It is Recommended to Defragment and Optimize Your Hard Drive

It is recommended to defragment and optimize your hard drive but do you know how to do it? If you don’t, you can read this post to learn how to optimize your hard drive.


By Lucas / Updated on May 12, 2023

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Is defragment a hard drive good or bad?

Some users might not be clear whether defragment hard drives is good or bad, this is because they don’t understand how defragment works.

1. What is defragment?

Consider all of the data on your hard disk to be a load of laundry. There are many various sorts of garments and colors, and they all get jumbled up in the washing machine. Everything is still there, but it's jumbled and takes up a lot of room.

This is comparable to what happens to the data on your hard drive over time. Fragmentation causes your computer to work harder and slower because all data is shifted around and segregated, your computer must work harder to find everything it requires. When a computer saves a file to a hard drive, it uses whatever space is available; if there is insufficient consecutive free space to retain the file in its whole, the hard drive divides the file into numerous pieces and stores those portions into available open areas.


When you're done with the washing, you normally arrange your clothes back into tidy piles so they can be put back in your closet or drawer. While defragmentation is the process of rearranging file segments on a storage medium in a contiguous sequence so that the file is no longer fragmented, then your computer can discover things more simply and make the most use of its available space.

2. Does defragment hurt your hard disk?

It is recommended to defragment and optimize your hard drive. The point is that defragment or not depends on which kind of hard disk you’re using. Defragmentation can improve data access performance for HDDs with disk platters, but it can cause SSDs with flash memory to wear out faster.

3. Benefits of defragment

Defragmenting is useful for HDDs because it puts data together rather than spreading them, allowing the device's read-write head to travel around less when accessing files. The time it takes to move the control arm to the data location and the time it takes to read the data are two factors that influence how rapidly a hard drive recalls data. Defragmenting shortens load times by lowering the number of times the hard disk must seek data.

So, if you're using an HDD and you feel your PC takes longer time to open files or run apps, you can speed things back up by defragmenting that hard drive.

After defragment

How to defrag a computer?

If you have an HDD installed on a Windows computer, you can try the built-in tool or third-party tools.

Way 1. Use Defragment and Optimize Drives to defrag HDD

Step 1. In the search bar on the lower left of the desktop, type “defrag”. Select the “Best Match” – “Defragment and Optimize Drives”.

Step 2. In the “Optimize Drives” window, choose the target drive and click “Analyze”. Then the program will analyze the fragment on the selected drive. After that, you can click “Optimize” to defragment.

Defragment and optimize

If you want your PC to defragment HDD regularly, you can click the “Change settings”, in the new window, select “Frequency” and the drives you wish to defragment regularly.

Schedule defragment automatically

Way 2. Run third-party drive optimizer

To better manage your disks, Windows built-in tool might be not enough.

Before the defragment, you need to deeply clean your target disks, if not, the defragment process will take all data files as useful and waste much more time to defragment junk files. However, users can’t manually clean all junk files because some of them can’t be accessed directly.

Thus, here we recommend you AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard, a disk and partition manager for Windows 11/10/8/8.1/7/XP. This tool has both “PC Cleaner” and “Disk Defrag” functions. The “PC Cleaner” feature can thoroughly scan all drives and filter the system junk files, then you can clean all junk files with one click. After the clean the drives, you can use the “Disk Defrag” function to defragment your HDD.

Download FreewareWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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▶ Section 1. Clean junk files on the HDD

Step 1. Download and open AOMEI Partition Assistant Standard, and click "Free up" and "PC Cleaner" in turn.

PC Cleaner

Step 2. Click "Start Scan" in the new pop-up window to scan your computer for unwanted files.

Start scan

Step 3. After starting the scan, please wait for a while until the progress bar is loaded.


Step 4. Unneeded data will be automatically selected, you can directly click "Clean All" to delete them. If you still have other unnecessary files, you can tick the boxes of the corresponding files.

After scanning

Step 5. When you see a correct symbol displayed in the interface, you can click "Back" to leave the function.


▶ Section 2. Defragment and optimize your hard drive

After the cleaning, now we can defragment the HDD.

Step 1. Right-click on the disk and select "Disk Defrag".

Disk Defrag

Step 2. Check the partition needed to be analyzed and click "Analyze".


Step 3. After the analysis is completed, the disk will be scored based on its fragmentation rate.

Step 4. Launch the defragmentation by hitting the “Defrag” button.

Analyze finished

Step 5. Wait for a while, the program will defragment your hard drive.

Defrag finished

Tip: Cleaning disk or defragment only optimizes the disk/drive, it won’t release too much available space, if you want to release more free space, you can upgrade to the Professional Edition to use “App Mover” or “Allocate Free Space” functions.

Ending lines

In all, it is recommended to defragment and optimize your hard drive, which can improve HDD performance. If you have an HDD and an SSD on your computer, then AOMEI Partition Assistant can help you conveniently manage both hard disks.

Besides the mentioned functions, you can also use this tool to clone disk or migrate OS for disk upgrade without reinstalling systems and programs, convert disk to MBR/GPT without deleting partitions for Windows 11 upgrade, and so on. Then, there is the Server Edition for Windows Server 2022/2019/2016/2012(R2)/2008(R2)/2003 users to manage their computers.

Lucas · Staff Editor
I prefer peaceful and quiet life during vacation,but sometimes I watch football match if my favorite club performs brilliantly in that season. And I love reading, painting and calligraphy, thus I send my friends festival handwriting cards every year.