Acer 1350 laptop running slowly

  algo mas 18:38 06 Sep 2011

Laptop running fine until a couple of days ago. Running xp with S.Pack 3 , 2GB ram. Have got rid of junk etc. Task manager stats:

Physical: Total 2062832 AV. 702800 System cache 797200

Commitchange? Peak: 1479368

CPU usage: 100% [with pcadvisor running].

Peak Usage 1.22gb

I have 5.13gb free space.

In Applications, I seem to have 3 Iexplorers running?

Suggestions please.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:02 06 Sep 2011

1. Software

a) Clear out all temporary files and folders -- use CCleaner

b) Scan for malware spyware and viruses --Free Anti Spyware :- Malwarebytes Superantispyware

Free Antivirus software MicroSoft Security Essentials Avast

c) Clean the registry -- Use the tool in Crap Cleaner its very safe and also allows you to back up the registry first.

d) Pagefile (Virtual Memory) -- Right click MY Computer - select properties - Advanced tab - Performance - advanced tab - Virtual memory click change, you can put the page file on a different drive (if you have one), click custom size and set Initial size to one and a half times the amount of memory you have fitted i.e. 512MB memory = set to 768MB, set maximum to double your memory amount i.e. 512MB memory = 1024MB click ok. If your hard drive is full and there is not enough room for the pagefile this can slow down, freeze or even cause the PC to crash (restart).

e) Cut down on the programs that load at start up -- Start - Run type msconfig - start up tab- untick everything except for firewall, antivirus and antispyware

and the services that run in the background.

2. Hardware

a) Hard drives /

i) IDE Channels: (Not required if you have SATA drives) Check the transfer rate, you need to have the transfer mode set to DMA not PIO. Right click My Computer - Properties - Hardware - Device Manager - Expand (click the + ) IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers right click Primary Channel - Advanced Settings Tab - If transfer Mode is PIO then follow the instructions at to change.

ii) Check for errors and defrag your hard drives -- My Computer - select drive - properties - tool tab - Error checking / Defragmentation.

ii) If you are using Windows XP, Vista or Windows 7 it's a good idea to convert your system drive to the NTFS file system if you have not already. In addition to providing numerous security and data recovery improvements over FAT32 (the file system of choice for Windows 9x/ME and XP Home) it can also speed up your system slightly.

In fact, the only real reason for sticking with the FAT32 file system for any of your data is if you have more than one operating system on your PC and the other OS's can only see FAT32 partitions (as would be the case with Windows 98, for example, which is incapable of reading NTFS data).

To convert your drives to NTFS: Right click on 'my computer' and select 'manage' From the computer management window, expand storage and select 'disk management.' Using the 'file system' column of the upper pane of this window, you can easily check what file system each of your logical drives is using. Make a note of this information. Now open a command prompt window by going to 'start\run' and typing 'cmd' To convert a disk to NTFS, type 'convert (drive letter): /fs:ntfs' So for example, if you were going to convert your C: drive, you would type 'Convert c: /fs:ntfs' at the prompt.

b) Drivers Obtain the newest drivers for your hardware This may seem a bit obvious, but keeping your system's drivers up to date can give both your performance and stability a boost. Video card manufacturers release updates especially often, and these can often give "significant boosts" to gaming performance as video card in question is "optimized."

Don't neglect the other components of your system either. Your motherboard manufacturer may have released newer versions of its Input/output drivers for your board, and sound cards and other peripherals can also benefit from newer software.

c) Memory Add more physical memory, this of course means opening the "box" and fitting a memory module, make sure you buy one that is suitable for your PC. Crucial will guide you through the process of selecting the correct memory. for a guide to fitting memory.

  T0SH 19:17 06 Sep 2011

Given that this problem has only recently started it could very well make sense to try a Windows System Restore back to a date when all was working well ?

Cheers HC

  algo mas 20:06 06 Sep 2011

Thanks for replies. 1] Used CC cleaner 2]Used PC Tools Reg Cleaner 3]Laptop max ram is 2gb which I have. 4]Defragged.

5] Will scan later. 6] Using CC cleaner instead of Mysconfig. Halted Quick time etc. If I untick everything apart from what you mentioned, will not windows stop running as well as Internet explorer?

7] My computer boots up ok. It's when on internet the links do not work or crawl along. I have re-set my broadband router.

  algo mas 20:11 06 Sep 2011

One more thing, My links in hotmail when I click do not work all the time. I have to cut and paste.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 20:52 06 Sep 2011

Slow on Internet

Now your talking something entirely different.

I'm only using 7% cpu on PCA with less memory and a older slower CPU.

Line speed can be affected by many things but I think you need to check for Viruses and malware first.

  Secret-Squirrel 08:19 07 Sep 2011

algo mas, regarding the performance stats that you posted in your initial post, the Commit Charge Peak value shows that the maximum amount of RAM in use was 1.4GB out of a total of 2GB so you're clearly not short on memory and adding more will be a waste of time and money.

Your CPU performance is a different story altogether. If it's running at 100% the whole time then that will slow everything down. The next thing to do is to go to Task Manager's "Processes" section, click the CPU heading column so that the busiest process is at the top and see what's using all the CPU cycles. Note that "System Idle Process" is the opposite of busy so you can ignore that. If you discover that iexplore.exe (Internet Explorer) is the culprit then try this:

Close all IE windows, click your Start button and go to All Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools. There should be an entry there for Internet Explorer (No Add-ons) so click on that and see if things are better in that troubleshooting version of IE - including your Hotmail links. If things are, then it's likely your problem's being caused by a third-party add-on - post back for further advice on this.

An additional, optional, test would be to boot XP into "Safe Mode with Networking", use IE in its normal mode and see what results you get. If everything works fine then it tells us that it's not an IE add-on problem but something that runs in XP's normal-boot is causing the problem - anti-virus/security software is usually the culprit.

If you discover that a different process is hogging all the CPU then let us know which one it is.

PS: It's quite normal to see more than one instance of iexplore.exe in Task Manager even though there's only one visible IE window open.

Please let us know what you discover.

  algo mas 16:53 07 Sep 2011

Right I still think I have more than one IExplorer running, as sometimes the same window opens on top of each other. Anyway not much good at software! I had to cick CPU twice and it came up with: Applemobiledevice = 90

As far as memory usage: Iexplorer and explorer [5 of them] were using 444,468k

Bullguard about 80,000k

No idea what this apple thing is.

Sorry if not helpful.

Did go to Iexplorer without add-ons. Did not go all over the internet. Links were V.slow in hotmail, but they have had problems allday.

Will try other sites. Thanks for your time and patience.

  algo mas 17:08 07 Sep 2011

Just had a look around IE. Strip running across saying "running without add-ons here to manage ....." I found I have about 25 add ons and are listed as "enabled". So I shut some down [disabled]. Seems faster now but will use computer a bit more to see.

  Secret-Squirrel 18:07 07 Sep 2011

Sorry if I didn't make things clear, but the advice I gave about using IE's "No -Add-ons" was only intended if you noticed IE was using a lot of the CPU. There's no point in disabling add-ons unless we confirm that IE is playing up. I'm not especially interested in the amount of memory that's being used as you've got 2GB which is masses for XP. In normal mode, what's the total CPU usage for all Internet Explorer (iexplore.exe) processes? It might help to look for that info whilst you're on the PC Advisor site as you mentioned in your first post that that's when the CPU was at 100%.

Please confirm whether the "Applemobiledevice" process is constantly using ~90% of the CPU. If it is then the CPU's so busy with that one process that the laptop's entire performance will suffer.

When we discover the exact cause of your laptop's poor performance then we can address that problem directly. Please confirm too whether it's just your web browsing that's slow or everything you're doing on the laptop.

If that's all too much for you then you could try Tosh's advice from yesterday about doing an XP System Restore. You'll find it under Start -> All Programs -> System Tools -> System Restore. Pick a date on the calendar in bold that pre-dates your problem but don't go further back than you need to. If on reboot it hasn't worked or gives unexpected results then you can go back in to System Restore and you'll notice an undo option that'll put everything back to how it was.

  T0SH 19:41 07 Sep 2011

Did you made a typo in this part of your first posting ?

"in Applications, I seem to have 3 Iexplorers running"

Internet Explorer executable is named "iexplore.exe"

Windows Explorer is named "explorer.exe"

I would suggest you have picked up some sort of malware infection

Cheers HC

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