Thursday, March 19, 2009

SpeedDisk and Offline Defragmentation

Finally I succeeded in performing an offline defragmentation on my laptop with Windows Vista. I had troubles trying to do that recently, as listed in one of my previous posts (link).

SpeedDisk had some conflicts when tried to perform an offline defragmentation. One was sptd.sys, installed by Daemon Tools, a software package that mounts image files and emulates a CD/DVD ROM player.
Another issue was inspect.sys, installed by Comodo Desktop Firewall.

Autoruns, from SysInternals, is a convenient tool for disabling the drivers from startup. It can be used to disable both sptd.sys and Comodo's inspect.sys on startup. Later it is also very convenient to include them back again.

After removing the conflicting drivers, SpeedDisk reported inconsistencies on the drive. To perform a system check (chkdsk) of a system drive under Vista, you have to reboot the system and press F8 during boot time to get the boot menu. There, you should select "Repair Your Computer", which is the first option.
Then, the system will boot in the Repair mode on a RAM disk. Meaning your system drive (usually C:) will not be used and will be available for a full system check. "Chkdsk c: /f" - a file system check without the search for bad sectors was enough to fix my issues.
After this, PerfectDisk was able to (finally) perform the offline defragmentation and sort out my system files. It was annoying watching them in JkDefrag split out all over the disk.

Update 2009-03-30:
Last night I upgraded Nod32 antivirus from version 3.0 to 4.0 and it seems to have solved all the problems with drive locking. Boot-time defragmentation now runs without having to disable either sptd.sys or Comodo!

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