Fragmentation prevention — the next generation

Years ago, Raxco Software obtained a patent from the United States Patent and Trademark Office for a disk optimization strategy we all know as SMARTPlacement. SMARTPlacement organizes the files on a drive according to a user’s unique usage patterns. The result is a drive that is not only defragmented, but is optimized for the user. Free space is consolidated into the largest chunks possible. A benefit of this is that when a new file is created, the chances are much greater that the file is created contiguously- that is, not fragmented. In essence, PerfectDisk has prevented fragmentation of that new file. In a “typical” scenario, without optimization, the chances are much greater that there is scattered free space and the file got created in a fragmented state.

Another benefit of SMARTPlacement optimization is that any future fragmentation is reduced. And the time it takes to defragment the drive is reduced, since it is already mostly defragmented. And another result of this is that fewer resources are consumed while defragmentation is being performed. PerfectDisk has, in essence, shrunk the drive, since much less of the drive needs to be defragged.

All this background leads to my next topic — fragmentation prevention. As you can see, PerfectDisk has been preventing a lot of fragmentation over the years through its optimization strategy. Now, we’re getting ready for a new phase of fragmentation prevention.

We’ve developed a new file system filter which extends the capabilities of all Windows-supported file systems in order to ensure files are written contiguously when possible. This filter takes advantage of years of testing and research to intelligently prevent fragmentation in real time. To ensure the integrity of the system and ensure complete protection for users, this new technology is a Microsoft WQHL-certified Hierarchical Storage Management file system filter.

This new fragmentation-prevention filter provides the following key benefits:

• Up to 100% file fragmentation prevention with an average of 95% prevention or higher
• An average of 88% or better prevention over alternative solutions
• Reduces energy consumption by preventing the negative impact of file fragmentation has on energy efficiency and by greatly reducing or eliminating the need to defragment files
• Is fully compatibility with thin-provisioned disks on all copy-on-write storage solutions such as NetApp, Dell EqualLogic SAN, WAFL and etc.
• Full compatibility with all file- and block-based backup solutions, including Volume Shadow Copy and CBT (Change Block Tracking) enabled storage solutions

The filter has no minimum free space requirement compared to alternative solutions that require 2GB or more, and is supported on all major Windows versions from XP to Window7 and Server 2008 R2. It is also the perfect alternative to defragmentation on storage systems that can be negatively impacted by defragmentation, such as thin-provisioned SAN storage or virtual disks, such as those used by VMware’s vSphere, Microsoft’s Hyper-V and all other thin disk format solutions. So it is a big boon to Hyper-V performance, vSphere performance, and virtualization performance in general.

So how does it work? The filter is WQHL Certified by Microsoft and is safe to use on both desktops and servers. As a file system filter, it detects the creation of file fragmentation in real time, allowing it to appropriately redirect I/O so as to avoid the creation of file fragmentation. It does this without impacting system performance. By preventing file fragmentation from occurring, system performance is maintained while eliminating the need to defragment files after the fact. As a result, the need to utilize CPU and Disk I/O resources to defragment files is either greatly reduced or eliminated, and because less defragmentation is needed to optimize a file system, there is a direct benefit in the form of energy saved in both CPU usage and in the reading and writing to a disk. It saves users both in energy costs and in the time or need required to defragment a file system.

Fragmentation prevention from PerfectDisk — the next generation.

12 — coming in ’11.

Category: PC PerformancePerfectDiskStorageVirtualization