Slow PC

  Legslip 15:42 12 Mar 2012

Spec: Win XP - Pentium 4 - 1.25Gb Ram - 75gb HD (15gb used).

Trying to find out why this PC is V. Slow. Have Disk Cleaned up & defraged. Stopped all non-required tems in MSCONFIG startup. Only item using a lot of CPU is System Idle. Currently left running Malwarebytes/Superantispyware/Microsoft Securuty Essentials and will check when I get home, but don,t think anything in this area is the cause.

Would a Windows repair help? Any other thoughts?

  wee eddie 16:04 12 Mar 2012

Marginal RAM allocation ~ Needs more

  birdface 16:20 12 Mar 2012

Turn off the Anti-malware on MSE and you should notice a big difference.I always had it turned off when using XP.

If it is the free versions of Malwarebytes and superantispyware there is no need for them to be in start up.

I have mbam services turned off in services. I don't use Superantispyware but if the free version you probably should be able to switch that off as well.Just make sure none of them is running while in services.Just update and run them manually.

If nothing running System idle Process should be showing about 97% which is normal,Anything else using up the CPU let us know what.

Another one to turn off is Windows updates set that to manual and stop it running.Update manually on the 2nd tuesday of every month.

  birdface 16:30 12 Mar 2012

If an oldish computer I would not bother putting extra ram into it.Just a waste of money for any difference that it would make.I tripled mine and it made not the slightest bit of difference.

Maybe remove all but the last restore points.

If using I/E maybe try Firefox instead.Plus use an add blocker which should speed things up a bit.

Are you using windows host file or another.

  Legslip 16:55 12 Mar 2012

Thanks Buteman.Are you using windows host file or another? Educate me. What does this mean?

  birdface 17:08 12 Mar 2012

Sorry thought that you might have changed the Host file that comes with windows.

This is the one that I was using. .had problems with slow browsing for over a year till I found out it was the new host file that was giving me the problems.

On the other hand it usually speeds up browsing but i had a problem with it.

  Fruit Bat /\0/\ 19:13 12 Mar 2012

Slow PC

What are you comparing it against? XP with 1.25M RAM is bound to be slow compared with W7 and 4 - 8 G :0)

I suggest get rid of MSE for XP and use Avast (much better)

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


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 Your memory could be failing try memtest

Add more physical memory(probably not worth it for an old PC), 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.

  Les28 09:51 13 Mar 2012

You could try turning off windows indexing and the indexing service.

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Any recurring errors showing in Windows Event Viewer, that might point to a specific cause of the slowness? View the Application and System logs by left clicking once on Application or System in the left hand window and viewing their logs in the right hand window.

enter link description here

As buteman asked in Task Manager Processes tab is System Idle Process running at 97% CPU usage or more when the pc is idle at desktop?

Incidentally when in Task Manager, how many Processes shown at bottom left of page?

Start up and shut down OK, not too slow?

In msconfig Services Tab, not the Startup Tab, have you had a look to see how many non ms services are shown as running. Open msconfig, click on Services Tab, put a tick in the box to hide all microsoft services, how many non ms services are shown as Running?

60GB of the 75GB hard drive is free space?

As already mentioned by Fruit Bat worth checking to see dma hasn't reverted to pio on the primary drive.

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