UltraDefrag is a free, open-source file defragmentation utility for Windows. It can defragment any system file, including the Registry. It's fast and powerful by design, in part because it skips fancy data optimization strategies in favor of speed and reliability. UltraDefrag Portable is a fully portable, fully functional release based on UltraDefrag's source code. It has three operating modes: a GUI mode, with a standard user interface; a console mode; and a native mode for advanced users. We tried the GUI mode, in part because we like to see a cluster map when we defrag our drives.
You'll need Administrator privileges in Windows to run UltraDefrag Portable. The Web-based UltraDefrag Handbook offers guidelines for installing and using the tool, FAQs, best practices, hardware recommendations, tips and tricks, and more. Some of the manual's recommendations may be a bit advanced for the average user, such as disabling the Paging File. The documentation also warns against defragmenting SSDs and flash drives, though the program will do so if you tell it to, so heads up. UltraDefrag's up-to-date user interface has an old-school feel to it, partly because of the font but also because it has the classic defrag utility layout, with disks displayed in a list view above the color-coded cluster map. UltraDefrag offers defragmentation as well as Quick and Full Optimization (they only work on NTFS disks, not on FAT disks) that offer similar operations, but quicker and lighter. UltraDefrag Portable certainly is fast. It quickly analyzed and defragmented our system's HDD, displaying free space, used space, and other data under draggable column headings. The program also generates HTML-based Reports. The Unicode configuration file needs to give way to proper controls.
We like UltraDefrag Portable's speed and flexibility. It's largely the same as the installed version of UltraDefrag, except that it runs from any directory without having to be installed, making it a good option for mobile users. However, the portable version lacks the installed version's boot time defragmenter, a major feature, so we recommend using the installed version where you can, and taking the portable version on the road with you.