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Should You Or Should You Not Defrag SSD

Updated on Aug 22, 2019 by Brithny to Partition Master

Summary:
It's useful to defrag a hard drive with physical moving parts, but how about an SSD? Should you or should you not defrag SSD? Defragmenting SSD has long been a controversial issue. If you are also confused, read this tutorial and get some basic information. Besides, we provide you another better way to optimize SSD instead of SSD defragmentation.

Should You Defrag SSD

Defragmentation exists to re-arrange data to maximize read performance of a spinning magnetic medium and a flying read head. Pretty much everyone has defragged their hard disk once or twice to achieve better performance. However, it often happens among hard disk drives (HDDs). Why do we need to defragment a hard disk? Since spinning hard disk reads and writes data sequentially, it takes longer for the drive to read a file if parts of the file are located in different parts of the disk. It's useful to defrag an HDD. But what SSD - does it benefit from defragmentation?

defrag ssd

Pro: Windows Defragments SSD

Many voices say defragmenting would cause unnecessary writes to the drive and shorten service life. This is only partially true since Windows does sometimes defragment SSD on purpose. If you have Volume Shadow Copy turned on, which will be enabled when you roll back your Windows system to the previous version, defragmenting SSD will happen once a month by default. But it’s OK. Windows' defragmentation of your SSD can prolong its life and make it run optimally.

Con: Defragmenting Wears Out SSD 

Contrary to the above view, the other insists that we should never defrag SSD. A solid-state drive stores data altogether in one unit, and it accesses memory randomly other than sequentially like an HDD. This is why the reading and writing speed of data in an SSD is faster than that of an HDD. From this point, not only does SSD not need defragging, doing so would cause unnecessary writes to the drive, and the final result is a shortened SSD life. 

To Sum Up

The two opinions are all reasonable. For us, the best thing to optimize SSD is avoiding manual defragmentation. As for Windows auto defragmenting SSD, you can turn off the Volume Shadow Copy if you don't like it. 

Is There Another Way to Optimize SSD

Now that it is uncertain whether defragmenting SSDS will improve disk performance, you can use another way to make it. Here, try SSD optimization with 4K alignment instead.

Is 4K Alignment Necessary

SSD uses flash memory as the storage medium, and each sector is 4K bytes. When you write and read files on SSD, the partition always does not start from the starting position of a physical sector. If SSD is not 4K aligned, when you save a 4KB file, even the smallest one, the file will be saved in 2 different sectors. This will reduce reading and writing speed and shorten the service life of SSD. So, 4K alignment has a significant impact on SSD performance, and it is necessary to make 4K alignment for SSD.

defrag ssd

How to Make 4K Alignment for SSD

You can do 4K alignment by formatting using the disk management tool in Windows 7/8/10. To avoid data loss due to formatting, you can also use a free partition manager to achieve 4K alignment. EaseUS Partition Master enables you to align the 4K sectors on your SSD with one-click without affecting the normal use.

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 Windows 10 is supported

 

Step 1: Install and launch EaseUS Partition Master on your Windows computer.

open EaseUS Partition Master

Step 2: Select the SSD disk that you want to align, right-click it and choose "4K Alignment".

SSD 4K alignment

Step 3: Go to find task by clicking the "Execute 1 Operation" button at the top-left corner and click "Apply".  Then, the SSD drive partitions are all 4K aligned with all sectors on it.

SSD 4K alignment

SSD Disk Optimization

After the 4K alignment on SSD, you can continue using the Disk Optimization feature of EaseUS Partition Master to Optimize your drives to improve system performance. 

 

Step 1: Install and launch EaseUS Partition Master. Select "Tools" and click "System Optimization".

choose system optimization

Step 2: Choose "Disk Optimization" to optimize your hard disk and improve the disk performance.

select disk optimizayion

Step 3: Select the partition that you want to optimize and click "Optimize". After a while, the defragment is completed. The time depends on the amount of the fragments on this partition.

optimize the disk
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 Windows 10 is supported