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Wednesday, March 18, 2009

Windows XP Is Running Slower Than Usual

Check that you are not running out of disk space, I always make sure I have ¼ of my Hard Disk Drives Total Capacity free. To check the disk space Double Click “My Computer” on the desktop the right click the Local Disk (C:) and select properties, a pie chart should be show as below.

The information on this chart speaks for its self.

If you are running low on disk space then maybe archiving some data (i.e. MP3, Pics, Films, etc) to CD if you have a burner may be in order.

At this stage you should also try to clear out your temp files for this I use CCleaner you can get this for FREE here http://www.ccleaner.com

Make sure your PC is Virus and Spyware free. If you do not have a scanner for each of these you could download one of each using the links below or find one for yourself.

Free Virus Protection:




Free Spyware Removal:




Check if any processes are running typically high on CPU usage. To do this first close all open programs and then press Ctrl-Alt-Del together and select Taskmanager Button the select the processes tab, If you then click the CPU header so that it sorts in Descending order and look for any items than are still using the CPU (ignore the one called system idle process, they higher this is the better) see below

once you have found any CPU hungry processes then you can try searching for the process name on Google to find out what it is and what it does and if it can be terminated to see if the machine speeds up. (to terminate a process right click and select end process.

Use MSconfig to temporarily disable items from starting up. To run MSconfig click the start button, select RUN and type msconfig in the run box and then OK up will come MSconfig, see below

If you click the startup tab you will see a similar screen as above. You can then try unticking various items and restarting to see if it is one item in particular that is causing your issues. (Be careful if you disable your Anti Virus software do not open any files or download/open any emails, also if you disable your Firewall do not connect to the internet during this testing phase) if you have unchecked all these and machine is still running slow you can put the ticks back in.

You can also stop services from starting using this tool to further help in diagnosing your speed issues.

By clicking the services tab (See pic above) and checking the box “Hide all Microsoft Services” (this is so you don’t stop a critical MS service) you can uncheck a service one by one and restart your machine (Be careful if you disable your Anti Virus software do not open any files or download/open any emails, also if you disable your Firewall do not connect to the internet during this testing phase)

Although this process can be time consuming it can be very helpful in sorting your speed problem.

Although I would not recommend you play around with the Microsoft services I have known a few services to slow machines down in the past which you could try stopping temporally these are as follows.

Background Intelligent Transfer Service
SSDP Discovery Service
Universal Plug And Play Device Host

To stop/start services in Windows click start, RUN and type services.msc then click OK you can then right click the service you would like to stop and select stop service
If this makes no difference in speed then right click and start it up again.

The above information may fix your problem or at least give you a clue as to what is causing the issue.

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