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Tina2002 (TechnicalUser) (OP)
9 Sep 03 3:01
Hi

I have a question that may sound stupid, but I'd like to know - can I run some programs while I'm defragmenting my system?  Or will it harm my computer?

I need to run some programs 24/7 and would rather not shut them off for defragging

Thanks!
Helpful Member!  pmonett (Programmer)
9 Sep 03 3:07
You can run programs, the defrag process should not normally break.
However, you must be aware that the defrag will reset and start over every time something is written in the partition you are defragging. I do not know if that has an impact, but you certainly run the risk of defragging for a long time - or never if HDD write access is often (more than once a minute) for that partition.

In the end, it is not because using apps is a risk to the data or the HDD, but much more because the defrag process will never be able to do anything.
As much as it might be unpleasant, I do suggest stopping all applications that have even a remote chance of writing something on the partition you want to defrag.
If your applications are too critical to do that, I would then heartily suggest buying a second PC and setting up a cluster. That will give you the possibility of taking one machine offline to do maintenance, while the other takes up the critical functions.

Pascal.
Tina2002 (TechnicalUser) (OP)
9 Sep 03 4:11
ok, I understand a bit more, thanks

Can you tell me what a cluster is please? - I'm not too good with the technical side of computers

Thanks again......:) !
pmonett (Programmer)
10 Sep 03 5:41
A cluster is two or more servers working as a single unit. That is, any client connecting to the cluster connects to one of the servers in the cluster, but does not know (and cannot choose) which one.
The advantage of a cluster is that 99% of the cluster can be down, as long as there is one left, the service can be upheld (theoretically). The more servers are in the cluster, the more client requests can be served concurrently.
Clustering allows for exotic services like load balancing (a new connection is directed to the least-burdened server in the cluster) and high uptime values (six 9s, or 99.9999%) that are usually achieved with more expensive equipment (think mainframe), among other things.

Pascal.
GreatSeaSpider (Programmer)
10 Sep 03 8:17
think you ment cluster as in disk cluster rather than server clustering :)

http://computer.howstuffworks.com/hard-disk3.htm

this link should give you an idea of what a cluster is in relation to your hard drive

Pete
unlimited01 (IS/IT--Management)
10 Sep 03 9:26
OK, I think that this became a lot more complicated than it needed to be..  In Windows 98 the defrag would act just like pmonett explains..  but I believe that while defraging in Windows XP it just skips over the files that are in use.

So you can run a successful defrag while you have applications open it just won't defrag the files you have open..
dwilko (TechnicalUser)
10 Sep 03 9:37
I think that unlimited01 right bout win XP defrag becuase I hav run defrag on xp and it never restarted cos of disk writes

________________________________________
I help Where I can

pmonett (Programmer)
11 Sep 03 5:17
Possible, I have never yet defragged in XP, so I do not know if works the same or not. But I tend to be wary of so-called defrag programs that start all over again when they just finished.
I mean, the best way for me to test if the defrag is correct is to start it again, right ? If it shows up as 100% done, then its done.
Yet, in Windows, using the defragger again just starts it over. And, most of the time, it takes just as long - again.
In my opinion, that means that the app is useless.
So I tend to use defragmenter in Norton - at least when I had 98 installed. Now that I have XP, I have not upgraded my Norton yet, so I have no more defrag app I trust.

Pascal.
GreatSeaSpider (Programmer)
11 Sep 03 6:11
The windows xp defragger actually works,

it doesnt restart like the 98 version does. I use it every month ish and have not had any problems so far!

Pete

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