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Diskeeper

"defragmentation can restore performance"

 

The best-selling disk defragmenter that automatically eliminates performance bottlenecks on a single workstation or remotely, across your entire Windows® 95/98/NT/2000 network.

Now you can actually get performance gains comparable to a hardware upgrade—at a fraction of the cost—faster than ever!

Without regularly scheduled disk defragmentation, the performance of even your most advanced system can be brought to its knees. Only defragmentation can restore that performance. And only “Set It and Forget It” scheduling enables you to keep on top of your system’s or network’s rate of fragmentation, before it becomes an expensive performance issue.

New Smart Scheduling takes “Set It and Forget It” one step further and dynamically configures your defragmentation schedule based on the condition of your disk. You don’t have to analyze your network traffic loads, Diskeeper adjusts to them automatically. It keeps your whole network running at peak performance no matter how the load shifts.

Diskeeper 6.0 includes a newly improved engine that is 5X faster that the previous version and simply the fastest Windows network defragmenter ever built. What does this mean to you? Less system resources needed to defragment your system or network. Diskeeper is truly transparent, running in the background while online users are unaware it is running.

Diskeeper contains robust network functionality that enables you as a busy systems admin to remotely install, customize and schedule defragmentation remotely with “Set It and Forget It”® ease.

Diskeeper is the most recommended defragmenter ever made and continues to lead the field in powerful functionality and innovative technology. It’s the only defragmenter certified by Microsoft for Windows 2000 server and workstation versions. Although Diskeeper is perfect for the stand-alone computer, it is designed for and scalable to any size network of any size load.

 

Product Features

File fragmentation is common to the majority of modern file systems. The result of fragmentation can be significant performance losses over the whole system due to extra disk I/O that keeps your CPU's busy. Files are commonly shattered into hundreds or even thousands of fragments. A file that has 100 fragments takes a hundred times longer to access - slowing your system down from its potential speed. DISKEEPER for Windows NT has consistently set the standard for eliminating this primary performance bottleneck. And now, new DISKEEPER 6.0 provides the option to defragment the Page File which creates the most complete, cutting edge defragmentation solution available.

Added Feature: Frag Guard. The first problem Frag Guard solves is fragmentation of the Master File Table. The MFT is part of the NT file system which keeps track of all the files on a disk. There is one MFT for every NT disk. Fragmentation of the MFT can seriously impact performance, as the operating system has to go through the MFT to retrieve any file on the disk.

First, the MFT is defragmented using Diskeeper's boot-time defragmentation feature, then Frag Guard maintains this consolidated state.

Frag Guard works much the same way with the Paging File. This is a specialized NT file on the disk which acts as an extension of the computer's memory. When memory fills up, the system can utilize this file as virtual memory. A fragmented Paging File impacts performance when it reads data back into system memory. The greater the fragmentation, the slower vital computer operations will perform.

With Frag Guard on your disks, your MFT and Paging Files will have dramatically reduced fragmentation and no performance will be lost.

Diskeeper pioneered the concept of "Set It and Forget It" scheduling and no other product has ever come close to its functionality or its ease of use.

Diskeeper is a true "network" defragmenter that offers unparalleled performance for the busy system administrator. With Diskeeper on the network, the system administrator can select which drives on which disks are to be defragmented at whatever time he/she chooses. Groups of drives of any size can be established. This operation takes only a few mouse clicks and is done remotely, right from the central console.

Although Diskeeper can be set at any of five priority levels, it is designed to be run invisibly in the background across the network while the systems are up and running. End users are unaware their systems are undergoing defragmentation. Diskeeper allows you to maintain peak performance levels for critical applications and drives that cannot be taken off line, such as Internet and e-mail servers and office suite applications.

The only defragmenter that allows you to defragment your mixed Windows environment, remotely, across the network. (Version 6.0)

Recent independent lab tests have clearly established the effects of fragmentation on network performance. Maximum performance gains are achieved when the entire network is able to be easily defragmented. Until now, the system administrator has had to manually defragment the 95/98 boxes on the network or, worse yet, leave it to the end user to do.

Diskeeper 6.0 changes all that and makes possible increases in overall network performance based on uniform defragmentation across the entire network or networks.

Upon installation, Diskeeper 6.0 workstation detects which operating system the computer is running and installs a compatible version of Diskeeper. Diskeeper 6.0 server controls and schedules all Windows 95/98 and Windows NT workstations that have Diskeeper installed.

 

Product Benefits

Disk fragmentation severely affects the performance of every computer system - even the most advanced systems on the market. Fragmentation is a condition in which files and free space are broken into pieces and are scattered across a disk. Files fragmented into 100 pieces take 100 times longer to access. Files broken into 200,000 pieces could take 200,000 times longer...and that is just one computer and one file. The mathematics of a day's work on an entire network is staggering!

Diskeeper safely eliminates the bottleneck of fragmentation - guaranteed. System administrators find it easy to install and operate. And with a Diskeeper license installed on every box in the network, administrators can control defragmentation throughout their Windows NT network, right from their desks.

According to Microsoft Press: "Disk fragmentation can cause performance problems. You should consider running a defragmentation program on a regular basis." - From Microsoft Windows NT Server Resource Guide

Fragmented paging files can slow Windows NT performance. The paging file fragments also break up free space on the partition. By defragmenting your paging files, you can help maintain peak Windows NT performance! The paging file feature defragments the Windows NT paging file into a single location. This is done at boot-time, since the paging file cannot safely be moved or defragmented while a disk partition is being accessed by other applications or users.

Diskeeper carefully moves, consolidates and defragments directory files at boot-time. And, because some disks have one or two directories which cannot be moved, EVER, Diskeeper has a safety feature which recognizes - and bypasses - these directories.

Schedule disks one, two, ten, a hundred... or even a thousand disks with just a few mouse clicks. Simply highlight the disks you want to schedule, set the schedule (or use the default schedule) and click start. (Workstation and server versions)

Schedule an entire domain or even multiple domains with just a few mouse clicks. It only takes a few minutes to schedule an ENTIRE network for automatic defragmentation! (Server version)

Default Schedule - Diskeeper also allows a default schedule to be defined so that all disks can be set up quickly and easily. (This schedule can be later adjusted as - and if - needed.) (Workstation and Server versions)

Schedule and defragment the partitions on a disk individually. Useful for developers/test labs, who often have work-in-progress that cannot be touched. (Workstation and Server versions)

Diskeeper uses mechanisms built into Windows NT 4.0 that were developed and implemented by Executive Software and fully incorporated into Windows NT by Microsoft. By using these built-in mechanisms Diskeeper maintains cache coherency, file security, permissions information and file content integrity - no matter how fragmented the files on the disk are. No data is ever at risk, should anything cause your computer to stop during the defragmentation process.

Diskeeper can defragment disks while the system is in use with users active on the same disks. During most of the time Diskeeper is processing a file, it shares the file with any other users that may access the same file. The last step of processing the file, however, involves locking the file for a very brief period - a matter of milliseconds, there is never an interruption as a result of this.

 

Images, Diagrams and Screen Shots

Graphical View of a Fragmented Disk

 

White Papers, Documents and Other Files

Disk Defragmentation for Windows NT/2000: Hidden Gold for the Enterprise" from IDC

 

Product Requirements

OS Platform
Windows 2000 Server
Windows 2000 Professional
Windows NT4 Server (SP3 or higher)
Windows NT4 Workstation (SP3 or higher)
Windows 98/95
SQL Server
Exchange

Minimum Hardware Required
CPU Pentium 166
RAM 64
HD (Install) 4MB
HD (Operating) 4MB

FAQs

Q: What is the difference in defragmentation for FAT and NTFS?
A: The architecture of these two file systems is completely different and without going into details, both suffer from fragmentation in their own way. What is important is how to solve the problem for each. FAT has always needed defragmentation and many tools are available for FAT. Microsoft has included a utility in Win 95 and this does a fine job. There is just one drawback, it does defragging in "batch-mode". This means it takes the system for itself and nothing else can run while the disk is being defragmented. In an NT production environment this is in quite a few cases impossible to do. So for an NT (server) production environment, often an on-line (as opposed to batch-oriented) solution needs to be chosen.

Q: What is the MFT and why does it fragment also?
A: NTFS keeps a record of each file in the Master File Table. This MFT is a normal file and can also get fragmented. It will expand when more file records are added. When free space is fragmented, the MFT will be written in separate parts and it will take more time to find the file records. It is important to keep NTFS disks defragmented right from the start to keep the MFT from fragmenting too heavily and causing performance degradation.

Q: How much performance am I losing due to fragmentation?
A: It depends very much on what kind of environment you are running. A Win NT Workstation NTFS system that does not hammer the hard disk a lot will not suffer too much. It may not even be noticeable. But after a while, say three to six months, things do slow down gradually. The time you are losing while waiting for the disk will never be recovered. On an NT server with a lot of users it is strongly recommended to defragment from the first day of use.

Q: What is the difference between Diskeeper Workstation and Diskeeper Server?
A: The Server version can be used to monitor and control Diskeeper on any computer in the network. You must have Diskeeper licensed and installed on the other network system, but you can control it from an installation of Diskeeper Server. The users of the other machines don't have to do anything and don't have to be trained in running Diskeeper.

The Workstation version of Diskeeper can only be loaded and run on a system running Windows NT Workstation, Windows 2000 Professional, or Windows 95/98.

Diskeeper Server also must be licensed and installed on any system from which you wish to control remote systems; regardless of whether that system is running Windows NT Server or Workstation, or any version of Windows 2000.

Q: My Diskeeper 5.x display shows more fragmented free space than I am used to seeing in earlier versions of the software. Is Diskeeper 5.x doing a worse job defragmenting free space?
A: A change was made in the display logic in Diskeeper 5.0, to allow the display of more free spaces. Diskeeper 5.x shows free space in its display that it didn’t show previously, thus making the display more informative. Executive Software is constantly working to improve our product and they welcome your suggestions.

Q: After analyzing or defragmenting my NTFS partition, Diskeeper reports that I have less free space as a percentage than I really have. Why is Diskeeper not reporting the correct amount of free space?
A: The ''Free Space Available for Defragmentation'' message refers to the free space area outside of the 12.5% set aside for expansion of the MFT. For instance, if the ''Free Space Available for Defragmentation'' figure is 17%, the total free space would be around 29.5%. The MFT area is indicated by the green and white striped area in the graphic display. Diskeeper can’t move files into this area under any circumstances. You can look in the Text selection of the View menu to see what the total free space and free space percentage are. By the way, you will find that the Report View displays the exact same percentage free space that you will find in Windows NT under the Volumes selection of the View menu in the Disk Administrator (one of the few ways that Windows NT reports percentage free space.) On Windows 2000 systems, you can find this percentage by selecting Control Panel \ Administrative Tools \ Computer Management \ Disk Management.

Q: I think that fragmentation is an issue that I would like to solve, but the price for these utilities is difficult to justify to my boss, any suggestions?
A: The best way to approach this is simply take the lost time of your users as a cost factor. Suppose you have 40 users on an NT File-Print Server. The main use is a shared database. 35% disk I/O slowdown could easily cost per user about 5-10 minutes per day. We're being conservative so lets say 5 minutes times 40 = 200 minutes. Let's round down and say it costs 3 working hours (180 minutes) a day. The total cost to the company for one working hour is say 15 bucks. Cost of Fragmentation per day is $ 45. That makes the payback time for a 400 dollar product about 9 to 10 days. After that you are starting to make money and gain productivity. Any MIS manager can free up budget for that!

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