How to Optimize Hard Drive for Gaming(Practical Ways)

In order to improve the running speed of the game, gamers need to optimize the hard drive in time, no matter it is HDD or SSD. This post will show you how to optimize hard drive for gaming with some effective ways.


By Dervish / Updated on May 12, 2023

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About optimize hard drive for gaming

For players, it is very painful for the game to run stuck. Many people blame the hard drive for the reason. So do hard drives actually affect gaming performance?

Yes. As a storage device, the performance of hard drive greatly affects the data read and write speed. Compared with a hard drive, SSD has faster read and write speeds. Therefore, installing games on SSD is the first choice of many players.

How can I make my hard drive run faster for gaming? Search the internet for this problem, and you'll find there are many ways to do it. However, some of them don't work after you tried. Don't worry, this article will show you how to optimize hard drive for gaming with effective ways.


How to optimize your hard drive for speed

To optimize HDD for gaming, what you need to do is run disk defrag.

Due to repeated downloads and installations, complete data will be stored on discontinuous sectors, which will increase the read speed. Disk Defrag refers to changing the discontinuous data on the sector into continuous, which shortens the time for the disk to read data and boosts the speed.

Disk Defrag

Here, I strongly recommend AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional for you. This is an all-in-one and safe disk management expert, compatible with Windows 11, 10, 8, 7, Vista, XP. It can optimize hard drive performance for gaming with two options, please download the demo version to see how to optimize hard drive performance easily.

Download Demo Win 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
Secure Download

▶ Option 1. Perform disk defrag

You could enable Schedule Defragmentation to optimize drives automatically and periodically on a regular basis. 

Warning: Please do not perform disk defrag on SSD, because it will affect its life.

Step 1. After downloading and installing it, open it on the desktop. Find the hard drive on the main interface, right-click and select Disk Defrag.

Disk Defrag

Step 2. On the home screen of Disk Defrag tool, click "Schedule" to open the Schedule Settings editor. Or, you can click "Not Enabled" to edit schedule for corresponding drive.


Step 3. In the schedule settings, you can select drives, and the time mode to defrag the target drives, you’ll have 5 options about time mode.


Step 4. Tick “Conditions” and click “Define”, you can set the rate of fragmentation to trigger the schedule to defrag your disk. And there is “minutes” for idle time, this is to make sure the program won’t hurt the data of other programs. Finally, click “OK” to save all settings.


▶ Option 2. Extend game drive space

Insufficient game drive space is also one of the reasons for affecting performance, you can extend the free space in the following steps to ensure smooth running of the game.

Step 1. On the main interface, select a partition with enough space. Then, right click it and choose the button "Allocate Free Space".

Allocate Free Space

Step 2. In the pop-up window, we could specify the free space to be allocated and the destination partition that the free space will be added to.

Allocate Free Space

Step 3. After that, you will see the destination C drive has extended. Now, you should click "Apply" on the toolbar to execute pending operations.


Move installed games from HDD to SSD without reinstalling

For the users who have installed SSD, you can clone HDD to SSD, or move installed games directly from HDD to the SSD.

Step 1. On the main interface. Select the “App Mover” under "Free up".

App Mover

Step 2. In the new window, click “App Mover”.

Select One

Step 3. Select the partition where the installed game is and click on“Next” to proceed. 


Step 4. Tick the apps you want to move and select single or multiple selections. Then select the drive where you want to move to and click "Move".

Move App

Step 5. Read the prompts carefully, click "OK" and "Move".

Click Apply

▶ Optimize SSD for gaming

If you are still not satisfied with the performance after moving games or HDD to SSD, you can try 4K alignment SSD, which is specially designed to speed up the read and write speed of SSD.

Partition Alignment


This is the full guide on how to optimize hard drive for gaming, which shows you some effective ways to solve this problem. Last but not least, AOMEI Partition Assistant has more useful functions, for example, convert system disk from MBR to GPT, wipe hard drive, SSD secure erase, etc.

Dervish · Staff Editor
Dervish is an English editor of AOMEI Technology; He is delicated to offering users easy and effecitve solutions for issuses related to disks and partitoins. In his spare time, he enjoy wathcning films, playing footable, traveling and so on.