Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Diskeeper 2008: First Impressions

I was a Diskeeper customer many years ago, but I stopped using their crappy defrag utility when I discovered to my horror that it was incapable of keeping my hard drive organised, much less the server that we spend $299 to get defragmented, but failed. Recently we replaced the server with a new one, and spent $99 to install PerfectDisk 8 Server. It works well.
I have undertaken to review DK 2008, but my first impressions are not good. Firstly, only DK 2007 and 10 customers are entitled to an upgrade. Suckers like me who paid full price for DK 9 or older, will have to pay full price again to get the product they thought they were buying back then.
Secondly, the web site is a marketing nightmare. I'm allergic to hype, and I was unpleasantly surprised when clicking on the "What's New" link to find not a single word on what's actually new in the new 2008 version of their product.
Thirdly, even if you're a corporate user, for goodness sake tell them you're a home user or you'll be given around 50 questions to answer before you can download the trial version. Even home users have to give their email address (twice), country and zip code before being able to download the trial version of Diskeeper2008-Professional.exe or Diskeeper2008-ProPremier.exe. As a service to my readers I have included the direct URLs here. BTW, the downloads page states "A confirmation email will be sent to the email address provided". They lied. I filled in "" and it still allowed me to download the files and install them. DK is notorious for badgering its customers with promotional emails.
Finally, DK removes all access to the built-in Windows Disk Defragmenter when it installs, without even asking if this is OK. I am busy testing the Professional version 12.0.758.0, and will test the $99 ProPremier version after that.
Update: I posted a comment on the Diskeeper blog referring to this article, which they didn't publish, but sent me a coupon for a not for resale copy of ProPremier 2008 instead. At least I won't be badgered by the "Buy Now" popup in the evaluation version.

A Closer Look at the DK2008 Review on Part 1 | Part 2 | Part 3 | How Fast is I-FAAST™? | Diskeeper 2008 Professional: Preliminary Results | First Impressions | The Great Defrag Shootout | Winners | Diskeeper 2007 | Benchmarks: DK2008 and DK2007


Daniel Watkins said...

Hmmm, I guess I'll stick with Distrix Ultimate Defrag and Mst defrag for now.
I've been looking forward to Diskeeper's i-faast technology upgrade from 2.0 to 3.0. It is the technology behind the intelligent organization of data on the hard drive by their product.

Donn Edwards said...

iFAAST technology on DK 2008 is still version 2, according to their
comprison chart and you'll have to pay $99.95 for this feature in the Pro Premier edition.

Anonymous said...

I think you are too harsh on this product.

I agree its (too) expensive
I agree almost all previous versions had one way or another flaws.
I agree about its marketing ways and spam tactics.
I even agree its overhyped and more.

But: (like you i have test almost all defraggers avalaible - i defrag since the days of norton speedisk and if i could defrag my amstrad 1512 5'' 1/4 floppy - believe me i would)

- It's the absolute fastest.
- I-faast when IT kicks in IT DOES make that speed difference on your pc. (It did to
- It's easy to use and not so complicated like others (date/modified/last/acess/name and so on - come on what should i choose for which case???)

The only competitor i see is disktrix ultimate defrag which actually does I-faast on demand BUT since it uses ntfs last access update (which i disable always on my pc since i use games with LOTS of small files) its effectiveness is to be doubted and it moves too much data (i mean reorganize the volume almost from start - at least they warn u about this on their manual - that's on auto method)

imho perfectdisk uses dumb-placement - come on recently modified data to inner tracks (like save games? or recently install games) go to inner tracks???
and moves too much data trying to fill that free space gap from start so its slow.(Take in mind files over 300-500 megs to be put in another place)(try defragging a 200gig volume with mostly iso games for a start and tell me whats SLOW) Same about goes for o&o.

Don't u find weird that dk moves data to outer tracks WITHOUT ntfs last access enabled?
I find it cool that it moved the almost burned from reading/writing data from my favourite game (Rome Total War) to outer tracks..
And guess what -it moved never used data of that game to last inner tracks too!! (like low res texture packs which where not used due to me using the high res ones...)

Shouldn't you try it a little more?
And what about its claim of being able now to defrag volumes with as much as 1% free space??)
Also i found out that it doesn't consolidate folders as efficiently like 2007 version - it leaves some-many) and it now doesn't move them close to the mft but to the beginning of the disk.
And last but not least ain't it cool the defrag when your away from your pc - this is resource saving unlike having to w8 your pc defrag...

Warning this is my personal opinion on these matters. This is just me - i'm defrag addict :)

Donn Edwards said...

Thanks for some excellent comments. I haven't finished testing, and am trying out the IFAAST option. The "low space" defrag doesn't seem to work. I will do some more tests though.

See the preliminary results of DK 2008 Pro for initial defrag results. I think that both JkDefrag and PuranDefrag are faster, except for the time that you click "Defragment" and it does nothing. %-)

It's great to hear from another defrag junkie.

Anonymous said...

Hi it's me again :)
-1st thank you for your kind words and your findings- at this point i must admit that you have done what other who get paid SHOULD have done. Also i must say this is 1st blog site

i ever bothered to write for.(and last to). I should say also that i am an one army at a public/govermental place as network admin and IT staff at the same time :(
The reason i write here is because i know the impact of the "weak chain" in servers/workstations and this is all in all the hard drive performance and the impact of fragmentation

both on the performance and the health of a system and hard drive together(sry for my bad english i'm from greece)

I' have read many forums, articles blah blah blah debating which defrager is best and so on.
I have come to conclude two things:
1.People are ignorant at least
2.Defragmentation software has changed course.

Ignorant are the people who are content with windows built-in version and think that there is no point in defrag.
Also defrag software is turning on the optimization course rather than just defragging.
Now on to the point:

From further test/experience i have done (using the kick-ass sysinternals proggy arsenal)i am convinced that diskeeper 2008 (pro premier that is -TRIAL) is
either FLAWED or COMPLETE ANOTHER software i don't know how to explain it. One thing is certain - it does not consolidate folders like 2007 version. It just bails out in the

process. I don't know if this is deliberate or not. Somewhere in its help file it says : Core "Defragmentation Intelligence" Enhancements
The brains behind defragmentation is the Diskeeper "controller”, which has been re-designed to deliver performance benefit faster and more efficiently. The controller’s job is to
detect various volume and system conditions and choose the most effective algorithm from the vast arsenal of Diskeeper defragmentation engines
I really wonder which those defragmentation engines are...>> spooky.
I think that this software has become so complicated that (as you very successfully pointed) it self-cancels itself.
One thing i know that in 2007 version (both using consolidate directories option) when you left the pc idle for a while - directories would be completely consolidated.
The "frag shield" option not only is not so necessary BUT IT IS DANGEROUS NOW! Why the heck should it automatically adjust the mft size? Does this mean that if install something,

not necessary large in size, but with numerous files my MFT will get to point which it will become like 500 megs in size and there is NO WAYBACK???
And what if i uninstall that software? Where's the option or ability to shrink it back??? Do you know what happens to file seeks - disk operations with such a huge MFT??
Dudes at diskeeper corp should cancel back this release and leave the 2007 version - or just add whatever engine optimizations they had done regarding free space consolidation

(this works) and ability to defrag low on space volumes. 2007vs2008 1-0 (since i-faast is same too).
Oh i almost forgot - on a workstation with 2 mft fragments it FAILED repeatedly to defrag it at boot time - Perfect disk as Paragons Suite did.

-Puran defrag: very good but i would lovely know in which way it optimizes file system- if it uses last access times and they get disabled how (i do) how i works around it.
Lacks boot time feature for mft and pagefile (ok the swap file can be defragged easily by manual means)

-Vopt 8.20 nice and fast but crashed multiple times.

Perfectdisk: I can't understand why it frags a large file between the mft and or pagefile - optimizing just the file and then doing dumb-placement seems *sometimes* to resolve

this issue.And i can't understand what good is defragger or better how harmfull can be defragger in the following real situation: Let's say i have a huge rar archive - which is on

my 200gig disk (i don't dare to think what would happen on 500gig disks) for backup purposes and left there alone for eons. Assume i download/do/produce something and decide to

update the huge rar (4gig or more- or assume it is a iso file) or the folder in which it resides. And then as a defrag junkie :) (i defrag on startup and on shutdown hehe) i use

perfectdisk to smartplace defrag the drive as i have made other changes/writes too.
Can u imagine how much data will be moved??? omg oh no - the disk might work for hours - is this promoting drive health??? NO - that's why i prefer diskeeper... it wont touch the

file if its defragged already but if i come to use it very often then at some point it will move it (i-faast it) but at least there is point in moving now.
Also i have to disagree with you that perfectdisk is should be the winner. I can't understand why can it be the winner when:
It's slow when to defrag say 4 files it moves 24 (You can say that you can choose defrag only but then i can say use a freeware one cause you bought PD for its Smartplacement.
It's smart-placement is not so smart - Recent modified data is more often than and frequent used too and the inner tracks aren't the place to be.
It is not a patent too since O&O has complete/modified light years ago.
PD Strength is the slow advance in REFRAGMTATION that is what should be advertsized - and is a weakness of diskeeper but then again the invisitasking sorts this out as soon as it

appears. IMHO in diskeeper the disk refragments faster.
Also PD strentgh is its offline defrag - it's powerfull

Paragon Suite: If you can stand to defrag offline then ok - at least it has complete/modified BUT even further than perfectdisk and o&o it can reverse the modified attrib - i mean

sort ascending or descending. Unique ability to shrink the MFT- saved me once from diskeepers AUTO FRAG SHIELD

Disktrix Ultimate defrag: I-FAAST on demand! :)(not sure what versio 1 or 2 :) If you don't take care on a very large ide volume with lot of data with decent transfer rates (i

mean not scsi/raid)- it can defrag for days. But the system get a unique speed up like i-faast and even faster. It's like having a control panel to run diskeeper i-faast. Cool but

once you choose it - stick with it -your hard drive won't take lots of those complete file reorganizations. For system\game volumes choose auto - then use defrag only for every

day. For Data volumes go with volatility - its the PD way and is suitable for data drives since in those disks you care only to prevent fragmentation. I'cant say that i-faast is

usefull for data drives.

O&O: Powerfull and complete as perfectdisk (you can say it includes it :) ) and even more with the powerfull but slow and drive killing complete/name defrag method. Now use this

in a drive with lots of frees space (over 75%) and you will see what speed means

So these are some thoughts on defraggers from me - for me 2 products stand out from the rest: Diskeeper and ultimate defrag - both are more than defraggers they are optimizers

with the later being more advanced with the tradeoff of speed. If you neet to defrag only then get a freeware from those suggested - its cheaper and works better - believe me.

Regards Steve

Anonymous said...

Hello Steve, I represent Puran Software, the developer of Puran Defrag, I just read your comment on Puran Defrag, Thank You.

About Puran Defrag optimization technique, It refers layout.ini to see which files are to be kept at faster disk areas. Since layout.ini keeps file paths stored in order of frequency of thier access, in my opinion its the best way to arrange files in this order. And ofcource this way the optimization would be the fastest, data movement would be the least and performance would be the most.

For Boot time defrag, we will be up with it soon.

For any further query, you may directly contact us, we would be pleased to answer you.

Unknown said...

Hi Donn,

Regarding your comment on the download process:

The request for an email is voluntary. Yes a bogus email works, and you can download and use the software without giving your real email - I'd consider that a plus, not a negative. Perhaps you misundertood?

Even if you do provide a valid email, the email they send only asks confirmation that you actually WANT to receive future emails.

Many sites require real email addresses to get the software (they send download links to the email you submit).

Donn Edwards said...

From the web site:
A confirmation email will be sent to the email address provided. To ensure delivery, please add to your e-mail address book.

*Denotes required fields.
* Email Address:
* Confirm Email Address:
Try leaving out the email address and see what happens: you won't get a download.

Fortunately the process has been streamlined since I wrote this, so that if you select "Home User" you don't get asked for these details.

If you download from you have to create an account with Diskeeper. All of this is a complete waste of time and most companies don't do it because customers (like me) don't like it.

Perhaps my comments to CĂ©line Bouquillon helped, I don't know.

Anonymous said...

What you did not praise on this page (or on this page: is that the 'Performance Graphing' is really great.

Here is the screen to which I refer:

This feature (and it's equivalent in PerfectDisk 8) are great, even if the programs themselves are not as good as they ought to be.

You must check out this feature prior to trying the wonderful "Uninstall Feature" -- as it is something to wish for in the other defragmentors ...