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    Win7 has slowed down to a crawl (Resolved)

    Hi to all,

    I am running Windows7 64 bit with 4 GB memory on my Dell Inspiron 530 computer and it has started to slow down to a crawl. Anything I click on takes several seconds to activate. I get the green circle with the arrow spinning around inside of it. When I try to Copy/Paste, both actions take a long time now where it use to be almost immediate. If I click on a URL in Windows Live Mail most of the time I get a box with an “X” in a red circle and the message “There was a problem sending the command to the program” and I get nothing but a blank screen. When I type something on my keyboard occasionally it will take a second or two to show up on my computer screen. I have Norton Internet Security 2011 installed and it is up to date and a Full System Scan indicates that there is nothing wrong. I have also cleaned out the temporary files from my “C” drive.

    Can anyone tell me what might be going on and how I can correct it?

    Respectfully, Graphics Guy

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    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    The first thing I would do is see how many apps are starting with Win 7 and shut MOST of them down. Use What's in Startup and close all the useless stuff that has no need to be running in the background. As you can see I only have 4 apps starting when Windows starts.

    What'sInStartup.jpg

    Many apps believe they must run at all times, that just ain't so!
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


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    Try disabling unneeded services:
    http://www.blackviper.com/WinXP/servicecfg.htm
    http://www.techspot.com/tweaks/win2k...es/index.shtml

    You might also try running the System File Checker (read more here: http://support.microsoft.com/?kbid=310747)
    To do so,
    Click Start->Run->SFC /Purgecache
    Start->Run->SFC /Scannow

    *You may need your installation source (CD) as this process will replace missing/corrupted drivers on your system.

    Failing that, you can try the following method to eliminate items from startup:
    Click Start->Run->MSCONFIG

    In the Startup tab, start out by disabling everything you're unfamiliar with (or everything if you're unsure).
    Optionally, you can also disable non-Microsoft services from the Services tab.
    If the problem no longer exists after a reboot, then you can narrow it down as one of the items in your
    startup.

    dmay
    Dale May

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    Quote Originally Posted by Graphics Guy View Post
    Hi to all,

    I am running Windows7 64 bit with 4 GB memory on my Dell Inspiron 530 computer and it has started to slow down to a crawl.
    Hey Graphics Guy

    I've been getting a similar problem over the past 1-2 months, everything locks up or goes reeeeaaaaly sloooooow for a while
    Its intermittent, like 2-3 times a week, it either goes away while I get a coffee, or do I restart

    My gut feeling is that its graphics related I run a GeForce 8400 GS, G98 GPU, 128MB memory.
    Not happening often enough for me to roll my sleeves up and investigate fully - if I had a spare Graphics adapter I'd give it a go

    I did plug a bluetooth dongle in about two weeks ago for a speaker - it could be the problem - but I'm 90% sure it was happening before that.

    I hate graphics related problems - I think I have the latest drivers from NVIDIA

    I dont use WLM, nor Nortons - I'm on Outlook and MSE - so we can put WLM, Nortons, Outlook & MSE to the side

    For me it mainly happens in Firefox, occasionally FastPictureViewer or xPlorer2

    cheers nw2222

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    Super Moderator jwitalka's Avatar
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    Is the PC slow in safe mode? If not, try the clean boot diagnostic procedure.

    Jerry

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    Quote Originally Posted by Graphics Guy View Post
    Hi to all,

    I am running Windows7 64 bit with 4 GB memory on my Dell Inspiron 530 computer and it has started to slow down to a crawl. Anything I click on takes several seconds to activate. I get the green circle with the arrow spinning around inside of it. When I try to Copy/Paste, both actions take a long time now where it use to be almost immediate. If I click on a URL in Windows Live Mail most of the time I get a box with an “X” in a red circle and the message “There was a problem sending the command to the program” and I get nothing but a blank screen. When I type something on my keyboard occasionally it will take a second or two to show up on my computer screen. I have Norton Internet Security 2011 installed and it is up to date and a Full System Scan indicates that there is nothing wrong. I have also cleaned out the temporary files from my “C” drive.

    Can anyone tell me what might be going on and how I can correct it?

    Respectfully, Graphics Guy
    I have this problem, and a lot more. It all started three weeks back. Have been working 15 hours a day x 18 days to solve it. No success yet.

    1. Running W7Ultimate 64b Dell XPS 1330 4GB. A click takes minutes to hours to respond. I sometimes hard press power button to shut down and restart. The desktop icons do not flicker when the mouse moves over them. It takes quite a while for that to happen.

    2. SFC /scannow does not scan more than 7 per cent??? Really confusing. DOS is suppose to take over the control!
    Just read 'dmay' suggestion to do a 'SFC /Purgecache'...will do that next time my computer is running.

    3. Windows Explorer crashes. Even in safe mode. Error 0xc0000185. How to set this right?

    4. I uninstalled Windows Service Pack 1. And tried non-format re-install. Encountered 5 failures?
    Thought, MS Office 2010 SP1 may be preventing. Tried to uninstall it. But no success three times.
    Now I have stopped all updates till the problem is solved.

    5. Windows inbuilt backup image did not install. I think windows back up is useless. Can any body advise a better alternative? Thanks.

    6. The computer as stopped backing up data on an external hard drive. Even catch/copy and move to Xternal HD does a few shipments and then stops. Must be Windows Explorer Error (above).

    7. Windoes Security Essential did not find any virus. I've also tried Trend Micro Online scan. No problem was found. Right now doing Iobit deep scan......
    By the way, Windows Essential does not work in safe mode!! Now that is really surprising. How does one do a safe clean up. Has Microsoft forgotten about it?

    8 Have also uninstalled Firefox, and many other utilities, and plug ins, add ons etc. But the problems lives on....

    Any help from any one of you will be highly appreciated.

    Mighty Thanks
    Roop
    [twitter][twitter]rssra[/twitter][/twitter]

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    Plutonium Lounger Medico's Avatar
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    You system sounds like it's really trashed. A Repair Install may work, but a complete reinstall might be in order. If you have not already done so, you can download the Win 7 iso file that includes SP1 directly from Digital River. Burn the iso to DVD and use this instead of your original installation media. Use it with your original key.

    I use Acronis True Image Home for my Imaging needs. (I use versions 2010 and 2011, have not upgraded to 2012 yet) Has never failed me. There are many very good apps mentioned in these forums, especially in the Security and Backup forum. Take a read.
    BACKUP...BACKUP...BACKUP
    Have a Great Day! Ted


    Sony Vaio Laptop, 2.53 GHz Duo Core Intel CPU, 8 GB RAM, 320 GB HD
    Win 8 Pro (64 Bit), IE 10 (64 Bit)


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    Are you running Secunia PSI, by any chance?

  14. #9
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    One other possibility: how long has it been since you cleaned out the inside of your case? Dust can accumulate in various places, like the cooling fins on your CPU. That dust will inhibit air flow and can cause the CPU to reduce its speed to keep the temperature low. I have solved many slowdowns by the deftly applying a can of compressed air.

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    Outside of the general physical housekeeping, you need to try to determine what the cause is before making changes to your system. Also, you can do such things as use disk cleanup to delete temporary files. You can begin with tools such as Task Manager or Process Explorer to see what is going on during the slowdowns.

    NOTE: Before you make changes to your system you should backup your system.

    Joe

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    As Joe517 and cafed00d have pointed out, there can be times when physical stuff contributes to problems; however, in my experience the three most common hardware culprits which might either cause or contribute to massive 'desktop' problems are RAM modules, which can be re-seated to ensure better contact; a failing or insufficient power supply, or a hard drive going south.

    If those three things can be at least provisionally ruled out, then from the symptoms given by Graphics Guy, northwood2222, and roop, I'd start looking at software and OS. Simplest place to start is with any recently installed apps or utilities - did the problems start afterwards? Next, as suggested, lean-out start up programs to what is necessary - if necessary, disconnect from Internet and local network and disable security apps as well. Did this help? If so, re-enable things one by one to find the culprit or culprits.

    Truly, though, I suspect that the cause is a tad more basic. “There was a problem sending the command to the program” and an incomplete scannow, for instance, suggest to me that Windows is having internal problems.

    Given the range and seriousness of these and others symptoms/complaints (those are some massive slows), I tend to think the simplest and cleanest approach would be to do a repair install - this will restore missing or corrupted system files without munging your own stuff, although I'd suggest backing up any really important files first (better safe than sorry, right?) This may seem a tad drastic, but when I think back to all the time spent on my own machines and those of friends, family, and customers, while it may be nice and educational to find out the "real cause", the time, effort, and all-too-frequent frustration involved is better to be avoided. A repair install _should_ fix stuff. IF it doesn't, then it's most likely that your install is hosed or you've got wonky hardware. (Yes, there are a few other possibilities, but let's not go borrowing trouble, alright?)

    For future: keep your system clean, hardware and software. Be careful of what you install and what changes you make to system configuration. Use CCleaner (mind the settings) or Windows' own cleanup utilities - Fred Langa has written several useful guides for doing so. Use independently-verified effective security apps. I used eset AV, and TuneUp Utilities for years and was well satisfied. Microsoft Security Essentials seems to be pretty good overall. Do install Secunia PSI - it really helps keep everything up to date and it really works. Do find, and _test_, an image backup app that works for you; for years I used DriveImageXML - it's free, it works, and it saved my bacon three times (I don't know if it's been updated or works on Win7; my only remaining Windows install is XP in a vm, and I never tried on my laptop when it still had Win7).

    Finally, unless you need graphics-intensive stuff such as newer games or video editing, you may wish to consider starting with a clean install and then running your every-day stuff under an OS in a virtual machine. I use VirtuallBox; it's free, it's easy, and it works. Unfortunately, if you're running Windows as host, you're gonna need to buy another licenced copy to do so. And alternative would be to use a vanilla major Linux distro as host OS and install Windows into VirtualBox from DVD or iso image. The advantage to doing this, similar to using a back-up image, is that recovering a munged vm OS is a simple as reading a file off the hard drive and _much faster_ than recovery using a 'normal' image.

    Oh, yeah, sorry 'bout the long post; I just really empathize with these kind of probs, having had my share, and got carried away. Hope this helped.

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    Bronze Lounger DrWho's Avatar
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    I do this stuff all the time in my Computer Business. That's usually the very first thing a new customer will tell me, "it's running so' slow".

    The first thing I'd do is completely disable Norton, every part of it. It's known worldwide and on every help forum to be the cause of many if not most slowdowns. If a computer is already loaded down with TSR's and Services, Norton can oft times bring that computer right down to its knees.

    Temp files and temporary internet files are stored in many locations throughout the HD. They ALL need to be removed. Only a person with extensive knowledge can find and remove them all. There are programs that will do that. Even running Disk Cleanup, available in every version of Windows, is a good place to start. Running it in the Extended mode is even better.

    Then make sure the OS is seeing all your installed ram. I just worked on a Dell where there were four 256meg ram sticks and Windows was only seeing two of them. After cleaning and reseating the ram, that problem was taken care of.

    I'm surprised that PC even booted up, because the CMOS battery was down to just 2 volts. BAD! That battery should be changed if the voltage drops below 3.0 volts.

    Also, the PC was 'howling' because of all the dirt in the power supply and exhaust fan (CPU cooling fan).

    The only thing that cannot be fixed by cleaning and tuning the HD and OS, is a condition that I used to see pretty often in IDE drives,
    where the drive would go into very SLOW mode. Only a new drive would fix that problem.

    I would try running that computer for a little while in "SAFE mode with Networking" and see how it performs.

    good luck,
    The Doctor
    Experience is truly the best teacher.

    Backup! Backup! Backup! GHOST Rocks!

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    Quote Originally Posted by Graphics Guy View Post
    Hi to all,

    I am running Windows7 64 bit with 4 GB memory on my Dell Inspiron 530 computer and it has started to slow down to a crawl. Anything I click on takes several seconds to activate. I get the green circle with the arrow spinning around inside of it. When I try to Copy/Paste, both actions take a long time now where it use to be almost immediate. If I click on a URL in Windows Live Mail most of the time I get a box with an “X” in a red circle and the message “There was a problem sending the command to the program” and I get nothing but a blank screen. When I type something on my keyboard occasionally it will take a second or two to show up on my computer screen. I have Norton Internet Security 2011 installed and it is up to date and a Full System Scan indicates that there is nothing wrong. I have also cleaned out the temporary files from my “C” drive.

    Can anyone tell me what might be going on and how I can correct it?

    Respectfully, Graphics Guy
    I have a similar system only HP, with a Geek Squad membership. I ran into problems with typing lag, in any application, screen would just freeze, then blurt out 7 or 8 letters, half of them wrong since I am a lousy typist. I had them remote in to my system and found the problem was having Secunia's PSI installed, though I had it for years, because it monitors everything all the time and caused cpu spikes up to 45% frequently. They recommended I uninstall, I did and the lag was gone, so am back to using the online scanner only. I also use a program called Autoruns to determine what I let start with my system, far more detailed than msconfig. Some newsletter I got recommended changing my page file, lowering it, I did, and got the lag problem back, reverted to Windows recommended size and no issues since. Sometimes you fix one thing and break another, lol. :^)

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    Quote Originally Posted by genej313 View Post
    I have a similar system only HP, with a Geek Squad membership. I ran into problems with typing lag, in any application, screen would just freeze, then blurt out 7 or 8 letters, half of them wrong since I am a lousy typist. I had them remote in to my system and found the problem was having Secunia's PSI installed, though I had it for years, because it monitors everything all the time and caused cpu spikes up to 45% frequently. They recommended I uninstall, I did and the lag was gone, so am back to using the online scanner only. I also use a program called Autoruns to determine what I let start with my system, far more detailed than msconfig. Some newsletter I got recommended changing my page file, lowering it, I did, and got the lag problem back, reverted to Windows recommended size and no issues since. Sometimes you fix one thing and break another, lol. :^)
    Secunia PSI can indeed cause this, especially if you have it configured to update some apps automatically. If you configure it not tp update apps, the issue will be done.

  23. #15
    Bronze Lounger Maudibe's Avatar
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    The first step you should try and a few other thoughts

    1. At the first scratch of your head, you should try a simple system restore. Has there been any recent system changes, installs, or updates?

    2. Everyone has given good points especially Dr. Who, who recommends disabling Norton completely. Many have been afflicted with the ccSvchst.exe Norton file stuck at 50% CPU usage driving user's computers to a halt. Open task manager when the slow down occurs and see if this is so. You can disable Norton's services from starting to see if this helps. Make sure no 2 AV programs are running at the same time.

    3. I would highly recommend keeping Secunia PSI installed on your computer but disable the startup feature by deselecting it within the program's settings. Just do a routine scan with regular scheduled maintenence. This will prevent PSI.exe, SUA.exe, and PSI_tray.exe files (depending on version) from running, slowing computer startup since Secunia loves to do an initial scan when Windows boots and frequent checking when it runs.

    4. In addition to the malware scans you might have done, to rule out infections as the cause of the slow down, I would also recommend spot scans using MalwareBytes, http://www.malwarebytes.org/, and SuperAntiSpyware, http://superantispyware.com/. Both are free and both are excellent.

    5. Heat is a major concern. Some processors are designed to throttle down when they get too hot to prevent permanent damage. As suggested, a thorough cleaning would be prudent with compressed air. Don't rely on vaccuuming. I have worked on many computers with components riddled with dust by owners who think thier computer is clean using a vaccuum technique. Install a temperature monitoring program to display the running temps of the CPU and hard drives. I use Core Temp, http://majorgeeks.com/Core_Temp_d5665.html and Speecy, http://www.piriform.com/speccy. These are excellent utilities with a small footprint and are free. Make sure the CPU fan is operational and fan speed adequate. Reapplying new thermal paste to the cooler may lower temps as well as upgrading the cooling system.

    6. If you are not using an SSD (solid state drive), try defragging your hard drive. Note the amount of free space available as defrag requires space to read from and write to. This may also clue you into the amount of space available for the the OS's page file (or swap file). If the size of the page file becomes too limited, the computer will slow especially with numerous programs running. You can clone your OS to a larger hard drive if needed or add an additional hard drive with a small partition on the outer sectors of the disk (faster read) for the page file and a second much larger partition for storage.

    7. Faulty or failing memory, as mentioned, can also create problems. I would suggest running Memtest 86+ at boot up to check your memory. http://www.memtest.org/ Just burn it to a disk and reboot your computer with the disk installed. If the disk is bypassed and Windows starts, you have to enter the BIOS and adjust the boot order of devices to have the CD/DVD boot before the bootdisk.

    8. While you are at it, download a free hard drive benchmark utility and test the speed of your hard drive. You can get an idea of it by looking at the Windows Experience Index Primary Hard disk component score. Note in Windows Disk Management, the healthiness of the drive.

    9. As Ted Meyers suggests, limit the amount running programs/services at startup. You can use the msconfig utility, Windows Sysinternal's Autoruns http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/s...rnals/bb963902, or if confident, edit the startup programs from within the regisrty.

    10. A reliable free backup software that I find comparable to Acronis is the free EaseUs ToDo Backup, http://www.todo-backup.com/products/...p-software.htm. It is a standard program I install on all computers that I have worked on after a clean, repair, and tune-up. When they mess them up, I get them back up and running in 10 minutes.

    11. When all fails, then and only then, would I attempt a system repair or re-install. A fresh copy of an OS is a beautiful thing but the updates and re-loading of programs is a pain. Don't forget to back up!

    12. Once you have your system up and running well, benchmark the system with a benchmarking utility so you can compare it with a re-benchmark if the system slows. It will readily be apparent where the slow down is occurring. One of the free benchmark programs I use is NovaBench, http://novabench.com/.

    HTH
    Last edited by Maudibe; 2011-10-28 at 06:00.

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