Article ID : 00030262 / Last Modified : 06/05/2014Print

How to defragment the hard drive using the Disk Defragmenter utility.

    Follow these steps to defragment the hard drive using the Disk Defragmenter utility.

    • To optimize disk defragmentation close all programs and utilities before running Disk Defragmenter.
    • Disk Defragmenter utility usage should be based on computer usage. If disk-intensive applications are used often, the disk defragment utility should be used more often.
    • This information applies only to computers using the operating systems listed below this article in the Applicable Products and Categories section.
    1. Click Start, click All Programs, click Accessories, click System Tools, and click Disk Defragmenter.

      NOTE: If a User Account Control prompt is displayed, click Continue.

    2. In the Disk Defragmenter window, to immediately begin defragmenting the hard drive, click the Defragment now button.


      • By default, the Disk Defragmenter utility is scheduled to run automatically at 1:00AM every Wednesday. To change the schedule, click the Modify schedule button.
      • To prevent the Disk Defragmenter utility from running on a schedule at all, click to clear the box next to Run on a schedule (recommended).
      • The length of time necessary to complete the defragmentation process will vary based on the degree of fragmentation, amount of data, and capacity of the drive.
      • If another application or utility, such as an anti-virus program, is running, it will cause the Disk Defragmenter utility to restart or require an extended period of time to complete. If the Disk Defragmenter utility requires an extended period of time to complete, keeps restarting, or repeatedly displays a message that the drive contents have changed, ensure that there are no other applications or utilities running.
    3. Once the Defragmentation procedure is complete, click the Close button.