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Unable to Defrag or start in Safe Mode

Discussion in 'Windows XP' started by NateDawgRN, May 4, 2011.

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  1. NateDawgRN

    NateDawgRN Thread Starter

    May 4, 2011
    I have a Dell XP400 Desktop PC that I bought probably 5 years ago. I was having problems with my windows freezing and searched and thought I'd better defrag my HD. Tried that, but got a message that said to either do a CHKDSK or SCANDSK. After doing the CHKDSK, it was a read only and so after more searching I discovered I needed to use the command CHKDSK/F instead. I did this and it still didn't help because of some message about the volume.
    Trying to start my XP Pro into Safe Mode by pressing F8 and even after continuing to press the button over and over, it didn't help and went to the Welcome screen. Then tried staring it again, but held the button in and it still went onto boot to the Welcome screen. I bought software yesterday called System Suite 11 since it had a defragger on it and it said to uninstall Spy Doctor. I don't have that and searched and still didn't find it. Any help would truly be appreciated.
  2. Saga Lout

    Saga Lout

    Sep 15, 2004
    One reason for a failure to defrag is shortage of hard disk space - how much do you have?

  3. zabusant


    Sep 6, 2007
    @NateDawgRN: but did you actually run checkdisk?

    Start>Run... cmd
    chkdsk /r
    type y when asked to shedule it and press enter.

    Restart and let it run (can take a very long time)
  4. Bill-R-TechSpec


    Mar 16, 2011

    There are several reasons why the built-in defragger may not work properly:

    0. There is malware on the system. Solution: Run an Anti-Virus check and also a Spyware check.

    1. The disk is too full (you need at least 15% free space, sometimes 20%). Solution: Delete unneeded files and programs till you have more than 20% free space.

    2. The disk is damaged and needs to be repaired. Solution:

    a. Open "My Computer" and right click on the drive you want to de-frag.

    b. Select "Properties" and click on the "Tools" tab.
    c. Select "Check now" to check the disk for errors.
    d. Select both options and click "start";

    (It may take a while and the PC may re-start so it can do the check at boot time. Be patient and let it complete).

    3. Disk Defragmenter may be corrupted, needing a System Restore to correct it. Solution:

    a. Start - All Programs - Accessories - System Tools - System Restore (click to open);

    b. Select a restore point well before you started having problems with Disk Defragmenter;
    c. Start the restore process and let it complete (Name the restore operation something descriptive like "Defrag Repair").

    4. There are other programs running that interrupt the built-in defragmenter. Solution:

    a. Close all running programs.
    b. If you suspect there may be some programs running in the background,
    c. Press Ctrl+Alt+Delete and
    d. Select "Start Task Manager"
    e. Under the "Applications" tab you will find a list of all running applications -- you can close these by selecting "End Task."

    5. If still no luck, try disabling the screen saver when running Disk Defrag (you should pretty much leave the system alone when running the built-in defrag utility).

    6. If still no go, try running the defragmenter in Safe Mode. If it runs, something is interfering with it and tracking the interference down may not be easy. Note: Some versions of Win 7 disable the ability to run the built in defragger in safe mode. If disabled, it will say so when trying to run it in safe mode.

    7. Disk Defragmenter may no longer be on the system or is so corrupted that it needs a re-install. Solution: Re-install the built-in.

    There are several methods to re-install the built-in defragger:


    a. Open the "Start" menu.
    b. Type "%Windir%\Inf" in the "Search" box and press "Enter".
    c. In the window that opens, find the file named "dfrg.inf".
    d. Right-click on "dfrg.inf" and "Install."


    a. Go to "Start > Run" on your computer.
    b. Type "rundll32.exe setupapi,InstallHinfSection DefaultInstall 132 %windir%\inf\dfrg.inf" and press "Enter"
    3. Click "OK" to make the program automatically reinstall itself.


    a. Go to Start >All Programs>Accessories>Right Click on Command Prompt> select "Run As Administrator"
    b. At command prompt, type "regsvr32 dfrgsnap.dll" and hit "Enter."
    c. Type "regsvr32 dfrgui.dll" and hit "Enter." This will reinstall any missing defragger files.

    8. Most problems will resolve by #6 above, but if not and if your windows install is otherwise running fine, you should consider downloading a free trial of a commercial defrag tool as opposed to doing drastic actions to restore the built-in's functionality. Third party programs are more robust and many work in the background so you can use your PC while defragging.

    Most third party programs offer a free, fully-functional trial (the better ones are for 30 days). Installing one of these will disable the built-in and if you decide to uninstall it, removal will replace the built-in, many times repairing it in the process -- it's worth a try. . ..

    Here is a recent Top 10 Reviews side-by-side comparison of the best defrag programs available:


    The Gold medal winner is the only
    defrag program that also prevents fragmentation (see the review).

    Why is it good to prevent fragmentation?

    Basically, it drastically increases your hard drive's life expectancy (especially since you don't have to leave the system on all night -- a much "greener" practice), not to mention it will also increase system performance.

    Check out what the review has to say on this.

    Good luck to you!

    Bill R TechSpec

    PS: If still no go, repair may involve registry editing or repairing the windows installation and possibly re-installing windows itself. These are not simple solutions. If needed, state so and they can be provided.
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