Welcome to Testing Grounds. This website will help you discover new ways of looking at the ordinary things around you. Whether it is a dusty old computer you have in the corner, or a coke machine down the street, Testing Grounds will show you how to do things you didn't think were possible. Enjoy!

What to look forward to:

Coming up on Testing Grounds, I'll show you how to do the following:

How to Install/Reinstall Windows Vista to Improve Performance

How to Backup DVD's: Defeat Any DVD Protection Including Sony and Disney

Tuesday, June 12, 2007

How and Why You Should Defrag Your Hard Drive

Is your computer acting a bit sluggish lately? When you try to open a file or get onto the internet, does it take a lot longer than it used to? It might be a virus, spyware, or adware, but if you've never defragmented your hard drive, that's a great place to start. It's simple enough to do, you don't need to download a program or anything for it, as it is built into the Windows operating system. There is nothing destructive about it, nothing bad can really happen - about the only thing that I can think of to go wrong is if your power went out when it was defraging. When you start the defraging process, don't be surprised if it takes a few hours. I usually let it run before I go to bed, that way I know I won't interrupt it.

So what does the defragmenting process do exactly? Well whenever Windows saves a file, sometimes it can't allocate a continuous space on your hard drive. So it saves a piece on one part of the platter, and another on another part, and so on. The bad side of this is that when Windows reads the fragmented file, it takes longer than it would if it was continuous on the hard drive. When you defragment the hard drive, it does exactly what it's name says, it puts all of the fragmented pieces and puts them together so that when Windows reads the file, it doesn't have to search for the next piece of the puzzle, and is therefore much faster.

Here is a screenshot showing how to get to the defragment utility:

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I hope those of you experiencing slow computers are helped by this tip.