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Still sluggish-Now What?

 
 
RS
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      10-06-2004
I wrote a few days ago that I had a sluggish computer - I had done a clean
install of XP on a new HD, added a router, and did a few other upgrades to
software and hardware. The computer - a P3 800MHZ older machine worked great
for about a week. Then it started getting real sluggish - applications take
30-50 seconds to open, frequent freeze ups where I have to use Task Manager
to shut applications down, screen saver moves like slow motion.

I have anti virus, have SpyBot and Ad-ware. No problems indicated.

It was suggesated that I upgrade my RAM which had been at 256 MB. I did
increase it to 512MB. The computer works faster when it works, but the
problems originally listed still persist.

I am thinking of wiping the HD clean and starting over, but wondered what
suggestions anyone would give me as a step or two short of that.

I am pretty good with hardware, but don't know much about registries and
internal software configuration.

Thank you.


 
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Thor
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      10-06-2004

"RS" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>I wrote a few days ago that I had a sluggish computer - I had done a clean
> install of XP on a new HD, added a router, and did a few other upgrades to
> software and hardware. The computer - a P3 800MHZ older machine worked
> great
> for about a week. Then it started getting real sluggish - applications
> take
> 30-50 seconds to open, frequent freeze ups where I have to use Task
> Manager
> to shut applications down, screen saver moves like slow motion.
>
> I have anti virus, have SpyBot and Ad-ware. No problems indicated.
>
> It was suggesated that I upgrade my RAM which had been at 256 MB. I did
> increase it to 512MB. The computer works faster when it works, but the
> problems originally listed still persist.
>
> I am thinking of wiping the HD clean and starting over, but wondered what
> suggestions anyone would give me as a step or two short of that.
>
> I am pretty good with hardware, but don't know much about registries and
> internal software configuration.



open the task manager (right click the taskbar and choose task manager) and
under the processes tab, see if anything in there is using a substantial
amount of CPU time when the pauses occur. Ignore the "system idle process"
as it is a measure of unused CPU cycles. It will normally be high (95-99%).
Everything else should be pretty low (1-5%) when nothing super-demanding is
running, for example right after a fresh boot, and the system has had time
to settle down. If something is spiking CPU usage, you can get big pauses
like you describe. You can also click on the "performance" tab and see a
graph of CPU usage history as long as you have that window open, and with a
VU-style meter showing realtime stats. Look for periodic spikes in the graph
coinciding with the moments you notice it pausing. You can minimize the
graph display and go about your normal usage routine and check it
periodically to see if you can notice a pattern of spiking.


 
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bmoag
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      10-06-2004
You probably heard this all before:
That hardware should run XP reasonably well. That configuration is similar
to my first XP computer which ran without the glitches you describe.
You say you have excluded viruses and spyware.
Sluggish performance usually means something in the background is eating up
CPU clock cycles or their is a bad driver for a basic component.
It is also possible your bios settings are incorrect.For example improper
settings of bus, memory or cpu speed can cause what you describe. Make sure
that the jumper settings on the motherboard are correct.
If you have not installed the correct motherboard/chipset drivers that may
cause these problems.
Video card drivers can cause these issues.
Check what loads with your startup program group and check MSCONFIG under
start-up and win.ini. Windows should still boot even with everything in
msconfig/startup turned off. You might be able to isolate the culprit by
selectively restoring items in msconfig/startup. This is probably not the
problem but worth trying.
Shut off any applets in the system tray: antivirus programs and firewalls
may cause this performance lag, particularly Norton products. If that is the
case make sure you have all the upgrades to these programs (Norton AV
requires about 25mbs of updates out of the box!). Antivirus programs,
especially Norton, interact badly with many other programs and drivers but
often updates resolve those problems.
See what your swap file size is: restrict it to a size double your RAM;
depending on the types of programs you run you may even need a smaller swap
file. If you have a second hard drive put the swap file on the second hard
drive immediately.
Press ctrl-alt-delete and see what processes are running. Google them to see
what they are and if they are vital if you do not recognize them.
Disable all your peripherals under control panel/device manager (better:
pull them out of the computer) except the video card and selectively add
them back. It may be a driver problem.

If this is a clean install then if you repeat whatever you did you will
likely have the same problems. Troubleshoot first before you wipe your hard
drive.




 
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mark mandel
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      10-06-2004

"RS" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> I wrote a few days ago that I had a sluggish computer - I had done a clean
> install of XP on a new HD, added a router, and did a few other upgrades to
> software and hardware. The computer - a P3 800MHZ older machine worked

great
> for about a week. Then it started getting real sluggish - applications

take
> 30-50 seconds to open, frequent freeze ups where I have to use Task

Manager
> to shut applications down, screen saver moves like slow motion.
>
> I have anti virus, have SpyBot and Ad-ware. No problems indicated.
>
> It was suggesated that I upgrade my RAM which had been at 256 MB. I did
> increase it to 512MB. The computer works faster when it works, but the
> problems originally listed still persist.
>
> I am thinking of wiping the HD clean and starting over, but wondered what
> suggestions anyone would give me as a step or two short of that.
>
> I am pretty good with hardware, but don't know much about registries and
> internal software configuration.
>
> Thank you.
>

When you check the page file(as suggested by another poster)make sure you
don't have a finite maximum setting. There are those who maintain the
minimum and maximum should be set for the same(which supposedly prevents
defragging)but if you ever run a memory intensive program you could get
crashing and freezups. So it might be best to have Windows to determine
your page file setting because this is an improvement over Win 9x.

Secondly, disable index servicing. You'll find it by first typing in
"services.msc"(without the quotes)in the Run box. Then look in the
applications or services(I forget which)and disable this index service in
the list you'll see.

Lastly, check in the Device Manager to see if there are any yellow
exclamation or question marks indicated driver problems(but with XP alot
less likely to have IRQ conflicts).
>



 
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Thor
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      10-06-2004

"mark mandel" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:ZYK8d.5273$(E-Mail Removed) ink.net...
>
> "RS" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>> I wrote a few days ago that I had a sluggish computer - I had done a
>> clean
>> install of XP on a new HD, added a router, and did a few other upgrades
>> to
>> software and hardware. The computer - a P3 800MHZ older machine worked

> great
>> for about a week. Then it started getting real sluggish - applications

> take
>> 30-50 seconds to open, frequent freeze ups where I have to use Task

> Manager
>> to shut applications down, screen saver moves like slow motion.
>>
>> I have anti virus, have SpyBot and Ad-ware. No problems indicated.
>>
>> It was suggesated that I upgrade my RAM which had been at 256 MB. I did
>> increase it to 512MB. The computer works faster when it works, but the
>> problems originally listed still persist.
>>
>> I am thinking of wiping the HD clean and starting over, but wondered what
>> suggestions anyone would give me as a step or two short of that.
>>
>> I am pretty good with hardware, but don't know much about registries and
>> internal software configuration.
>>
>> Thank you.
>>

> When you check the page file(as suggested by another poster)make sure you
> don't have a finite maximum setting. There are those who maintain the
> minimum and maximum should be set for the same(which supposedly prevents
> defragging)but if you ever run a memory intensive program you could get
> crashing and freezups. So it might be best to have Windows to determine
> your page file setting because this is an improvement over Win 9x.


By default, WindowsXP automatically sets a maximum pagefile setting. The
difference is that XP is capable of resizing the pagefile should that limit
prove inadequate (but virtually never does, as long as XP's chosen settings
are not altered). XP will warn the user that it is resizing the pagefile to
prevent a problem.

>
> Secondly, disable index servicing. You'll find it by first typing in
> "services.msc"(without the quotes)in the Run box. Then look in the
> applications or services(I forget which)and disable this index service in
> the list you'll see.


Wholeheartedly agree on that one.


 
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Matt Pascoe
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Posts: n/a
 
      10-06-2004
Now reinstall

"RS" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>I wrote a few days ago that I had a sluggish computer - I had done a clean
> install of XP on a new HD, added a router, and did a few other upgrades to
> software and hardware. The computer - a P3 800MHZ older machine worked
> great
> for about a week. Then it started getting real sluggish - applications
> take
> 30-50 seconds to open, frequent freeze ups where I have to use Task
> Manager
> to shut applications down, screen saver moves like slow motion.
>
> I have anti virus, have SpyBot and Ad-ware. No problems indicated.
>
> It was suggesated that I upgrade my RAM which had been at 256 MB. I did
> increase it to 512MB. The computer works faster when it works, but the
> problems originally listed still persist.
>
> I am thinking of wiping the HD clean and starting over, but wondered what
> suggestions anyone would give me as a step or two short of that.
>
> I am pretty good with hardware, but don't know much about registries and
> internal software configuration.
>
> Thank you.
>
>



 
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keexer
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Posts: n/a
 
      10-07-2004
RS, I'm convinced there are secret factory settings/motherboard
drivers installed when computers are set up at the factory. My guess
is that when you reformatted and reinstalled XP you got everything
back except these special motherboard helper files.

Maybe someone more knowledgeable than I can comment on where you can
download those motherboard utilities files.

The same thing hapened to me when I had 98 reinstalled professionally
with all the updated drivers--My computer never recovered. I tried
all the suggestions you read posted here and more! my computer sped
up yes but never recovered. Before my reinstall my lowly win98 and
small computer could open 3 major software and two small software
*and* print a 40-page document running in the background with a barely
perceptable slow down. Today I can only two major software before my
computer slows anoyingly and when I print any document the computer
does not slow at all while the document gets read in (spooled) but the
whole computer freezes until the printer finishes printing on paper.

Good luck.
 
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Matt Pascoe
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Posts: n/a
 
      10-07-2004
> RS, I'm convinced there are secret factory settings/motherboard
> drivers installed when computers are set up at the factory. My guess
> is that when you reformatted and reinstalled XP you got everything
> back except these special motherboard helper files.


Two letters, one word, beginning with N and ending on O.


 
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Trent©
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      10-08-2004
On Thu, 7 Oct 2004 18:56:33 +0100, "Matt Pascoe"
<(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:

>> RS, I'm convinced there are secret factory settings/motherboard
>> drivers installed when computers are set up at the factory. My guess
>> is that when you reformatted and reinstalled XP you got everything
>> back except these special motherboard helper files.

>
>Two letters, one word, beginning with N and ending on O.
>


Sure there are.

Think about it.

Many people make that mistake. They reformat and reinstall...but they
forget to reinstall those files.


Have a nice one...

Trent

Budweiser: Helping ugly people have sex since 1876!
 
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Thor
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      10-08-2004

"Trent©" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
news:(E-Mail Removed)...
> On Thu, 7 Oct 2004 18:56:33 +0100, "Matt Pascoe"
> <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote:
>
>>> RS, I'm convinced there are secret factory settings/motherboard
>>> drivers installed when computers are set up at the factory. My guess
>>> is that when you reformatted and reinstalled XP you got everything
>>> back except these special motherboard helper files.

>>
>>Two letters, one word, beginning with N and ending on O.
>>

>
> Sure there are.
>
> Think about it.
>
> Many people make that mistake. They reformat and reinstall...but they
> forget to reinstall those files.


They aren't "secret" settings or drivers though. LOL! Just not as well known
perhaps.


 
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