Improve performance by optimizing your drive

One of the best ways you can improve your PC's performance is by optimizing the drive. Windows includes features to help optimize the different types of drives that PCs use today. No matter which type of drive your PC uses, Windows automatically chooses the optimization that's right for your drive.

Be default, Optimize Drives, previously called Disk Defragmenter, runs automatically on a weekly schedule. But you can also optimize drives on your PC manually.

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To optimize drives manually

  1. Open Optimize Drives by swiping in from the right edge of the screen, tapping Search (or if you're using a mouse, pointing to the uper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then clicking Search), entering Defragment in the search box, and then tapping or clicking Defragment and optimize your drives.

  2. Under Status, tap or click the drive you want to optimize. (The Media type column tells you what type of drive you're optimizing.)

  3. To determine if the drive needs to be optimized, tap or click Analyze. Administrator permission required You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

    After Windows is finished analyzing the drive, check the Current status column to see whether you need to optimize the drive. If the drive is more than 10% fragmented, you should optimize the drive now.

  4. Tap or click Optimize. Administrator permission required You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

    Optimizing a drive might take anywhere from several minutes to a few hours to finish, depending on the size of the drive and degree of optimization needed. You can still use your PC during the optimization process.

Notes

  • If the drive is being used by another program, or is formatted using a file system other than NTFS, FAT, or FAT32, it can't be optimized.

  • Network drives can't be optimized.

  • If a drive isn't appearing in Optimize Drives, it might be because it contains an error. Try to repair the drive first, then return to Optimize Drives to try again. For more info, see "To repair a drive" at the end of this article.

To change the optimization schedule

  1. Open Optimize Drives by swiping in from the right edge of the screen, tapping Search (or if you're using a mouse, pointing to the uper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then clicking Search), entering Defragment in the search box, and then tapping or clicking Defragment and optimize your drives.

  2. Tap or click Change settings. Administrator permission required You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

  3. Do one of the following:

    • To turn off scheduled optimization, clear the Run on a schedule check box.

    • To change the frequency of scheduled optimization, next to Frequency, tap or click the drop-down list, and then tap or click Daily, Weekly, or Monthly. The default schedule for optimization is weekly and runs during Automatic Maintenance.

    • To choose the drives you want to include or exclude in scheduled optimization, next to Drives, tap or click Choose, select or clear the check boxes next to the drives, and then tap or click OK. You can also clear the Automatically optimize new drives check box if you don't want new drives added to scheduled optimization. If Windows can't optimize a drive, it won't offer the drive as an option for Automatic Maintenance.

  4. Tap or click OK.

To repair a drive

  1. Open This PC by swiping in from the right edge of the screen, tapping Search (or if you're using a mouse, pointing to the upper-right corner of the screen, moving the mouse pointer down, and then clicking Search), entering This PC in the search box, and then tapping or clicking This PC.

  2. Press and hold or right-click the drive you want to repair, and then tap or click Properties.

  3. Tap or click the Tools tab, and then, under Error checking, tap or click Check. Administrator permission required You might be asked for an admin password or to confirm your choice.

  4. Follow the instructions. You might need to restart your PC after error checking is complete.