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geothom

Optimization of SSD

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I have two electro-mechanical hard drives which I defrag frequently.

My application drive is a SSD which I know must not be defragmented, but what does Piriform's 'Optimisation' do to a SSD? 

Is it safe to use this frequently?

Please can anyone advise me on this?

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Hello geothom and welcome to the forum. One of the things you want to avoid doing with a SSD drive is defragmenting it, regardless of whatever software you use, because it leads to a lot of delete/rewrites at the block level and over time will wear out the drive prematurely. There really is no need to defragment a SSD, since Trim, garbage collection and wear leveling will re-arrange your data as they see fit and independently of whatever you do. You didn't mention what operating system you are using (Windows I assume, if you're concerned about file fragmentation), here are two guides for optimizing your system for use with a SSD drive.

 

For Windows 7 and 8: http://www.thessdreview.com/ssd-guides/optimization-guides/the-ssd-optimization-guide-ultimate-windows-8-edition/  (Note: 5 pages in all)

 

For Debian/Ubuntu/Ubuntu derivatives: https://sites.google.com/site/easylinuxtipsproject/ssd

 

Also, an article about Trim and Gabage Collection:  http://www.thessdreview.com/daily-news/latest-buzz/garbage-collection-and-trim-in-ssds-explained-an-ssd-primer/ (Note: 3 pages in all)

 

And another article about Over-Provisioning and Garbage Collection: http://log.lsi.com/gassing-up-your-ssd/

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Is it safe to use this frequently?

 

 

If you have one of the newer SSD's that use TLC (triple level cell) they have, on average, 1000 cell erase cycles before failure of that NAND cell.

MLC's (multi level cell) have about 10,000 with SLC (single) being up around 100,000.  (rough figures arguably but they serve the point)

 

In other words, whatever the cell level, you have a very limited number of read/writes when it comes to SSD's.

 

For me, the answer is if you have Win7 or 8, once you setup the system services that you want to turn off to not touch the SSD, you then just leave them alone.

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Two replies, and no one seems to have bothered to actually read the main question. I would also like to know the answer, and I don't see it anywhere else on the site.

 

Here is the question again, a bit harder to ignore, and spelling corrected*:

 

What does Piriform's 'Optimization' do to a SSD?

 

I also have an SSD, and Defraggler clearly shows a different function for SSD drives than it does for mechanical disk drives. On the latter, it offers "Defrag" and "Quick Defrag" options. On SSD drives, it offers "Defrag", "Quick Defrag", and an "Optimize" function, which is the default.

 

I'm guessing that "Optimize" forces a trim command to be sent, but I don't like guessing.

 

* Just kidding.

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According to the official documentation on the Piriform website, DF only uses Windows API's to do the heavy lifting, so the real question may well be "How does Windows optimise a SSD?"  (I won't make it big or red) and that can quickly be researched on the web.

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You don't need to make it big or read, because I read what people post.

 

It's not a question of how Windows optimizes SSDs, nor whether Defraggler uses the Windows APIs. We know the answers to these questions.

 

It's possible for Defraggler to use the defrag APIs on an SSD, and perform a standard defrag. But is it running a standard defrag API on SSDs? Or is it using an SSD-oriented API, presumably doing a TRIM? Once more, this is the question--what is it doing?

 

Since Defraggler has separate "defrag" and "optimize" functions for SSDs, it seems to me that "optimize" has to be doing a TRIM... But again, I'd like confirmation.

 

Incidentally, when I first adopted Win8 almost a year ago, it had a bug whereby my SSD would be defragmented as if it were a standard HDD. They fixed that bug.

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I know I read the OP question, and I'm sure Derek did too.

The fact it wasn't answered simply means no-one knows - beyond the guessing.

All forum members are just volunteers with no further inside info than anyone else.

What you're after is someone from the Dev Team to chime in with specifics - but that's not something they tend to do.

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You don't need to make it big or read, because I read what people post.

Originally you had no need to SHOUT in capital red letters - shouting is rude.

We can all read here.

 

If you need to know which API's are used perhaps you should pay for the Professional version which gives you access to the developers,

but that is unlikely to give you access to proprietary information.

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titanium, since you can't get a straight answer here, it's probably best to avoid this piece of software when using an SSD.  As some others have said, it's bad news using defrag on an SSD and I've had mine permanently disabled since I bought my first machine with an SSD on it.

 

Hopefully defraging drives will become a thing of the past in the next few years as new file systems and behaviors will develop.

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@gwt,

I thought he did get a straight answer. :)

And it's definitely best do avoid any defrag software on a SSD.

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There are MANY straight answers, e.g.

 

Never switch on your P.C. and then it has the longest possible life ;

Never connect to the Internet and then you are safe from malware (safe from the deliberately malicious and also the most pernicious malware to ever hit me - Microsoft Updates)

 

When you use a Microsoft API, regardless of whether it is used for Defragging or Secure Deletion/Over-writing,

you are GAMBLING in the hope of improving your system,

BUT risking a problem from an error in either the application software or in the latest Microsoft update that may have degraded your system.

It is a SAFE GAMBLE if you have validated partition image backups and Boot Rescue CD's to restore the backups

(and safer still if you have duplicated backups and Boot Rescue CD's that still function)

 

The only people to have precise knowledge of what Defraggler is supposed to do are the developers,

and they have far better things to do than answer idle questions,

and their answers could become incorrect for any computer that is suffering from a bad Microsoft Update.

 

It is obvious that "Optimization" of an SSD would not make use of a "standard defrag" API because the developers know far better;

they have in the past prevented SSD's from being defragged.

It is obvious that they consider it safe to use "Optimization" or they would not have developed it.

Whether it is "safe to use this frequently" depends upon how frequently you do it, how hard you drive your computer, and the quality of your SSD.

 

Personally I would like to know more about the theoretical benefits of SSD "Optimization",

But will only KNOW how useful it is to myself and my system if I measure and compare the performance of my system before and after.

Unfortunately I have better things to do with my time.

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The only people to have precise knowledge of what Defraggler is supposed to do are the developers,

and they have far better things to do than answer idle questions,

and their answers could become incorrect for any computer that is suffering from a bad Microsoft Update.

 

It is obvious that "Optimization" of an SSD would not make use of a "standard defrag" API because the developers know far better;

they have in the past prevented SSD's from being defragged.

It is obvious that they consider it safe to use "Optimization" or they would not have developed it.

Whether it is "safe to use this frequently" depends upon how frequently you do it, how hard you drive your computer, and the quality of your SSD.

 

Personally I would like to know more about the theoretical benefits of SSD "Optimization",

But will only KNOW how useful it is to myself and my system if I measure and compare the performance of my system before and after.

Unfortunately I have better things to do with my time.

 

This was not an "idle" (i.e. worthless) question. It's a valid question that deserves an answer--an answer, by the way, that should already be documented.

 

And I'm tired of people acting like developers are god-like individuals who cannot possibly be expected to act remotely human, and customers are worthless lowlives who should dare not expect even a fleeting moment of their divine attention. (This is coming from a former software engineer who is now an analyst. The best part of my job is helping my customers. But maybe I'm crazy or just not godly enough.)

 

It is not obvious that optimization would not perform a standard defrag, nor that they consider it safe. Developers are humans (strange but true) who make mistakes and odd design choices.

 

Because I'm a paid customer, I've submitted a support request to find the answer to this question. I will probably reply to this thread with the answer I get.

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This was not an "idle" (i.e. worthless) question. It's a valid question that deserves an answer--an answer, by the way, that should already be documented.

 

This topic started as an "idle" request for an answer to the ill defined question "Is it safe to use this frequently?"

 

The answers appeared to satisfy Geothom.  He had no followup questions.

 

It is reasonable to ask about the intended benefit of Optimization.

It is unreasonable to demand what MAY be proprietary intellectual property about how a design is implemented.

 

It is not obvious that optimization would not perform a standard defrag, nor that they consider it safe.

 

It is obvious to me that there is a difference, and that they consider it safe.

Is your standard of safety the same as theirs ?

Developers are humans (strange but true) who make mistakes

 

CCleaner is updated about once a month.

Several months ago a new release was found defective and instantly withdrawn, and then quickly replaced.

It is very insulting of you to suggest that Piriform developers would make an unsafe mistake and refrain from quickly correcting it.

Because I'm a paid customer, I've submitted a support request to find the answer to this question. I will probably reply to this thread with the answer I get.

 

I am pleased to note that you may have heeded my advice on paying for support as the best route for obtaining an answer to your own satisfaction.

I look forward to seeing what extra information you can obtain

 

Regards

Alan

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having no first-hand experience or even hearing via 3rd parties regarding attempts to get info from developers, I would be very surprised if Piriform give you any detailed info on the inner workings of their products.

 

if they do - great, and as you say, please let the rest of us know.

 

but asking Microsoft why they released that update and how they fixed that bug, or asking Nortons how how they scan your drive, or asking Piriform what their SSD optimisation does? - I just don't see you getting an answer you'll be happy with or an answer with anymore depth than "It executes the TRIM command to wipe cells no longer in use".  Which is what the currently guess is.

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No one is asking for highly detailed inner workings! My own question--the same as what I understand the OP was after--is just a basic, high-level description. The same sort of thing, by the way, that SHOULD be in the documentation already!

 

The answer I got from Piriform was as follows, and it is entirely satisfactory to me:

 

Defraggler will use a 'zero-filling' technique to optimize SSD's. You can find more information about the zero-filling SSD optimization technique here:

 

http://www.lowlevelformat.info/zero-filling.aspx

 

The hilarious thing is that I've already switched to a competing product, because I just cannot wait days for Defraggler to defrag my HDDs.

 

By the way, what I can only assume is another angry, rude reply from that other person (not you, mta) ... was not read by me, and never will be. Nor will I be checking back on this thread--EVER.

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well, that's a pity, DF for me, and many others, gets the job done nicely.

of course, every now and then, some PC for what-ever reason, just throws a hissy fit.

we all have to do whatever it takes to get the job done, for you @titanium that was switching products.

 

hopefully your experience with this thread won't reflect on the forum as a whole.  I have found it a good arena to share advice and experiences.

 

may be this would be an opportune time to close the thread if a Mod thinks it has run its course....

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