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Slow Computer, memory almost full


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18 replies to this topic

#1 LMG462

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 09:11 PM

Hi, My computer is running pretty slow and I believe my memory is close to being full. I bought a WD My Book to back up my photos. Could this hard drive also be used to create more memory on my computer and speed things up? If so, how do I set it up? Thanks for any input. Liza

#2 kazzoo

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 09:59 PM

Greetings LMG462

Welcome back to WTT.

Sorry to hear that you have performance issues on your computer.

To clarify, There is a difference between MEMORY and STORAGE.

A simple explanation. (not meant to be extensive or technical)

MEMORY is used as as a temporary place to move data in and out so the CPU can act on it.

It comes in the form of computer chips sometimes refered to Ram (Random access memory) or Memory sticks. These chips plug into special connectors in your computer. The purpose of these chips is to provide fast storage for the computer to use. The storage is only Temporary. Goes away when you shut off the computer. The trade off for being fast.

STORAGE refers to a device used to store data long term. It is there after you shut off the computer. Usually a hard drive is used for long term and large amounts of storage. Such as WD MYBOOK you mentioned. But it is Mechanical and has to spin and is slow. The trade off for being slow is being able to store permantely.

In your everyday life, when you "save" a file, you are asking the computer to "write" this information to the hard drive. There is normally a slight delay as the computer finds the right space on the hard drive and actually saves the information.


With this clarified, Are you running out of storage space? Or do you just have a case of the slows?

If it is a case of slow performance here is a link that will tell you what you might do to fix that, written by one of our Experts here by the username of miekiemoes

Help my computer is slow!

Good luck and Regards

Kaz.

Edited by kazzoo, 26 November 2007 - 09:59 PM.


#3 LMG462

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 10:17 PM

Thanks for the reply Kaz! I have already performed some of the "to do's" mentioned in the artical such as the disk defragmentation, deleted unused programs (however I couldn't get rid of AOL) and cleaned up temp. files. I am thinking I just have too many programs on my computer and it is causing the whole system to be slow. Thanks for clarifing the storage v/s memory. I begining to think I need more memory? Liza

#4 tallin

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Posted 26 November 2007 - 10:17 PM

Hi,

My computer is running pretty slow and I believe my memory is close to being full. I bought a WD My Book to back up my photos. Could this hard drive also be used to create more memory on my computer and speed things up? If so, how do I set it up? Thanks for any input.

Liza


Hi LMG462,

I notice you posted a HJT log on 19th October. It would be now out of date, so if you wish to post another to the correct forum please feel free to do so.

Please do this in the meantime - right click on My Computer on your desktop>>click on properties>> and read and post the specifications of your system. No, a HD cannot create more memory.
Kazzoo has explained to you just how the memory and other aspects of you system work very correctly.

Also would you please list your Antispyware programs, and one only (hopefully) Antivirus program you are running so we are sure you have software to keep your computer clean.

Your Java runtime is out of date so uninstall through Add and Remove and download and install from this site http://java.sun.com/...loads/index.jsp the fourth from the top.
Java Runtime Environment (JRE) 6 Update 3

Please post back if you need, and the site that Kazzoo sent you is all good reading for keeping your system spick and span.

kind regards,

#5 LMG462

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 07:36 AM

Hi Tallin, thanks for your reply. I did as instructed with Java. Here is the information you asked for: Microsoft Windows XP Home Edition Version 2002 Service Pack 2 Dell Dimension DIM4600C Intel R Pentium R CPU 2.40 GHz 2.39GHz, 256 MB of RAM I have webroot spy sweeper and I currently do not have any antivirus running. I know I should, but at this point I fear another program may lock up my system. I will go and post another HJT report. Thanks, Liza

#6 tallin

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 12:39 PM

Hi Tallin, thanks for your reply. I did as instructed with Java. Here is the information you asked for:

Microsoft Windows XP
Home Edition
Version 2002
Service Pack 2

Dell Dimension DIM4600C
Intel R
Pentium R CPU 2.40 GHz
2.39GHz, 256 MB of RAM


I have webroot spy sweeper and I currently do not have any antivirus running. I know I should, but at this point I fear another program may lock up my system. I will go and post another HJT report.

Thanks,
Liza


:thumbup:

#7 kazzoo

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 03:44 PM

Greetings LMG462

I dont want to step on anything Tallin has in mind, But it is obvious to me you are short of memory by a factor of four.

Many machines were sold when Windows XP first came out with about 256 mb of Ram. Memory was terribly expensive and to keep prices low, almost a minimum of Memory was installed on them. Just barely enough to get the Os up and running without having too many people yelling about performance and being too expensive.


Considering at the time Windows 98 needed about 64mb as a minimum. Wasnt so long ago, I used to quote to people about memory prices at a $1 a mb. So 256 would have added $256.00 to the price of the computer I would recomend or build. But now a 1gb ( 4 x 256mb) can be had for $79.00 or so years later.

What XP really needs is 512mb (2 x 256mb) to even get a reasonable user experience out of it. Just to get XP loaded up where you can do something with it other than wait for your turn, takes about 380mb right off the bat. At 256mb things have to wait till they get their turn to load, get removed, and other apps you want to use other than just the XP starting up.

So, my recomendation is to get 1gb (gigabyte) on this machine for memory.

1. What memory do I need?

Goto Crucial memory configurator

Use the memory configuratior and use the drop down boxes to identify your machine. Find the fastest memory your machine will support
Should give you a idea of price and how much you can put in your computer. Again I recommend at least 1gb.


2. What programs to remove.

You need to be able to get a start or handle on what needs to be removed and how the machine is behaving now. A measure or base line. What I might remove for me and my computer may be different than what you would keep.

---canned speach-----


Please Run the PCPitstop Full Tests, here:
http://www.pcpitstop.com
Note: Vista users with UAC must first Right-click IE - Select "Run as Administrator"
Register and create a password
Accept the ActiveX component to allow your machine to run the Full Tests
Registering and accepting the ActiveX are both SAFE and FREE.
Full Tests is the first item in the left hand column of that page.

The Full Tests take less than 5 minutes for most machines.
Once you have your Results, please post the TechExpress Link back here into this thread for review.
TechExpress is the last item on the list in the yellow box in upper right area of any Results page.
Post the entire URL link information back here into this Forum thread.
Note: Vista users, please close your instance of IE "Rrunning as Administrator" after you are finished reviewing your Results.

Caution: During the testing of Video Adapter, a variety of patterns, shapes, colors and text are “flashed” onto the users monitor screen. In the many thousands of daily uses of the PCPitstop Full Tests over several years, two individuals who suffer epilepsy experienced discomfort and temporary dizziness when viewing the flashing patterns.
If you know that you are susceptible to photo driven seizure, please look away from your screen during the Video Adapter testing sequence.
Note: The PCPitstop Full Tests Results is a free service, but is supported by various paid product advertisements for utilities that "could" remedy the OP's problem.
Since WTT is a "free-help" forum, we do not recommend or endorse purchase of automated utilities, and will assist you in manually correcting any problems and settings necessary to optimize your machine's performance. Ask your questions here. We'll help you walk through any necessary steps.

------------end canned speach------------



That should be enough for the moment? Yes?

Regards

Kaz.

#8 LMG462

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 05:14 PM

Thanks so much Kaz and Tallin for helping me out. O.k., here is the link from my pcpitstop tests.

http://www.pcpitstop...9R0HWW7WCVS4WWV

If things seem salvagable with my current pc and I buy more memory, can that extra memory then later be transfered to another pc?

Thanks,
Liza

#9 kazzoo

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 07:39 PM

Greetings LMG462

To answer the question about the memory working in another computer. Most likey not.

Your computer uses a type called DDR memory. Most new computers use a Type called DDR2. (Double data rate version 2)

This is not to say you should not upgrade your current computer just because its a generation behind. There is still sometime left in your computer seeing Windows XP is going to be supported for a couple more years. a 1gb kit is going for 59.95 and a new computer is going for what pray tell??

1 gb kit of pc3200

Note, if you are going to purchase memory for this computer, besure to purchase it in pairs. Pairs means two sticks of the same size memory. So if you go with my recomendation of 1gb (gigabyte), You would buy 2 sticks of 512mb. If you were to max your machine out, that would be 2gb in two sticks of 1gb each.

Got it? Your machine is of a type that works best with pairs of memory rather than just one big stick.

Now to the Pcpitstop results.

Take a look at the Test resuts specifically. The most important thing is you are missing a antivirus program. If you dont do anything else with the rest of the suggestions get a antivirus program on this computer.

I have some favorites, I personally use a program called NOD32 by a company called ESET. I chose it because not only does it work well, it is light on system resources and doesnt nag me. It scores very well in detecting virus, trojans, and exploits. There are a few that do rank higher, but not by much. It is a paid version and costs a subscription fee for each year I use it. If curious they do have a free 30 day trial.

Nod32

Everybody likes free things, a resonably good free Antivirus is one called AVG by Grisoft. They also have a paid version as well which has many of the features your spysweeper is already providing. It is a pure antivirus.

AVG FREE Version

If you look and read the Rest of the Test results under Test details, You will see install antivirus, run antivirus, install more memory. This should be clear.

Until those tasks are done. No tweaking is going to help you speed up much. Especially the memory.

Get Thee to a RETAILER! :)

Regards

Kaz








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#10 LMG462

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 07:59 PM

Thanks so much! I'll get right on it. Liza

#11 tallin

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 09:27 PM

Hi Tallin, thanks for your reply. I did as instructed with Java. Here is the information you asked for:

Microsoft Windows XP
Home Edition
Version 2002
Service Pack 2

Dell Dimension DIM4600C
Intel R
Pentium R CPU 2.40 GHz
2.39GHz, 256 MB of RAM


I have webroot spy sweeper and I currently do not have any antivirus running. I know I should, but at this point I fear another program may lock up my system. I will go and post another HJT report.

Thanks,
Liza


Hello LIza,

I have not come back to contribute to this thread as Kazzoo is doing a great job, however I see you have posted your HJT log here

If you change anything before the HJT experts respond to your log it will change to a different configuration which indeed would be most confusing for you and them.

Do not respond to your posted log as the experts answer logs with '0' responses. If you are going to change your system now post back here please and we can ask a Moderator to cancel your request in the HJT forum.

Kind regards,

#12 LMG462

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 10:10 PM

Hi Tallin. Actually, I have not changed anything else since I posted the last log. I just ordered more memory and should receive it in about 5-7 days. I want to hold off on installing the antivirus software until I add more memory. So, since I won't be making anymore changes for a week I would like to leave the last log in case something bad may already be lurking in my computer. If that is o.k.? Thanks again! Liza

#13 tallin

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Posted 27 November 2007 - 10:48 PM

Hi Tallin. Actually, I have not changed anything else since I posted the last log. I just ordered more memory and should receive it in about 5-7 days. I want to hold off on installing the antivirus software until I add more memory. So, since I won't be making anymore changes for a week I would like to leave the last log in case something bad may already be lurking in my computer. If that is o.k.? Thanks again!

Liza


Hi again Liza,

That is absolutely fine with us, of course it is okay to leave the log. Good that you have ordered more RAM. Are you familiar with the installation of the RAM? On my own computers, I always have a IT firm to do it or any other really what I call testy changes.

I do hope the Experts get to your log soon, you do know that after 5 days, there is a forum to post a reminder.


kind regards,

#14 LMG462

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 11:41 AM

Hey Tallin, I have reviewed some intsructions online as to how to install the RAM. It seems pretty straight forward, but the whole grounding thing by leaving the computer pluged into the surge protector kind of freaks me out a bit. My husband is good friends with the IT guy at work and he could probably do it for us. But, as silly as this sounds, I want the since of accomplishment of doing it myself. So I probably will. Thanks, Liza

#15 LMG462

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Posted 28 November 2007 - 12:14 PM

Hey guys, I was wondering if you could help me with something. It seems like my original post (from Oct. 18) came up in th HJT forum and they locked it. I understand the old log is not useful any longer but I almost feel like I was being slammed for doing something wrong and none of the potential 5 reasons applied to me. It seemed to me my post had been overlooked. I hope they are still willing to look at my most recent post. What do you think? Thanks! Liza I just reread the reasons. Maybe it is reason 1since I just posted a new post with a new log the other day since the orginal was so old.

Edited by LMG462, 28 November 2007 - 12:18 PM.




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