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Chris56
06-11-2011, 02:26 PM
Hi all,

I currently run the following PC (have owned for 3 years) and is becomming increasingly slow, particularly on startup:

AMD Athlon 64 X2 5600 (2.9GHz dual core)
4GB Ram (showing 3.25 however)
Nvidia 512 MB graphics card
250 GB Hard Drive (145 GB used)
Windows XP home (SP3)

To maintain performance, I regularly do the following:
Defrags
Cleanups
Virus Scans
Reduce number of programs on startup to a minimum.

My real question is, what should I do?????

I am considering any of the following:

Buy a new PC (well, xmas is comming!!!!)
Add more RAM (motherboard will take up to 8GB)
New Hard Drive
Upgrade to Win 7

My uses are mostly word processing, internet, streamed videos and some games (though I am not really into the most recent games or building a super performance PC)

Are there any experts out there who can offer any advice.
If changing the PC, I have been considering going for an Intel I5. I understand that they have an integrated graphics controller. Is this any good or would you recommend disabling this and fitting my existing Nvidia card.

Your advice is much appreciated

Bosscat
28-12-2011, 07:37 AM
If that is all you are doing then your hardware is ok unless you have money burning a hole.
XP is well known for getting slower and slower particularly on boot up. I would back up what you need to keep in terms of files, piccies ect and then do a fresh install of XP. You'll be suprised I think it will give a new lease of life most welcome in the current tough economic times. Failing that consider an u/g to Win7

DCM
28-12-2011, 09:07 AM
Agree, backup and wipe the drive and fresh install of Windows (7 is better than XP), and maybe a bigger hard drive with faster access times (try Aria, yoyotech, novatech for an OEM version of Windows 7 not RETAIL version).

MILKY
28-12-2011, 09:34 AM
Also you will see less ram when running a 32 bit copy of any windows flavour as 3.25 gb is the max 32 bit can address. To increase performance and make full use of your ram at that capacity and above you will need 64 bit copy of windows. This in itself will increase capacity but you will need to ensure your graphics card etc is 64 bit driver compatable,which to be honest 99.99% of gear from 2002 onwards is.

Just by a fresh install alone you will notice a jump in performance and I advise windows 7 home 64bit as the way to go.

I run a similar spec pc that I built a long time ago with intel components and will play any game even crysis(however I run two monster graphics cards) but you will not need these if you run the games you stated.

The only downside to 64bit used to be the software from certain company's was never written in 64bit but nowadays that is a thing of the past and anyone who tells you not to go 64bit is scared of change and not likely to ever think of updating there os anyway. Trust me it's a good move. :thumbsup:

Milky

Cardnim
28-12-2011, 11:54 AM
+1 to this advice.

However, I would question whether you are doing those maintainence checks correctly.
XP will start to slow down, yes - but remember that everything to it can be undone - i.e. it shouldnt get slower if you are carrying out regular proper maintainence.

I run XP on my development machine and also on this laptop that Im typing on atm; periodically, I go in and alter the startup programs and services if I notice any slow down - removing the ones I dont want and/or need.
Also, cleaning the registry is important too; and with all these things done correctly Im not seeing any slow down in XP after years and years.

Good point about 32bit though - you arent getting the full use out of your RAM (though I dont think its as low as the 3.2Gb that Milky says - Im nearly sure its 3.65Gb max for Win XP 32bit.)

Anyways, I think the hardware sounds good, but
I would check whats using up your additional memory as I think 3.65 is possible.
And the video card could be better - you can pick up a nice nVidia 9800GT 1Gb on eBay (new) for a good price nowadays.

colmo
28-12-2011, 12:03 PM
If games are of little interest, abandon Windows altogether - the modern iterations of Linux are excellent, and they don't slow down. Any 64bit version you fancy will do. They also cost nothing. You can even dual-boot with XP.

cigbunt
28-12-2011, 12:53 PM
fresh install of vista x64 will speed things up... ramm is so cheap now a lil upgrade to 8gb wont cost you much.

Whens the last time you formatted?

you've probably got loads of bloat ware running if its been a while..

i format probably 2-4 times a year depending on what i'm using my computer for!

Big G
28-12-2011, 01:22 PM
If games are of little interest, abandon Windows altogether - the modern iterations of Linux are excellent, and they don't slow down. Any 64bit version you fancy will do. They also cost nothing. You can even dual-boot with XP.

What he said.

Having converted to Mac 3 years ago I can't see why more people don't abandon windows all together. everyone moans about windows, but they all put up with it. a new OS isn't that hard to learn. I learnt OSX almost instantly and don't have a windows machine anymore.

A fresh install will make a world of difference. I would strongly adjust the 8gb ram upgrade with the 64bit version of the OS.

markwilliamson2001
28-12-2011, 01:33 PM
SSD and reformat.. It could be your drive is nearly on its way out anyway, so upgrading to a SSD for the WINDOWS install could be a very easy way of speeding things up. Keep your data on another drive, then reformat the windows disk more often!

AV does a good job, but can noticeably slow your machine down.

Hope this helps.

Ross
28-12-2011, 05:29 PM
Sorry to high jack, but how do you clean up/stop what starts up when you first turn the machine on. My laptop used to be good, but 18 months on its slow to start up, it's ok once it's up and running but I hate having to wait :).

Cheers

RudolfXC
28-12-2011, 09:40 PM
On the start menu find 'Run'. In the box type 'msconfig'. Click on the Startup tab and untick all items you don't want to run at startup such as Office, Quicktime, Real Player, Google Updater, etc.

Ross
28-12-2011, 10:27 PM
On the start menu find 'Run'. In the box type 'msconfig'. Click on the Startup tab and untick all items you don't want to run at startup such as Office, Quicktime, Real Player, Google Updater, etc.

Cheers mate, just turned a load of rubbish of and it boots up a lot quicker :thumbsup::thumbsup:.

Thanks

Ross

Big G
29-12-2011, 08:49 AM
I don't get why so many people bother turning their computers off. I don't think I've ever turned mine off since getting it. Just shut the lid and go. Then when I want to use it again it's on ready :D

cigbunt
30-12-2011, 12:52 PM
alot of advice here... SSD will speed up your computer but there pricey

if i was you i'd do a bit of trial and error and see how things go starting with the cheapest option first.

1. format your computer
2. install a x64 OS ( id get win7 if you can buy/get it try windows 8 there a free beta http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/apps/br229516 )
3. add extra 4gb of ram (approx 15)

if your not happy with the improvement look at getting a new processor :thumbsup:

metalmickey0
30-12-2011, 01:31 PM
On the start menu find 'Run'. In the box type 'msconfig'. Click on the Startup tab and untick all items you don't want to run at startup such as Office, Quicktime, Real Player, Google Updater, etc.

I just done this to mine and do agree mine now starts up quicker too.
But i now get a box saying i`ve changed things and recommend i put it back to `normal mode`.
I ticked the check box to stop it popping up, but it that ok?

Cardnim
02-01-2012, 10:10 AM
I just done this to mine and do agree mine now starts up quicker too.
But i now get a box saying i`ve changed things and recommend i put it back to `normal mode`.
I ticked the check box to stop it popping up, but it that ok?

Thats perfect mate.

Advice too all for speeding things up is also to clean your registry.
Download a program called CCleaner (totaly free and safe) and when installed (its tiny) click the REGISTRY button and click "Check for Errors".
Allow it to fix all that it will find (probably more than 100!) and keep running it until you get no errors.

P.S. Im surprised at how many people are suggesting formatting. I NEVER format mmachines - you simply donthave to if you know what you are doing to simply cleean things up. Formatting is risky - you can lose it all!

And someone recommended a drive partition for Windows which can then be formatted. Ouch!! I would neer recommend this ever. What happens when Windows runs low on disc space on this partition? A horrifically slo computer and no way back unless you wipe everythiing.

Remember, Windows doesnt just slow down - all that makes it slow down is what you install on it, and possibly a hardware problem - all of which is fairly easily fixed.

Hope it helps. :)

Ross
02-01-2012, 10:17 AM
Thats perfect mate.

Advice too all for speeding things up is also to clean your registry.
Download a program called CCleaner (totaly free and safe) and when installed (its tiny) click the REGISTRY button and click "Check for Errors".
Allow it to fix all that it will find (probably more than 100!) and keep running it until you get no errors.

P.S. Im surprised at how many people are suggesting formatting. I NEVER format mmachines - you simply donthave to if you know what you are doing to simply cleean things up. Formatting is risky - you can lose it all!

And someone recommended a drive partition for Windows which can then be formatted. Ouch!! I would neer recommend this ever. What happens when Windows runs low on disc space on this partition? A horrifically slo computer and no way back unless you wipe everythiing.

Remember, Windows doesnt just slow down - all that makes it slow down is what you install on it, and possibly a hardware problem - all of which is fairly easily fixed.

Hope it helps. :)

Cool cheers for this. I'll try CCleaner tonight :thumbsup:

jorgea
25-01-2012, 03:33 AM
I would seriously consider the upgrade option. Why spend that extra money? I hope your PC works better. Maybe someone else here at http://www.oople.com can provide you with better advice.