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-   -   Slowdowns (https://www.hardwarecanucks.com/forum/troubleshooting/1718-slowdowns.html)

Il Duce June 22, 2007 11:05 AM

Has anyone noticed their old computers slowing down? (I defrag my HDDs once a month, don't visit spyware infested sites, weekly spybot scans, and only 5 icons on startup.)

I have an old athlon 2500 with a 512 stick and I do notice my pc slowing down occasionally when I open new browsers, closing pc games, and alt-tabbing between browsers with flash.

sswilson June 22, 2007 12:35 PM

How often do you do a fresh install?

XP is getting better, but over time the registry starts filling up with crud which slows stuff down a fair bit.

Registry cleaners help a bit, but nothing beats a fresh install every 6 months or so.

Il Duce June 22, 2007 12:54 PM

hmmm you're right a fresh install could mean the world to my old 2500 :D. My last install was like a year ago.

sswilson June 22, 2007 01:01 PM

An extra 512 would probably make a huge difference as well.

On the subject of older computers seeming to slow down over time, there was a pretty good editorial about just that subject in Maximum PC.

He suggested that even without the computer getting physically slower (due to old installs, or extra stuff running in the background), they will seem to slow down because over time we've adjusted both our expectations and our ability to use the faster processing it provided when it was new.

I'm not describing it very well, but it made sense to me when I read it.

CMetaphor June 22, 2007 01:11 PM

I agree with sswilson. Regristry keys and backups, as well as system restore points can be killer for the speed of Any pc. Try disabling restore points at least and clearing out some old ones. Also.... Take a look at what your windows folder looks like with "show all files" and "show protected operating system files" enabled...

:shok: And each one of those can be anywhere from a few Kb to several Mb in size. Owch...

belgolas June 22, 2007 06:16 PM

I am having some bad problems with my computer and have only started to happen in the past few days. The computer is having slowdowns where it comes to a halt at times when playing video games. It goes down to 0 fps and then the CPU is at 90-100%. The worst is on BF2 and Medieval 2 total war. I have all the latest drivers but haven't done a fresh install in about 10 months.

I have a...

intel pentium 4 541 3.2 ghz 1mb cache HT
3gigs of ddr2 533 mhz
7600 gt *** 256 mb
crappy 120 g hard drive
sound blaster X-Fi extreme music
intel 945PSN mother board
crappy $50 500 watt power supply
logitech G15 keyboard and G5 mouse
5.1 speakers
Dell 24" monitor
Lots of cooling(sounds like as jet engine)

AVG free edition
Windows XP Pro
Ad aware SE personal

Ok so I did a stress test and everything had zero errors. Th last thing I remember installing was Spyware Terminator Beta, and some windows updates. There was a bad thunder storm a few days back before I had the issue. So I am wondering if I have a virus or worse faulty hardware. All my games where running fast before but now almost all of them are unplayable except source games like half life and counter strike. So I am kinda angry. I hope I gave you every thing you need. If you need anything else just ask. I am very tempted to just do another painful fresh install.

edit: Oh forgot that AVG said that 2 windows system files changed in size and then I did another scan and 1 more changed. so 3 files changed in file size. I think this means I have a virus. dun dun dun. or more. Also I was using the beta drivers from Nvidea but then I unistalled them because I thought they were causing the problem and installed the regular drivers. Then I unistalled Medieval 2 TW and reinstalled and still have problems.

sswilson June 23, 2007 04:52 AM

If your problems seem to be gaming related and you were using beta vid drivers that would be the first place I'd look.

Newer vid drivers are notoriously hard to uninstall and you never know what kind of undiscovered bug might have been lurking in them.

I'm seeing a fresh install in your future as well.......

I've seen folks spend days trying to track down & remove spyware/virii/malware when it only takes 4 - 5 hours to get all of the windows updates installed.... (Definately time for another service pack, but I doubt we'll see one.......).

bushwhacker June 23, 2007 08:21 AM


Originally Posted by sswilson (Post 12831)

I'm seeing a fresh install in your future as well.......

I've seen folks spend days trying to track down & remove spyware/virii/malware when it only takes 4 - 5 hours to get all of the windows updates installed.... (Definately time for another service pack, but I doubt we'll see one.......).

This would be my recommendation as well. For all the time and trouble it takes to speculate on the cause(s), find and implement the solution(s); it is much quicker, easier and complete to go fresh.

Download a copy of WindowsXP with *all* the updates integrated into it from the bins. Edit the setupp.ini file for the version you have a valid key for and use this key during the install. You will be uptodate immediately upon completion of the install.

belgolas June 23, 2007 04:15 PM

Well just did a fresh install and am now installing the plethora of updates.

edit: Well I still have slowdown problems! grr. this sucks.

edit: Well I am going to try and swap the power supply first with my old 420 watt and see if that is the problem. If it isn't then I will switch the graphics card and if that isn't the problem then I will have to take it in I guess.

edit: Well I think the problem was with the power supply. I think one of the cables wasn't completely plugged in.

Gamashinoch July 6, 2007 09:39 AM

Regardless of what windows system requirments are 512mb is considered minimum by most knowledgeable system builders. But to take advantage of XP you'll want 1024mb.

A few other XP tweaks can be found at tweakxp.com

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