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Diskeeper 3.0 Ships

By Andy Goodman

If you have read my previous articles on disk fragmentation in Windows NT* you know Executive Software’s Diskeeper* workstation version is going to be included in NT 5*, Although it will be a watered down version. If you want remote management or the ability to de-fragment your whole domain at once you will still need to buy the full server product. While version 2.0 of Diskeeper was a big improvement over no de-fragmenter, it still had a few problems. It ran as an application rather than a service which slowed down the system performance too much and you could only do 1 drive at a time. These two problems have been overcome in the new 3.0 release. The biggest problem was that Diskeeper did not optimize the directories. This has been fixed (sort of). Executive’s solution works great for workstations, but I don’t feel it is any answer for Servers. The problem with their solution is you need to reboot the machine. A lot of servers are never rebooted unless there is a problem and therefore would not get their directories optimized. Other than that it seems like a great product. Of course, Diskeeper does de-fragment the files and free space on Servers as well as Workstations. You can defrag all your NT machines from any server, and you can use the Set It and Forget It scheduler to take care of this maintenance during off peak server load hours.

About a month ago I started a project to evaluating the new Microsoft NT Small Business Server* (read it here in a month or 2). This gave me the opportunity to reload George (my main workstation machine) from a fresh format. After about a month of use I received the new Diskeeper and wanted to try it. I figured I would have to do a lot of opening and editing files to create some fragmentation as the drives had only been in service for a month. As I was writing a small routine to accomplish this, I decided to go ahead and install Diskeeper first just to see if I had any fragmentation at all. To my surprise my C drive (1.6 gig) had 1523 Fragmented files and 7411 excess file fragments. My G drive (1.6 gig) had 120 fragmented files and 696 excess file fragments. I could not believe how fast all this fragmentation occurred. I ran Diskeeper once on each drive then ran the directory optimizer on each drive and the de-fragmenter once more on each drive. After 2 hours and 45 minutes drive G had no fragmentation and drive C was down to 3 fragmented files and 309 excess file fragments. This was a dramatic improvement. The machine was noticeably perkier and I was able to use the machine during the de-fragmentation. The only time I could not use it was during the directory optimization as Diskeeper need to be able to reboot the machine a few times.

My overall opinion is that Executive took a good product and made it substantially better. It will be a great product when they overcome the need to reboot to clean up the directories. If you’re running NT you should be running Diskeeper! You can download a fully functional trial copy (time bombed) from http://www.execsoft.com

About the Author

Andy Goodman is on the Steering Committee for BANTUG (Bay Area NT Users Group) as well as a past Officer and Director of the SVCS (Silicon Valley Computer Society). He is a Licensed Microsoft OEM and Intel Registered IPD. Andy owns and operates DownHome Computers a System Integration House in Santa Clara, CA. He has been involved with the electronics industry since 1975. You can reach Andy at Andy@12c4pc.com or http://www.12c4pc.com


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