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42% of PC Users Fail to Defrag Their Computers: Survey

August 27, 2007; 02:02 AM

SAN FRANCISCO--More than 42% of PC users neglect to defragment their computers, according to a client-sponsored survey conducted by online opinion polling and market research service provider Vizu Corporation. This failure to conduct routine computer maintenance can adversely affect system performance for both home and enterprise users, slowing operations such as bootup, file retrieval, Web browsing, backups, and anti-virus scans as well as contributing to system crashes.

Nearly 16% of those who answered the poll said they had no idea what disk defragmentation is, while more than 26% said they never defrag their machines. The remaining respondents said they frequently defrag their systems using either a built-in manual defragmenter (44.9%) or a standalone utility that automates the defrag process (13.1%).

Disk fragmentation is a byproduct of normal computer use. As files are created, modified and deleted, the computer stores different fragments of each file in non-contiguous sectors of the hard drive. This forces the PC to search through different parts of the disk to assemble a single file, slowing data recall.

In recent years, the fragmentation problem has been exacerbated by the increasing size of applications, operating systems, and multimedia files such as songs, photos and movies. Also aggravating fragmentation headaches is the exponential growth of storage, spurred in part by the availability of larger hard drives and in part by government regulations requiring long-term archiving of business files.

Defragmentation reorganizes the file fragments on a hard disk into contiguous clusters that help speed response time. Tests have shown that activities such as word processing, Web-surfing, and anti-virus and spyware scans can take almost 15 times longer than hard drives that have been defragged.

Experts recommend that end users defrag their computers on a regular basis to optimize performance and reliability. In enterprise environments, analysts recommend daily defragmentation for critical systems.

About Vizu

Vizu provides services that make online opinion polling and market research easy, accessible, and affordable to everyone. The companys premiere service, Vizu Answers (, combines an innovative market research technology with a vast network of relevant web sites, offering highly targeted audiences to answer a wide variety of questions.



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