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Windows 7: Computer slow...hardware...what are my options?

28 Jan 2014   #31
vitaminn

64 bit Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
I'd buy the 2gb Crucial RAM stick for $27: 2GB, 240-pin DIMM, DDR3 PC3-10600 upgrades for Lenovo H405 (7723) Desktop/PC, CT1935206 from Crucial.com. They guarantee it based on their scan.

Googling all of the specs you can find it for less but it takes close comparison to match exactly. Many warn buyers away from eBay but sellers must abide by PayPal's refund policy and give your money back if you pay to ship the piece back.
Thank you. This has been a great learning experience in such a short period of time! I think I'll grab that stick of RAM and see how that goes.

As far as Google Drive @bitoolean, that's mostly to keep my files synced between different computers, tablet and phone; Hugely convenient. I use carbonate for cloud based backing up.


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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28 Jan 2014   #32
bitoolean

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32bit
 
 

Well apparently one of the two slots is available. That's very good. Optimum is to buy a stick of the same frequency (MHz, or you can identify that by the PC3-10600 number which just means DDR3 at 1333 MHz) and quantity (2GB) as the one you already have, indeed. Otherwise (you buy a faster one) it will down-speed or (you buy a slower one) the one you already have will down-speed. If you do that, it will make it possible for them to work in tandem (dual channel) which is a plus (programs load to the memory faster because of double bandwidth). There's no absolute need to buy Crucial - any other maker does just as fine, but that's what I would choose too if the prices did't differ too much. Otherwise, when it comes to RAM, choice doesn't matter too much (they fail more rarely than other components, although for some reason I've seen it happen more often lately). This is just my opinion from my experience using RAM, I'm not trying to contradict greg, in fact just completing his answer. EDIT: Don't expect a significant boost of performance, just getting rid of a little bottleneck. Like, now the PC will be in a rather decent condition.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2014   #33
vitaminn

64 bit Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
Well apparently one of the two slots is available. That's very good. Optimum is to buy a stick of the same frequency (MHz, or you can identify that by the PC3-10600 number which just means DDR3 at 1333 MHz) and quantity (2GB) as the one you already have, indeed. Otherwise (you buy a faster one) it will down-speed or (you buy a slower one) the one you already have will down-speed. If you do that, it will make it possible for them to work in tandem (dual channel) which is a plus (programs load to the memory faster because of double bandwidth). There's no absolute need to buy Crucial - any other maker does just as fine, but that's what I would choose too if the prices did't differ too much. Otherwise, when it comes to RAM, choice doesn't matter too much (they fail more rarely than other components, although for some reason I've seen it happen more often lately). This is just my opinion from my experience using RAM, I'm not trying to contradict greg, in fact just completing his answer. EDIT: Don't expect a significant boost of performance, just getting rid of a little bottleneck. Like, now the PC will be in a rather decent condition.
On further inspection of the computers profile, the memory info reads:

Memory:
DDR3 PC3-10600, DDR3 PC3-12800
Memory Type: DDR3 PC3-10600, DDR3 PC3-12800, DDR3 (non-ECC)

I just bought 2 gigs of the 10600. What the hell is the 12800 ??? ://
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28 Jan 2014   #34
bitoolean

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32bit
 
 

What memory info is that? Of the memory stick you have, or the memory frequencies the motherboard supports? You need to find out what frequency your RAM stick is, and use another one of the same type. Anyway, don't worry, they adjust to each-other's speed if they differ (to whichever is the lower one, but to the maximum the computer - that is the motherboard and the CPU - supports). My first impression from that amalgamated data is that the stick you have is PC3-10600 (DDR3 1333 MHz) and that the motherboard supports maximum PC3-12800 (that probably stands for DDR3 1600 MHz), but I can't be sure since those numbers have no label. You should check the frequency of the RAM stick you already have, using Speccy or another software, as I said before. It doesn't feel right that two frequencies are specified on the same line. Those are most probably just what the motherboards supports, which it's normal to be more than one.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2014   #35
vitaminn

64 bit Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
What memory info is that? Of the memory stick you have, or the memory frequencies the motherboard supports? You need to find out what frequency your RAM stick is, and use another one of the same type. Anyway, don't worry, they adjust to each-other's speed if they differ (to whichever is the lower one, but to the maximum the computer - that is the motherboard and the CPU - supports). My first impression from that amalgamated data is that the stick you have is PC3-10600 (DDR3 1333 MHz) and that the motherboard supports maximum PC3-12800 (that probably stands for DDR3 1600 MHz), but I can't be sure since those numbers have no label. You should check the frequency of the RAM stick you already have, using Speccy or another software, as I said before. It doesn't feel right that two frequencies are specified on the same line. Those are most probably just what the motherboards supports, which it's normal to be more than one.
Just used Speccy... impressive user experience. Also, I just got off chat with a Crucial and the rep said that my current ram is actually PC3-8500.

Anyway, I just purchased 4 gigs of PC3-10600 and will pull the old stuff out so there's no downclocking.

Cheers!
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2014   #36
bitoolean

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32bit
 
 

I DID mention in my previous message that the memory speed is limited by the maximum frequencies supported by both the CPU and motherboard. Unfortunately it seems that your CPU only supports PC3-8500 (DDR3-1066 MHz) maximum memory frequency, so any memory used with it will downgrade to PC3-8500 anyway. So in fact the RAM stick that you already had is a PC3-10600 (DDR3-1333) as well (at least according to the PC info on newegg), just that it works at a lower speed because of the CPU, so it appears as a PC-8500 to system information software.

From my online findings, your CPU socket on the motherboard is AM3 (not "AM3+"). If you happen to replace that (otherwise pretty sweet, at least a couple of years ago it was) dual-core (X2) CPU with one with more bandwidth (Front Speed Bus frequency), the RAM sticks will work at their full potential (unless the motherboard's memory speed limit is also 1066 MHz, which is probably not the case). Such CPUs for your socket are any X3 - 450/455/460 (those are triple core) or one of the quad cores X4 640 / 645 - the higher the model numbers, the higher their frequency - if you can still find those (maybe on ebay, I don't know). Otherwise, from what I could tell from online benchmarks a couple of years ago, there isn't much performance benefit between 1066 and 1333 MHz RAM anyway.

The reason the Crucial app/website (and greg) initially pointed you to a faster RAM is probably that 1066 MHz RAM sticks are no longer on sale, most probably, so they gave you a compatible one instead.

Besides being of same capacity, for two memory sticks to work in dual-channel it's also recommended that they are as similar as possible (have the same latency timings, be from the same manufacturer, and preferably even the same factory lot) but that's mostly commercial mambo-jumbo in my opinion and even different latency RAM sticks should work together. However, you can at least rest easy you didn't spend the money on the second stick completely uselessly and maybe it could also be considered an excuse for the Crucial employees to have recommended that buy.

Speaking of Speccy, you can verify the temperatures of some components with it, so for example you current CPU's maximum temperature ceiling is 74 degrees Celsius. You can check that when the PC is worked hard, and if it ever reaches 75 for prolonged times (say, more than a minute or two at most), you know you need to worry about overheating. I thought I'd share that with you since I stumbled on the information online.

Another thing in Speccy related to your PC, if the "Graphics" is recognized as "Radeon (HD) 3000" (which is the default video chip for your PC, integrated into the motherboard), then you probably don't already have a dedicated video card, and that integrated chip is only good for dual monitor configurations. But it's definitely good for that at least, according to the AMD website.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2014   #37
vitaminn

64 bit Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
I DID mention in my previous message that the memory speed is limited by the maximum frequencies supported by both the CPU and motherboard. Unfortunately it seems that your CPU only supports PC3-8500 (DDR3-1066 MHz) maximum memory frequency, so any memory used with it will downgrade to PC3-8500 anyway.
Well shi! . Guess I forgot about checking to see what my CPU and mobo limits were considering frequency. ://

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
I see from online findings that your CPU socket on the motherboard is AM3, without a plus. If you happen to replace that (otherwise pretty sweet, at least a couple of years ago it was) dual-core (X2) CPU with one with more bandwidth (Front Speed Bus frequency), the RAM sticks will work at their full potential (unless the motherboard's memory speed limit is also 1066 MHz, which is probably not the case).
I have no idea what the motherboards speed limit is.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
1066 MHz RAM sticks are no longer on sale, most probably, so they gave you a compatible one instead.
hmmm... will be interesting to see what the sole me when they show up.

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
Speaking of Speccy, you can verify the temperatures of some components with it, so for example you current CPU's maximum temperature ceiling is 74 degrees Celsius. You can check that when the PC is worked hard, and if it ever reaches 75 for prolonged times (say, more than a minute or two at most), you know you need to worry about overheating. I thought I'd share that with you since I stumbled on the information online.
Good to know! Here is a link to the Speccy data for my Lenovo: http://speccy.piriform.com/results/m...Eq0Bkg7clb54AB

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
Another thing in Speccy related to your PC, if the "Graphics" is recognized as "Radeon (HD) 3000" (which is the default video chip for your PC, integrated into the motherboard), then you probably don't already have a dedicated video card, and that integrated chip is only good for dual monitor configurations. But it's definitely good for that at least, according to the AMD website.
I'd definitely be ok with 2 monitors at this point. I just didn't see a slot on back for an additional monitor...maybe I can use the HDMI port?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2014   #38
bitoolean

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32bit
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by vitaminn View Post
I'd definitely be ok with 2 monitors at this point. I just didn't see a slot on back for an additional monitor...maybe I can use the HDMI port?
I've never used one before, but yes, you should be able to. Or if you don't have a HDMI-cable monitor, you will probably find converters (or cable adapters or whatever they're called) to DVI or what you need.

The driver application that comes with the driver software for the video chip Radeon HD 3000 (provided it is installed) should activate automatically when you start the computer with two connected monitors and guide you to set them up however you want (mirror will show the same image on both, split will behave as two desktops and the third option is to spread a single desktop on the monitors as if they were one big screen). I'm not sure what the exact options are named, but you'll figure it out. If the app doesn't automatically start, you'll find the AMD Radeon settings in the control panel surely (I think their app is called Catalyst).

Another thing that will happen when you first start your PC after you put the new RAM sticks in place of the old one is probably that you will get a message from the BIOS (black screen before Windows even loads) alerting you that memory amount has changed. You just need to acknowledge that by pressing some button.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2014   #39
bitoolean

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32bit
 
 

From the Speccy output, your motherboard accepts PC3-10700 maximum, so if you ever replace the CPU with another AM3 one with more cores, the memory should also work as 1333 MHz. And just out of curiosity - your current RAM's latency is 7.

EDIT: Multi-core is beneficial for running more simultaneous critical (heavyweight) processes and having more cores will turn out even better performing with time, as technology evolves and more and more software developers make use of it in their apps.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
28 Jan 2014   #40
bitoolean

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32bit
 
 

Hehe I see that great minds think alike. I have User Account Control disabled as well. Cheers!

EDIT: But you lied about not having an active antivirus. You do. It's Microsoft Security Essentials. You probably installed it along with other things in the suite or something.
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 Computer slow...hardware...what are my options?




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