How Often Should I Defrag Windows 10

How often should I defrag my Windows 10 computer? You can learn all about defragment and 2 ways to do automatic defragmentation.


By Lucas / Updated on May 12, 2023

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Why defrag and how often to defrag?

No matter as a system disk or a data disk, HDD is still selected by lots of users. However, once you’re using an HDD, the trouble of files fragmentation will emerge one day in the future. Fragmentation is far from serious hard drive damage, but it also affects disk performance. And the fragmentation only appears on HDD, so, that might be one of the reasons why more people would like to choose SSD (SSD won’t raise fragmentation).

1. Why defrag?
When a computer has been used for a long time, and a large number of files are stored on the disk, and these files are not stored on continuous disk space. When a small file is newly written to the disk, there will be some space on both sides of the file, and then a larger file is written. But any part of the two spaces can’t accommodate the file. Thus, the file needs to be divided into several parts, fragments are produced.


Although disk fragmentation has little effect on normal work, it will significantly reduce the operating speed of the hard disk. This is mainly because the hard disk needs to jump between multiple fragments to read files, which increases the latency of waiting for the disk to rotate to a specified sector. The seek time required to switch tracks with the head.

2. How often to defrag
There should be no doubt about defragmenting the hard disk regularly. The hard disk has been used for a long time, and the existence of fragmented files will reduce the working efficiency of the hard disk and increase the possibility of data loss and data damage.

To reduce the effect of fragmentation, Windows 10 offers a program called “Defragment and Optimise Drives” to help users to defrag their hard drives regularly. But, people also might be a little confused, “how often should I defrag Windows 10 computer? Do I need to defrag every day or every week?...”

Normally, we suggest personal users defrag the target disk or drive once every 3 months, however, it depends on how deeply you use your computer. If you use it every day for more than 8 hours, you might need to defrag your computer around once every two weeks. For business, enterprise, or government users, we advise defrag once a month, and if your computer performs quite slowly, you can try to defrag immediately.

2 ways to do automatic defragmentation

Since regular defragment can improve the performance of your hard drive, you can use the Windows tool to set a schedule to defragment tasks or a convenient tool to allow your device to automatically defrag.

1. Defragment and Optimise Drives from Windows

“Defragment and Optimise Drives” is a Windows built-in application that can allow users to set their own defragment plan to defrag the target disks or drives regularly. However, it’s a small program, users might need to prepare their disk before they start.

Before defragmenting the hard disk, it is necessary to clean up junk information, check for errors, and finally defragment. You can open “This PC” and right-click the drive you wish to defrag, select “Properties”, then click “Disk Cleanup”.

Cleanup Windows drive

After the cleanup, we can open the defragment application.

Step 1. Type “ Defragment” in the search box, and open the “Defragment and Optimise Drives” app.

Optimize Drive

Step 2. In the “Optimise Drives” window, click “Change settings” to open the settings of the schedule.


Step 3. After clicking the “Change settings”, in the new window, select the “Frequency” and the drives you wish to defragment regularly.

Schedule defragment settings

Then your computer will defrag the designated drives on the date you set.

2. Disk defrag from AOMEI Partition Assistant

However, this built-in tool only provides a simple schedule for users. When the computer executes the defragment task, the computer may become slow and if you’re running other programs at the same time, some data might lose. Therefore, we suggest you turn off the screen saver and do not do other things on the computer, like listening to music, playing games, etc. Let the computer only run the disk defragmentation program to avoid data loss.

But the Windows tool doesn’t allow users to set an exact time or date in the schedule, so the automatic defragment task might start when you’re running some important programs. Thus, we recommend you try AOMEI Partition Assistant Professional to set the exactly automatic defragment schedule to do smart defrag on your devices.

“Disk Defrag” feature is what we highly recommend you to have a try. Users can set frequency, date, time according to their personal needs, so the defragment will only execute when your computer is idle. What’s more, this powerful tool even allows you to set a certain fragmentation degree to touch off the schedule, which realizes an intelligent defrag on your computer.

Free DownloadWin 11/10/8.1/8/7/XP
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Notes: We don’t suggest you defrag your SSD:
1. The working mechanism of disk defragmentation may reduce SSD lifetime.
2. When the TRIM feature on the SSD is enabled, it may give full play to the overall read and write performance. In certain ways, it has served as a disk defragmentation function.
3. Although there are some fragments, the application will display the SSD state as "Normal."

Here we come an example of how to set defragment schedule via AOMEI Partition Assistant.

Step 1. Install and launch AOMEI Partition Assistant Pro, select the target disk or partition, and choose “Disk Defrag” or "Advanced" > “Defrag Partition”.

Disk defragment

Step 2. In the pop window, you can see all your used drives. Because we need to set a schedule, you need to click the button “Schedule”, but you can also directly defrag the disk or partition if you want.


Step 3. In the schedule settings, you can select drives, and the time mode to defrag the target drives.

Choose schedule mode

Step 4. Click “Conditions”, you can set the rate of fragmentation to trigger the schedule to defrag your disk. And there are other options to help you make a detailed schedule. Click “OK” to save all settings.

Rate of fragmentation

Notes: If you don't change any conditions, all options will be set by default:
1. The fragmentation rate is higher than the set number of fragments.
2. The time that the computer is idle before a certain scheduled time point.
3. The computer is on AC power.
4. Stop the schedule when the computer switches to battery power.

Now your personalized defragment schedule is set. During the set schedule, you can also defrag disks or drives normally if you need, it won’t affect your schedule.

Bonus tips

How often to defrag your computer? It’s related to your daily use. AOMEI Partition Assistant gives you more user-friendly settings to help you. And it also supports Windows 11/8/8.1/7/XP/Vista systems and has Server edition to help Server users, so you don’t need to worry the compatibility. Besides, defragment, you can “Convert to GPT/MBR”, “Clone disk/partition”, “Migrate OS to SSD”… on this versatile tool.

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.