I've heard that the ext4 filesystem does not need to be defragmented because the way it stores information is engineered to avoid exactly that problem.

At them same time, I have a program called Bleach Bit, which is essentially the Unix version of CCleaner for Windows, except a lot more detailed and advanced (not to mention several times faster).

For a few months now I've been running BB before shutting down, but if clutter and fragmentation generally is not a problem for Linux and ext4, then is there really a point to using Bleach Bit? Or could I just install it once a month to do a clean, and then immediately uninstall it?

I'm not quite savvy with the deep innards of the filesystem, so a detailed technical explanation would be great if possible.


  • 3
    I have never used bleachbit nor defragmented and in all my years of using linux have not had a degradation in performance due to fragmentation or excess files in $HOME – Panther Mar 12 '13 at 23:14
  • this site is democratic and those with sufficient privilige have the ability to downvote questions / answers. The process is anonmymous, I have had my share of downvotes as well, best move on. See the FAQ - askubuntu.com/faq – Panther Apr 8 '13 at 20:04
  • @bodhi.zazen Yeah, I get that, haha. I was just curious as to why it was downvoted as I do appreciate an explanation (a "-1 because X" comment) so I can improve upon the reason for the downvote. – Braden Best Apr 9 '13 at 0:04

Pretty certain that CCleaner DOES NOT perform a defrag, on my Win 7 installations I've used it's sister program Dfraggler for that purpose. More details HERE

From what I've gathered in reading defrag is not a real concern on ext4 file system, however cleaning up clutter and old files is a separate function. You've probably noticed when running BB quite a number of files are eliminated. For my ancient Dell laptop it really makes a difference by using BB frequently.


It's possible that things are being mixed up here. Bleachbit is primarily for deleting files that may not be needed anymore provided the user knows what is safe to delete. It doesn't appear to be a tool for defragmenting disks. The closest it comes to "defragmenting" is the vacuuming of databases:

Q: Will BleachBit make my computer faster?

A: BleachBit probably won't make your computer faster in general, but ... you may see your computer become faster. ... vacuuming SQLite databases speed up applications that use them. Firefox, Safari, and Google Chrome are some of the applications that stores various data, such as URL history, in an SQLite database. With heavy browsing, the databases become defragmented and bloated, and this happens at a level higher than the disk storage, so standard disk defragmentation tools are completely useless. BleachBit shrinks the SQLite database (saving disk space and disk I/O effort) and defragments them. ...

(I don't use Bleachbit and I don't vacuum. Instead, I delete cache and browsing history.)

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