question about defragging

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by Loft, Dec 16, 2004.

  1. Loft macrumors newbie

    Oct 17, 2004
    i'm a mac newbie and i just want to ask you guys if we need to defrag out macs. i'm not even sure if there's a disk defragment mode so please enlighten me. if there is a need to defrag, please give me a step by step process on how to do it. thank you.
  2. timnosenzo macrumors 6502a


    Jun 21, 2004
    ct, us
  3. Sharewaredemon macrumors 68000


    May 31, 2004
    Cape Breton Island
    A little bit more specifically, the reason you do not need to defrag is because OS X defrags on the fly! It's great not to have to worry about that.
  4. MisterMe macrumors G4


    Jul 17, 2002
    Actually, from what I understand of MacOS X and the physical layout of data on Mac hard drives, running defrag software can hurt. IIRC, people running Norton Speed Disk on MacOS X have reported problems. Let me put my $0.02 in about defragging. It is a Wintel solution to a Wintel problem. Being the worry-wort that I am, I periodically defragged my own Mac prior to MacOS X. I have never seen anything better than marginal improvement in the performance of my Macs. When I accepted my current position, I inherited a Mac-using secretary who never performed maintenance of any kind on her computer. I loaded Norton, ran through the utilities including Speed Disk. I saw no noticeable improvement. When I converted my Macs' hard disks from HFS to HFS+, the conversion left them in a most fragmented state. I ran Speed Disk--or was it TechTools Pro. At any rate, I saw no noticeable improvement after defragging. Even though I used it, I had become convinced that defragging was a waste of time. However, when I run Defrag on my Windows computer, the improvement in performance was dramatic. A computer whose performance had dropped to the point were it was barely useable was now performing as it should.

    The takeaway message is simple: Defragging is an essential task to maintain the performance of [some] Windows computers. For Mac users, it is a waste of time or worse.
  5. Loft thread starter macrumors newbie

    Oct 17, 2004
    thanks guyS! i just thought that defragging was essential for all computers! thanks again!
  6. Westside guy macrumors 603

    Westside guy

    Oct 15, 2003
    The soggy side of the Pacific NW
    Nope. Some filesystems are intrinsically designed to basically never become significantly fragmented. Linux's ext3 is one such system, and hfs+ apparently uses a similar methodology (I don't know a lot about hfs+ internals; I'm relying on what I've read).

    Of course, if this is really true about hfs+ I'm not sure why it would defragment smaller files on the fly...

    Edit: Here's some interesting reading:

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