General Question

Hollister0221's avatar

Why don't I need to defrag my mac?

Asked by Hollister0221 (502points) July 22nd, 2008 from iPhone
Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

12 Answers

richardhenry's avatar

You probably won’t need to optimize at all if you use Mac OS X. Here’s why:

* Hard disk capacity is generally much greater now than a few years ago. With more free space available, the file system doesn’t need to fill up every “nook and cranny.” Mac OS Extended formatting (HFS Plus) avoids reusing space from deleted files as much as possible, to avoid prematurely filling small areas of recently-freed space.

* Mac OS X 10.2 and later includes delayed allocation for Mac OS X Extended-formatted volumes. This allows a number of small allocations to be combined into a single large allocation in one area of the disk.

* Fragmentation was often caused by continually appending data to existing files, especially with resource forks. With faster hard drives and better caching, as well as the new application packaging format, many applications simply rewrite the entire file each time. Mac OS X 10.3 Panther can also automatically defragment such slow-growing files. This process is sometimes known as “Hot-File-Adaptive-Clustering.”

* Aggressive read-ahead and write-behind caching means that minor fragmentation has less effect on perceived system performance.

For these reasons, there is little benefit to defragmenting.


robmandu's avatar

Kudos to @richardhenry!

btw… does anyone else think that Apple’s Support site search is FAIL?

Hollister0221's avatar

wow!! The answer I needed and more. Thanks!

gailcalled's avatar

@Rob: I get better and faster tech support from Fluther. And check out this from your link. Someone misspelled “dynamically”...not an auspicious start.

—“Apple – Downloads – System/Disk Utilities – VolumeWorks
Dynamicly repartition your drive without erasing your data.”—

richardhenry's avatar

@gailcalled: The guys at SubRosaSoft Inc. (they made the software that’s listed in the search results) clearly didn’t go to school.

gailcalled's avatar

@Richard: I wonder whether they know that “SubRosa” is Latin and not Slovene?

A bad name, under any circumstances. On the Sly, Hidden or Sneaky?

richardhenry's avatar

@gailcalled: As said by the CEO in their first meeting, “who cares, it sounds great!”

richardhenry's avatar

Oh, and if anyone is wondering, here’s the real Apple Support search.

gailcalled's avatar

@Richardhenry; don’t lend the CEO money or buy stock, please.

richardhenry's avatar

@gailcalled: Selling my shares as we speak…

gailcalled's avatar

RH: small broker’s fee for me?

richardswart's avatar

Fragmentation is the process of splitting your files into multiple parts and storing it to different locations on the hard drive.,

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