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Why is defragmentation unnecessary?

I have an older hard drive that might be in need of defragging. how would I go about doing that with Ubuntu? I have done it in windows, but I have no idea on how to do it on Ubuntu. Thanks!

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marked as duplicate by Uri Herrera, Tom Brossman, Ringtail, psusi, fossfreedom Dec 15 '12 at 10:16

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If your hard disk is formatted in ext3 or ext4 there is no need to defragment.

If it is an NTFS partition, then you might need to defragment it but there are no defragmentation tools for linux as far as I know. In this case you have several options depending on your setup. Is it an external drive or an internal one?

  • If you have a dual-boot system, use Windows to defrag.
  • If you are only using Ubuntu, consider reformatting to ext4 to avoid the need to defragment in the first place.
  • If it is an external drive and you want to be able to use it on windows pc's, then formatting to ext4 is not such a good option. So if this is the case you might consider defragmenting on someone else's computer or occasionally copy all files on your pc, quick format your disk and copy everything back. This would effectively remove fragmented files.
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How would I go about formatting it to ext4? –  iKiel2012 Dec 14 '12 at 22:56
On Ubuntu 12.10 open Disks and format your partition from there. On 12.04 open Disk Utility. –  To Do Dec 14 '12 at 22:57
Thanks! apparently, my disk was already formatted to that. –  iKiel2012 Dec 14 '12 at 23:05
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