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Vista Problems

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I am having trouble with my computer running REALLY SLOW. I am running VISTA home basic. This started around the time that SP1 was installed. I have never seen it run this slow, even on other computers. Not sure what the prob. is, but SURE COULD use some help. By the way I am on dialup, so downloads are not so good.

Thanks Wanda

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My laptop running Home Basic 32-bit did the same thing after a while. Never could quite figure it out so I just reinstalled Windows and immediately performed all the updates before installing anything and it's been running better than ever.

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Yeah for me it was real strange cause it started slowing down and became unstable right after I busted the Monitor on it (dropped something on it). Ordered a replacement LCD and stuck it in there and reinstalled Windows shortly after. It's never been better.

Now, there are some things you could do before hand just to try. Run Malwarebytes Anti-Malware and see if it picks anything up and also try a Virus scan like Avast or something. If none of those helps, my typical response is to back up my things and reinstall. I've got so many external hard drives and flash drives, it ain't nothin to back-up and reinstall and to me that's usually the most painless and sure fire way to go.

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Hi Wanda! I know you from Handyman's :) Now, Hondaboy is "young and adventurous" (and a little clumsy ;) ) so he would reinstall and I agree, that's a last resort along with a lot of kicking and screaming.

Hondaboy, I see she already got a clean bill of health from the Hijack This section......Back to the drawing board, young man

Simple thing to start off with is if you aren't using Windows Firewall, check and make sure it hasn't somehow accidently kicked in. With all the scans you've done, it may have turned itself on, and two firewalls running make for a constipated idiotbox.

Wait for an expert to confirm before doing so---disconnect from the internet and try turning off your antivirus and see if that speeds things up. Could be something wonky with it

And give a list of your computer specs for the experts to see, like Ram, Antivirus, any antispyware gadgets you have running, firewall, etc. They might see something in your list that can trigger "constipation"

Liz

Edited by blim

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Well, often times a SP1 install can cause issues particularly if the system had been running long before it's install. Often times for me the best course of action would be a full reinstall and use Windows Update to get all the updates and SP1 before installing anything else (and that includes Anti-Virus'). I had Sp3 on XP botch an install. Had to reinstall XP SP2 and install all the updates and SP3 before anything else to make in work correctly. Ditto with Vista. When I upgraded my main rig to Vista Home premium x64, I made sure to have all updates before installing any Anti-Virus, or any other programs for that matter to make sure it all went well and it worked.

A question I would like to ask is did you install SP1 with an Anti-Virus or Firewall running during the SP1 install? Sometimes that an cause it to install incorrectly.

My Laptop also had a clean bill of health so to speak but was still operating very strangely and a reinstall fixed it. Again, like I said sometimes the a reinstall of the OS, is the easiest and most sure fire way to solve an issue such as this.

A good example was a recent repair job. I got this guy's computer, ran scans out the hind end and cleaned it out. Tried everything to return it to normal but all was in vain because though now clean and many errors fixed, it was still unbearably slow. Removing NORTON was a big help but still it was slow. Reinstalled XP on it, did all the updates (including SP3), installed all my normally recommended software (FF3, Avast, COMODO, etc.), removed all unnecessary software (recovery partition), returned all his files and programs and it was like "new" but familiar. Had I just recovered his files and did the reinstall to start, I could have saved myself 5 hours.

Another Job, went to my local comic book shop to fix the owner's computer. The computer was running slow and Windows Genuine whatever was rejecting it (strangely it was a genuine copy). Luckily he had already run the time consuming scans so I didn't have to. Turned up nothing. He had called another guy and was mad cause he was out some cash since all the stuff he did helped nothing. I brought my XP disc and a spare XP license (his was an upgrade, mine was OEM) asked him to move all his stuff on the main to his secondary drive, and then got to the fresh XP install. After I was done, had all the updates and recommended software installed, he was so happy. He's also the guy that delivers the bread to my work (I do the computer stuff on the side) so every time I see him, I ask how his system is doing. He says it's great and thanks me every time (I gave him that license and didn't even charge him for the work, he's just gonna find a Gundam Action figure I've been looking for and give it to me when he finds it as payment).

So you may think my way is reckless but it is effective.

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Hi Liz, I'm not sure what you are saying on the Windows firewall. To be HONEST, I don't know what I am running. This whole computer thing has got me on my last raw nerve. I hope this is what you were talking about (THE SPECS)

Windows Vista Home Basic, 65.5 fre hard drive, 1gig memory, AVG antivirus (that will not update). What else do you need and how do I find the info for you?

Thanks, Wanda

Edited by wra122

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You could also open the task manager to see if a process is using up cpu cycles, usually the first thing I do.

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Here's something to try. That may actually solve your slowness problem easily. Disable the Resident Shield in AVG and see if that helps. If so, then AVG might be your problem. AVG recently became bloated and on my old XP install, it killed the performance bad. I had an Athlon x2 6000+ with 4GB of RAM running unbearably slow but switched out AVG for Avast and the performance was finally back up to where it was supposed to be. I've since switched to Vista on this rig and have only used Avast so I don't know quite how it would perform on it now but I doubt it'd be any better than in XP (though my Vista install is actually faster than XP).

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Wanda has been declared "cootie free" from the hijackthis section here, Darth, so its something else....

Now, I'm no Geek (come onnnnn guys, jump in here!!) but seeing as AVG won't update, that's a clue. What happens when it doesn't update? Any messages?

Also, try Hondaboy's suggestion on disabling AVG's resident shield (he's reckless but he sure is smart and we love him! :thumbsup: )

I don't know anything about Vista but in checking your firewall in XP is as follows:

(and hoping Vista's process is at least similar enough for you to figure it out)

Start

Control Panel

Security Center

Firewall--click the "double v" and it will tell you what your firewall is.

Now, in XP, to check the microsoft firewall, (scrounges up my Dummies book....)

"Open start menu, right click on My Network Places and choose Properties. Right Click on the connection you want to protect and choose Properties. If you're using a dial up account, right click on that icon.

Click the advanced tab to activate windows firewall"

(me-obviously YOU will want to make sure the windows firewall ISN'T clicked if you are using a different firewall!)

Liz

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Ok well knowing that it's free of malware is a good start. The next thing I would do would be to disable your startup programs and services. Going to Start - Run and typing msconfig

And then going to your startup menu and disabling all startup entries except AVG. Personally, I would uninstall AVG and install Avast if you need an antivirus program. It's much lighter than AVG is. Then I would disable Vista's eye candy by right clicking your my computer, clicking properties (I use xp so it would be slightly different in vista) I'm sure someone here can instruct you how to do that, and disable all the eye candy. you can also disable the indexing feature by right clicking your drive and unchecking the "index for faster searching"

Also I would go to your services and disable the networking services. A great program that does this for you is Iorbit's Advanced system care which is freeware

I would also download Iorbit's disk defragmenter which is freeware and do a defragment on deep optimize.

You can also check for system errors by going to start - run - typing cmd

Then in the command prompt typing chkdsk/f and then restarting your computer.

Your computer will also load faster if you click the boot tab in msconfig and click "No GUI boot" The aurora boot is slightly faster than vista's default.

Also I agree with what was said above. Do a control alt delete and order your processes by CPU usage and then memory usage and you can get a feel of what is hogging your ram. If it's ok with the site admins, I would post a screencap of your taskmanager's processes when sorted the two different ways and then people here can help you figure out and eliminate the fattest processes.

Also I would disable Microsoft's firewall as it is useless.

Edited by darthvader

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I would advise against using msconfig to disable startup programs. It can cause issues disabling that way. If you do need to disable anything, go to the Control Panel, and underneath Programs, there should be an option to change startup programs. That's what you need to use.

Now, I do not believe that is what needs to be necessarily since it apparently was functioning correctly before hand. I'm leaning towards either AVG is dragging it down or there may have been something wrong with the SP1 install.

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Ok, I disabled the resident shield an checked on the firewall, it is Windows Firewall. I also got my 2gigs of memory yesterday and installed it. I'm still running (TURTLE SLOW). It is hard to figure out wha to do, since there is SO MANY suggestions. Can your ISP cause everything to slow up?

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Ok, I disabled the resident shield an checked on the firewall, it is Windows Firewall. I also got my 2gigs of memory yesterday and installed it. I'm still running (TURTLE SLOW). It is hard to figure out wha to do, since there is SO MANY suggestions. Can your ISP cause everything to slow up?

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No the ISP could only possibly cause a slow in your internet access. Is your computer running fine and is your internet slow? Or are both slow and laggy?

Also I would apply pretty much all of the suggestions above and then let us know how it's going, also if you could screencap your processes, it would be pretty easy to tell what is slowing you down.

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I have NO IDEA how to begin to screencap. Now, the computer is doing good "AS" long as I am not on the internet. Before my dialup wasn't anything to brag about, BUT IT HAS NEVER been this SLOWWWWWWW!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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Hi Liz, I'm not sure what you are saying on the Windows firewall. To be HONEST, I don't know what I am running. This whole computer thing has got me on my last raw nerve. I hope this is what you were talking about (THE SPECS)

Windows Vista Home Basic, 65.5 fre hard drive, 1gig memory, AVG antivirus (that will not update). What else do you need and how do I find the info for you?

Thanks, Wanda

Wanda:

I have Vista on my laptop, and when I bought it, it was recommended that I have a minumium of 2GB Ram (memory). I get my memory from Crucial:

Crucial

Where it says CRUCIAL MEMORY ADVISOR TOOL, you will see 3 steps for you to choose. It will be computer brand, product line, and model computer that you have. After you fill in all info, let it scan your computer and it will tell you what kind of memory you should get.

It will tell you also the most amount of memory that your computer can handle. Take a look at it.

Barb :)

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Ok here's how to screen cap.

1. Do a control Alt delete, click your processes tab, then click memory usage and click it so that the larger numbers are at the top.

2. In the top right corner of your keyboard there should be a button that is labeled "Prnt Scrn" As in "Print Screen", click that button.

3. Open up microsoft paint by going to Start - All Programs - Accessories - Paint

4. Once it is open Press Control + V and your screen should paste onto the paint program.

5. Save your screencap as Whatever.bmp to your desktop

6. Upload your picture here via the attachments box.

We'll look at it for you and google the processes and then make suggestions, it should clear up (hopefully) what is slowing you down so much.

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Looking at your task manager screen shot

1. Bigfix ; while the original idea was great it never really took off; not enough software and hardware manufacturers were willing to pay them for fixlets so it pretty much only checks for windows updates. Windows update does that just fine.

2. Windows Defender; one of the least effective protections there is.

3. AVG ; the other

I would uninstall these two and go with Avast free for home use.

http://www.avast.com/eng/download-avast-home.html

4. Desktop Window Manager is running; Have you optimized Vista by turning off the crap you do not need?

http://forums.g4tv.com/showthread.php?t=10...ht=Fixing+Vista

Adding RAM was the right first step but turn off fancy things like AERO , UCE ...

5. I see taskeng (the task scheduler) running ; what scheduled tasks do you have ?

Check in start => programs => accessories => system tools => scheduled tasks

Click advanced => show hidden tasks

Any non necessary stuff?

6, Both AOL and NETZERO software running? WHich is your ISP? Why not uninstall the other so it is not running all the time?

7. THe pic does not go down far enough , do you have an instance of SVCHOST.exe running which is using a lot of cpu or memory? This generally means a jammed automatic updater. Could be AVG, bigfix, windowsupdate . Disable automatic updates for what ever has them and then restart and see if things improve. If so manually check for updates. Get them one at a time and then once you have everything updated you can restart and re enable the updaters and restart one more time. This usually solves that slowdown issue.

8. If you have not done so; defrag. Normally it is recommended you do disk cleanup and defrag before you install a service pack and again afterwards.

Likewise if you have not done so flush your prefetch

go to start / run and type

prefetch

hit enter.

it will open a folder ; do edit => select all , file => delete to empty the contents of the folder.

restart your computer . This will rebuild your prefetch folder over the next few cycles of startup and shutdown as windows relearns what is loading during boot and what you use all the time.

The Windows Vista SP1 install process clears the user-specific data that is used by Windows to optimize performance, which may make the system feel less responsive immediately after install. As the customer uses their SP1 PC, the system will be retrained over the course of a few hours or days and will return to the previous level of responsiveness.

Could be a problem with prefetch not being cleared or not rebuilding.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc709618.aspx

9. Do you have ready boost enabled using a readyboost capable USB flash drive? Readyboost copies files used in bootup and loading of programs you use a lot to the flash drive so that they can be copied directly from it to RAM rather than having to find them on the hard drive each time. This can speed up many items quite a bit.

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-v...readyboost.aspx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ReadyBoost

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Yo man you did it it right except for one thing, I can see you clicked on the memory usage and ordered it but could you click it again next time so that the largest numbers are at the top and the lowest ones are at the bottom? That way I can see which programs are taking up the most memory on your computer.

After examining the processes I could see I have found this:

bigfix.exe

It is used to automatically receive and read technical support information provided by computer and software manufacturers and other technical support experts.

Also can automatically check your computer for bugs, configuration conflicts, and security holes. It is a resource hog! Please start it manually.

opwarese4.exe

is a OCR Aware from ScanSoft, Inc. belonging to OmniPage.

You don't need it to run at startup

So if you don't have omnipage scanning software in your computer then you can remove it via add/remove programs.

BJMYPRT.exe

Cannon printer software does not need to be running at startup

aolsoftware.exe

Installed with AOLSoftware it does not need to be running at startup

So from what I see by your taskmanager you need to disable all your startup entries except for AVG.

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Yo man you did it it right except for one thing, I can see you clicked on the memory usage and ordered it but could you click it again next time so that the largest numbers are at the top and the lowest ones are at the bottom? That way I can see which programs are taking up the most memory on your computer.

After examining the processes I could see I have found this:

bigfix.exe

It is used to automatically receive and read technical support information provided by computer and software manufacturers and other technical support experts.

Also can automatically check your computer for bugs, configuration conflicts, and security holes. It is a resource hog! Please start it manually.

opwarese4.exe

is a OCR Aware from ScanSoft, Inc. belonging to OmniPage.

You don't need it to run at startup

So if you don't have omnipage scanning software in your computer then you can remove it via add/remove programs.

BJMYPRT.exe

Cannon printer software does not need to be running at startup

aolsoftware.exe

Installed with AOLSoftware it does not need to be running at startup

So from what I see by your taskmanager you need to disable all your startup entries except for AVG.

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Ok bud, here's what you do follow these step by step.

1. Disable all your startup entries except for AVG.

To disable your startup entries use the following tutorial

http://www.vistaclues.com/turn-off-a-startup-program/

2. Next after we have those done tell us how your speed is.

3. Post the new screencap this time ordering your processes by highest memory first.

4. Download this defragmenter program

http://www.download.com/Smart-Defrag/3000-...cdlPid=10998119

Click Auto defragment in the lefft when it starts up and disable the auto defragment and click apply

Click Schedule and uncheck schedule and hit apply

Click Options and uncheck Minimize to system tray when program is closed

Load automatically at windows startup

Stop defrag while using battery then hit apply

Then run the program at "Deep Optimize" and click apply

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Looking at your task manager screen shot

1. Bigfix ; while the original idea was great it never really took off; not enough software and hardware manufacturers were willing to pay them for fixlets so it pretty much only checks for windows updates. Windows update does that just fine.

2. Windows Defender; one of the least effective protections there is.

3. AVG ; the other

I would uninstall these two and go with Avast free for home use.

http://www.avast.com/eng/download-avast-home.html

4. Desktop Window Manager is running; Have you optimized Vista by turning off the crap you do not need?

http://forums.g4tv.com/showthread.php?t=10...ht=Fixing+Vista

Adding RAM was the right first step but turn off fancy things like AERO , UCE ...

5. I see taskeng (the task scheduler) running ; what scheduled tasks do you have ?

Check in start => programs => accessories => system tools => scheduled tasks

Click advanced => show hidden tasks

Any non necessary stuff?

6, Both AOL and NETZERO software running? WHich is your ISP? Why not uninstall the other so it is not running all the time?

7. THe pic does not go down far enough , do you have an instance of SVCHOST.exe running which is using a lot of cpu or memory? This generally means a jammed automatic updater. Could be AVG, bigfix, windowsupdate . Disable automatic updates for what ever has them and then restart and see if things improve. If so manually check for updates. Get them one at a time and then once you have everything updated you can restart and re enable the updaters and restart one more time. This usually solves that slowdown issue.

8. If you have not done so; defrag. Normally it is recommended you do disk cleanup and defrag before you install a service pack and again afterwards.

Likewise if you have not done so flush your prefetch

go to start / run and type

prefetch

hit enter.

it will open a folder ; do edit => select all , file => delete to empty the contents of the folder.

restart your computer . This will rebuild your prefetch folder over the next few cycles of startup and shutdown as windows relearns what is loading during boot and what you use all the time.

The Windows Vista SP1 install process clears the user-specific data that is used by Windows to optimize performance, which may make the system feel less responsive immediately after install. As the customer uses their SP1 PC, the system will be retrained over the course of a few hours or days and will return to the previous level of responsiveness.

Could be a problem with prefetch not being cleared or not rebuilding.

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/cc709618.aspx

9. Do you have ready boost enabled using a readyboost capable USB flash drive? Readyboost copies files used in bootup and loading of programs you use a lot to the flash drive so that they can be copied directly from it to RAM rather than having to find them on the hard drive each time. This can speed up many items quite a bit.

http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-v...readyboost.aspx

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ReadyBoost

How do I uninstall AOL?? It is not in the ADD/REMOVE folder. Also, I have "NO IDEA" what you are saying about the ready boost being enabled or not. I am a "COMPUTER DUMMY" so, I try not to do ANYTHING that I know NOTHING about.

Can you explain things differently for me? Thanks, Wanda

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