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Rearranging and Compressing Files for Increased Speed

Rearranging and Compressing Files for Increased Speed is the fifth post in a series of tips and advice on cleaning your sluggish computer.

Disk Defragmenter – Disk Defragmenter is a Utility included in Microsoft Windows designed to increase access speed by rearranging files stored on a disk to occupy contiguous storage locations, a technique commonly known as defragmenting. The purpose is to optimize the time it takes to read and write files to/from the disk by minimizing head travel time and maximizing the transfer rate. As of Windows XP, Disk Defragmenter is also used to improve system startup times. [Source: Wikipedia]

Before you begin defragmenting, you may want to go back and perform the Disk Cleanup steps given to you in the first post in this series How to Free Up Disk Space on Your Computer’s Hard Drive. If you don’t think it is necessary to repeat that step, at least empty your recycle bin before beginning this process. Emptying your recycle bin is a very simple process. Just follow these three steps:

1. Locate the Recycle Bin icon on your desktop.
2. Right click on the icon.
3. Click on Empty Recycle Bin.

Now, it is time to rearrange and compress the files on your computer.

1. Close all programs and files.
2. From your task bar, go to StartAll Programs.
3. Click on Accessories.
4. Click System Tools.
5. Click on Disk Defragmenter.
6. At the top left of your window, click on (C:) – or the drive letter you wish to defragment under volume.
7. At the bottom of your window, click on Defragment.
8. Wait until the defragmenting process completes. This may take a while – with really old computers, it may take hours.  I recommend you start Disk Defragmenter before you go to bed, and just let it run while you sleep.
9. When it has finished running, you may click to view the report or click the red “X” in the upper right corner of the Disk Defragmenter box.

There you have it. That was a super easy process. I hope this has increased your computer’s speed. However, if you have followed every step in this series and your computer is still running slow, I need to tell you that it may be time for you toconsider purchasing a new computer system. Make sure you get someone technical to help you transfer the files from your old computer to your new computer – this can be tricky.

Additional resources: Is This Thing On?: A Late Bloomer’s Computer Handbook

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