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Old 04-12-2005, 12:24 AM   #1 (permalink)
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computer help please, comp runs extremely slow

i think it may be my hard drive because it makes a horrible noise when its running. i have a service plan with circuit city but they wont do shit because they're telling me its a virus.

my symptons are the computer takes super long to load up windows. it may take up in excess of 5 minutes to just get to the screen where i need to put in my password. when i do have access to my desktop all my programs and the things i do take very long to do whatever.

if i open up a folder it will take a long time for the folder to open up.
if i'm trying to play a video from my hard drive it takes long for winamp to open, and when it does open it doesnt play correctly, like only the sound will play.

i have an external hard drive. when i open up files on my external they open up at the normal speed. also, if im trying to play music/video's from the external everything runs fine.

i tried to move all the files i needed onto my external so i wont lost too much information. the files transfer onto the hard drive VERY slowly. something that would usually only take 20 seconds to move now takes in excess of 3 minutes. 3 minutes might not sound long but thats like a 4-5 times longer than usual. i actually didn't get to move all my files because some would take 200 minutes and counting.

i'm scanning my computer now for virus's and its been 56 minutes and only 6% is completed. it takes forever just to move from one file to the next. i'm not a computer wiz but if its taking super long to look into a file, i'm thinking something is fucked up with the hard drive. the horrible whinning noise it makes kinda makes me lean towards this conclusion.

is there any type of virus that can slow down your whole computer? like make all your files, folders, programs run slower? or does the fucked up hard drive theory of mine fits the description?

the stuff i download are usually direct download stuff or files from bittorrent.
i only download anime/manga stuff. nothing else.
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Old 04-12-2005, 12:34 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Have you tried scanning for adware and spyware? this may cause the slow start up. Also what OS are you running?
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Old 04-12-2005, 12:54 AM   #3 (permalink)
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How much memory do you have and how full is your hard drive?
Have you made any changes recently? dded hardware, messed with config etc.
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Old 04-12-2005, 01:12 AM   #4 (permalink)
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i use spyboy and ad-aware6 to combat spyware.
i try to keep my computer pretty clean.

my hard drive is never too full because i always eventually move everything to my external. i think right now i may have 25 gigs used and 15 free.
for my memory, i have two 512 sticks of ddr ram

i've made no changes recently.
i actually got my laptop back from repair about a month ago for similar symptoms.
the work order included cleaning it out a little and re-seating the hard drive, btw.. i dont know what that means.
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Old 04-12-2005, 02:10 AM   #5 (permalink)
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slow drives usually indicate something else is using it or your page file is full or too small.
A drive with errors on it or that is about to die would start giving a lot of blue screens or just crashing, a slower access is indicative of higher use or lower resources elsewhere.
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Old 04-12-2005, 05:09 AM   #6 (permalink)
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How long has it been since you last defragmented your hard drive?? With a lot of activity the hard drives get fragmented very fast and it slows dow the access time to your files. It shouldn't cause that much of a slow down, but it could be part of the problem.
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Old 04-12-2005, 06:56 AM   #7 (permalink)
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Try booting up in safe mode and see if that makes a difference. Also do your spyware/adware/virus checking when in safe mode to get everything. Also defrag your disk like vinaur says. When you're just at your desktop, hit CTRL-ALT-DEL and see what processes are running, see if anything other than the System Idle Process is running high. If you're just at your desktop the Idle process should be up to 99% or so. Is anything else running high?

I would recommend formatting the disk and re-installing Windows but if your files are taking that long to transfer it might take a month. Also when they say they reseated the hard disk it just means making sure it's screwed in properly and the cables are plugged in nice and tight.
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Old 04-12-2005, 07:13 AM   #8 (permalink)
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Is the computer still under manufacturer's warranty or an extended warranty through CC. If it's less than a year old, then it's still covered under MFG warranty. Both CC and Best Buy will not do anything warranty wise unless it's hardware related (i.e. drive clicking/failing, drive not showing in BIOS, etc.). Anything software related, both places will charge you to fix.

What do you mean when you say that your harddrive is making a horrible noise? Does it sound like clicking or is it just making that noise the same time the harddrive activity light (most likely on the front of the machine) is blinking? Some harddrives are just naturally noisy if they're close to your ears. Others are extremely quiet; most are quiet nowadays. If the harddrive is clicking, and you should easily be able to tell, then it's most likely that the harddrive is failing.

Try the stuff mentioned above about the Adware/virus removal in Safe Mode.
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Old 04-12-2005, 01:45 PM   #9 (permalink)
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my computer is 1 year 4 months old. its out of the MFG warranty. i just updated norton anti virus definitions (by just i mean TODAY) and did a scan, it took almost 4 hours to scan my whole computer which is unusually long for norton. i checked my harddrive and i have 14 gigs used. the last time i defragged my hard drive was maybe 2 weeks ago. i use diskeeper pro.

so viruses = ZERO
by noise it actually makes two kinds of noise.
one is a electronic whinning noise.
second one sounds like 'quickly scratching your nail against the desk'

i have a toshiba satellite and usually, its super quiet.


i have a strong gut feeling its the hard drive...

update:
i just ran Ad-aware, and there were 9 new objects found.
which is a really small amount, and they were all tracking cookies.

Last edited by MiSo; 04-12-2005 at 02:21 PM..
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Old 04-12-2005, 04:44 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Run chkdsk in cmd, maybe that will give you something. Also have you looked at your MFT in Diskeeper Pro. Maybe you need to extend the MFT space. MFT probably will not have anything to do with slowing down the computer that much, but you never know. It's always better to try everything before throwing out the hd.
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Old 04-12-2005, 04:45 PM   #11 (permalink)
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What I would tell you to do then is take your computer back to Circuit City, and tell them that you have run virus scans and adware scans on your computer and you're basically coming up empty handed.

If the person you are talking to still won't take your computer, ask for a manager. Most of the time, the manager will do what it takes to keep customers happy, because thats what they're there to do aside from making sales quotas.

If they still won't take your computer, you might tell them you will see your lawyer about breech of contract.

I used to work at BBY when I was in college and we had many customers come in that were displeased with Circuit City's extended warranty.
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Old 04-12-2005, 06:15 PM   #12 (permalink)
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Look in the event viewer for disk errors

The event viewer is in administrative tools inside of the control panel

That will defiantly show the hard drive is failing. if you donít see them, check the manufacturer of the drive, most make diagnostic disk you can run and it will check the disk for problems.
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Old 04-17-2005, 11:25 PM   #13 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MiSo
by noise it actually makes two kinds of noise.
one is a electronic whinning noise.
second one sounds like 'quickly scratching your nail against the desk'

i have a toshiba satellite and usually, its super quiet.


i have a strong gut feeling its the hard drive...
Ya man...back up the porn and warez because that hard drive is seeing its last days.
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Old 04-18-2005, 10:15 AM   #14 (permalink)
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The scratching noise you indicated sounded like the arm that moves around to read data is f'ed up or possible making small scratches on the platters in it. The whining noise sounds like it could be a problem with the motor(s) that spin the platters. But from what you've been describing, I would recommend you back up your stuff and try reformatting. If it takes a long time to back up your stuff, so be it.

If the reformat and clean install doesn't help, the drive is close to being FUBAR. Only some thermite or a lightning strike could mess it up any more.
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Old 04-18-2005, 11:00 PM   #15 (permalink)
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well, i said screw it to circuit city warranty plan. i'm just going to upgrade my hard drive to something better. my gf said she'd pick one up for me as an anniversary present so no complaints about that.

and about circuit city's warranty plan, its not like i can bring it into circuit city. there's another company that handles their warranty claims and they send you a box, you pack up ur laptop and ship it to them. then they ship it back.
so its going to take atleast 2-3 weeks to get my laptop back.

i figure i'll just take the chance to get a bigger faster drive.
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Old 05-02-2005, 10:02 AM   #16 (permalink)
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Update:

upgraded to a 80 gig 5400 rpm drive.
big upgrade from 40gig 4200 drive.


but a problem i have is now my usb2 drive does not read at 2.0 speeds, and my pci card slot does not read my wireless card (i dont have integrated wireless)

i checked toshiba's website for the drivers, but no dice.
anyone know any good toshiba support forums i can visit?
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Old 05-02-2005, 10:52 AM   #17 (permalink)
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When you plug in your USB drive do you get that little balloon that says something about it being able to run faster? I assume you're using Windows XP? Make sure you download Service Pack 2 using Windows Update. Go to the device manager (Control Panel -> System -> Hardware -> Device Manager) and find your USB entry. Right click and uninstall it, then search for new hardware and it should install itself automatically. SP2 gives support for high speed USB devices but you have to reinstall them before it kicks in. My gut feeling is that that's the problem but if it's not let us know.

As for your wireless card, did it come with its own drivers? And do you have another way to access the net? You might want to try connecting to the net through a modem or cable, and uninstalling and reinstalling the card, and let Windows search the net for its own drivers. I installed my wireless card a few weeks ago on my Dell laptop and the supplied drivers didn't work, Windows needed its own from the internet.

So give that a try and see how it goes
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Old 05-02-2005, 09:16 PM   #18 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Rlyss
When you plug in your USB drive do you get that little balloon that says something about it being able to run faster? I assume you're using Windows XP? Make sure you download Service Pack 2 using Windows Update. Go to the device manager (Control Panel -> System -> Hardware -> Device Manager) and find your USB entry. Right click and uninstall it, then search for new hardware and it should install itself automatically. SP2 gives support for high speed USB devices but you have to reinstall them before it kicks in. My gut feeling is that that's the problem but if it's not let us know.
So give that a try and see how it goes

thats a great idea, and i tried it, but i'm using a pirated copy of xp pro that i got from a friend and MS wont let me get service pack 2.


i got a question though, i have the original disk that came with the laptop ( the system recovery disk). do you think that disk would have windows xp home edition on it? can i just pop in the disk and will it set everything back to how it was from day one?


the reason i used the xp pro was because the hard drive i got was a new one and i wasnt sure if the recovey disk would put windows xp on my system.
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