Windows 7 Forums
Welcome to Windows 7 Forums. Our forum is dedicated to helping you find support and solutions for any problems regarding your Windows 7 PC be it Dell, HP, Acer, Asus or a custom build. We also provide an extensive Windows 7 tutorial section that covers a wide range of tips and tricks.


Windows 7: Periodic performance drop for most video games, out of options.


19 Feb 2013   #1

Windows 7 Ultimate x86 (64bit)
 
 
Periodic performance drop for most video games, out of options.

Right so, for quite some time now (seven months or more?) I've been having this weird problem with my PC.

Most of the time all my games run fine, sure some badly optimized ones like GTA IV don't run perfectly, but almost every other game runs as expected. However, from time to time I experience random performance drops (frame rate) in almost every game, only exception being the ones that are ether very old or just very light on the system. The problem lasts for a few days (sometimes weeks).

I have no clue what the source of the problem could be. I reformatted the PC several times and the problem still occurs. PC specs and maintenance details:

-Intel Core i5-661 3.33 GHz Dual Core processor (temperature between 27 C and 34 C)
-Gigabyte GeForce GTX 550 Ti 1GB GPU (temperature between 28 C and 39 C, rarely goes above 40 C during summer)
-8GB DDR3 RAM
-Windows 7 Ultimate 64bit

Maintenance:
-Advanced Defragment and Optimization once a week using I0bit Smart Defrag 2
-Full Automatic maintenance once a week using I0bit Advanced System Care 6
-Reinstalling drivers once a week
-Always keeping 20 / 320 GB of hard disk space empty
-Hardware dusting with compressed air spray once a month
-Hardware check and tuning at local service... normally I do this every six months but I kinda' slacked off cause I've never noticed the results, apart from my pocket being lighter.
-Only programs I have running in background are: Steam (always), GameBooster (most of the time) and the Nvidia CP (always).

Also:

-I use I0bit Game Booster when running games (free version)
-No anti-virus to slow the games down
-Running games as administrator
-I enable FXAA in every game, for or the ones that don't support it I force it from the Nvidia CP. For most games it doesn't impact performance but for a few games I disable or lower other forms of Anti-Aliasing.

This problem affects Saints Row The Third and Sleeping Dogs worst, despite the fact that they both run perfectly with everything set to maximum when the problem doesn't occur. Strangely enough, the crappiest port in the world (GTA IV) doesn't seem to be affected by this problem.

A lot of people have told me I might have an evil virus plaguing my PC, however I'm pretty sure that's not the case, that's because:

1. I'm not a moron, I know how to avoid obvious virus threats.
2. Last time I re-formatted, this problem occurred before I even connected my PC to the internet or copied my personal data from the backup disks.

Any ideas?

My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

19 Feb 2013   #2

Windows 7 Home premium
 
 

Is it during extended play? Sometimes caches fill up or ram becomes overloaded if the game isn't clearing the cache properly, Bethesda's Elder Scrolls and Fallout games are particularly prone to this. I've not run into this issue with Sleeping Dogs or Saint's Row myself though.

It sounds like something is running in the background. Maybe an automatic update or some sort of adware, or spyware? [Most virus scanners won't pick up either of those, as they aren't viruses.]

Sometimes I forget to turn off auto-updates and that will give me a performance hit on games if it starts doing it's thing while I'm playing. Make sure you've got auto-update turned off for Windows update or any other program that self updates, there's usually an option for 'ask me first' so you don't miss important updates if it's not on auto-update.

IObit is a good tool to have, but it looks for malware and registry issues and nothing else. As far as I know it's not an Anti-virus program, and you'd be surprised the kinds of places you can pick them up. Most of the worst ones you won't get from obvious virus threats. I suggest getting some kind of anti-virus and anti-spyware program if you don't already have one.

I use Avast myself, but Ad-aware is a free program you could use to check your system and clean out most viruses and spyware. Even if it's not the source of your issue, it's a good idea to have anti-virus on any system.

Try running ADWCleaner, it's free and provides a nice report of what it finds.

If none of those things work, try checking out your processes and look for anything running in the background that wasn't before. You can do this in the task manager under the 'processes' tab. It's a good idea to have a look while the issue isn't going on and take note of what's running. Then when the issue hits again press ctrl-shift-esc to bring up the task manager and have a look to see if anything extra is running in the background. You may have to alt-tab or close the game to have a look as some games will fight to stay up front.

As far as I know, Saints Row and Sleeping Dogs shouldn't give you problems with the task manager, I've got them myself and have no troubles bringing it up with them running.

Good luck. Just from what you posted, I'd honestly say my top suspicion is that you've got something that wants to run in the background while you're playing. Usually that's an updater of some kind in my experience. Not necessarily a malicious program, but an annoyance. It might also be spyware or adware as well, two things you don't want that IObit doesn't deal with.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
19 Feb 2013   #3

Windows 7 professional X64
 
 

40 C for a 550TI under load?
..something seems fishy...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.


19 Feb 2013   #4

Windows 7 Home premium
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Erick Aguilar View Post
40 C for a 550TI under load?
..something seems fishy...
Saint's Row and Sleeping Dogs shouldn't put a 550ti under load. Neither of those games is particularly intensive. Maybe maxed out with full PhysX turned on, but otherwise they shouldn't pose a problem for the card. Even then they should run at a decent framerate. It's not a super card, but Sleeping Dogs and SR3 aren't huge GPU hog games either. [Sleeping Dogs might be with the HD Textures DLC, but not without it.]

I've got three Radeon HD 7970s in crossfire, and they rarely go over 45 c because my cooling is so good. They stay under 50 c running Farcry 3 for 2-3 hours. My case has six fans in it, a Noctua D14 heat sink for the CPU, and I keep my room pretty cool most of the time.

I didn't think of it before, but it could also be that OPs PSU is a little underpowered as well. I'd check to see if the wattage is at recommended levels for the CPU and GPU.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Feb 2013   #5

Windows 7 Ultimate x86 (64bit)
 
 

Neither of them use PhysX.

Anyway, the problem occurs instantly, aka from the moment I start the game.

Anti-Virus is out of the question, they do more damage than prevent it.

Here are all the processes I have running in background, nothing out of the ordinary... I think

EDIT: Nvm, forum won't let me post the image.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Feb 2013   #6

Windows 7 Home premium
 
 

I knew Saint's Row didn't, but I don't know why I thought Sleeping Dogs used PhysX. I haven't played it much beyond a couple of hours right after I installed it. Probably because the combat system was stolen from the Batman games, which both do use PhysX.

I don't know where you got the extremely silly and absolutely incorrect idea that 'antivirus does more damage than it prevents'. Whoever told you that is an idiot who has no idea what they are talking about.

If you have an internet connection, you -need- an antivirus program if you're running any version of Windows. Seriously, where did you pick up that from? Whoever told you that is a complete moron and shouldn't be trusted.

Anti-virus is essential to any PC that has an internet connection. Just like any other program, if it's interfering with games, it can be paused or temporarily shut down while you play. Or you can just use one to scan the drives every week or so and shut it down or even uninstall it after you do. Though, I'd not recommend that, it's much better to have active protection most of the time.

You're just begging for an infection without it. That's probably what the problem is if you've not got one. Just hooking into the internet can infect your PC. They can sneak in with E-mails, java and Flash ads on websites, and you don't really need to 'click on' or 'open' something for it to put a virus into your system. Viruses can even get into your system through game servers.

I hate to put it this way, but 'not being a moron' isn't good enough to protect your PC. Most virus threats aren't obvious. That's kind of why they're so good at getting into systems and messing things up. They're literally designed to not be obvious, and to get into the background of your PC where you don't notice them until it's too late. That could be as little time as a couple of minutes.

Regardless of whether not having Virus Protection is the cause of this issue, not having anti-virus of some sort is indeed 'being a moron'.

Besides, most anti-virus programs don't cause enough of a performance hit to matter. Especially if you have auto updating turned off. If your PC is struggling with a game, having an anti-virus program isn't going to make things any worse. It might knock a couple of fps off if any. You won't have to change any settings if you've got one in. If it runs on ultra without AV, it will run on ultra with it installed.

Not having AV with a Windows PC is insane. Seriously, having an internet connection without AV on a Windows PC is like making it have unprotected sex with a hundred different people every day. It's going to get infected with something, it's just a matter of how long it takes, and more than likely it won't take long.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Feb 2013   #7

Windows 7 x64 (Ultimate)
 
 

Search Indexing perhaps?

Have you check the time Windows Updates run at?

Spyware or Malware running on Backgroung when you least expect it? Perhaps part of Windows option?

That or a heat problem... pretty much with everyone else has said.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Feb 2013   #8

Windows 7 Ultimate x64
 
 

First off i can't understand why you use Game Booster on such a system. It really will make no difference what so ever. And secondly you shouldn't need to defrag a Windows 7 system also. It is done by the OS in the background or basically when you install something it will arrange your HDD's data in such a way that it is always very well arranged.

From what you have tried i.e. reinstalling your OS several times that is saying it is a hardware fault. Could be PSU, motherboard, Ram etc etc Or of course what others have mentioned. Overheating with one of your components. Only way to test these things out is to either have a spare to try or borrow one from a friend (Needle in an haystack comes to mind...) Also get some programs for checking temps/voltages like Realtemp (CPU temps) and say HWMonitor (Voltages etc) and may be MSI Afterburner or EVGA precision for checking GPU temps.

In regards to a Anti-virus most of them make no impact at all on your systems performance (You would never even know one was running 99.9% of the time) Just get a free one like "Microsoft security essentials". It is probably one of the best antivirus programs available these day's. Personally i use Nod32 but that's because i paid for it but would use Microsoft security essentials myself once the subscription on mine runs out.

EDIT: Couple of other things just come to mind...

Have you installed the latest version of DirectX 9c? Most people seem to overlook this with Windows 7 as it comes with DirectX 11 but not all of the DirectX 9 components are there by default. Also have you checked if there are any firmware updates for your Motherboard? Check what board you have (Should say on the board itself or get CPU-z and that should display your motherboard information make/model).

One other thing that bothers me in your first post is "-Full Automatic maintenance once a week using I0bit Advanced System Care 6". Anything automated is asking for trouble in my opinion. It's fine having maintenance programs but you'd be better off deciding when it runs. Even if it is set to run in the middle of the night it will still have a process running all the time in the background and thus using resources.

Last thing...

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Contrabardus View Post
Not having AV with a Windows PC is insane. Seriously, having an internet connection without AV on a Windows PC is like making it have unprotected sex with a hundred different people every day. It's going to get infected with something, it's just a matter of how long it takes, and more than likely it won't take long.
Made me laugh. Brilliant way of putting it And i totally agree with your opinion about Anti virus protection.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Feb 2013   #9

Windows 7 professional X64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by taylorig View Post
First off i can't understand why you use Game Booster on such a system. It really will make no difference what so ever. And secondly you shouldn't need to defrag a Windows 7 system also. It is done by the OS in the background or basically when you install something it will arrange your HDD's data in such a way that it is always very well arranged.
Can you explain something to me please?
If you don't need to defrag a Windows 7 system, why is the defragmentation tool available for use?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
20 Feb 2013   #10

Windows 7 Home premium
 
 

Well, you can set up scheduled defrags on a regular basis with Windows 7, but it's not set that way by default. You need to go in and set it that way. It's a good idea, and it's best to pick a scheduled time when the PC is never really used, such as your regular sleeping or working hours.

You do need to defrag a Windows 7 system. Fragmentation has nothing to do with file placement or how your HDD is arranged. It's fragments of data that aren't completely cleaned out when an area of the HDD is overwritten or when something is deleted off the system. A defrag seeks these little shreds of data out and eliminates them. It's sort of like brushing your computer's teeth. Little data fragments are like plaque and can hurt your system if left to build up over time leading to slowdown and crashes if left unattended for too long.

Windows 7 does not automatically prevent this from happening. The only way to deal with it is to defrag on occasion. Though, as I said, you can set the defragmentation to a schedule where it happens automatically. It isn't set that way by default, you actually have to open the control panel go into the defrag tool and set it that way.

I recommend setting it to do so about once a week for each HDD you've got. Do one drive one day, another the next,etc...

I also recommend setting Anti-virus, anti-malware, anti-spyware, and anti-adware to do scheduled scans when the PC is not normally in use. Most scanning programs have a setting for automatic scanning in them as well.

If you've got this stuff going on a set schedule, you shouldn't ever really need to worry about doing it yourself beyond checking occasionally to make sure an update didn't reset your settings when you weren't paying attention.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 Periodic performance drop for most video games, out of options.




Thread Tools



Similar help and support threads for2: Periodic performance drop for most video games, out of options.
Thread Forum
Accessibility on drag and drop options Customization
Sudden drop in performance by around 60% --- most noticeable in games. Performance & Maintenance
Why did my processor performance drop? Performance & Maintenance
Solved Possible performance drop due to cleaning fan. Performance & Maintenance
Solved Sudden, massive drop in RAM performance Performance & Maintenance
Performance + WEI Subscore drop Performance & Maintenance
Intel can't yet replicate published SSD performance drop Performance & Maintenance

Our Sites

Site Links

About Us

Find Us

Windows 7 Forums is an independent web site and has not been authorized, sponsored, or otherwise approved by Microsoft Corporation. "Windows 7" and related materials are trademarks of Microsoft Corp.

Designer Media Ltd

All times are GMT -5. The time now is 01:05 PM.
Twitter Facebook Google+



Windows 7 Forums

Seven Forums Android App Seven Forums IOS App
  

1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25 26 27 28 29 30 31 32 33