You are here

Should I defrag my pendrive?

8 posts / 0 new
Last post
rogerferrari
rogerferrari's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 2010-02-12 14:30
Should I defrag my pendrive?

hi I would like to know if can I defrag my USB drive, if it's would be good or bad...
I read a lot of things about it, some people say that it will enhance performance on the other hand, other people say that it decrease time life of my USB flash drive... what is true? and what all of you recomend to do...
I have a Kingston 8GB

ceciliaFX
ceciliaFX's picture
Offline
Last seen: 3 months 3 weeks ago
Joined: 2007-04-24 14:18
no

flash drives should not be defraged.

"No one man can terrorize a whole nation unless we are all his accomplices." - Edward R. Murrow

Walt Kowalski
Offline
Last seen: 12 years 9 months ago
Joined: 2010-01-30 13:37
neva dew it

neva dew it

ottosykora
Offline
Last seen: 2 days 3 hours ago
Joined: 2007-10-11 17:48
answer it yourself

Q: what was defrag designed for?
A:, to keep file fragments near together, so the reader head moving over the rotating hard disk does not need to travel all over the disk back and forth to collect parts of the file.

How many heads has a flash drive? Is there something moving across the storage surface inside it? Does something click and tick inside?

So what do you expect from defrag? What should speed up what? Think logically about the difference between rotating hard drive and solid state flash memory unit and you will find the answer.

Otto Sykora
Basel, Switzerland

rogerferrari
rogerferrari's picture
Offline
Last seen: 5 months 2 weeks ago
Joined: 2010-02-12 14:30
ty

thx Otto,
you clearified all about it

Rocking for the One who is the Rock

Jimbo
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: 2007-12-17 05:43
yes and no

If you search, then you will find some lengthy arguments about this.

There are certain cases in which each of the pieces of advice you have been given could be correct. In other words, there are circumstances where it will improve performance, and there are circumstances where it will reduce the life of your drive.

For the general case, for 90%+ of users, for 90%+ of drives, for 90%+ of usage patterns, don't defrag. Ever. Just not worth it. The potential performance gains are tiny in comparison to the time it actually takes to run the defrag, and only exist at all in some very specific usage patterns, so just don't do it.

Specifically, you will pretty much never see any increase in read speeds from defragging a drive. The only advantage is that large writes (single file, multiple megabytes) may be faster if the free space is contiguous, but they still don't care about the fragmentation of the existing files.

John T. Haller
John T. Haller's picture
Online
Last seen: 16 min 33 sec ago
AdminDeveloperModeratorTranslator
Joined: 2005-11-28 22:21
Wear Leveling = No Contiguous Free Space

Modern flash drives with modern wear leveling mean there is no such thing as contiguous free space.

Sometimes, the impossible can become possible, if you're awesome!

Jimbo
Offline
Last seen: 2 years 10 months ago
Joined: 2007-12-17 05:43
to get technical

it is about ensuring that the write hits as few erase blocks as possible.

Since the granularity for the remapping for wear levelling is done either within an erase block, or on a whole block by whole bock basis, or both, but never by swapping out portions of a block with another, then it doesn't matter whether the empty erase block are next to each other in the address space of the flash memory chip or not. Making the free space contiguous on a filesystem level will still tend to mostly ensure that erase blocks are wholly free or wholly used, meaning fewer blocks touched by a large write.

Like I said, it is a very special case, and for anyone who doesn't know exactly why they need to defrag their drive for their usage pattern, my recommendation is don't defrag.

Log in or register to post comments