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Hi all -

I consider myself a reasonable man.

I consider myself reasonably tech-savvy. I have home-built our last 3 computers, and even broke the warranty to upgrade the memory in my MacBook.

So it drives me UP A FREAKING WALL when - as always seems to happen - my PCs start getting "lazy" on me.

Now it's the home PC. Windows 7, 64-bit, home-built. The symptom is that it just...runs...slow - but with an average of 5% CPU utilization. So it's not that it's getting old (it's only a year or so old, and was built with reasonably top-shelf parts), but that some process seems to be blocking.

I'm not looking for a miracle from the wise Fools here, but could use some help on how to even go about starting to work on this.

I really think it's some piece of software that does something on startup - example candidates include Microsoft Security Essentials, DropBox, Carbonite, etc. I think one of them is trying to phone home, and gets blocked. I try to aggressively keep things like the Adobe Updater and iTunes updater from starting, but they keep coming back.

I can run Hijack This or S&D or whatever is in use today, if others could help point out likely culprits and suggest steps I might follow to unclog things. It was definitely much faster when first built, so I 'm highly suspicious of, oh, maybe a Windows update, or some other piece of poorly-updated software or something.

THANKS FOOLS!!!
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No. of Recommendations: 14
Hey GameMaker,,,

Computers don't get Old and Tired and therefore run slower.
Your PC should be able to run Just as Fast Now, as it did when it was New!!! You did not mention how much RAM you have???

Systems get Cluttered Up, over time, and they generally retain all that Clutter, without proper periodic Cleaning. Also, people keep adding more and more Processes, Applications, and all sorts Automatic Update Processes, to everything, and eventually you just filled the 1 pound bag with 2 pounds of Crap!!!

Don't know what all you have, for software but, here is what I think you should do:

1) Download & Install CCleaner latest Copy, from here: http://www.filehippo.com/download_ccleaner/

2) Download & Install MalwareBytes, from here: http://www.filehippo.com/download_malwarebytes_anti_malware/...

3) Run CCleaner and allow it to Clean Everything;

4) Run the CCleaner's Registry-Cleaner, allow it to clean everything and make the suggested Registry backup;

5) Run MalwareBytes, Full-Scan, and allow it to delete everything it finds;

6) Update and Run MSE, Full-Scan, and delete anything it finds;

7) Run CCleaner again, and go into CCleaner---> Tools---> Startup. Then look at all the listed Start-Up Processes and Applications, and Disable Everything you are not using or that you don't want or need.

8) Re-Boot the System, and see and let us know where you are at???

Just my 2 cents...

TK...
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My old computer behaved the same way when the BIOS setting for caching RAM got cleared.
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When mine slows down, I run CCleaner. Usually I find that AVI has accumulated massive temp files.

I run CCleaner about every 10 days.
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I've also found that CCleaner doesn't clean out ALL temp files on the system.

There are multiple temp folders on your computer and it focuses on C:\TEMP or C:\Windows\Temp.

Using Windows 7, there is another hidden temp folder within your User Account.

You have to first ensure that Hidden Files / Folders are visible by clicking File>Folder Options and then select the View Tab... Show Hidden Files, Folders, Drives.

Then go to:
C:\Users\YOUR_USER_NAME\AppData\Local\Temp

I've found this Temp folder in Win7 to contain upwards of 500mb of crap that CCleaner didn't get. I just cleaned this on my work computer about a week ago and it is currently 48mb of junk...

NOTE: THIS IS IMPORTANT
When you wipe out this Temp folder's content, make sure that you don't have any applications running. It can cause issues.

xSSMBB
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Gamemaker, you mentioned you thought the problem might be something on start up.

Go into MS Config, make a note of whats on and turn off all start up items. Same for services.

Then reboot and see how the system runs. (You may need to reactivate some system services to get a clean boot, play that by ear.) If that computer is faster, you've found the problem. Then go back and one by one, turn back on each item and reboot (yeah, I know, this is laborious). When the system slows down you've found the culprit.

I can't say much more because the solution depends on which service caused the slow down.

Charlie Brown
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Computers don't get Old and Tired and therefore run slower.

I beg to differ. The most software installs and uninstalls and detritus a machine has on it can and often will slow the PC down.

Same with heavily fragmentation on the drives. At the office we'll image or reload a PC when is starts getting sluggish and users sometimes thing we replace the hardware with something faster.
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Wow - thanks, everyone!

I will follow all these steps and report back tonight when I see how it did.

You. People. ROCK!
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C:\Users\YOUR_USER_NAME\AppData\Local\Temp

When running CCleaner as that same YOUR_USER_NAME, I find that CCleaner v3.22.1800 (64-bit) does indeed clean out that directory. (Actually, it won't touch any files less than 24 hours old in either the above %temp% directory or in C:\Windows\temp.)

However, if one has multiple users on the box, I don't know if it would handle the other users' %temp% directories. (If it doesn't, one could add the full paths to CCleaner in Options -> Include and "Add" each respective path (and set to include files and subfolders), assuming the logon running CCleaner has rights to those folders and files.)
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Hey xSixSigmaMBB,,,

I've also found that CCleaner doesn't clean out ALL temp files on the system

Yes, that's true, the Sub-folders and Files in

C:\Users\YOUR_USER_NAME\AppData\Local\Temp

are created and placed there by various Apps, and they can contain almost anything, Historical Log-Files, Statistics, etc., well you name it.

However, if you want those Directories and/or Files to be include in the Cleaner's Cleanup runs, you can go to Cleaners's-->Options-->Include and Browse to the Directories and/or Files, and add the Path to the CCleaner's Table that you also want to be cleaned.

Conversely, you can also Exclude Directories and/or Files that you don't want to be cleaned, like some Sub-Directories under the Temp Dirs. that some Apps use for saving various Statistical info. etc. And I know, that the Apps shouldn't use temp Folder for that purpose, but many Apps do.

TK...
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Hey exeter17,,,

Computers don't get Old and Tired and therefore run slower.

I beg to differ. The most software installs and uninstalls and detritus a machine has on it can and often will slow the PC down.


Well you can I beg to differ all you want, but you obviously didn't read or understand what I said:

"Systems get Cluttered Up, over time, and they generally retain all that Clutter, without proper periodic Cleaning. Also, people keep adding more and more Processes, Applications, and all sorts Automatic Update Processes, to everything, and eventually you just filled the 1 pound bag with 2 pounds of Crap!!!"

Then you said:

Same with heavily fragmentation on the drives. At the office we'll image or reload a PC when is starts getting sluggish and users sometimes thing we replace the hardware with something faster.

Well, I think you just made my point, after all that Image Restoring or Cleaning, the old hardware was just fine and user even assumed you gave them new hardware,,, LOL..

TK...
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xSixSigmaMBB,

Using Windows 7, there is another hidden temp folder [besides C:\Windows\Temp] within your User Account.

Indeed, and there are other temp folders specific to various programs. Personally, I have a batch file (remember DOS?) that erases files older than a couple months from various temp folders at each bootup. And removes any empty folders within the temp folders.

Phil
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Followup:

Hi all -

I ran CCleaner and MBAM - the former cleaned some stuff, and the latter found nothing.

The computer is indeed running faster, though - and I am 80% sure the culprit was one of the things in the startup group. All those stupid Apple / Adobe updaters that want to run constantly. Turning those off seems to have made it peppier again.

Thanks, everyone!
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pop the lid and clean out all of the dust from the cpu fan and the power supply
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TK, I bookmarked your post to follow these steps later as I was crazy busy at work at the time.

Now that I did, I have to thank you for helping my "lazy computer" to speed up. I've always been scared of doing anything to the registry because of some of the stories I've heard. CCleaner cleared out about 250 things and the computer is much faster now. One site I like was so slow that I had stopped going there. Now it's still slow, but is usable.

I looked at Startup and see a long list of Processes and Applications. I'm not sure how to tell which ones I don't need. A couple were obvious, but most look like mumbo jumbo.

Thanks!
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Hey rosewine,,,

Well, I am glad you are seeing some improvements, anyway!!!

I looked at Startup and see a long list of Processes and Applications. I'm not sure how to tell which ones I don't need. A couple were obvious, but most look like mumbo jumbo.

There are many Utility-Programs, that you can download or you can run them from their Web-Pages, that give you a pretty good description of the process or application, who it belongs to and your options as to disabling it from Start-Up or just deleting it. None of them are perfect on every Name but, they can be pretty useful.

Here is one from ProcessLibrary.com, by Uniblue.
You can Downloaded it from here, and then install it:

http://www.processlibrary.com/quicklink/

(Snip)
How it works

Once you install ProcessQuickLink access the Task Manager. Near each process you will see an button. Click on this button and you will be linked to the process page as listed on processlibrary.com.

ProcessQuickLink is compatible with Windows 2000, 2003, XP, Vista and 7.


And, when you are done using it you can just R-Click on the Icon in you System-Tray and Click on Exit, and then your Windows Task-Manager is back to normal.

Or, you can go to their Web-Page and just type in the Name of the Process, here:

http://www.processlibrary.com/directory/files/trueimagemonit...

Check it out...

TK...
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