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Newskeeper Vo lu m e 4

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a diskeeper corporation publication

Issue 18

fragmentation prevention and the role of

free space Improving server response time at a global corporation

5 myths of fragmentation that waste your time and money

page 06

page 08

An Interview with

Diskeeper CTO Gary Quan page 07


in this issue Editorial

03

Testimonials

03 An ounce of prevention…

Feature article

04 Active fragmentation and the role of free space

Case study

06 Improving server response time at a global corporation

interview

07 A chat with Diskeeper corporation Chief Technology Officer Gary Quan

article

08

Welcome to the other side

5 myths of fragmentation that waste time and money

10 Southwestern Energy testimonial 11 Diskeeper corporation World News

The Diskeeper Corporation has knowledgeable customer relations representatives available to answer your questions, give a custom ROI analysis of your system needs or provide quick, no-obligation quotes. Call direct: 800-829-6468 or send an email to sales@diskeeper.com. Tech Support technicalsupport@diskeeper.com General information info@diskeeper.com

Diskeeper Corporation, Innovators in Performance and Reliability Technologies® founded in 1981, is a multinational corporation with headquarters in Burbank, California, and offices in Europe and China. The Diskeeper product line is distributed widely across the globe. Launched to an overwhelming success, Diskeeper Corporation

Diskeeper Corporation 7590 N. Glenoaks Blvd. Burbank, CA 91504 USA TEL 800.829.6468 FAX 818.252.5514 www.diskeeper.com

has sold over 38,000,000 licenses of its flagship product —

Diskeeper Corporation Europe Shaw House Pegler Way, Suite 226 Crawley, West Sussex UK RH11 7AF TEL 011 44 (0) 1293 763 060 FAX 011 44 (0) 1293 763 210 info@diskeeper.co.uk

to their Windows-based laptops, desktops and servers.

Diskeeper Corporation China Limited 21/F, ICBC Tower Citibank Plaza No.3 Garden Road, Central Hong Kong TEL 011 852 2273 5146 FAX 011 852 2273 5999 info@diskeeper.hk

making it the most widely used automatic defragmenter on Earth. In the United States alone, over 90% of the Fortune 500 and thousands of enterprises and government agencies rely on Diskeeper® software to provide constant speed and reliability

The only way to prevent fragmentation before it occurs.™

Virtual Platform Disk Optimizer for Hyper-V.™

Solid State Drive Optimizer for PCs.

®

Fragmentation Prevention Technology.

Real-Time Protection. Real-Time Recovery.™

Zero System Overhead Application Technology.


EDITORIAL

testimonials

More than a defragmenter

An ounce of prevention…

Why there are no Diskeeper ads at half-time In an era crowded with whistles and bells and the kind of embellished niceties you’re supposed to be lost without, it’s good to remember one thing: all enduring technology is based on hard need. We invented automatic defragmentation nearly 25 years ago as a response to the overwhelming need for an online defragmenter that eliminated having to take an Open VMS server offline to defragment the disk. With the advent of the NTFS file system, we met the need for faster systems requiring less IT management with a completely set-it-andforget-it automatic defragmenter for Windows®. Over the years we’ve been the leading pioneers in the field, taking fragmentation maintenance to its highest levels with fast, reliable defragmentation that worked on even huge mission-critical servers. To this day, no other solution comes close. However, our purpose is not “to defragment” but rather to fulfill the IT manager’s need for increased speed and efficiency across an entire system (and by extension, network). And so we looked deeply into the many simultaneous interactions that occur at the system core. As a result, for years now we’ve been delivering key innovations that go well beyond defragmentation, providing performance benefits otherwise unavailable – even some previously considered “impossible.” We developed a new background processing technology that operates with zero active resource conflicts. We have a half dozen more innovations all under the Diskeeper hood and another half dozen currently in development. Our latest breakthrough, IntelliWrite, is a good example of our core level approach. With one stroke it takes the subject of fragmentation from a maintenance issue to a cure. (See our feature article for details). Today’s technology demands relevance, solves real needs, saves money and improves working conditions. That’s why there are no Diskeeper Corporation ads at the “Big Game” half-time. We spend our money on R & D, creating products that make a difference. Peter Mead, Editor editor@diskeeper.com

BETA TESTING

We run Diskeeper on our two production web servers and the development server that we are using to host a web-based warfare systems interface management tool. Our office systems are a part of the Navy/Marine Corps Intranet and all of these systems have Diskeeper running on them as well. I am a big fan of Diskeeper because I am all too aware of the problems that fragmentation can cause on a system. — Mike Mountain, U.S. Navy

Diskeeper makes a huge difference in our system reliability. On average, we would see about 70% fragmentation. I tried other tools but they locked up our database engine, resulting in some unhappy customers. Manual defrag would take hours, and if I was lucky I could get the fragmentation down to maybe mid-20%. Then the following day, after about four hours of system use, the fragmentation would be up to 40% again. With Diskeeper, we are able to take a hands-off approach to defrag and, without taking any of my time, it keeps us in single-digit numbers. — Louis Perez, system administrator, F.W. Davison & Company

From my personal experience, I don’t ever realize Diskeeper is running and our PCs stay defragmented. We never have disk performance issues here — and that’s the point. If Diskeeper is doing its job, nobody should even know it’s running; disk performance should not be an issue, and both of these are true. Now, if somebody could make our anti-virus software more invisible….” — Kerry Farney, ArcelorMittal   #28 on Global Fortune 500 list

Put Yourself on the Cutting Edge of Technology

Be among the first to see the exciting new features and functionality of products before they are released to the public! Sign up to be a field test site by sending an email request to FieldTest@diskeeper.com.

Paperless Newskeeper Prefer to receive Newskeeper by e-mail? Send me an e-mail at editor@diskeeper.com to make the switch. Vo lu m e 4

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Issue 18

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f e at u r e a r t i c l e

active fragmentation prevention and the role of

free space

“Things are working very well — as I’ve come to expect from Diskeeper. “So far the IntelliWrite technology has prevented over 70% of fragments on my system. Automatic Defragmentation handled the rest. “Right now I’m using Diskeeper on all of the PCs that I support.  Currently, Diskeeper is handling on average about 11,000 fragments daily (74% are handled by IntelliWrite, 26% by the automatic defrag).  And the technology is working fine as far as it only uses idle CPU time; I never notice any issues with it running in the background.” 

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— J ames Ingram, Wellpoint Health Networks, Inc., #32 Fortune 500 list

NE W SKEEPER • A DISKEEPER C o r p o r at i o n PUBLICATION


A

lthough Diskeeper 2010 with IntelliWrite™ technology has revolutionized system performance with the first-ever active fragmentation prevention, its true power comes from a major shift in how system performance operations should be viewed. Preventing fragmentation is one corner of a powerful triangle that includes file defragmentation and free space consolidation. This triangle not only ensures maximum speed and efficiency, it also has a positive impact on all system throughput. But to harness this power, precise and instantaneous estimations of what the computer is doing with free space must be achieved.

manages free space consolidation, IntelliWrite prevents fragmentation by ensuring subsequent writes remain contiguous. IntelliWrite significantly improves upon what the O/S does in this regard. It takes into consideration the O/S type, the application, file type and history, how many apps are running, how busy the CPU is and many more factors. As a result, disk free space is more efficiently allocated to individual files in a manner that prevents a majority of fragmentation. Because the file system stays close to a state of zero fragmentation, reads/writes are faster, require less energy and increase the lifetime of the hard drive.

IN

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EN

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The Diskeeper 2010 active prevention design works The life of a computer system, particularly well because it is one corner of a performance a server, is a dizzying matrix filled with IntelliWrite triangle, the other two being file defragmentation many processes writing furiously to InvisiTasking and free space consolidation. many files from many programs nearly I-FAAST Advanced simultaneously over and over again. It’s Defrag Engines The triangle that represents prevention, busier than the surface of an ocean CONSOLIDATE defragmentation and free space during a gale. No two writes, even to consolidation includes additional the same file, are ever written under innovations such as InvisiTasking® zero system the same exact conditions. The state of the disk and the operating system is constantly fluctuating. overhead technology and I-FAAST® intelligent file access acceleration technology. With each point of this triangle Although free space defragmentation can somewhat in play, the operating system can exercise the best reduce the likelihood of fragmentation under ideal choices as to file placement on the disk. As a result, circumstances, it is impossible to predict future space the system runs consistently at the peak performance needs using this method alone. And circumstances are potentials it was designed to achieve. never ideal. Applications don’t write data to files in one big block, they usually write in small pieces and save expansion space. The onslaught of writes from many sources creates file fragmentation and quickly chews up blocks of free space.

TELL US!

Active fragmentation prevention must take into consideration numerous factors present at the time data is being written, while also ensuring that free space is efficiently consolidated. IntelliWrite uses an adaptive, proprietary algorithm that monitors applications’ behavior relative to their data files. While Diskeeper 2010 invisibly

arter century For nearly a qu has poration R & D Diskeeper Cor e os keeping cl been based on s. stomers’ need ties with our cu ther a quick We’ve put toge better we will use to questionnaire k lin is ase visit th serve you. Ple t you need. and tell us wha ey per.com/surv www.diskee

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CASE STUDY

Improving server response time at a global corporation The company: AO Smith Electrical Products Company, #817 on the Fortune 1,000, has over 3,000 employees and a globally distributed computer environment including over 120 servers across the United States, Europe, Mexico and China. AO Smith is a Microsoft shop with some Linux and Oracle, and primarily uses Dell PowerPath, EMC SAN, Clariion and Equalogic iSCSI. They have thousands of Dells in their desktop/laptop environment. The challenge:

The solution:

The administrative demands of a global network ruled out the builtin defragmenter. It just wasn’t an effective solution for application, database or file server defragmentation. It required scheduling in large windows, off high production times. AO Smith is a threeshift company with heavy traffic running 24/7. They’d been getting poor file server response time and file corruption. Backups were slow and caused undue downtime to complete. Help Desk was receiving several hundred calls from users about poor file server and application server performance.

David Henry, Systems Administrator for AO Smith, said, “I first became interested in Diskeeper when I discovered many forums, conferences and colleagues strongly recommending Diskeeper. Initially, we purchased five licenses to pilot. Diskeeper Administrator was able to give us a concise report on performance increases and showed us that rolling out Diskeeper on our network would be cost effective and the right thing to do. We use Diskeeper EnterpriseServer on our SQL platform and it is excellent. Remember that our servers interact with hundreds of very high-end testing and research machines and fast response is vital. System response is a key contributor to why we succeed so well as a company. “Diskeeper Administrator allows me to manage performance across my network. I can run reports and

pull disk metrics — even on machines that don’t have Diskeeper installed — so I know exactly where to deploy Diskeeper. When considering the true time, money and effort involved in network management, I can say that Diskeeper pulls its weight.” The results: “Our backup times have been cut by about 75%,” said David. “The best feature is that Diskeeper removes my worry about whether the disk is being maintained at the highest possible level of performance. We noticed the best increase of performance on our file servers. The EMC SAN is for database servers, VMware and file servers. Diskeeper works smoothly and all servers are now reporting quicker boot times and better response times. Everyone in the company has benefited from the Diskeeper deployment!”

“Diskeeper Administrator allows me to manage performance across my network. I can run reports and pull disk metrics — even on machines that don’t have Diskeeper installed — so I know exactly where to deploy Diskeeper. When considering the true time, money and effort involved in network management, I can say that Diskeeper pulls its weight.” 6

NE W SKEEPER • A DISKEEPER C o r p o r at i o n PUBLICATION


interVieW

A chat with

gary Quan

diskeeper chief technology officer A 29-year technologist and industry expert on disk defragmentation, Mr. Quan has overseen all Diskeeper Corporation product development for Windows since NT v3.5. He recently took a break from a busy schedule to answer four questions I put to him.

from a technology perspective, what role does Diskeeper Corporation play in the corporate world? Our objective is simply to improve the performance, reliability, longevity and energy efficiency of computer systems. I say “simply” but there is actually quite a bit of advanced technology we’ve developed under the hood to pull this off. Although improvement is immediately noticeable on every system, it is the aggregate gain throughout an enterprise network that is really striking. We have over 38 million licenses sold, so I know we’ve made an impact. how does “fragmentation prevention” fit into this? We know that preventing fragmentation on the hard disk drive will improve each of our four target objective. Instead of allowing a system to waste resources writing fragments to disk, we take an active approach and cause files to be written contiguously in the first place. There is a quote from Peter Drucker that sums it up nicely. “In cost control an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” It’s true. Preventing fragmentation creates significant cost reductions from diverse areas. now that Diskeeper 2010 contains IntelliWrite fragmentation prevention technology, is defragmentation obsolete? No. IntelliWrite prevents a majority of fragmentation from occurring, but it does not completely eliminate it — yet.

The reasons it is so effective — preventing up to 85% of all fragmentation — is because Diskeeper 2010 takes a whole system view, ensuring that sufficient free space is contiguous and intelligently used, much of the fragmentation is eliminated and files are written contiguously. And, of course, there are other optimization features in Diskeeper that help ensure the users are getting the utmost performance from their systems.

What’s next? What I can tell you is that, unlike most software companies, we spend the bulk of our resources on research and development. As a result, we’ve elevated our understanding of system performance to a level that breaks with the customary model of incremental improvements. Diskeeper 2010 represents a theory shift and we will continue to make improvements for the corporate IT site beyond normal expectations. To quote Peter Drucker once more: “The best way to predict the future is to create it.”

Breakthrough technology. Breakthrough pricing.

VIRTUAL PLATFORM DISK OPTIMIZER FOR HYPER-V™ Virtual machines are the future and loaded with potential benefits. However, unknown until now, virtualization can become a costly experiment in bottlenecked performance and wasted disk space. We have a solution. V-locity is the only solution for full virtual disk optimization: Completely eliminates the “fragmentation on top of fragmentation” accumulation that plagues all virtual platforms. Optimizes virtual platform performance without impacting active resources on the host or guest systems. Analyzes waste in a virtual disk space and allows one-click VHD compaction.

Call 800-829-6468 or try V-locity free for 30-days at: www.diskeeper.com/nk418


article

MYTH #1: The built-in defragmenter

Myth #2: Fragmentation is not

is good enough.

an issue with SAN/RAID/SSD and virtual platform technology.

The truth: The built-in defragmenter has basic limitations that add to operational expenses. The rate of fragmentation increases as normal business throughput increases. As the built-in defragmenter lacks operational transparency, it can’t keep up with daily fragmentation and must be scheduled off production times. Because fragmentation has built up during work hours, scheduled defrag times are often too short to get the job done. Using the built-in requires administrator time for planning. When many systems are involved, this is a significant man-hour drain. Diskeeper 2010 performance technology goes much further. It prevents up to 85% of all fragmentation before it can happen. Any remaining fragmentation is handled in real time, automatically, with zero system resource conflicts. Computers run at close to zero fragmentation without the need for administrative time.

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The truth: No matter how you store data, all file systems fragment and eventually bottleneck I/O throughput and increase the time and energy required to do the same amount of work. New storage technologies abstract disk file systems from the actual underlying hardware and software that make up the storage subsystem. Those same underlying disk systems (software and hardware) have no knowledge of what the file system is doing. No matter how or where you store your data, solving file fragmentation has never been more vital for peak system performance and reliability. A comprehensive technical report on the subject is available at: http://downloads.diskeeper.com/pdf/Best_ Practices_Eliminating_Fragmentation.pdf

NE W SKEEPER • A DISKEEPER C o r p o r at i o n PUBLICATION


Myth #3: Active defragmentation

Myth #5: New computers operate at the

is a resource hog and must be scheduled off production times.

peak of their ability.

The truth: This was certainly true with manual defragmenters. They had to run at high priority or risk getting continually bumped. When the built-in defragmenter became schedulable, not much changed. The defrag algorithm was slow and resource-heavy, suitable maybe for an emergency but certainly not for standard system performance maintenance.

The truth: Even on a large-capacity hard drive, just installing an operating system fragments files considerably. Every additional application or utility installed increases the level of fragmentation. Here is a screen of a disk fragmentation analysis on a new hard drive:

Diskeeper 2010 includes InvisiTasking ÂŽ background processing technology that allows defrag operations to run in real time with zero resource conflicts, no matter how heavy the I/O throughput traffic is. Add to this the fact that Diskeeper 2010 also prevents up to 85% of all fragmentation from happening in the first place and you have a machine with far more available system resources than it would have had otherwise.

Myth #4: You can wear out your hard drive if you defragment too often.

The truth:

Exactly the opposite is true. When you eliminate fragmentation you greatly reduce the number of disk accesses needed to bring up a file or write to it. Even with the I/O required to defragment a file, the total I/O is much less than working with a fragmented file. For example, if you have a file that is fragmented into 50 pieces and you access it twice a day for a week, that’s a total of 700 disk accesses (50 X 2 X 7). Defragmenting the file may cost 100 disk accesses (50 reads + 50 writes), but thereafter only one disk access will be required to use the file. That’s 14 disk accesses over the course of a week (2 X 7), plus 100 for the defrag process = 114 total. 700 accesses for the fragmented file versus 114 for the defragged file is quite a difference. But in a real-world scenario, this difference would be multiplied hundreds of times for a true picture of performance gain. The ability of Diskeeper 2010 to prevent fragmentation in the first place reduces hard drive activity far more than even defragmentation can.

Figure 1 Color legend

Blue = defragmented files Red = fragmented files Yellow = paging files Solid Green = system files

White = unused space White with Green Lines = reserved system space Light Blue = folders

Diskeeper 2010 needs to be part of the base image that gets pushed out to all new servers and workstations so they can reach maximum performance quickly.

Find out how affordable it is to roll out Diskeeper 2010 across your entire network. Get a volume license quote now at: www.diskeeper.com/nk18b

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IntelliWrite delivers real-world performance gains! Customer e-mails are pouring in, telling us what a difference prevention makes as a solution to fragmentation. Chad Fisette, MCSE, System Administrator for Southwestern Energy, showed us his numbers (right).

Got a Diskeeper success story of your own? Send it to editor@diskeeper.com

Save time and money with the “faster than going to backup” solution! Accidents can happen every day—with backups done daily at best, and snapshots only occurring occasionally throughout the day, there is a critical gap in your data protection strategy. Those accidents can cost you serious time and money. You need a solution that fills the gap, ensuring that no data is lost—ever! Just one instance using Undelete® real-time data protection saves you more than the cost of the purchase—and your valuable data! Site-wide pricing incentives are available.

Contact your Diskeeper Corporation Sales Representative now for a discounted volume license quote. Call 1-800-829-6468 now! 10

Try it FREE for 30 days. Visit www.diskeeper.com/nk418

n e W s k e e p e r • a d i s k e e p e r c o r p o r at i o n p u b l i c at i o n


DISKEEPER

WORLD NEWS

WHAT INDUSTRY OPINION LEADERS HAVE TO SAY ABOUT DISKEEPER DISK PERFORMANCE SOFTWARE

Channel InSIDeR: neW DISkeepeR TOOl SaVeS TIme, mOneY fOR VaRs For managed services providers handling PC maintenance, upgrades and patching remotely for their customers, this tool is incredibly useful. http://www.channelinsider.com/c/a/News/New-DiskeeperTool-Saves-Time-Money-for-VARs-701465/

DISkeepeR 2010 keepS DISk DefRaGS TO a mInImum In the life of a Windows machine, nothing is certain but malware sweeps and disk defragmentation. Not only does Diskeeper’s software attempt to prevent fragmentation from ever occurring, but it cuts power consumption and unnecessary I/O operations. — Jason Brooks, Technical Editor, eWeek http://www.eweek.com/c/a/Data-Storage/Diskeeper-2010Keeps-Disk-Defrags-to-a-Minimum-356694/

mY faVORITe SOfTWaRe JuST keepS GeTTInG BeTTeR all The TIme! The End of Fragmentation: New Diskeeper 2010 is the only product available today that actually prevents fragmentation before it happens. Utilizing a new revolutionary technology called IntelliWrite. http://www.aroundhawaii.com/lifestyle/computers/ 2010-02-from-rubber-boots-to-38-of-the-worldwidecellphone-market.html

DISkeepeR 2010 WaS aWaRDeD The GRanD pRIX BY VeCTOR In Japan “Vector’s Grand Prix winner is very popular defragmentation software, Diskeeper 2010. The previous version added the SSD optimizer, ‘HyperFast’ and people said it was impossible to improve the software more — but the new feature, IntelliWrite, can prevent fragmentation!”

DISkeepeR & COmpTIa eDuCaTIOnal fOunDaTIOn keep mIlITaRY VeTeRanS’ COmpuTeRS WORkInG aT TOp SpeeD Diskeeper Corporation doubled its annual donation to the CompTIA Educational Foundation, providing over 1,000 copies of its defragmentation software to keep the computers of our military veterans running at top speed while they train for new tech careers. “In 2009, we provided IT training to 574 military veterans, including 244 disabled veterans — nearly a five-fold annual increase — smoothing the way for them to transition from military duty to the private sector. Partnerships with industry leaders such as Diskeeper Corporation allow us to help even more military veterans launch new careers,” commented John Venator, president and CEO, CompTIA Education Foundation.

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Innovators in Performance and Reliability Technologies

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©2010 Diskeeper Corporation. All Rights Reserved. The Diskeeper Corporation logo; Innovators in Performance and Reliability Technologies; Diskeeper; The only way to prevent fragmentation before it occurs; Undelete; Real-Time Protection; Real-Time Recovery; Invisitasking; IntelliWrite; Hyperfast; V-locity; I-FAAST and Virtual Platform Disk Optimizer are trademarks and /or registered trademarks owned by Diskeeper Corporation in the United States and/or other countries. All other trademarks and brand names are the property of their respective owners.

Keep your systems up and running:

Continue getting cost-effective Diskeeper upgrades automatically! A Diskeeper maintenance agreement on your volume license contract protects your investment and keeps your network up to date with the latest performance technology. •  Save up to 50% on the cost of a full software upgrade. •  Get immediate website downloads of new Diskeeper builds as they’re released. •  100% transferrable should you upgrade your machines or operating systems.

Contact us now for a special maintenance agreement discount at www.diskeeper.com/nk418b

Newskeeper Vol 4, Issue 18  

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