How can I see how many fragments a file uses in Windows?
February 20, 2009 10:21 PM   Subscribe

How can I see how many fragments a file uses in Windows?

I have several large files that I'm trying to keep defragmented in Windows XP.

It would be great to be able to see at a glance how many fragments a given file is using, so that I can see if I need to defrag again.

Windows obviously has this information, but doesn't seem to display it anywhere - you cannot see this in Windows Explorer or anywhere else that I've looked.

Am I missing some Windows trick to see this, or is there perhaps a small freeware app that one can use to see this information for a given file?
posted by worldshift to Computers & Internet (5 answers total) 2 users marked this as a favorite
If you're OK with the command-line, Contig is the tool for you: not only can it tell you how many fragments your file is using, it can defragment it for you.
posted by We had a deal, Kyle at 10:27 PM on February 20, 2009

Defraggler, from the same people who brought you CCleaner.
posted by theichibun at 11:32 PM on February 20, 2009

If you only wanted to use built in windows functions to see, you have to start the defrag tool, run analyze on the disk where your file resides, then view report - that will show you how many fragments individual files are in. Other than that, I'd definitely go with contig as mentioned above.
posted by xla76 at 12:46 AM on February 21, 2009

power defragmenter uses contig, but with a graphical user interface if the command line scares you.
posted by motdiem2 at 9:04 AM on February 21, 2009

Response by poster: Thanks everyone for the great suggestions.

I went with Defraggler to sort out one of my major files, an Evernote database over a GB in size. It's slightly disconcerting in that it always ends by saying "No files were defragmented" - this being because it never manages to get a large file down to just one allocation on my system - but it did reduce it from over 1,500 fragments to just 50 on the first pass.

After deleting still more files from my drive, then by running Diskeeper on the whole drive first and then Defraggler on the database I was able eventually to get it down to just 5 allocations, which is ok.

Incidentally a great little utility for finding large files is TreeSize, which shows you all the files in a folder sorted by size with a graphical bar showing the relative size of each; you can then right-click on any directory to immediately open it and delete any unnecessary files. Much nicer than WinDirStat.
posted by worldshift at 11:24 PM on February 22, 2009

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