Computors running very slow?


Old 02-19-08, 01:53 PM
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Computors running very slow?

My computors seem to be running very slow and hanging up. I got rid of unused programs to make a little room on the hard drive (I now have 1.5gig free) only has total of 14gig on my older computor and even put some more ram in. up to 512 ram Will a external HD help?

The more recent Comp., I am in the process of adding ram to the ( pentium4 1700) unit it only has 256 ram.

What else should I be doing to get these thing back up to speed?
did reconfig and cleaned out old files
Is it time for a format?
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Old 02-19-08, 09:30 PM
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To answer your first question, no an external drive will not really help you in this situation, unless you have files (mp3's, pictures, etc) that you could move off the system drive to free up more space, 1.5gigs of free space is not very much.

If windows has been on that machine for a long time and it's been used alot, it might just be time for a format and reinstall. It is possible that there is some bad hardware too, but there would have to be more troubleshooting done to determine that. If you're not too worried about the machine, do a format and reinstall and see how it runs. That can fix alot of problems.

For your second question on the p4 1700. If it still has the original install of windows, then yes I would do a reinstall on that one as well. I may get flamed for suggesting reinstalls so quickly on here, but sometimes it's just not worth it to dink around with a machine when a quick reload will do the job just fine, not to mention it will "freshen up" the machine.
Old 02-19-08, 10:40 PM
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Yeah, I think a reformat and finding a way to free up considerably more space on the HD is in order.
Old 02-20-08, 04:49 AM
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I hate the word format when it comes to older hard drives. I use old computers for my hobby and to format a drive can be a pain sometimes.
Make sure you have a copy of the drivers for all of your hardware installed on the old hard drive. I have had to spend hours trying to find drivers for all that stuff online or on cds for my computer after formating the drive. Sometimes windows has some drivers that will get you going but in some cases they are not exact drivers and things might not work as well as before.
Look for things you can't replace such as pictures and needed files for software and also look at your software and make sure you have CD copies of those programs.
I am sure your system will speed up if formatted but that should be the last choice.
Old 02-20-08, 10:59 AM
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Applications running at startup and running on your tool bar are usually the biggest culprit to slow systems, the other would be Spyware and Viruses.

If both of these machines visit the internet then they need to be scanned, not using Norton which slows down the fastest of computers. There are smaller and better freeware AntiVirus and spyware apps out there than the larger bloated apps. Try Adaware by Lavasoft for Spyware removal and Avast for virus scanning.

To see what applications are running at startup look at your Start Menu > Programs > Start Up and there are items that load from the Windows Registry. Go to the Microsoft site and search for Sysinternals, there is a tool under Process Utilities called Autoruns, it shows you all the items running at startup.

If you have Office installed you really dont need any of its startup items running they're really just chewing up ram.

Clean-up your temp files, look at your temp directories and delete them. Delete any temporary internet files and installed objects. To do this go to Internet Options > General > temp internet files - Setting > View objects and delete them. They will re-install when needed. Also set your temporary internet files to only use 50M.

Something else to look at, Windows Virtual memory (aka Swap file) is a portion of HD space that acts like extra RAM, this being HD space can become fragmented, this however will not get defragged when running it on your computer. The route to go to fix this is change your virtual memory setting, you can change it to a fixed value, reboot, defrag, and then reset it back to the auto setting. Ideally having free HD space (more than 20%) free is a good thing, when you run out of HD space your eating up potential swap file size.

The other thing with your 2 machines is you have a dreadful amount of RAM you 512M is really the absolute min for anything newer than Windows 98 it may not say it in the books but it you want more performance and Ram will help.

Lastly why re-install might be ideal. When you install applications they can add quite a bit to the system registry and profile directories, a lot of times un-installing applications will leave orphaned DLLs, registry settings, profile settings etc.. Re-installing Windows starts from a fresh slate, but as you start adding all you apps back on the system they all start chewing up RAM you want to limit the item running at startup and on your lower right corner of your start menu to save as much RAM / System resources as possible.
Old 02-21-08, 08:35 PM
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I had a 14 gig HD on my 1998 Quantex running windows 95
If your PC is that old - I think you should upgrade your newer unit & put your 14 gig to rest..
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