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Severe screen lag


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#1
skeletonsaurus

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I recently reinstalled Windows XP and now witness severe lag when scrolling down webpages or dragging non-maximized windows. There is no lag when I minimize a window, switch windows, or when I violently fling the mouse-icon around onscreen. There is also no lag when watching videos on youtube. I am not sure if this is hardware or not, I have a Dell LCD screen and have not been able to test another monitor. I have tested both 16 bit and 32 bit as well as varying resolutions. I've also tried onboard screen options, e.g. auto correct, phase, pixel clock, etc. I've also tried downloading the drivers from the Dell website. Does anyone have any advice?


Thanks.
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#2
The Admiral

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How did you reinstall Windows XP? Did you install all of the appropriate drivers following the reinstall? Why did you reinstall XP?
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#3
skeletonsaurus

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How did you reinstall Windows XP? Did you install all of the appropriate drivers following the reinstall? Why did you reinstall XP?


I reinstalled Windows XP from the lame DVD that came with the (Dell) PC (i.e. not a full fledged Windows XP disc, such as one purchases at the store, but rather one that reads "For Distribution Only With a New Dell PC). I manually installed drivers for the video card, the modem and the lcd screen. I have not manually installed any other drivers, so if any are there they were autoinstalled, though the Windows DVD read "This DVD is not for reinstallation of programs or drivers", so I doubt that it autoinstalled. I reinstalled XP because on boot up my computer had a "missing or corrupt hal.dll". I could only boot from disc, by running the boot.ini.

Thanks, let me know if you need anymore information.
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#4
The Admiral

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Haha don't tell a Dell guy that his DVDs are lame. The only difference between the Dell Windows DVD and a Windows DVD you buy at the store is the fact that it doesn't ask you for a product key, and it only works with Dells. Every other function is the same. :)

Whether using a "real" Windows DVD or the Dell DVD, you'll need to install all of your drivers. It is very likely that a missing driver, or a driver installed in the incorrect order could cause this problem. This Article from the Dell Solution Network (Knowledge Base) explains the order you need to install drivers, which ones you need, and where to get them from. Simply click the blue plus (+) sign next to the appropriate topic. Here's a quick rundown, in order:
  • Desktop System Software (DSS)
  • Chipset
  • Video Adapter
  • Network Interface Card (NIC)
  • Audio Adapter
  • Modem
Then you can look in your Device Manager by going to Start, then right-clicking My Computer and selecting Manage. Select Device Manager on the left pane of this window, and wait for the right side to populate. Then look for any device with either a yellow ? or ! next to it - that device is missing a driver.

Edited by The Admiral, 06 November 2008 - 09:59 PM.

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#5
skeletonsaurus

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Hopefully it is just a driver issue. What do you recommend? Should I uninstall the drivers I already installed and reinstall everything in that order?


Thanks again.
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#6
The Admiral

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Nah, don't uninstall anything, just start at the top of the list and install everything, regardless of whether you have installed the driver or not.

Also, please reset your monitor to factory defaults. I'm pretty confident that the problem isn't the monitor itself since it seems to be application specific. Let's put it back to factory settings to avoid any problems in the future.
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#7
skeletonsaurus

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OK, I tried reinstalling everything in that order and it still hasn't resolved the issue. Let me know if you have any other advice. I read on another forum someone had a similar problem and one of the responses was,

"think i may have bad news for ya. i had that happen not too long ago. and it also lagged on textures in games. was real blotchy. and it was my hard drive taking out. there must be some windows virus floating around that is killing drives. we have had alot on here and have had alot on yahoos help chat and tech chat on aol. so only advice i got is back up important data. other possibilitys is ram bad or overheating. or a virus causing lag on the computer. but if you dont really have much lag opening programs then that rules them too out. see when you visit a site it downloads the page to your temp internet files then when you scroll it access's data. well your harddrive is not processing data correctly or ram cpu. but i bet its that hard drive. so locate restore disks, and back up data. you can get the restore disks online through your pc manufacture website."

That's from here if you want to read it.

Anyway, thanks again.
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#8
The Admiral

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Since the problem started when you reinstalled Windows XP, I doubt that this is a hardware issue. I'd like to test the hard drive just in case. But I need to know if you still have the diagnostic partition on the system. Can you go to the Start menu, right-click My Computer and select Manage. Select Disk Management on the left pane of this window, then tell me if you have a 60(ish) MB EISA partition at the beginning of the hard drive, before the other partitions. Here is an example:

Posted Image
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#9
skeletonsaurus

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It's still there and it reads "healthy". It is 55 Mb and has 85% free. Fault tolerance reads "no". It looks similar to your posted picture.
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#10
The Admiral

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Let's try running those diagnostics then.

Turn on the computer, and start tapping the <F12> key. Arrow down to Boot to Utility Partition and press Enter, and it should get you into the Utility Partition, which is a gray window on a blue screen. Select Test System if that is an option, then Custom Test, then find the Hard Drives section. Click the (+) sign next to Hard Drives, then the (+) sign next to your hard drive. Don't worry, there will only be one. Then click on the name of your hard drive again so it is highlighted, and press the Run Tests button in the bottom left corner. This will take a while, but you'll need to sit at your laptop the whole time and watch for any error codes. Please write down any errors you do find and post them back up here.

Edited by The Admiral, 08 November 2008 - 08:58 PM.

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#11
skeletonsaurus

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There were no errors found. I doubt this symptom is related, but since there is a minuscule chance it could be pertinent: the "stand by" option when I click on "Turn off computer" is no longer available. It is there, but greyed and is not capable of being selected. If it doesn't pertain, then don't worry about it since I could care less about the stand by option.
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#12
skeletonsaurus

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Hey, I messed with the drivers some more and it ended up being the video driver.

I had to manually install it, it turned out the "extract" option from the cd-rom was not functioning properly.


Anyway, thanks again.
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#13
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Good to hear you got it fixed! :)
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