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Unexplainable computer slowdown


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#1
nashville-bound

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Hi, i'm having an issue with my computer that i just cant figure out a reason for. For the last couple of weeks when i surf the web pages hang while they load. Programs take longer to respond. I cant use Adobe to read PDF files. I can no longer have multiple programs running without having either a major slowdown or having to restart the computer. I originally posted in the Hijack this forum thinking it was a malware problem. Essexboy tried to help me but so far we havent figured out what could be causing this. Here's the original thread so that you can see what we've tried.

http://www.geekstogo...ng-t191009.html
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#2
Ztruker

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Hi nashville-bound, read through your thread working with Essexboy, so I'm up to speed.

Let me ask a couple basic questions.

1. Have you cleaned out your TIF (Temporary Internet Files) recently?
2. What are your Virtual Memory settings?
3. Did you make any hardware or software changes around the time this started happening?

For TIF in IE6, see here: http://www.microsoft...clearcache.mspx
For TIF in IE7, see here: http://www.mvps.org/...02/delcache.htm

For Virtual memory, see here: http://technet2.micr...3.mspx?mfr=true
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#3
nashville-bound

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1. Yes, although i dont use IE unless i absolutely have to. I use Firefox 99% of the time.

2. I have it set for Custom Size, Initial 960 MB, Maximum 1920 MB, Space Available 23992 MB

3.I didnt make any changes
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#4
The Skeptic

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It's impossible to tell at this stage if the source of the problem is in the hardware or software (corrupted files). Please do the following:

1: Open Task Manager > Processes. Look in the CPU what processes load your cpu heavily when the slow down occurs. Also report Idle Processes.

2: Download HD Tune and run a hard disk test. Choose Benchmark and Start. Please report Average data transfer when the test ends.

3: Run a memory test. Download Microsoft memory diagnostic tool using my list of links below. Follow the instructions and create a bootable CD. Boot with the CD in place and run the test for half an hour or so. Report if there are any errors.

4: Download Sandra XII Lite. Choose Tools > Burn-IN Computer. Use the green arrow keys until you reach a list of tests. Check the first two, related to Processor and the three, just above the bottom of the list, related to Memory. Keep a report to your desktop and attach it to your next post. The test takes time so please be patient.
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#5
nashville-bound

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1. Here's the big ones

firefox.exe 85,868 k
svchost.exe 27,920 k
vsmon.exe 24,084 k
ashServ.exe 16,508 k
explorer.exe 15, 356 k

Idle processes 16 k


2. Average data transfer 48.3 MB/sec


3. No errors on the memory test


4. Report attached

Attached File  System_Report.txt   2.98KB   39 downloads
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#6
nashville-bound

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Anybody out there? :)
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#7
The Skeptic

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What we look for in the task manager is not memory usage (as you wrote) but cpu usage. Open task manager again, expand it to full screen and let us know which items use a lot (say, over 1O%) OF CPU resources.
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#8
clennox

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KK, seems all everyone is doing is just askin you for information. Theres more than enough already.

Firstly.....CELERON!!! (nicknamed : Celery) is total crap. Its a cheap low-end CPU and is renound for 'GO SLOWS' after a few months. Every single one i have installed for customers has done exactly the same. Yet they still buy it cos is cheap. It cant handle massive loads. Read HERE. Or type in 'PROBLEMS WITH CELERON' in a google search and read some of the stuff.

Chances are your CPU is 'tired' and may need replacing.

Also, all your processes you have running are in fact essentially applications. Just they have no 'window' that you can see on your desktop. You have numerous 'virus/spyware/etc' packages running. Everytime you do something, each one of these packages will scan any incoming data for viruses etc... which will slow down your pages from opening. Add a celeron into the equation and you have a formula for a 'DIAL UP' internet simulator.

In my opinion, i would go get yourself a nice AMD Athlon CPU. Find out what your board can handle, and make it a happy PC once again. Might be worth upgrading your RAM too.

Hope this helps :) Let me know.

EDIT: Forgot to mention...... IF you CPU is tired and finding itself overloaded, this may be causing your PC to reboot. If it was insufficient RAM it would just freeze for long periods of time while it cleared space/writes to the page file(Virtual RAM on the HDD....very slow). If you are using vista, you can get yourself a memory key, 1 or 2 gig should be sufficient, and plug it into the back of your PC. There is a feature called ready boost on vista that will use your memory key as RAM.

Edited by clennox, 31 March 2008 - 05:26 AM.

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#9
nashville-bound

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Thanks Skeptic for replying. :)

Okay...System Idle Process is ranging anywhere betwen 85-98% System has gone up to 13-14% Firefox.exe has done up to 97-98% every time i pull up a new webpage.
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#10
The Skeptic

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Please do the following:

First: Uninstall Firefox and try to work with IE. Latter on you can reload firefox. Second: Uninstall Yahoo, google, or any other toolbar that may be installed on your browsers.

To speed-up your computer please do the following: (For most downloads use links in my signature).

1: Click Start > run. Type msconfig. Go to the "startup" tab and uncheck everything which is not essential to run in the background. Leave only antimalware programs running. (if you change your mind latter you can reactivate those programs). Confirm and reboot. Upon rebooting a message will show up. Please check it and continue. For laptop users: do not uncheck items that clearly relate to the operation of the computer.

2: Download and install CCleaner. Do not install the Yahoo toolbar that comes packed with the program. Run the "cleaner" and "registry" options a number of times until nothing is left to be cleaned. Use the backup option (in "registry") when prompted to do so. Run it as is. Do not check items that are not checked by default.

4: Run disk defragmantation. For this operation I use and recommend Auslogic Disk Defrag. Alternatively you can use Microsoft's tool.

5: Download and run PageDefrag. This program defrags registry and page files which are not defragged by other means. Set it to work upon next boot and reboot.

6: Press ctr+alt+del to enter task manager. Under Performance tab look for "physical memory". Please report Total and Available.

7: Enter "My Computer", right-click drive C: -> Properties. Please report Capacity and Free Space of your hard disk (each partition, if you have more then one).

8: Go to Device Manager, expand IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers, Double click IDE Primary Channel, click Advanced Settings and write down what you see in Current Transfer Mode. Repeat the procedure for Secondary IDE Channel.


Note: Usually I include in this list a thorough scan for malware. I assume this is unnecessary in your case, after getting a clean bill of health from G2G's malware forum.
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#11
nashville-bound

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Physical Memory: Total 1046528 Available 733480

Capacity of Hard Drive: 37.2GB Free Space: 22.0 GB

IDE Primary Channel: Device 0 = Ultra DMA Mode 5
Device 1 = Not Applicable

Secondary IDE Channel: Device 0 = Ultra DMA Mode 2
Device 1 = Not Applicable
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#12
The Skeptic

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Try the following:

1: Uninstall Firefox and reboot. Use IE for the time being. If you run IE7, please uninstall it in add/remove programs in Control Panel. This will roll you back to IE6.

2: Disable your firewall temporarily (please report what firewall you are using). Any improvement? If not:

3: Open Internet Explorer > tools > internet options. Open the following tabs and set to default: Security (each of the four options), Privacy, Advanced.

4: If still no good Go to this site and run reset tcp/ip .
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#13
nashville-bound

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Did you forget a link in step #4?


ETA: I just did an Avast scan to be on the safe side and it found Win32 CTX

C:\\WINDOWS\system32\ActiveScan\pskavs.dll

I placed it in the chest. Do i need to do anything else to remove it?


I'm using Windows firewall...I'll go ahead and disable it and see if there's any improvement.

Edited by nashville-bound, 01 April 2008 - 11:59 PM.

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#14
The Skeptic

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Sorry, here is the link. Regarding Avast, you can leave the bug where it is. It can do no harm while in the chest.
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#15
The Skeptic

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Just as an afterthought: Looking for details about the bug you mentioned it seems to be quite a serious one. I think it would be worthwhile to inform Essexboy about the find and take his advice. Please do so by opening again the topic in the malware forum.
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