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  • Slow computer

    Here's the deal, if I start using the interent, it runs slow, real slow. But if I keep using it, it gets faster and faster. If I stop using the computer but have the net up it'll run slow at first and then pick up speed.

    Here's another thing my computer does, it runs real slow but if I restart my computer, it'll go back to fast for about 2-3 weeks before it slows down again. I've been doing this for about 1 year now, restarting the computer, so I can say it has a definet pattern and the only thing that is the same is time. I do defrag my computer regularly.
    Buy cheap, buy twice.

  • #2
    Re: Slow computer

    You likely have spyware that sucks up bandwidth and cpu when browsing the web. Especially in Internet Explorer.

    Another thing to check is if you have a software firewall (antivirus/spyware like norton running) then it will really slow the performance of your machine down.

    Josh

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    • #3
      Re: Slow computer

      Other possibilities.

      1. Do you have enough memory?

      If you browse the internet, then depending on the amount of memory you have and the amount of cache dedicated to the browser you may run out of RAM pretty fast and the operating system starts swapping files to disk. That slows things down. See if status light of the hard disk is on nearly solid on, as opposed to blinking occasionally.

      Also, if you happen to use pre 3.0 version of Firefox then you should upgrade. It was known to hog memory like there is no tomorrow.

      2.
      - Right click the task bar
      - Select task manager from the popup menu
      - The Performance tab and check if the CPU usage is high (above 70 or so %)
      - If it is then click the Processes tab.
      - Click the CPU header to sort by CPU usage (toggle ascending/descending sort). This will help you indentify which process is hogging the CPU and also how much memory it uses.
      - If memory is the issue then, still in the same tab, click Mem Usage header and find you culprit there.
      In order to understand recursion, one must first understand recursion.

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      • #4
        Re: Slow computer

        This sounds exactly like Josh said.
        Download a good spyware detection program, Spybot S&D is free and does a pretty good job.
        First time you scan you might be shocked, spyware isn't detected by anti-virus software.
        Your computer just gathers spyware as you surf websites, over time they can add up to a serious slowdown.

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        • #5
          Re: Slow computer

          This is one of the trickiest problems to track down because so many things can cause it. As mentioned start by the basics like running full system scans with a good antivirus/spyware to make sure you don't have any unwanted crap hogging your system in the background.

          If you feel the computer feels slow right after idle and the eventually speeds up you might have some sort of system services running in the background. Many are designed to run when the PC is idle and throttle down when activity is detected. This can be normal to a certain extent and can be far more pronounced depending on computer speed/memory/harddrive speed etc...

          How much RAM does the system have. If its an older system it might be a little short and starts caching to the disk as you open up more windows and programs. Severely fragmented drives can potentially make this worse.

          Like Josh said, some firewall or antivirus applications can be too aggressive in their scanning which will actually bog things down significantly. I ran into this with a version of Norton AV some years ago.

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          • #6
            Re: Slow computer

            Years ago, when we were using Windows 95 and Windows 98, we were plagued by things called "TSRs" - these are "Terminate and Stay Resident" programs. The more of them you had running, the slower your computer would be.

            On modern computers, much the same thing happens. The more Yahoo Messengers and toolbars and things you have running all the time, the slower your computing experience will be.

            And as you add more programs, you put more items in the registry, and often the programs will add widgets to your taskbar or tray.

            The computer has to search the registry for settings and whatnot and the bigger it is, the longer it takes.

            There's nothing so nice as a freshly-installed computer. Today, I have first-hand experience since my Linux box died and I had to replace it. I got the cheapest Wally-World computer I could: an eMachines. I hate them, mostly because the power supplies die and fry everything. But I can replace the power supply. This thing is running on a Celeron processor and so far it's amazingly quick. But then, it's nice and shiny new.

            I haven't installed Linux yet - I'll probably get into that later tonight and hope that it doesn't hose everything. :-) I'm going for my first dual-boot system because I don't want to lose XP. Too hard to come by these days.

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