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  #1  
Old 2006-06-10, 10:58 PM
netyuppie's Avatar
netyuppie netyuppie is offline
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non-torrent related computer help

i'm having a really strange problem with my computer. about a week back it started acting strange. i was playing a fairly resource-hog of a game and listening to MP3s via foobar in the background. have done this with the same game for years with no problems. all of a sudden the music started skipping and the game was running very slow. rebooted after that and it was taking a lot longer to boot than normal. everything before the windows splash screen loads about thye same speed, but the windows screen takes about 3 minutes to finish. once windows is actually running, it takes another 2 or 3 minutes for all the tray icons to load (i dont have that many - maybe 8 or 9 loading). never had any troubles like this before with the machine. i keep pretty good care of my computer and am fairly experienced in maintanence/diagnostics.

i first thought it was a problem with my processor, so i checked it out. ran sisoftware sandra and it reported my v-core (i beleive? admit i dont know much what this is. power going to CPU?) was above rated maximum. i found out how to changed it & did so. problem remains.

a friend of mine thought it deffinatly sounded like a failing HD, and as skepitcal as i was (only running 1 HD, not even 6 months old), i set out to work on that next. first ran spinrite (never used it before - it took about 18 hours to completly scan a 300gb drive, this normal?) and it reported nothing wrong. next i ran chkdsk (took about 24 hours!) and it fixed some bad sectors relating to restore points. i then defraged (use diskeeper), which also reported the MFT was 84% full, so i expanded it.

safe to say (i hope) its not the hard drive. next thought was bad memory. i ran a program that measures used/free RAM for awhile, and with 1gb of RAM, right when windows starts already about 45% of that is used. when doing something like playing a game it shows less that 1% free. are these normal %'s? never really payed attention when it was running fine. RAM all checks out (so i think) besides one warning in sandra reading "large memory sizes should be made of registered/buffered memory)". not sure what to make of this.

anyone still with me? any ideas? im really stumped. it will still boot up and run, but everything takes at least 3x as long as it should. its just slow and i have no idea why. all temps are well within safe limits. have AVG and NOD32 running and full scan. virus free. have checked for spyware with 3 or 4 programs as well. all that was found was non critical. i'm gonna run a CPU test tonight and see if it has anything to say.

Last edited by netyuppie; 2006-06-10 at 11:44 PM.
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  #2  
Old 2006-06-11, 02:37 AM
walter2 walter2 is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

sounds like these some programs that you need to turn completely off that youre not using, you know, the ones that start when you boot up that you dont even know that are running.

and you should get a mac
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  #3  
Old 2006-06-11, 11:30 AM
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TheMamba TheMamba is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

I've run into problems like this with games as well. I doubt that foobar running in the background had anything to do with it since you were doing fine with that set up for so long.

A few things I've had to fix in the past:

Video Card - I was getting "Blue Screen of Death" with this one, so it's probably not the source of your problems, just keep it in the back of your mind.

Heat
Bad/Failing Hardrive

Let's talk about heat.

There's a program called Motherboard Monitor that I've always used:

http://mbm.livewiredev.com/

Assuming that your motherboard supports this program and its abilities, when you install and run MBM, you'll be able to see what your temperatures are for various things - CPU, Motherboard, etc. Back when I was having problems, after installing this I found out that I had some serious heat issues. Your motherboard and CPU manufacturer should have optimal heat ranges listed on their respective websites, so check against those.

What I ended up having to do was totally replace my CPU cooler fan with a high-performance model. Not expensive - think it was around $50 - but if you've never worked on the hardware of computers before...it could be a little nerve wracking. I got my CPU cooler from these guys: http://www.coolermaster-usa.com/



Along with that, I cleaned the hell out of my case with a "can of air" and installed a few more case fans to intake and exhaust air from the case itself.

So...download MBM (if your mobo is on their list), run it, and check the temps vs. the manufacturer's suggestions. Buy yourself a can of air and clean the hell out of your case. Cheapest and easiest solution. Then, go from there.

The extra case fans will never hurt you and they are cheap.

The CPU cooler...Most original CPU fans are OK for normal everday use. Games up the ante on all the computer's resources. If you're still having heat problems, I'd look into getting one of these. There are a TON of them out there so do some research on them first. I can point you in the right direction of some good websites if you need to go this route.
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  #4  
Old 2006-06-11, 11:40 AM
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TheMamba TheMamba is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

Oh shit...just saw that your temps are in a good range...so to heck with my last post.
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  #5  
Old 2006-06-11, 11:48 AM
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TheMamba TheMamba is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

Quote:
Originally Posted by netyuppie
safe to say (i hope) its not the hard drive. next thought was bad memory. i ran a program that measures used/free RAM for awhile, and with 1gb of RAM, right when windows starts already about 45% of that is used. when doing something like playing a game it shows less that 1% free. are these normal %'s? never really payed attention when it was running fine.
How big is your swap file?
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  #6  
Old 2006-06-11, 02:37 PM
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netyuppie netyuppie is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

yea like i said all temps are well within limits. keep my case clean with canned air usually every other week (got a dog that sheds like crazy) and 3 running case fans.
the problem tho isnt so much that it only acts up when i'm playing the game with foobar. the entire machine is running rediculously slow now. it just started with the music skipping while playing a game.
thought it may have something to do with the video card too for a little. i'm getting a weird screen of boxes of different colors when i boot between the windows splash screen and the desktop for about 3 seconds. but i cant imagine the rest of the problems i'm having with everything acting so slow being caused by that.
not sure about the swap file? mind telling me how to check quick? do you know what the buffered/registered memory message i'm getting is refering too?
thanks for the help.

edit - just did some searching. my swap file (paging file?) is 1536mb.

Last edited by netyuppie; 2006-06-11 at 02:43 PM.
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  #7  
Old 2006-06-11, 02:58 PM
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saltman saltman is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

My guess would be bad RAM or a failing hard drive.
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  #8  
Old 2006-06-11, 03:00 PM
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netyuppie netyuppie is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

going to try swapping RAM out in a little bit (2x 512mb). how else could i test for a failing HD? i thought what i did was pretty adequate.
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  #9  
Old 2006-06-11, 04:06 PM
netyuppie's Avatar
netyuppie netyuppie is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

well i swapped each stick of RAM out, trying 1, then the other, then both...no difference. safe to assume its not related to the RAM?
what else is there to do? i have spare hard drives i can try to install XP on later and see if that runs fine. but i really doubt its the hard drive.
CPU? i ran a CPU stability test for 11 hours and it reported nothing wrong. it says for perfect results to run it for 24 hours tho, maybe i will try again later.
motherboard doesnt have onboard video, cant bypass the video card.
thanks in advance for any suggestions. i'm out of ideas.
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  #10  
Old 2006-06-12, 07:21 AM
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TheMamba TheMamba is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

Have you changed anything in the last couple of days? Any new hardware, software, etc?

Paging file = swap file. Looks like your size is OK.

If you've got a spare hard drive and some spare time I'd try a fresh install on one of those and see what that gets you.

There's a Windows XP Tweak Guide that I've always tried to use when I reinstall XP: http://www.tweakguides.com/TGTC.html Some of the tweaks in it are not really tweaks but it's a good read none the less. Lotta good information in there to implement...once we get your problem solved.

Another thing that occurred to me is that you could have a failing power supply. Had that happen to me once. Was getting all sorts of weird behavior like you're getting so I ordered a new one and replaced it. That was purely a shot in the dark...

"large memory sizes should be made of registered/buffered memory)". I did a quick search on google and it looks like this is no big deal.
http://www.computing.net/gaming/wwwb...orum/4136.html

Unfortunately, you're probably on a witch hunt. Since we've ruled out heat and probably RAM, try the hard drive swap and see what that gets you. When you're on the witch hunt, always do the cheapest/easiest fixes first so you don't waste money...too bad you're in Chicago because I have a ton of spare parts in my office that we could swap in and out of your machine to help narrow it down.
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  #11  
Old 2006-06-12, 11:45 AM
joemc joemc is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

hi, a slowing down of comps is a lot of the time to do with spy/malware. you dont mention that you have done an antivirus check or anything like that, if you havent i would give that a go, there are plenty of free virus/worm etc chekers out there. another thing to look for is when you have evrything going go into task manager, processes and see what is hogging your cpu, like someone said it could be a program you dont need and it can easily be stopped.

joe
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  #12  
Old 2006-06-12, 12:21 PM
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Five Five is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

all I can say is check which progs are starting when you startup... it seems you have everything else carefully considered so far as I can see.
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  #13  
Old 2006-06-12, 12:55 PM
netyuppie's Avatar
netyuppie netyuppie is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

sorry if i didnt mention but i've run 3 different anti spyware apps and 2 different anti viruses. everything is clean. i've also cleaned up the programs that run when windows starts by about 1/2. didnt make a difference.
anyone want to take a look at this? running processes with only firefox open and rest appears to be running in the background.

what i know is safe/fine are anything with razer, ati, googledesktop, CTS, ramsaver, AVG, nod32, DkService (i think is diskeeper service).
i've selected in red everything i'm not 100% sure what it is. i just woke up and am out the door in a second, but i can google some of them once i get back in. if anyone sees something that deffinatley shouldnt be there let me know. it looks like a hell of a lot of other stuff running tho. why so many svchost? i know svchost just controls/runs from any dll's. can also mean a virus working behind it.
major headache thanks again for all the help folks.
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  #14  
Old 2006-06-12, 01:21 PM
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TheMamba TheMamba is offline
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Re: non-torrent related computer help

I'll check it out vs. mine when I get home tonight.
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  #15  
Old 2006-06-12, 04:05 PM
netyuppie's Avatar
netyuppie netyuppie is offline
i have a fucking gun
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Join Date: Jun 2005
Location: Chicago
Re: non-torrent related computer help

okay, went through each process and found out what it is. new cleaned up process list below. only thing i see that really bothers me is marked, the svchost using so much memory.

been reading up about it online and basically it controls anything relating to dll's that are currently being used, that is why there are so many active. however, i dont think its normal to use so much memory for one process. also have heard that if its using more than explorer, as it is in my case, its most likely a virus of some sort. i did have 1 trojan months back on this machine but i thought NOD32 took care of it.
completly out of ideas now.
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