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  1. #1
    New Lounger attilathepun's Avatar
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    Little or no CPU activity about same time every day

    I'm running Win7 on an HP Compaq 6200 Pro with an i3-2100 CPU and 4GB RAM. Usually have 8-10-12 windows open.

    Just about every day, sometime around 11am give or take, my machine goes into a real slowdown. Process Explorer says the CPU is nearly idle. The hard drive activity light is solid on. And what ever keystroke or mouse click I do has no effect for several seconds and then suddenly does. This begins regardless of whether I'm hard at work or even away from my desk. It lasts for a good half hour or more, then suddenly everything is back to normal until tomorrow.

    Is there any relatively simple straightforward tool I can employ to find out WHAT's causing my hard drive to go into hyperdrive and kill response times? Or any settings I could tweak to improve the situation?

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    Bit Bum (2015-11-15)

  3. #2
    jwoods
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    I would take a look in Task Scheduler and see if you have anything scheduled to run around 11 AM.

  4. #3
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    Task Scheduler is a great idea. Here's another.

    You can get this information from Task Manager as well. Start Task Manager at 11 am. You can get there with [Ctrl-Alt-Delete] and select it off the list.

    Now click on the Processes tab. You need 3 columns called I/O Reads, I/O Writes, and I/O Other. I don't think these appear by default so click View | Select Columns... to select them.

    Now you can sort these by clicking on the column heading. Click each one in turn to see what is causing all the activity. The Description is the most helpful for identifying the culprit while the Image Name tells you the internal name of the program doing the deed.

  5. #4
    Super Moderator satrow's Avatar
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    Or, from Task Manager's Performance tab > click the Resource Monitor button, once perfmon (Resource Monitor's 'internal' name.) loads click on the Disk tab and expand the Disk Activity section for an almost real time view of the action.

    As above, click on the column headers to sort, Write and Total are likely to be of most use. Highlight a row and use Ctrl+C to copy the data if you need to.

  6. #5
    Super Moderator Rick Corbett's Avatar
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    Do you have Google Drive and/or Avast and/or MalwareBytes installed? On my own PC I've noticed that all 3 have scheduled events (file sync, AV definition check/download and system scan, respectively) that create a similar situation, i.e. swamping of hard disk I/O activity until the relevant background process has completed.

  7. #6
    4 Star Lounger
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    BTW if you use satrow's method, I find it often still leaves me scratching my head. Resource Monitor doesn't provide a good Description column, just the much less helpful Image column. However there is a way out.

    If you right click any row in the "Processes with Disk Activity", you get an option to Search Online. It's just a really basic Bing search of the file name in the Image column but it works reasonably well just the same.

    Just don't try this in the Disk Activity section. It doesn't work there, don't ask me why. These kind of interface inconsistencies drive me crazy; someone created a good feature and then stopped their work half way through.

  8. #7
    4 Star Lounger
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    Resource Monitor is probably the way to go, yet the slowdown could be something as simple as Windows Index updating itself, or your Backup program running. Whatever the cause, the slowdown is increased if your hard drive is several years old and over, say, 60% full. If you can bring yourself to spend a little cash keep an eye out for a bargain price on a good SSD. Over the last 2 weeks i've seen Sandisk, PNY, Mushkin and Crucial brands all going for around $149 - $169 for a 480GB - 500GB SSD (or $69 for a 240GB model). "Cloning" your existing Windows system from the old hard drive onto a new SSD will make your HP Compaq 6200 Pro feel even faster than when it was brand new! There may better price deals coming over the holiday shopping period. Regular forum users here can guide you step by step through the cloning process if you require assistance.

  9. #8
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    To attilathepun....
    I've had the exact same symptoms with my WIn7 PRO desktop although the time it happens appears to be random. Everything freezes for a time and then suddenly catches up and responds to all the key presses I made while its frozen.
    I'm looking forward to trying the submitted solutions the next time it happens.
    Glad to hear I'm not alone. Thanks for posting.
    Last edited by Bit Bum; 2015-11-15 at 13:45.

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