It’s a simple fact of life the storage space on your hard drive is in worse shape than you think it is. Every time you save a file, download something or install a program, Windows will scatter that data across your hard disk in something akin to a shotgun blast.

The end result is a system that, over time, runs slower than it should. And let's not even get into the fact that capacities are larger than ever, so keeping them in shape takes longer than before.

We can hear you saying to yourself, “yeah but Windows comes with a defrag tool, so why should I spend good money on another one?” The simple answer is time – this tool is faster and because it runs in the background, you don’t need to manually set it up and run it. In fact, the products tagline is "set it and forget it", as once you’ve installed it you and set it running it’ll keep an eye on the state of your hard drives.

Diskeeper 10 is perhaps the longest standing deframentation tool and this latest version has a clean interface that certainly feels easier to use than the Windows version. Windows is essentially a manual program but Diskeeper works best in the background.

Once installed you can set it up to check and defrag each of your partitions and once in fighting fit order you can set the program to monitor the state of your drives, this way you’ll find the program making incremental checks, so you’re never at anything but the peak of performance. There is an argument that keeping you disk tidy won’t give you a serious performance boost but we’re of the opinion that it’s better to have a maintenance routine than not, as you’ll get more from your PC in terms of service than the cost of the application.

It comes in a variety of forms, with the basic consumer version costing £30 (inc. VAT), while the small business version is £90 (inc. VAT) and goes up from there for corporate accounts. The only difference with the Home version seems to be less in the way of power tools, such as setting up different ways of defragging the hard drive on your notebook as opposed to your desktop, as well not being able to access the Windows paging file.

Price when reviewed:

If you’ve got a high capacity drive then you need a powerful defragging tool and Diskeeper 10 is one of the best you can use.

It’s easy to set up, it runs itself and while the debates of whether regular defragging will actually give you a noticeable speed boost rages on, it can’t do you any harm to try.