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Windows 7: Possible to run Win 7 Defrag from bootable optical disk?

10 Aug 2014   #1
tjg79

Windows 7 Professional x64 SP1
 
 
Possible to run Win 7 Defrag from bootable optical disk?

Hi,

I've got a few apparently large files that Win Defrag can't resolve due their being on the system disk, C:\.

Is it possible to create a boot CD to run defrag from so the system disk can be fully defragged without running into non-movable/non-defragable files?

Regards


My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
10 Aug 2014   #2
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

Windows should have no problems defragging (C) hard drive.
That is what it is designed for.

How can you tell that defrag is having problems with certain programs installed?

Have you tried unhooking all the Raid drives and then defrag (C).
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Aug 2014   #3
DavidE

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64
 
 

Puran Defrag has a Boot Time defrag.
Puran Defrag - Automatically Defrag your Hard Disk Drives
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

10 Aug 2014   #4
tjg79

Windows 7 Professional x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Layback Bear View Post
Windows should have no problems defragging (C) hard drive.
That is what it is designed for.

How can you tell that defrag is having problems with certain programs installed?

Have you tried unhooking all the Raid drives and then defrag (C).
It's been my experience that system tools such as defrag are limited on a system disk. I once did a new install of Win XP on a new disk and had my old disk as a D:\ drive with the old system files intact. I could run the system tools on the old disk with ease, because it wasn't the active system. Chkdsk didn't require a reboot and defrag could move anything. Once I ran the utilities, I rebooted with my old system disk as C:\ drive. It was clear to me that everything was running better and the disk had a cleaner more compact system file installed after running defrag on the disk when it was a non-active system D:\ drive.

That's why I'm thinking that it would be the same result for Win 7.

The Win 7 defrag seems to hang for hours. Because it's not graphical, you don't know if it's doing something or just stuck. I decided to run Piriform Defraggler, because it's graphical and I can see if it's making progress or just stuck in the mud. I don't like Piriform Defraggler as a final defrag, because it causes the files to take up significantly more space. So, I run the Win 7 defrag after Defraggler has cleaned up all the fragments. Win 7 defrag does a better job consolidating the file system. I also run the system file checker and chkdsk to ensure everything is good to go after the defrag.

Once you are in an Intel RST RAID, you can't remove it without a new clean install to a single disk. You can take a single disk with Win 7 installed and combine it with other disks to form an Intel desktop RAID with the Intel RST utility and you can change the type of RAID and add additional disks as well, but you can't go back to a single disk with the OS intact.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Aug 2014   #5
tjg79

Windows 7 Professional x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
I haven't heard of Puran before. Thanks for that information. I'll give it a look.

Regards
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Aug 2014   #6
Layback Bear

Windows 7 Pro. 64/SP-1
 
 

I have never used Raid so I don't give suggestion on how to work with it.

I do give thoughts on such matters because it might make the OP some ideas.

I understand you don't want to start over with your Raid set up.
Maybe someone will come along that has run Raid using Windows 7.

Their can be a big gap between how Windows 7 and XP handles Raid.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Aug 2014   #7
tjg79

Windows 7 Professional x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Layback Bear View Post
I have never used Raid so I don't give suggestion on how to work with it.

I do give thoughts on such matters because it might make the OP some ideas.

I understand you don't want to start over with your Raid set up.
Maybe someone will come along that has run Raid using Windows 7.

Their can be a big gap between how Windows 7 and XP handles Raid.
I've never had any significant Intel desktop RST RAID issues that weren't related to hardware. That's the purpose of the RAID; it's protection in the event of a hardware failure. Hdd failure with a RAID 1 thru 10 is a lot easier to deal with than without a RAID. I've probably replaced six hdds in the last five years. It's essentially a hot swap. The Intel RST RAID is invisible to Win 7 as it was to Win XP for the most part. Win 7 just sees a disk when in fact it's three disks for a RAID 5. The only issues I've had with Intel RST RAID that were software related pertained to a significant number of verification errors found and fixed repeatedly. It's usually hardware, but can be an early warning about software. I resolved my last Intel RST RAID verification issue, by running chkdsk which I hadn't run in a long while. I don't think the RAID configuration caused the chkdsk issue. On the contrary, I think the need to run chkdsk was causing red flags to pop-up related to the RAID. I think I caught the issue early, because of the RAID.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Aug 2014   #8
tjg79

Windows 7 Professional x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
I tried the Puran Boot-Time Defrag, but it couldn't move the non-moveable files and folders of which there are 11.

Caution:

When I downloaded the Puran Utilities set-up file and installed, my ESET Smart Security 7 blocked an attempt to contact a third party website. I suspect the download is infected with malicious software. I ran several malicious software tools after the install to check my system. The setup installer is infected, but nothing was detected other than the contact that was blocked during install.

I did try a Repair My Computer Command Prompt defrag using my OEM Win 7 DVD. But, that was not entirely successful because the defrag.exe file is located on the drive I want to defrag and consolidate. The Repair My Computer Command Prompt method did the best job of consolidating the system files and freeing up drive space.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Aug 2014   #9
DavidE

Multi-Boot W7_Pro_x64 W8.1_Pro_x64 W10_Pro_x64
 
 

Hello tjg79,

How do you find the 11 non-moveable files and folders ?
I'd like to play with this and see what I find...

I found a response from Puran which might explain your findings.
Quote:
The extra files that offline defrag defragments are mainly, MFT, pagefile, registry files etc. However, Puran Defrag does leave certain files fragmented like NTFS Bitmap since we do not feel it is much safe to play with these sensitive files.
Source is an old SF thread/post: Puran Defrag Free

For a long time now I've only used the built-in Windows scheduled defrag ...
I just downloaded the latest Puran defrag, scanned it including VirusTotal and nothing is detected.
Do you know the third party website that ESET blocked ?
I don't have ESET but I'd like to see if my Security programs detect anything during the install.

I'm not as "purist" as you so I never gave much thought to boot-time defrag...
For me it would be fun to play with this to see if it does make a difference.

From what you said a Repair did the best job for you.

I wonder if restoring a Macrium, Acronis, ... System Backup Image would clean things up ???
I'm more comfortable restoring a Backup Image than doing a Repair to "defrag" ...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Aug 2014   #10
tjg79

Windows 7 Professional x64 SP1
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
Hello tjg79,

How do you find the 11 non-moveable files and folders ?
I'd like to play with this and see what I find...
The defrag program gave that specific information when I performed the defrag.exe command in the "Repair My Computer" (RMC) Command Prompt window with the following switches: /x (consolidation), and /u & /v which give verbose status as the command runs and generates a report when complete. When you're in the RMC Command Prompt window, your system files are not necessarily on C:\ drive. Mine were on E:\ drive; C:\ drive was my 100MB System Reserved partition. So, you've got to look for your system drive by typing DIR "C":\ at the X:\ prompt where "C" is each possible letter (without quote marks)

Puran Utilities boot defrag gives some information as well. I can't recall specifically if it gave a number of non-moveable files and folders, but I think it did as well. Puran Utilities boot defrag performed better than regular Win 7 defrag in Windows and Piriform Defraggler.


Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
I found a response from Puran which might explain your findings.
Quote:
The extra files that offline defrag defragments are mainly, MFT, pagefile, registry files etc. However, Puran Defrag does leave certain files fragmented like NTFS Bitmap since we do not feel it is much safe to play with these sensitive files.
Source is an old SF thread/post: Puran Defrag Free
Win 7, just like Win XP has certain "unmovable" files on the system drive. As long as the drive with the OS is the active boot drive, I don't think any defrag program will move or consolidate the "unmovable" files. You can see the distribution of the files on the disk if you use a graphical defrag program or a disk utility program with graphical representation of the disk.

I found out by luck that you can move or consolidate these "unmovable" files if you have another active boot system disk and the drive you want to consolidate is not the active boot drive. I did it and then made the newly consolidated drive my boot drive by switching the SATA cables It booted just fine and I didn't notice any issues with the OS. That was with Win XP. I think Win 7 will do the same. I'll try it and see once I load Win 7 onto another hdd and boot from that hdd with my original boot drive as a drive D:\.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
For a long time now I've only used the built-in Windows scheduled defrag ...
I just downloaded the latest Puran defrag, scanned it including VirusTotal and nothing is detected.
Do you know the third party website that ESET blocked ?
I don't have ESET but I'd like to see if my Security programs detect anything during the install.
I don't recall the website the malicious software attempted to contact. I thinking about uninstalling the Puran Utilities and downloading again to see if it does it again and if it does, to make a note of the website.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
I'm not as "purist" as you so I never gave much thought to boot-time defrag...
For me it would be fun to play with this to see if it does make a difference.

From what you said a Repair did the best job for you.
I'm not usually that much of a "purist." But, I've got a problem to solve so I'll try anything to find a way to do what I want to do. I'm trying to shrink my C:\ drive. I just moved all my data files (My Documents, etc...) to D:\ drive. My C:\ drive is 465GB and I only need about 165GB for the OS and programs. I can only shrink my C:\ drive 105GB, because the "unmovable" files and folders won't consolidate. If I could move or consolidate the "unmovable" files and folders, I could shrink my C:\ to the desired 165GB size. I want to shrink or reduce my C:\ drive by 300GB.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by DavidW7ncus View Post
I wonder if restoring a Macrium, Acronis, ... System Backup Image would clean things up ???
I'm more comfortable restoring a Backup Image than doing a Repair to "defrag" ...
I don't think it would, because it will just restore the image to the disk without changes.

I was browsing the SevenForums tutorials and I saw several tutorials where you can install Win 7 audit mode to a virtual machine with virtual drives that you can size to your needs. You can then take an image of that Win 7 audit mode install and install it on another drive. I'm going to do that with a 165GB virtual drive. There will be "unmovable" files and folders I'm sure, but it won't matter, because they will be on a 165GB image that I can restore to my soon to be 165GB C:\ drive.

Regards
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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