Tuesday, July 05, 2005

Do you know what Defragging is? (I should HOPE so!)

` Here's a cute little humorous question for people who own computers - especially ones with a Windows Operating System of some sort. I think it is immensely funny when they don't know the answer. You get 2 pieces of delicious candy for answering this correctly:

What is defragmenting, or, 'defragging?'

Bonus Question, (worth another delicious piece of candy):

Why is defragging important?


` When you put files into a hard drive, they are all inserted in a row, something like consecutive pages in a book. When a file that is between two others gets bigger, for instance, it will need to extend despite having no physical space at the end of it. So it puts a little 'go to' message at the end and skips ahead to a blank space to continue depositing the file. This is called 'fragmenting', for obvious reasons.
` Similar complications happen when you delete things and create blank spaces, which may be in the middle of a dense block of data, providing more space for files to get fragmented to. After a while, in order to read any fragmented files, the hard drive then has to skip backwards and forwards from piece to piece as it goes along, a lot like a super-fast version of a 'Choose Your Own Adventure Book'.

` Needless to say, your hard drive head really gets a workout from all this collecting pieces of files, and that slows down your computer like mad!
` Logically, what defragmenting does is takes all your smashed and broken pieces of memory and puts them back together, so your hard drive is not in constant pursuit of them.
` Windows is especially bad with this in that it doesn't attempt to avoid these problems by doing things like fragmenting files in as closely-spaced areas as it can.

` Bonus Answer:

` It is important to defragment because your hard drive will become less and less coherant until it simply grinds to a screeching halt! It also makes your computer more likely to cause an error, which could cause your hard drive to crash! I remembered the hard drive in my first computer crashed - everything I'd created was lost! It was as if I'd formatted the hard drive!

` Of course, long ago I didn't know what 'defragging' was, because when I was trying to learn about our first computer, my dad kept touching me and distracting me, which eventually drove me out of the room. As I was the only one to really use the computer, I doubt he defragged it at all! This may have something to do with it - also, Dave, the computer guy, apparently enjoyed it when our computer crashed! He might have set it up to crash! Not sure...

` Oh no, here it comes!

` And now for a bit of DadRanting, as he was detrimental to my computer knowledge: That computer had the then-brand-new Windows 95 on it, but Dad didn't let me use it much until we took both DOS and Windows 3.1 classes. Which we did.
` So, we sat in a classroom for hours, which was stiflingly boring. I learned everything I already had figured out and little else. (But not defragging!) My dad evidently didn't learn much (not even how to operate my laptop after he stole it), and my mom is still computer-illiterate!
` On the same vein, we weren't allowed to get the internet until we took internet classes (what brainfart can't use the internet when they can use Windows? Someone without abstract thought, evidently...), but his manic phase, in which he paid for the computer classes, was over, and (as usual) he didn't take any more interest in it. So he never did allow me to get the internet.
` Whenever I went over to other people's houses, I was like; "Ooh! Can I get on the internet?" The first time I used the internet myself, I picked up the basic things you need pretty fast: The URL (address) bar, the back and forward buttons. EASY! I COULD USE IT! I'm pretty sure chimps could if you gave them a chimp-oriented web site!
` After Dad moved out (stealing everything he could while we were out of the house), we got ourselves a new, 80 gig computer (which I learned to defrag!), with high-speed internet, and I quickly learned 'Reload' and 'Stop', and 'Favorites' ('Bookmarks'). Learning 'Find' was next; I figured it out because I've been using the same feature since 1997 when I had Corel Wordperfect! (Just didn't notice it at first.)

` Enough DadRanting! Seriously, though, if you own a computer and are capable of using the Internet and reading this (not requiring any braindead classes), 'Defrag' should be something you already know to do.
` If this is so, here are three pieces of delicious candy!

` If not, how to get to it is easy: For Windows users, anyway, go to your Program Files, where all your programs are generally installed, then your Accessories folder. It's in the folder marked System Tools. You just tell it to defragment any of your drives and it does it. Mine even gives me a preview of what it looks like - it shows how all the data is distributed via variously-spaced chunks and bars; most of it's blue, but the red bars are where it's really mixed up! The bar in the middle is green, because you can't defragment what is needed to run the computer! Then, it gives me a preview of what it predicts it will look like afterwards, but it's not very accurate until the process is almost finished.
` If your computer only defrags so much at a time and then stops, you may need to do it several times in a row. Sometimes my computer says: 'This volume does not need to be defragmented' - even when it does! So I continue until it defragments all 80 gigs before I can count to ten!
` And you call yourself a technoholic... well, you'd be surprised how many people don't know this! They're all like: 'My computer used to run so fast... what? What's defragging? Never heard of it."

` Anyhow, if you don't defrag, your hard drive is in trouble!

` ...And since I can't make little shooting-stars, I'll just write:
` This has been a Public Service Announcement from SQN!

` For me though, I'm finally getting around to making my own HTML files... it's so fricking easy to grasp! A chimp could... well, maybe not HTML because chimps don't always have the best spelling skills, but I'm sure a chimp-oriented programming system using single-lexicon commands can be invented! The successfulness of such an endeavor would show how organized and abstract a chimp's mind really is! Or isn't...

` Even more off the subject is my
Personal Note: Just earlier, Phil, EdgeWalker and I saw about twenty fireworks displays from the terrace! Everett's show was late and evidently most of the people had left - we saw droves of cars driving away!
` Instead of the barge shooting off the fireworks near shore, they apparently began to get the attention of whoever was left by beginning the show while the barge was still way, way, off in the distance. By the time it got to the dock, where a few people were probably still waiting, the show was over!

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