SOURCE: Diskeeper Corporation

March 26, 2008 11:30 ET

The Importance of Defragmentation to Virtualization and Green Computing

BURBANK, CA--(Marketwire - March 26, 2008) - For many years, the mantra of the computer industry -- and computer users -- was "more power!" Faster chips, faster hard drives, and as much memory as could possibly fit were the priorities. Only secondary attention -- if that -- was paid to the amount of energy consumed or a company's carbon footprint. Now with global climate change making itself very firmly felt, energy conservation has now become vital, and key technologies such as virtualization have come to the fore. And although you may not realize it, defragmentation can make a significant difference in the effectiveness of virtualization and the amount of energy consumed.

Virtualization dovetails right into green computing due to the fact that it eliminates the use of additional hardware and conserves power use as well. It allows better use of system resources by allowing multiple operating environments on a single physical hardware platform. Numerous virtual machines can operate and appear as independent machines. And file fragmentation -- already a performance challenge in non-virtual environments -- is even more of a problem in virtualization.

Virtual machines make use of hard drive partitions which appear as drives dedicated to the virtual machines. But underneath the "virtual" software layer, the hardware is storing files the way it always has, utilizing an entire disk and fragmenting files from all partitions across the entire disk. Because virtual machines have their own I/O requests that are passed along to the host system, multiple I/O requests are occurring for each file request. When fragmentation enters the picture, multiple I/O requests are occurring for each fragment of each file. For a file fragmented into tens, hundreds or thousands of pieces, the impact on performance is horrendous.

Because virtualization has its own incredible rate of fragmentation, virtualization performance is best maximized by a fully automatic defrag solution such as that offered by Diskeeper®. Diskeeper's proprietary InvisiTasking™ technology allows defragmentation to occur whenever idle resources are available -- never negatively impacting performance due to defragmentation -- which keeps virtualization performance consistently optimized. No scheduling is ever required.

Automatic defrag also means that overall computer performance is always faster and more efficient; therefore less power and less resources are used. Multiplying the effect all across a company and that company's carbon footprint is substantially reduced.

Another benefit to fully automatic defrag is that computers need not be left on at night so that scheduled defragmentation can run. Not long ago, a study found that computers running at night were costing an estimated 1.72 billion to U.S. businesses. Fully automatic defragmentation means computers can be shut off at night, unless needed for other reasons.

For the realization of virtualization and green computing benefits, automatic defragmentation such as that offered by Diskeeper is a must.

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