Over the course of typical computer usage, your hard drive can become fragmented. When this happens, files or parts of files are stored in multiple locations on the hard drive and, consequently, the time needed to access them can increase, slowing down your entire computer.

Defragmenting your hard drive involves rearranging your files in a more sequential order so that they can be accessed quicker. Defragmenting will not change, move, or erase any of your data. You will not see any change in where your documents are stored, but the time needed to access them should decrease.

Defragmentation is not required, but it can help speed up your computer. If you have questions about it, you can contact Technology Services.

How to defragment your hard drive

  1. Open the disk optimization tool by searching for "optimize" or "defrag" in the start menu.
  1. 2. Select your hard drive and click Analyze. *Note that if you have a SSD, this option is grayed out and not available as SSDs do not need to be defragmented.
  1. 3. If you want to defragment your drive, click Optimize. It's best to do this when you don't need to use your computer for anything else, so you can let Windows defragment the drive efficiently.

When Windows is done, your drive should say 0% fragmented in the Optimize Drives utility.