While patience may be considered a virtue there are very few people interested in practicing this quality when it comes to the speed of their computers. The idea of actually waiting even a few seconds for a computer to respond is enough to send most of us into a panic. That panic is elevated into absolute frustration for those who have had to deal with a slow computer on a regular basis.
Witnessing the reaction of these people working on a slow computer is almost comical. Whether it’s pounding on the keyboard, shouting at the screen or just throwing their hands up in disgust it really takes all you have to not laugh. That’s usually because we’ve all experienced that aggravation at least once.
While most people believe a slow computer is just the result of a computer getting old the truth is there are much more ominous reasons behind the sluggish workings of a hard drive.
Age may have a small part in how a computer performs its routine tasks but the real determining factor lies in how well the computer has been protected. If a computer owner has taken the necessary precautions to prevent particular diseases then their hard drive can continue to operate at optimal speed for an extended period.
For whatever reason computers still strike fear in the hearts of their owners. There is this general belief that when something goes wrong there is little that can be done other than shelling out a lot of money for repairs or a new computer all together. Of course this belief is based on little more than fear and if we took a more proactive approach to guarding against problems that could occur then the likelihood of dealing with a slow computer would lessen.
It is important to realize that slow computer performance is almost always the fault of the owner. There is nothing in a computer’s design that was manufactured for the sole reason of driving you crazy. If you can accept that then you stand a good chance of avoiding the unenviable distinction of owning a slow computer.
Going back to a computer’s design, a hard drive is made to value one thing more than any other and that is space. A hard drive does not take into consideration the idea that a file may need to be modified or deleted or anything like that, instead it looks to keep as much space free as possible so when you save a file it is placed directly behind the lest file saved. This manner of saving files is what causes the majority of computer slowdowns.
When an existing file is recalled and modified we then save the file and common sense tells us that the information remains together in one space. Nothing can be further from the truth. Because a hard drive stores files in a contiguous manner there is no room for an existing file to be modified and kept together. When those files are recalled and modified they no longer fit in the same space as the original and so rather than make room by pushing files down the hard drive fills the original space and then cuts the extra and places it in the next available space on the hard drive. This is now a fragmented file.
There is absolutely no limit to how many times a single file can be fragmented and this often means thousands of pieces of a file are strewn about on the hard drive. Multiply that by the amount of files that exist on a hard drive and you have serious problems.
This is where the slow performance comes into play. That slowdown is the result of your hard drive looking for all the fragmented pieces of a file before it can deliver your request. The problem only gets worse over time until the work becomes too much for the hard drive and it crashes, signaling the end of everything that has been saved and stored.
Fortunately your computer gives you plenty of warning signs that there is a problem. When you begin to notice that it’s taking a long time to boot up your system, when your having difficulty loading pages and applications, when your Internet browsing has become Internet crawling or when your experiencing problems accessing and sending emails chances are your hard drive is overrun with fragmented files.
Just like you would get your oil changed if the light came on in your car this is the time to take the simple step of installing defragmentation software on your hard drive. By taking this simple step you can effectively reverse the damage caused by fragmentation and restore your computer’s speed.
Defragmentation works by scanning your hard drive for fragmented files and repairing them. Once all the pieces of a file have been joined the file is saved as a single unit and stored in its own space. This means the hard drive no longer has to search for all the pieces and can deliver the file in a much faster fashion.
Essentially defrag software reorganizes the hard drive like any rational person would and then keeps things in order. Defragmenting your hard drive will not only repair the fragmented files but continue to prevent the deadly disease from returning. This not only improves the speed of the computer but extends its life as well.
So the next time you notice somebody about ready to break down in tears because they can’t seem to get their computer to move faster be sure to ask them if they’ve installed defragmentation software on their hard drive. The next time you see them you might be overwhelmed by the gratitude they bestow upon you.