cleanup, scan disk, THEN defrag AFTER them; seems to help than just doing a defrag. I totally agree with k4cdm! I have DSL & also notice that there's some activity going on while trying to defrag. So, if you have the cable modem or DSL as well, SHUT THEM DOWN & just let it ride. Sometimes it may take hours to finish, as when I first ran mine. Now, I make a habit of running it once a week! Depending on your usage of your PC also depends on how much & often you should run these! I hope some of this helps!
if your defrag freezes try running chkdsk first. start then run then type in "chkdsk"
Have you tried running Ad-Aware or Spybot S & D before attempting the defrag? Spyware can cause the defrag process to freeze. Both applications are free and effective at rooting out spyware and removing it.
This will sound strange, but- have you ran any error checking software i.e.: scandisk, or norton disk doctor ? If not then run either of those that you have and then try Defrag again. Of course if Defrag works then you'll know it was soft/hard errors on your hard drive.
I tried to do a defrag with about 90% of the disk full. XP said it needed a lot more empty space. Knowing MS, they probably need 50% empty ( they're really not too sharp on storage techniques - they just tell you to keep putting more storage capacity in ). It's obvious that 50% empty is the easiest solution. I suggest you either delete all surplus files\folders or install big files\folders to another HD, the latter being the easy option ( just saw a 120 Gb Maxtor for $76 at Ecost ). I hope that transferring big folders\files is a defrag process, since you have an equal amount of free space to organize the file structure. Only an idiot would design it to be otherwise, but you know Microsoft.
Having to put up with defrag seems to be a given, judging from the replies. Only a stupid software outfit would sit on its butt and ignore the obvious. Defrag could be run in the background, by a clever designer, by keeping track of the fragments and reassigning their locations during normal operation. It could respond to the load demands and suspend when file access was peaking and probably not even make the slowdown apparent. Like Google desktop search. Too bad Google wasn't doing a defrag package. Basically, all the problems stem from Microsoft's overwhelming paranoia about all the other , much more clever designers out there pushing them off the top of the hill, so only the immediate concerns, never the basic, get addressed.
Found the following tip at Microsoft--works great. Your temp files may have a corrupt file contained within. Not all Temp files are deleted by Disk Cleanup, so do the following:
Go to RUN
Type in %temp% (yes, use the percent signs)
There may be 1 to 3 files that will not delete-that is OK-delete all you can.
I agree with first just letting it run all night (or day) and just wait and see. If that doesn't work see if there are a lot of programs running in the background. When I used Windows 98 it would always lock-up unless I shut down those applications. (See forum response: http://reviews.cnet.com/5208-6130-0.html?forumID=7&threadID=58715&messageID=697232&tag=nl.e497 )
It's usually worth the bother so hang in there!
Defrag freezes,I had the same problem.
After lengthy investigation I found it always froze up during the "compress old files" part.Then the search on the internet for info about it gave me the cure.Go to
And then down to line 48 on the right hand side.It says "Disk Cleanup-Compress Old Files Freezes-Undo".You don't want the undo part,this is a visual basic script that you must run(they tell you how,then restart.Try it,it worked for me.Just "click" on the part that says"Disk Cleanup-" to download. It saved my sanity last year!
Window's Defrag has never been much good. Go to executivesoftware.com. and checkout Diskeeper. Diskeeper has got Window's defrag beat hands down. It does a much faster and very thorough job on Defragmenting. You can set it to work while your screensaver is on, on bootup, or any time you want. I've got Diskeeper 9 now, and it really does the job. Windows doesn't get in the way because it's a program by itself. It costs around $30-$40, but it's well worth it. You will never have that problem again.
The same thing happened to me too. Try running the Win-XP utility scandisk. Just right click the problem hard drive in My Computer and go to tools and select check this drive. I did it and it found errors and it fixed them and I was good to go to defrag. I run scandisk once a week now. Hope this helps, because it helped me.
Defrag needs the 100% current disk file directory (names and hardware addresses) at all times, so when defrag is started it 'analyzes' the disk drive fetching the current directory.
But a (supid little, often overlooked) Microsoft utility may be running in the background and killing you effectively by constantly updating the directory.
Look for "Find Fast" in your system settings via: Start -> Settings -> Control Panel -> Find Fast (I believe I remember the name right). I know it exists in older operating systems (ie: Windows 98), but I'm not sure about Win-XP/2000.
If you see it, check/open it and disable it ... the reason:
"Find Fast" may be indexing your disk files for quick access ... this is good (only!) if you do a lot of disk 'searches' for files because you cannot remember where you saved them.
What defrag does is: moving files that were split into a bunch of peices to a location on your disk drive that will hold the whole file as one peice (ideally).
As files are moved (& defragged) the "Find Fast" indexing process keeps updating its own directory (another disk file containing the names/hardware address of each file in your operating systems master disk directory) to keep it current ... thus,
The O/S master disk directory is changed to have the revised "Find Fast database" location corrected (that file will have changed in size and physical hardware location) ... but,
Defrag needs the 100% current disk file directory (names and hardware addresses) at all times ... so,
Defrag restarts itself (refetching the updated O/S master directory), cleans up one file ... thus,
The disk directory changes (again) ... so,
"Find Fast" re-indexes, changing its directory again ... so,
Defrag re-starts again ... etc, etc, etc ...
Like a loop forever!!!
The process repeats at least once for each file that has to be defragged, I believe. You'll get a warning after every 10 restarts of defrag, but most people just tell defrag to quit showing the warning and then they wait, and wait, and ...
Basically if any file is updated while defrag is running, the defrag process restarts. This is also why you want to disconnect from the internet (your firewall/virus/etc software may be posting records to their logs, etc) and stop all other programs from running if you can before starting defrag.
Note: Cleaning your recycle bin, deleting undesired cookies/spyware/adware, etc. will improve performance by freeing up work space, but no vendors defrag is very quick anyway so be prepared to wait ...
1) disconnect from the internet,
2) clean out trash (disk clean, spyware, adware, cookies, etc),
3) shut down everything (firewall/virus scanners, etc),
4) and only then start defrag, and finally,
5) leave it running, go to bed and reboot in the morning
Reply title should be ... Turn off FIND FAST
Whoops ... title on my reply got cut off.
Sounds like you may need to run a Scan Disk to have it check for programs that may have errors. There's just one problem. Maybe someone in the CNET community knows how to access Scan Disk on XP. In '98 that was part of System Tools. However XP does not have this feature. I sometimes had that problem in Windows '98 and if I ran advanced Scan Disk it would fix any problems and/or allow me to delete fragmented files, then Scan Disk would run normally. Think I'll ask about Scan Disk in XP. Good Luck.
If you have any screen saver or desktop photos that cycle (e.g., Webshots ), turn them all off as they interfer with the process. You will reach a certain point, be it 50% or another figure, and a new photo will cycle through and push your defrag back. The same thing happened to me, and this solved the problem. When done, turn back on any such program you want.
Total posts: 42 (Showing page 1 of 2)