Windows seems slow recently, sound stutters etc.

Discussion in 'Computer Information' started by Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008.

  1. I don't know what has happened but it is running like a dog.
    It takes longer to boot up seemingly.
    It seems to other performance probs too, the mouse pointer is 'sticky'
    and it stutters playing music, or maybe video but it is very noticable on
    Even when the cpu is 'idle' supposedly. There seems to be a mismatch between
    the cpu usage bar in the system tray and the cpu in task manager, but that
    my be
    due to delays betwen the two perhaps.

    I have been mesing about with it recently, I installed ubuntu to my second
    I aslo took the page file off that drive, but I have put it back now - not
    does it need a reboot to take effect?

    I also opened the multi channel sound manager, I have never used that before
    but was curious, I don't recall making any changes.

    I also installed the latest AVG free, I have the link scanner diabled now.
    I killed off most/all of the avg stuff and that seemed to make no

    I had also been transfering data off another drive by putting it on as
    I got the jumper setting wrong a few times resulting in error, and no boot,
    but when I got the setting right it was OK.

    One of the drives I tried was dead previously in another machine, I tried
    in this this one to see it it was justthe other machine it would not work
    (it seems a gonna).

    I also put in a network card (ethernet 10/100) which I thought was
    dead, it didn't seem to show up in device manager so I took it out.

    Another thing I did was to change my conection from the computer to
    cable modem from USB to ethernet port.

    Some of this involved using the network set up wizard.

    This always seems to finish with an error (unspecified)

    Any ideas chaps?

    Could be a lot of red herrings there, I will try and undo a lot of the
    I have done.

    It's not too bad really but music sounds bad with stuttering, so noticable.

    Any ideas diognostics?

    Windows XP SP2 on sempron 3000 1.2 gig ram, 80 and 250 gig drives
    25 and 85 gig free respectively.

    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008
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  2. How did you know that?
    Thats right, onboard.

    I will try to change back to USB anyway to eliminate that.
    Trouble is it take a good while to boot now.
    Gonna try uninstalling ubuntu.
    But I will try sound in ubuntu first and see if it has the same problem.

    Should be a good test if it uses different software for sound.
    I think it will, but I will check on their forum, I am new to it.
    Maybe sabotaged windows?

    Thnaks for the help.
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008
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  3. Yes I can't see anything odd, except that often when the 'green bar' is 100%
    of often it shows it at about 66% idle or something like that, its bit

    Oh and one other thing, you know the connection icon in the task bar,
    it is flashing on light blue, like it did when I had a local area connection
    set up.
    I don't think it should, it is like I have made the internet my local area
    or something. But I don't think it is that, I have disabled sharing.
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008
  4. OK back on as Turkey, I will run a virus scan.

    Took almost 10 mins to boot up. (in XP) ubuntu 2 mins.
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008
  5. Lord Turkey Cough

    Paul Guest

    Your Ethernet card is a RealTek 8139, and likely has more overhead
    than a normal card. Still, if I had to choose Ethernet or USB for
    a network connection, I'd choose the Ethernet. And if there is
    any protocol conversion required, between the broadband modem, and
    the computer, I'd buy a router that can handle the conversion
    automatically, so the computer is totally oblivious to how it
    is getting its network connection. (My router handles the PPPOE
    that comes from the ADSL modem, so my computer doesn't have to
    do it.)

    For a toy to play with, you could try this.

    They also mention another tool called RATT from Microsoft here.

    But really, you have to be methodical, and keep track of the stuff
    you've been messing with, to hope to narrow the source of the problem

    On older computers, a BIOS setting called "Delayed Transaction" was
    one fix for sound problems. Adjusting PCI Latency (which affects
    how long any PCI device stays on the bus), was another tweak. But
    in the current day, it seems software is doing a lot of the
    messing up, and fixing it is a lot harder.

    Paul, Jul 3, 2008
  6. Lord Turkey Cough

    Paul Guest

    Hmmm. I tried running dpclat.exe, and my antivirus software got
    tied up in knots. Tried to do a shutdown and the computer wouldn't
    shut down. Had to do a reset. Tried it a second time, and this time,
    the AV rejected the driver the program was trying to install. So
    when you go to use that tool, you may run into a bit of trouble.

    I had a similar experience with a framerate measurement tool for
    gaming. Program tried to add something into a bunch of games,
    and the AV software went nuts. So depending on how aggressive
    your AV software is, you may not get it to run.

    Paul, Jul 3, 2008
  7. Lord Turkey Cough

    Paul Guest

    I think you mentioned it in another post.

    By the way, have you looked in Task Manager (control-alt-delete),
    to see if any software is running at 100%. Sometimes, something
    gets stuck in a loop, and then there aren't a lot of cycles
    left to run the sound tool.

    Paul, Jul 3, 2008
  8. Lord Turkey Cough

    half_pint Guest

    Hi Paul!! This is Lord Turkey Cough under his very old name :O)

    I had to use this because I am using ubuntu and I don't have my
    Outlook express to login as the Turkey lol.

    Anyway I can tell you that sound plays fine in Ubuntu a little hard to
    because I don't have any appilcations to load the CPU, just surfing
    websites to put a load on the CPU, but the sound is perfect even with
    'heavy surfing', also I can play several youtube videos at once and
    the sound is mixed perfectly.
    And the mouse pointer drag has gone, infact it seems very very fast!!

    I am beginning to like ubuntu now!!!!!!!!!

    So I guess that elimanates all hardware and comms issues??

    Anyway ubuntu is pretty dammed good, certaintly compared to to my now
    screwed up windows!! (should not say that here though!!).

    I will try a few things back on XP, virus scans and defragging

    Narrow it down a bit anyway I guess!!

    I am a bit lost with out windows, this is all so new to me.
    half_pint, Jul 3, 2008
  9. Lord Turkey Cough

    half_pint Guest

    I do have a theory that Ubuntu screwed up windows in a
    'operating system war'?

    Sounds plausible?
    half_pint, Jul 3, 2008
  10. Lord Turkey Cough

    Paul Guest

    Some of my boot time, is all the screwing around the AV does.
    My system would boot a bit faster, if it didn't have an antivirus
    program scanning stuff at startup.

    It is going to be tough to figure out what is upsetting the audio.
    Start by looking at the Task Manager, because there may be an
    obvious thing you added recently, and seeing the software
    names listed, might remind you of what was added.

    Another thing that can mess up the audio, is if the hard drive
    is operating in polled mode, instead of in "DMA if available"
    mode. In polled mode, the processor moves the data from the
    disk to system memory, and that can be quite a bit slower.
    And add enough latency, to make audio skip. A disk can
    switch to polled mode, if Windows detects too many errors
    coming from the disk.

    Paul, Jul 3, 2008
  11. Lord Turkey Cough

    witan Guest

    I suggest you should check whether your harddrive had reverted to PIO
    from DMA: it happened to my computer. I found a working solution at It involved downloading and running a VB
    script file, resetdma.vbs from .
    I said "working solution" because of my suspicion that the problem may
    be actually connected with some mechanical defect or deficiency in the
    hard disk, causing the disk to spin-up too slowly. Microsoft "support"
    web page says "IDE ATA and
    ATAPI disks use PIO mode after multiple time-out or CRC errors
    occur" ...etc. However, the solution recommended in the Microsoft page
    did not work for me.
    witan, Jul 3, 2008
  12. So how do I tell which mode it is in?
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008
  13. I have removed my anti virus for the time being.
    It takes long enouth to boot up as it is.
    I also removed one other programs I updated.

    One thing I have not removed yet is Ubuntu, but that is
    on another drive and is not booted up (dual boot system).
    I may have to try removing that too.
    On the other hand I might be better off switching to Ubuntu altogeather.
    If I can't sort this out I may have to anyway.

    Incidently I can gets stuttering on sound at with the CPU
    usage graph well below 40%, maybe its an average and there
    are hidden peaks? (But it seems fine on ubuntu)
    Also I have 1.25 gig ram, 640meg of ram is available, there should not
    be much disk IO.
    Anyway I will try various things, I have done a viru scan and it found some
    stuff but it looked harmless and its all removed and no real difference.
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008

  14. Thanks I will have a loot at that.
    I have a lot of things to 'look at'
    However it seems to me in a way that it is not caching properly, for
    example if I play a song it should all be cached in memory when I go back
    start of it, but there are still stutters.
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008

  15. There don't seem to be anything unusual, I am quite familiar with
    what it usually looks like. I even killed off a few things.
    I will try uninstlling ubuntu now.

    This is my boot.ini:-
    [boot loader]
    [operating systems]
    multi(0)disk(0)rdisk(0)partition(2)\WINDOWS="Microsoft Windows XP Home
    Edition" /fastdetect /NoExecute=OptOut
    C:\CMDCONS\BOOTSECT.DAT="Microsoft Windows Recovery Console" /cmdcons

    Incidently Ubuntu is on drive f: not c:
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008
  16. Just an update, the sound is definately affected by disk IO,
    songs sound worst at the start and then settle down, once the
    file is loaded apparently. Also for example opening this news
    group caused stuttering which stopped when it was opened.
    The CPU did not seem high at those times, it seemed 'disk bound'.

    Or at least the IO is screwed, it takes about 10 minutes to boot up
    and open a web browser.

    Maybe the disk hs problems?
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008
  17. My system came with winidows pre-installed, so I have
    no windows disk as such. However it does have a recovery
    partition on the disk, and at start up there is some sort of
    option to enter 'recovery or roll back' or something like that,
    I can't remember the exact wording.

    I am not sure what this does.
    I also burnt a recover disk a while back, over a year.

    I am not sure what is involved in this, I guess it just restores windows
    and its drivers back to an older state?
    What state is that? Last boot up? I would need to go back several
    days or more, would that be possible?

    I guess I will have to try that at some stage anyway.

    I am also woondering if the disk is 'getting faulty'?
    I will have a go at running benchmarks on that, but last time
    I tried it just kind of hung for over 10 minutes and did not appear to
    be doing anything, I killed it offf as I needed he comp,
    Will try again later.
    Lord Turkey Cough, Jul 3, 2008
  18. Lord Turkey Cough

    Paul Guest

    Paul, Jul 3, 2008
  19. Lord Turkey Cough

    Paul Guest

    You could also reinstall Windows, if you're interested
    in fixing it, without understanding what caused it.
    Sometimes that is the lesser evil, if you don't have
    any more time to waste on it.

    If the CPU is running 40% and music stutters, if
    you look in Task Manager, do you see any individual
    task "peaking" at the time. I've had cases where
    someone will post a problem like yours, and they
    see a task run for a fraction of a second, and
    then disappear from the Task Manager. Look more
    carefully at the Task List, and correlate the
    skip or stutter of the audio, with whatever new
    task shows up or is using cycles.

    Paul, Jul 3, 2008
  20. Lord Turkey Cough

    Baron Guest

    Ubunto won't make any difference ! Its not running inside windows !
    Baron, Jul 3, 2008
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