To Index or Not To Index?: That is the Question

Discussion in 'Windows & Other OS Discussion & Support' started by Dyre Straits, Dec 19, 2013.

  1. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -1 Great-grandson-and one in the oven

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    What particular advantage/disadvantage is there to doing one or the other?
     
  2. IvanV

    IvanV HH Assassin Guild Member

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    Indexing speeds up searching, not indexing relieves the system of having to build and maintain the index. I'd say that that's about it?

    When vast amounts of new files are created, Windows can get seriously bogged down, so in those cases one should turn off any indexing that can be disabled. On the other hand, I'd say that Windows 8(.1) has a search-centric interface, so indexing should be enabled at least for some locations.
     
  3. Trusteft

    Trusteft HH's Asteroids' Dominator

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    I have found search in Windows after XP to SUCK BALLS.
    Slow or fast, search results almost always don't have what I am looking for even when I find the file manually. I have stopped using windows search and instead categorize my files well enough now days.
     
  4. mkk

    mkk Well-Known Member

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    I haven't tested much with Windows 8, but for the most part with Windows 7 I turn it off. The deciding factors can be whether the system has an SSD(might as well turn it off) and whether you use the search function to mostly find stuff under the start menu(in which case there's not much to index anyway), or if you often use it to find files you are not completely sure where they are. Really only in the last case would I try leaving it on, and see if it makes much of a difference.

    I've seen several instances in the past where the index has fouled up and made search results not showing files that are there, that would later show up with the indexing turned off.

    The most efficient and quickest way to turn off indexing is to disable the service itself(Windows Search (WSearch)). If you simply remove all areas from within the indexing options, the service will still run and take up some RAM, and other software can add areas that will be indexed without asking so that it can start doing work again behind your back. Explorer will however bug you about indexing having been turned off, but that's something you'll just have to ignore.
     
  5. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -1 Great-grandson-and one in the oven

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    Like Trusteft indicates, I've found Windows to be horribly slow for quite a while now. I'm still on Windows 7 Pro x64.

    I have my Downloads on a separate HDD and, even with Indexing ON, whenever I open the directory to the downloads, it can take 2-3 MINUTES to actually yield the results to me. I could go make a sandwich while that progress line fills up across the top of the frame.

    Totally frustrating on what should be a very spiffy system. It seems like it's having to read the entire drive just to be able to yield the results of what is in the Download directory.

    [And, yes, it's a SATA drive and a nice size one, too. ;) ]
     
  6. IvanV

    IvanV HH Assassin Guild Member

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    That sometimes happens when you download the whole Internet. :p But it shouldn't unless you have hundreds of thousands of entries directly in that directory.
     
  7. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -1 Great-grandson-and one in the oven

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    I will concede that I likely need to weed out some of the files. ;)

    It just seems to me that it shouldn't be taking quite a long as it is, though.
     
  8. IvanV

    IvanV HH Assassin Guild Member

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    It probably shouldn't. :) Can we exclude antivirus as the cause of the delay?
     
  9. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

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    I don't think I've ever actively used search..... for anything.... ever.....
     
  10. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -1 Great-grandson-and one in the oven

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    Guys, guys....

    I'm not even using Search at all. All I'm doing is OPENING the directory to the Downloads. It's taking ages to finish reading what's in that directory.

    I never mentioned doing a search.
     
  11. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

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    disk indexing is specifically for fast file searching and advanced file indexing is for greater level of detailed searching.




    So your question was specifically related to that.


    What you want to obtain for speed however won't help you with indexing... actually it doesn't really effect your situation at all.
     
  12. mkk

    mkk Well-Known Member

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    I would check the drive for faults just to be sure.

    In case the folder is set to display icons or thumbnails, try switching over to List view and see if that makes a difference. If that helps and the drive itself is ok, then it could be some media codec or explorer plugin making opening a folder with a lot of media files in slow. It's not likely to be Windows itself slowing folder viewing down that much.
     
  13. The_Neon_Cowboy

    The_Neon_Cowboy Well-Known Member

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    I have to many files not too :D about 8k files on my external stuff
    I've saved over lifetime a lot of junk, funny pictures, etc...

    right click empty space in folder change "view" option to like "details" default options
    thumbnails/tiles etc. takes a lot longer if there are many
    files as it loads a thumbnail for each file...
     
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  14. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -1 Great-grandson-and one in the oven

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    What I did have it set to was "Details"...mainly to see the dates of the downloads and, for a few reasons, the file sizes, too.

    Changing to List does speed up the opening of the directory a lot. But, that negates seeing the dates and file sizes.

    But. the List view may be enough to allow me to remove some of the files that really aren't needed any longer, OR, should I want archive any, I could move them to optical storage.
     
  15. mkk

    mkk Well-Known Member

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    In the Details view one can also change precisely which data columns are displayed. In case there are many up there, it might do well enough with fewer columns than before.

    Out of technical curiosity, how many files were right in that folder altogether(just files, not including subfolders)? I'm thinking that unless they number in the thousands(and/or lots of data columns) something is still likely not right.
     
  16. Judas

    Judas Obvious Closet Brony Pony

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    I have every file I have created since 1997 organized in such a manner that I know precisely where everything is and it's very easily navigatable. So I've never had to search.


    thousands of files.
     
  17. Dyre Straits

    Dyre Straits 10 Grandkids -1 Great-grandson-and one in the oven

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    644 Items; total size of the Downloads Directory, 38.6 GB.
     
  18. WxMan1

    WxMan1 Active Member

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    I've found that latency centric-HDD avail themselves wonderfully to partitioning and purposeful layout of partition contents. For those reasons I've patitioned my primary HDD into several partitions; the first partition being the system partition and contains the O/S and only those applications that are essential to be quickly resolved at boot time, e.g., Comodo HIPS/FW/AV, system utils that load icon into the system tray, KX Project sound card-drivers, RivaTuner GFX card-drivers, PCI latency utility and stuff like that. I've also dedicated the installation of precisely two games, i.e., F4, F1 2002 & Decent. 1.5 GB fixed size-swap is dedicated therealso. 12 GB are reserved for this performance critical mission.

    The first partition utilizes all of the outer tracks of the HDD so as to avail the the immense benefit of angular velocity of the disk platters. The subsequent 10GB are dedicated specifically to applications and nothing else.

    I've next dedicated 15GB to stuff were access times are of no consequence, e.g., EXE & ZIP/RAR files, documents, videos, music.

    The next 31GB is devoted to stuff the never gets used, and latency is of no concern whatsoever, e.g., MSDN Library, DLL cache, NT Backup and Ghost image repository.

    HD1:1 is dedicated to WinXP SP3 drool-boot. A fixed - min 1.5GB / max 4095 MB - swap-file is dedicated to that partition and is shared by the HD0:1 - Win2003 R2 - O/S. WinXP on HD1:1 - in contrast - shares nothing with HD0:x.

    HD2:1 is dedicated to HD0:1 Windows AU folders/files & Windows app-installers that use space to grimace proportions but are absolutely worthless in the Gran Scheme, i.e., @ boot-time & defrag thrash.

    HD2:2 is dedicated to 15GB of ISO & large scale EXE / ZIP data files, i.e., various WInDoze, MSVS / MSDN installation ISO, MSVS / SQL Server / Dot Net service pack EXE, very large MS AU KB files - 1/4 to 1/2 GB ea.'s - and local copies of ISO extracted source for Win O/S, i.e., the Windows CD is observed to exist on HDD by the O/S, not overlooking such important EXE such as: OpenOffice Complete.

    For the most part, HD2 is only utilized at boot - HD2:1 - and after X minutes can be sloughed off like a bastard's mother. Tell me, of the various GB of data I've described, how much changes? I make a propheciy: once you've installed any major item from HDD you'll take whatever steps are necessary to prevent ever from having to install from CD again.

    Out of all this data, what do I need to defrag on a minute / minute basis? OF COURSE its only HD0:1! What else is changing so freekquently? I can has 15 BILLION TB HDD and all that really matter to defrag is 10GB, i.e., the first 10GB.

    Here's what matters a lot WRT to the different partitions: Windows decides how large and where to put all the NTFS meta-fiels.

    M$ in its infinite wisdom decided that 12.5% of your HDD / partition at format time shall be reserved for $MFT reserved space. AND guess what: those tracks are put down in virtually the worst performance locations on the HDD. I don't know who the hell thought this through - but nobody did - so when you format any HDD by default the $LOG file fills the outer tracks and then some 30% in the $MFT begin and then 12.5% of the entire HDD capacity is reserverd for $MFT reserved, and then the $bitmap, $MFT_mirr, etc., e.g., $USN
    _JRNL.

    You needs to layout your drive such that outer tracks-inbound are sorted: strict - last modified - decending
    You needs to layout your drive such that: inner tracks-outbound are sorted: strict - last access - decending

    Pareto's Rule says that 80% of the time you're using 20% of your data. Which 20% is important? The stuff highly modified or the stuff highly accessed? Intelligent layout of data on HDD will garner decent performance.

    A signifiant portion of HDD performance equation is due to a combination of Zoned-Bit Recording (more densely packed sectors) and angular velocity i.e. the outer tracks of the hard drive have a greater angular velocity – data transfer at the outer tracks of the drive
    is typically 180 to 240 % that of the inner tracks. So when a drive is quoting a maximum of 75 Mb/second – the minimum is about 30 and the average about 58 Mb per second.

    To optimize this is a utiliity that will allow one to specify precisely the size and location of various NTFS meta-files w/in the overarching schema of HDD data-layout. For that purpose I recommend Ultimate Defrag 3 (by Disktrix).

    IF you've implemented thought into the placement of data on HDD, then the rare occurance of searching for whatever will prove inconsequential in the Gran Scheme of things; the rest of the time the system will run just fine.

    Obviously if one's affinity is to SSD, then the foregoing will prove of no value whatsoever; there are no tracks / latency to resolve. The only issue possible is that of disaster recovery, i.e., highly fragmented SSD files may prove difficult to resolve.
     

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