Diskeeper professional combines quality defragging, a well-rounded feature set, and enterprise management. The downside? Prepare for a serious case of sticker shock.
Note: This review was performed with a free 30 day trial edition of Diskeeper.
- Cost: $59.95
- Hardware Requirements: 38MB disk space
- Supported Operating Systems: XP (32-bit only), Vista (32-bit and 64-bit), 7 (32-bit and 64-bit)
- Additional Information: Product Web site
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Who's it for?
In general, disk defragmentation tools appeal to both enterprise IT departments and enthusiasts, power users, etc. Diskeeper, however, is very focused on the enterprise market, and the features that it has above and beyond its defragging capabilities will most likely not be interesting to non-professional users.
What problems does it solve?
The defrag tools on the market range from "mediocre" to "excellent" when it comes to their ability to actually defragment a disk. Diskeeper builds on top of the defragment process itself to provide a product that has the kinds of features that IT departments like. For example, it integrates with Microsoft Operations Manager (MOM)/System Center Operations Manager (SCOM) and works with Microsoft Visual SourceSafe (VSS) (typical consumer applications do not need this functionality to be backed up properly).
- Enterprise features: Diskeeper works with Group Policy and MOM/SCOM, and has a central administration system; these are the kinds of features that IT departments value in an application.
- Feature set: All of the best features that we have seen in other defrag tools (including continuous defrag) are here, as well as some new ones.
- Cost: One has to wonder if the management features are worth $59.95 (a full $40 more than Auslogics Disk Defrag). In addition, you need a maintenance contract for upgrades.
- Complexity: Diskeeper adds some bells and whistles that would feel perfectly at home in a lot of other applications, but not in a defrag tool, and these features add overhead to the UI that other tools do not have.
- Windows built-in Defrag
- Auslogics Disk Defrag
- Norton SpeedDisk (part of Norton Utilities)
- Smart Defrag
Bottom line for business
Diskeeper Professional really stands out in the world of defrag tools. It has some pretty intense enterprise-class features as far as workstation utilities go. But one has to wonder, "why?" and "is it really worth $59.95?"
The MOM/SCOM integration is a good example. I really do not know of any system administrators who have been clamoring to receive alerts of when a user's drive is too heavily fragmented. Likewise, the various graphs and charts, while interesting (and perhaps providing proof of the application's usefulness), are a lot of clutter on the screen. When people use defrag, they do not want a complex application, they want "set it and forget it" ease of use.
Unfortunately, these enterprise class features also come at the enterprise class price of $59.95. On top of that are the maintenance costs, which are very rare in this particular market. That is an awful lot of money to be spending on defrag, especially given the range of prices in the defrag market - from free to $19.95 for the excellent Auslogics Disk Defrag (which is also free for home use).
That being said, Diskeeper Professional is an excellent advertisement for their server products. While Diskeeper Professional feels like total overkill for most business usage laptops and desktops, the feature set and range of options are dead on perfect for a server.
If you absolutely require central management of your systems and don't mind spending the money, you should look at Diskeeper. If you are a home user, or do not need insight into the defragging on your deployed systems, you are better off with a less expensive or free system.
Have you encountered or used Diskeeper? If so, what do you think? Rate your experience and compare the results to what other TechRepublic members think. Give your own personal review in the TechRepublic Community Forums or let us know if you think we left anything out in our review.
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Justin James is the Lead Architect for Conigent.