How To Make Vista more responsive and faster

Synopsis
Defragmenting speeds up the system dramatically, BUT using the default defragmenter doesn't defrag file fragments bigger than 64MB. Command Prompt allows for defrag of all files regardless of size.
How To Make Vista more Responsive and Faster

information   Information
Many people are having a problem in regards to either a slow boot up, or that windows is slow to load Programs.
I am using a SATA RAID 0 config, and even with 4GB of ram This can result in heavy fragmentation over two drives, and a slow system- especially after recording tv on MCE or any other activity that writes large files to disk.

Deframenting speeds up the system dramatically, BUT using the default defragmenter doesn't defrag file fragments bigger than 64MB or even include them in the fragmentation statistics
When you have file fragments for one program scattered all over your hard drive, it takes time to recompile them in order to execute the program/data in question. Consolidating all file fragments regardless of their size will result in faster access and execution. Now multiply this by hundreds of thousands of individual file fragments that the cpu must recompile to execute in proper sequence per Windows or User command at the same time. I have seen the GUI show 0% fragmentation where the -w command will show 10% fragmentation on a 640GB SATA RAID 0 drive- thats alot of little individual file fragments scattered over a modest size drive...

But this is only part of the problem, now add into the equation file system errors, bad sectors on the disk, and attribute record (NTFS Directory) corruption...and even the fastest system will slow to a crawl over time.


two steps to a faster system:
(Diskcheck can be scheduled at same time as defrag is running, and will commence upon reboot of system)
1. Do a full defrag- Consolidate all file fragments regardless of size (-w)
Start>All Programs>Acessories>Right Click Command Prompt>"Run as Administrator">at command prompt, copy and paste the following>hit "Enter": (or just type cmd in search at start, right click program "run as administrator")​
(Do not close command (cmd) screen-flashing cursor in empty space indicates defrag running. see note below or page 2 of this tutorial (second post from bottom to see screen shots of the 3 defrag stages))​
defrag c: -w
defrag.GIF

2. Check disk for errors
Start>Computer>Right Click "C" drive>Click Properties>Tools>Error Checking-Click "Check Now">Under Check Disk Options click "Automatically fix file system errors" and "Scan for and attempt recovery of bad sectors"> Restart Computer​
(note-substitute "c" for the drive letter you want to defrag/check for errors)
Capture.jpg

Note   Note
When the computer restarts after check disk, you will notice that the system is much faster and more responsive.
Note   Note

Do not close the "Administrator:Command Prompt" window untill defrag is complete, or it will abort (wait until you see flashing cursor at C:\Windows\system32>_)​
Defrag does not delete files- it just rearranges them on the drive and consolidates. If you notice increase/decrease of storage space on the drive, It can probably most likely be attributed to the Check Disk scan verifying/correcting errors in file data and free space, and/or bad sectors recovered, or marked as "unrecoverable" on the disk. See scan results for more info upon completion of Disk Check.​
If your Disk is marked as "Dirty" see Method 3 here: Check Disk - chkdsk


 
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Comments

Hey!
I tried both of those out and I am definitely seeing a difference. Usually what I would do is just run the standard defragmentation and error checker. With my 4GB of RAM and lovely Q6600 processor, things were already running smoothly. But after doing that full defrag, it's even better! Thanks a lot!
 
Hey! I got another reason to be grateful for you putting this out lol

I'm checking my hard drive space, see how much I'm using and there was 50GB less used space! I'm thinking "Alright, that was either the most awesome defrag ever or I'm missing stuff" lol Being as I wasn't missing anything, I conclude that the command prompt defrag is the most awesome ever lol

The one thing that's especially crazy about this though is that the standard defrag didn't pick up that 50GB worth of frag that I had! And I would have to defrag around 2-3 times a week because things would keep slowing down! Could this have been because of that files bigger than 64MB deal? If it is then Microsoft really needs to get on that cause that was just retarded lol I mean, 50GB OF FRAG! And the standard defrag did not pick any of that up, it would just give me that green circle with the check mark "No defrag for you, biatch" lol

I think the ONLY way to defrag on Vista is to go with that full defrag until they fix the standard defrag cause after this, I definitely don't trust it anymore lol

So, once again, thanks a lot and I think everyone out there on Vista needs to know about this!
 
Hello TMM,

It depends on much you install and uninstall, or save and delete, items on your computer. The more often you do, the less time this will last since your hard drive will get fragmented faster. If you do this a lot, then you will just need to defrag a little bit more often.

Hope this helps,
Shawn
 
You're welcome TMM. Yeah, it can vary on how long it takes based on how much you have on your hard drive and how fragmented it is.

Shawn
 
Hi,

Many thanks for all the help.. I tried both of these and the Check Disk one is great to know, thank you for that........ But I am not so sure about the Defrag tip, I checked everything before using it, disk space, what was taking up the disk space etc... and after the Defrag I checked it all again, and just like in a post above, I had a few extra gigs of free space appear on the drive, 7½ gigs worth.. the exact same amount of space that my system restore points and shadow copies were taking up, The defrag from the command prompt had deleted them all! So I think that I will stick with AusLogics from now on. lol
But many thanks for everything you do..... it is very much appreciated.
 
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Hi,

Many thanks for all the help.. I tried both of these and the Check Disk one is great to know, thank you for that........ But I am not so sure about the Defrag tip, I checked everything before using it, disk space, what was taking up the disk space etc... and after the Defrag I checked it all again, and just like in a post above, I had a few extra gigs of free space appear on the drive, 7½ gigs worth.. the exact same amount of space that my system restore points and shadow copies were taking up, The defrag from the command prompt had deleted them all! So I think that I will stick with AusLogics from now on. lol
But many thanks for everything you do..... it is very much appreciated.
I am pretty sure Defrag does not delete files- it just rearranges them on the drive and consolidates. The increase/decrease of storage space on the drive can probably most likely be attributed to the check disk scan verifying/correcting errors in file data and free space.
tH4
 
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Hi, it seems that I can't do this to my notebook for unknown reasons? can you please help me. if i do step 1 this happens:



so i run chkdsk as it says and these are the results:



trying to skip step 1 i continue doing step 2 and again another error happens:



Its clear that im no genius when it comes into these things so please point me to the things i needed to do. thanks

Last night i did something to my drivec properties>security and changed all the "deny" to "allow" assuming that nothing will happen since im the only one using my notebook. Something went wrong and lots of windows popped up and all i can do was to click "ok" for each of them. so after that happened, i wanted to do a system restore but it all so happened i can't run it anymore.

 
tImotei14-
You've got severe Windows/System corruption. Suggest you backup User data, and re-install Vista, and if you are using registry cleaners STOP.


Try this:

To Reset and Check All Drives and Run CHKDSK if a Drive is Dirty -
A) In the command prompt, type chkntfs /d and press Enter. (See screenshot below)
NOTE: Restores the computer to the default behavior; all drives are checked at boot time and chkdsk is run on those that are marked dirty.
B) Go to step 7.


6. To Check a Specific Drive and Run CHKDSK if the Drive is Dirty -
A) In the command prompt, type chkntfs /c C: and press Enter. (See screenshot below)
NOTE: This will schedule the C: drive to be checked at boot time. If the drive is marked dirty, then chkdsk will run. If you want to schedule another drive letter to be checked, then substitute C: with the drive letter you want checked instead.


http://www.vistax64.com/tutorials/130824-chkdsk-will-not-run-startup-vista.html
 
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tImotei14-
You've got severe Windows/System corruption. Suggest you backup User data, and re-install Vista, and if you are using registry cleaners STOP.


Try this:

To Reset and Check All Drives and Run CHKDSK if a Drive is Dirty -
A) In the command prompt, type chkntfs /d and press Enter. (See screenshot below)
NOTE: Restores the computer to the default behavior; all drives are checked at boot time and chkdsk is run on those that are marked dirty.
B) Go to step 7.


6. To Check a Specific Drive and Run CHKDSK if the Drive is Dirty -
A) In the command prompt, type chkntfs /c C: and press Enter. (See screenshot below)
NOTE: This will schedule the C: drive to be checked at boot time. If the drive is marked dirty, then chkdsk will run. If you want to schedule another drive letter to be checked, then substitute C: with the drive letter you want checked instead.

Ive tried what you said, and it resulted with the same window as before saying CHKDSK cannot continue in read-only mode.

What do I have to do now?


Sorry if my posts became off topic. Don't mind deleting them if necessary :)

thanks for the help, I also sent you a Private Msg.
 
Reformat and reinstall. If you have a disk, put it in the drive, restart, Hit any key to boot from disk when you see the screen prompt, and follow the "Install" prompts.
When you come to screen that shows the Windows Installation on your drive (you will be asked where you want to install), delete the partition (current windows installation) and install Vista into the unpartitioned space.

If you have a recovery partition boot into that at startup. here you can get further info on your system:http://support.gateway.com/support/drivers/dlcenter.asp
 
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I followed your steps exactly. Error check works fine but, after I copy and paste and hit enter for the defrag in command prompt nothing happens. I just get copyright info.
Any Ideas? What am I doing wrong? Thanks.
 
I followed your steps exactly. Error check works fine but, after I copy and paste and hit enter for the defrag in command prompt nothing happens. I just get copyright info.
Any Ideas? What am I doing wrong? Thanks.
Ae your running command prompt as the administrator?

An active running defrag looks like this...(note flashing cursor in empty space). Do Not close the command prompt! When defrag is finished the flashing cursor will return to: "C:\Windows\system32>_"
 

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Rive, It worked, I must have spaced out on something. However I got this message- Note: On NTFS volumes, File fragments larger then 64MB are not included in the fragmentation statistics. My question is are 64MB and larger files still being defraged?
 
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