Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

I am running Windows Vista where the entire system drive has been encrypted using Truecrypt 6.2 Whole Drive Encryption (WDE). I was wondering whether defragging a drive which is encrypted with WDE would yield the same results as a non-encrypted drive.

I understand speed of defrag might take a hit due to the added requirement of having to read-decrypt-defrag, but would the quality of defrag be affected?

share|improve this question
up vote 6 down vote accepted

I think you would be far, far better off to just copy stuff to another drive, wipe it, and copy it back. That way it's guaranteed to be linear.

One of two things would happen with defragging. Either it would not defragment at all due to the random nature that TrueCrypt uses to disguise encrypted volumes, or it would defrag and take god-knows-how-long because of the processor usage of decrypting tens of thousands of blocks (or more) of encrypted data.

As I said, recreate the drive if defragmentation is an issue.

share|improve this answer
+1 I agree completely. – KPWINC Jun 6 '09 at 16:46
+1, With a paranoid security reference: – nik Aug 8 '09 at 7:40

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.