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Computer slowing down

Discussion in 'Computers, Hardware, and Operating Systems' started by AC0FP, Feb 14, 2012.

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  1. AC0FP

    AC0FP Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have noticed my computer is slowing down. The antivirus program indicates all is "secure". I'm beginning to think this may be from the newer versions of Adobe Flash player, it does seem to be associated with sites with a lot of graphs or advertizements. Anyone have some thoughts about this? My computer is getting a little dated (1.3GHz) and runs XP.


  2. KD8DEY

    KD8DEY Subscriber QRZ Page

    Go into msconfig and turn off any unneeded start up programs to take the load off of the system?
  3. WA4OTD

    WA4OTD XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Go in and delete the programs like Adobe can always install them again. Look at processes running (ctrl-alt-del).

    Run program like Malwarebytes or AVG.
  4. KW9W

    KW9W Ham Member QRZ Page

    There's several questions that you may be asking yourself about the machine...

    Is your machine 3-4 years old?
    Are you running Kaspersky Internet Security, or one of those others?
    Does it have much in the way of games, music, or photos stored in the hard drive?
    How much memory is available of the entire hard drive space? 70-80 percent, or is your software & files taking over?

    There's things that many of us can do to keep our machines running efficiently, and without too many hickups. Part of the key is not to rely on inexperienced family members for advice, or two paragraph articles in magazines that only scratch the surface.
  5. G0GQK

    G0GQK Ham Member QRZ Page

    Download the free CCcleaner and clean out all the stuff which arrives without you knowing, like add on's. Adobe does take up space, have a look in ADD/REMOVE programs and see if there are things you can live without and do a defrag.
  6. KK4AMP

    KK4AMP Ham Member QRZ Page

    Could be a hardware issue like overheating, too. Some machines will throttle back to keep from cooking. When's the last time you blew out your heatsinks and took a look at fan RPMs?
  7. AC0FP

    AC0FP Ham Member QRZ Page

    The hard disk is 71% empty, I have very few pictures and zero games. Yes, the machine is about 3 or 4 years old ( HP Compaq ). The antivirus software is Avast.

    I think the new Adobe flash program uses a lot more resources and probably is written for computers with dual or quad processors.



    Install program from Microsoft called "Process Explorer". You will be able to identify EVERYTHING that is running on your computer. This, just like everything else on the computer requires that you invest some of your time on how to use this tool. Invest the time, learn the tool ... solve your problem. Good luck.
  9. AC0FP

    AC0FP Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have found away to turn off the Avast antivirus program while programs are executing, maybe that will make a difference.

  10. KA7O

    KA7O Ham Member QRZ Page

    Apparently, this behavior is by design.

    Was a time that MS suggested re-installatin of their products on a regular interval, varying from 6 months to a few years - depending on use.

    Could always try defragging the drive or install a bunch of other products and hope it doesn't break something.

    Amazing that folks still endure this when there are options available.
  11. VA3CSS

    VA3CSS Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yes, and then download and install Steven Gould's Cleanup program. Run that regularly to help keep your system clean.

    If your system is older, as it appears it is, you may be due to defrag your hard drive as well. This would be even more true if you've installed / removed many files or programs. Over time, this opens up the possibility of fragmenting your files.

    It's not by design at all. It's called regular maintenance. Something every computer, running any OS, would need.

    But you can blame Microsoft if you want.
  12. VA3CSS

    VA3CSS Ham Member QRZ Page

    duplicate post
  13. W9DTC

    W9DTC Ham Member QRZ Page

    You mentioned the latest version of flash.

    Flash often installs Google Toolbar. In my experience, as an IT professional, Google Toolbar can conflict with antivirus programs (specifically norton) causing significant delays. When I get reports that computers I'm responsible start behaving badly, this is one of the first things I remove.
  14. K8MHZ

    K8MHZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Firefox will drag your computer down with it's huge cache and constant attempts to check for upgrades. When mine gets groggy, I clear out the cache and I'm good to go for a while. Now I just have to get around to turning off the upgrade stuff.

    Without some adjustments, MSSE is also a hog, and acts like a virus in it's own little way. But it works better than the others, so I tolerate it.
  15. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yes, I WILL blame Microshaft, because even your described "Regular Maintenance" suggestion runs into their "Activation" requirement, which requires one to be online already, and can lead to problems trying to explain to MS why activation is being used on multiple attempts, after it was already activated on a specific machine.
    Whether successful (with legitimate reasons and hardware changes,) or not, it's another boondoggle built into MS operating systems and software applications.
  16. VA3CSS

    VA3CSS Ham Member QRZ Page


    First of all, the activation requirement is not exclusive to Microsoft. Many software companies use that method as a means to cut down on illegitimate copies of their software.

    Secondly, even Microsoft won't give you problems re-activating a copy of Windows, unless you've re-activated it far too often already. If you're one of the many who believe that one copy of XP should be all you need for every computer in your house, Microsoft, and their license agreement, disagrees with you, and so do the courts who uphold it.

    Thirdly, none of this has anything to do with his computer slowing down over time.

    I get it. You hate Microsoft because they won't let you easily cheat on their software.
  17. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The easy way to deal with issues like this is to install it once on your computer, activate then update Windows and make a disk image with something like Clonezilla. The cloned copy can be restored without activation to that computer. The next time you need to install it; go ahead and install it update the install, then make a new clone and ditch the old one.
    This method works well.
  18. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    I resent your implications. I OWN three legitimate copies of XP, and three computers with XP pre-installed legitimately. I refuse to use pirated software, and any software I use follows the license agreement.

    Firstly, Activation is STILL an additional time consuming step, and if a computer isn't "on-line," can take more than a few moments. (It took a half hour to activate one computer via phone. Whether that's SOP or an anomaly is immaterial..

    Secondly, I don't use pirated software, and all my software follows the licensing agreements,

    Thirdly, Microshaft Windoze DOES collect unused and unnecessary detritus in the convoluted Registry. THAT can and does slow down a computer. Having to "renistall" an OS as big and clumsy as WIN XP by what you refer to as "regular maintenance" is ridiculous, and should not be needed with a properly designed OS.

    Fourthly, I again resent your claim that I dislike Microsoft because I want to cheat on their software.

    While Sue has a suggestion, it doesn't reduce the time required to download and install the gazillion software security patched and updates AFTER an image disk is created. that can easily tie up a computer for hours at a minimum. THAT is unproductive time wasted.
  19. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I use either AVG or NOD32 anti-virus S/W and they don't use much in the way of resources; they operate pretty quietly in the background and don't seem to slow down the system much compared with others. I turn "off" the MSFT stuff.

    McAffee was probably the worst of the worst when it came to slowing things down to a crawl. I kicked them to the curb several years ago.

    I let AVG look for stuff that's slowing down the system and eliminate or fix it; I set it to do that at 2 AM every day, and I'm not normally using any of my machines at that hour, so it's non-intrusive. It does help. Sometimes I find an early morning screen telling me AVG found and fixed dozens of nonessential crap and the machine does indeed run faster after that.

    Having lots of memory helps. This little laptop is maxed out with 4GB (it's a couple years old) but my real work stations all have 32GB to 96GB RAM.
  20. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    It does take quite a bit of time to bring the OS back up to date since the last image was created.
    The registry is legendary when it comes to collecting crap.
    If software isn't changed much this isn't such a problem provided some peace of Internet security software isn't writing information into the registry every time something changes. The forerunner to Norton Firewall At Guard, they bought the software did just that everytime you made a rules change a new registry entry was created. I bought At Guard and at the time I was a good product. Any such program that writes such information into the registry should be avoided at all cost if you want to maintain a fast machine.

    I have gone to using an external firewall because I can free up resources and get a bit more performance out of my computer. My computers are in one subnet and one has Windows firewall running on it, this one doesn't....
    My roommate's computer is on a completely different subnet and is plugged directly into a separate NIC on the firewall computer. She runs Windows Firewall and some AV software. (MS Security Essentials)

    With the new computer performance won't be as critical as it is with this twelve year old computer so I'll run WF anyway.

    More to the subject at hand;
    The new computer will have a drive that is nothing but the OS, I won't even install programs on that drive. I plan on having a drive for programs and one for data, docs and pictures.
    And another drive for multimedia files that are not photographs.
    This will ease maintaining an image of the OS, one for the programs and one for each of the drives.

    Being basically lazy I try to find the best way to burn the least calories to keep my computer s organized. :)
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