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I have been reading about people talking about "misaligned" hard drives, and how they are trying to alight them again.

Can someone explain what this concept is all about and why are people worrying about it?

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Removed 'windows' tag because this is an OS-independent problem. –  Shinrai Nov 15 '10 at 15:55
    
Thanks for clearing that up. Now I am concerned about my SSD drive. I have asked a new question regarding this: superuser.com/questions/211192/… –  7wp Nov 15 '10 at 22:51

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

This article should clear it up for you. Essentially, it has to do with the way partitions are created and accessed on drives. The way software reads and writes off of a drive can be based off of old standards that new types of drives (SSD as a primary example) or operating systems (win vista or 7) don't necessarily follow. This can cause newly created partitions to be misaligned with the underlying structure of the disk, which creates more read/write cycles and slows performance, and in the case of SSDs, can dramatically reduce their life.

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