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repair or replace?


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#1
angel5565

angel5565

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Any advice is appreciated - I have no idea who else to ask. I have an HP Pavilion dv1000 that is barely 3 years old. I know that's not new by computer standards, but it's not ancient either. But, it takes a lot of abuse, as I use it for work and spend lots of personal time at home.

My computer has started giving me regular problems, and I really can't decide whether to replace it or if it can be repaired. I would really like to get another year or so out of it, because a replacement right now is out of my budget. Here are the stats:

I've got 34.9 GB free, and 39.3 GB used memory. Running XP Home SP2, 1.50 GHz Intel Pentium M, 244 MB of RAM.

I've looked on several reputable sites, including this one, and run a number of virus/spyware scans to be sure I'm clean and that's not my problem. I've also taken tips from these sites to clean up the system, modify registry, etc. to speed up XP. I run CCleaner at least once a week, I keep most of my larger files on removable storage, I've recently defraged my drive.

My big problem is that about every other time I start windows it runs VERY SLOWLY. It takes forever to startup (I only have AVG virus, Scotty Watchdog as startup programs), and even after it boots up completely it runs like molasses. I usually restart once, maybe twice, and suddenly everything is fine. If it goes to sleep (like if the battery dies or if I close the lid without shutting down), it will not come back to life. I have to do a forced shut-down and then restart, and then usually have to restart at least one more time after that.

I'm also having periodic problems with items freezing - especially if I have more than 2 programs running (Example - at work I usually have outlook running while I'm typing in Word, and then I need to look something up online so I'll start firefox and suddenly everything will go haywire - running slowly, programs crashing, etc.). Other times everything is running just fine and with no warning at all I'm crashing all over the place.

Other problem - two of my three USB ports are trashed (I reconnected one but it came loose after a few days - prongs were broken off the other and it is beyond repair without professional help). The only remaining port periodically stops working, but works most of the time. I've been using a hub to be able to plug more than one thing in at a time, but sometimes I have hardware conflicts and can't use more than one thing at a time anyway.

SO, my question - do you think a pro can do anything to prolong the life of this computer, or are its days numbered? Again, I would love to get another year or so out of her, but I don't want to waste a lot of money beating a dead horse.

I didn't know who else to ask - any advice would be greatly appreciated!! Sorry for the long post.
Angela
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#2
Samm

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Hi Angela

When you bought the laptop, did it come with a recovery CD? If not, did it come with a Windows XP CD?

Basically, at the risk of stating the blatently obvious, the cause of your problems could be either software or hardware (or a bit of both). If it's a software issue and you have a recovery disk, then it would simple enough to run the recovery & put a fresh installation of XP back on the system. This has the added advantage that if you do have any malware etc lurking around, then it will be wiped by the recovery process. You would need to backup everything you wanted to keep first though, to an external drive or CD/DVD.

If after doing this, the problem still exist, then you're looking for a hardware problem. If the faulty component turns out to be a hard drive or the memory, then either of these are relatively simple and cheap to replace. If it's the motherboard thats faulty, forget it.
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#3
angel5565

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Wow, after everything I've tried, I can't believe I didn't think about running the recovery disc. Duh. :)

Thanks so much for your advice!
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