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

27 Jan 2014   #1
vitaminn

64 bit Windows 7
 
 
Computer slow...hardware...what are my options?

Hello, I have a clean (recent new install of windows with few programs) on a Lenova desktop.

The computer is just slow if I put too much of a load on it...which I tend to do.

It seems the CPU is high and RAM is near its limits often.

Question is: would be best to simply buy a computer that is able to handle more, OR, is it relatively feasible and cost beneficial to upgrade the hardware of this computer to perform at a higher level?

I would like the computer to handle two, maybe 3 monitors...at present, it handles 1.

I understand what drives up CPU usage, but what is it that a computer needs to handle more? Is that RAM? or the processor orrrr?

Thanks in advance. P.S. I'm not a gamer if that makes a difference? //




My System SpecsSystem Spec
.
27 Jan 2014   #2
gregrocker

 

Establish a Clean Boot, test the hardware, check the logs for repeat errors to resolve, utilize the other System Resources to solve problems found using the Troubleshooting Steps for Windows 7.

Once the freeloaders are all turned off at Startup, logs and hardware cleared, then the Resource monitor readings become meaningful and are also traceable using that step in tutorial.

I see you have only 2gb RAM on an Athlon x2 processor. I have a PC running these same specs that runs Win7 fast, but I would never install 64 bit Win7 on less than 4gb RAM.

So I would strongly consider starting over and this time follow the steps compiled in Clean Reinstall - Factory OEM Windows 7 to get and keep a perfect install based on tens of thousands of them we've helped with here.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #3
bitoolean

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32bit
 
 

Yes, of course it makes a difference whether you are planning to play video games or not. Those usually need much better performance from pretty much all of the components of a computer. The screenshots you provided are how my PC looks when I stress it the hardest, and I have a weaker CPU than you do. So there must be something wrong with your system. I don't use an antivirus though, so that might be one explanation. But there's no way to tell if you don't offer any more information.

One thing I can see from the start is that Windows is 64-bit, which doesn't make any sense with 2GB of RAM. Are you planning to get more RAM or why choose a 64-bit? That's only necessary if you absolutely need to use 64-bit software or you have at least 4 GB of RAM. A 64-bit Windows system usually eats slightly more resources than a 32-bit, and won't provide any performance boost on a low-RAM computer.

I'd be able to tell you what the problem is if you provided me with a list of the most resource-consuming processes. You can find those in the "Processes" tab of Task Manager. We only need to know the ones that use the most CPU and RAM (which you can find out by sorting them - just click the headers of the respective columns), but if you provide me with the full list of processes I can also see if you're running two active antivirus software at the same time for example (which would be very bad for system stability and performance).

One common thing I notice with recently acquired computers (especially manufacturer ones such as DELL, or HP notebooks for example) is that they come bloated with manufacturer software supposedly meant to help make the system better, but actually a burden performance-wise. Those are applications that accompany device driver software for example and most people don't even know what they are and never get to use them anyway. Backup utilies, driver updaters... and in the wrong hands (people who don't know well what they're doing) they're even a threat.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
.

27 Jan 2014   #4
vitaminn

64 bit Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
Yes, of course it makes a difference whether you are planning to play video games or not. Those usually need much better performance from pretty much all of the components of a computer. The screenshots you provided are how my PC looks when I stress it the hardest, and I have a weaker CPU than you do. So there must be something wrong with your system. I don't use an antivirus though, so that might be one explanation. But there's no way to tell if you don't offer any more information.

One thing I can see from the start is that Windows is 64-bit, which doesn't make any sense with 2GB of RAM. Are you planning to get more RAM or why choose a 64-bit? That's only necessary if you absolutely need to use 64-bit software or you have at least 4 GB of RAM. A 64-bit Windows system usually eats slightly more resources than a 32-bit, and won't provide any performance boost on a low-RAM computer.

I'd be able to tell you what the problem is if you provided me with a list of the most resource-consuming processes. You can find those in the "Processes" tab of Task Manager. We only need to know the ones that use the most CPU and RAM (which you can find out by sorting them - just click the headers of the respective columns), but if you provide me with the full list of processes I can also see if you're running two active antivirus software at the same time for example (which would be very bad for system stability and performance).

One common thing I notice with recently acquired computers (especially manufacturer ones such as DELL, or HP notebooks for example) is that they come bloated with manufacturer software supposedly meant to help make the system better, but actually a burden performance-wise. Those are applications that accompany device driver software for example and most people don't even know what they are and never get to use them anyway. Backup utilies, driver updaters... and in the wrong hands (people who don't know well what they're doing) they're even a threat.
Thanks for the thorough response.

I use 64 bit because that's what came on the machine. It looks like I need s'more ram... easy fix.

I also don't run any antivirus software and when I put a fresh install of windows 7 on the machine, it killed all the excess bloatware.

The biggest hog of CPU is my security camera software that runs constantly. What does a computer need to handle more "processes"? Is that RAM?

Below is a snapshot of processes running:
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #5
gregrocker

 

Sorry if you'd rather deal only with the guy with 4 posts, just say so.

Such a security system that runs constantly should probably have its own Server.

You can also try running a browser with less demand and which doesn't spend a lot of resources spying on you like Chrome does. Any installed Google program is a spyware nest building ad profiles that track your every move and paste ads based on what you write in emails. I install no Google and stay signed out of their sites like Youtube.

Firefox which is open source is much lower resource and doesn't allow spying, even confines Google to a secure Search box. Internet Explorer is less pernicious.

I'd stll want to see how 32 bit runs on there up to 4gb RAM which may be all that your mobo can support. Many Athlon x2 can only support 2gb in which case 32 bit would be essential.

Otherwise I'd go over the install closely with the Troubleshooting Steps for Windows 7 that are almost always revealing.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #6
vitaminn

64 bit Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
Sorry if you'd rather deal only with the guy with 4 posts, just say so.

Such a security system that runs constantly should probably have its own Server.

You can also try running a browser with less demand and which doesn't spend a lot of resources spying on you like Chrome does. Any installed Google program is a spyware nest building ad profiles that track your every move and paste ads based on what you write in emails. I install no Google and stay signed out of their sites like Youtube.

Firefox which is open source is much lower resource and doesn't allow spying, even confines Google to a secure Search box. Internet Explorer is less pernicious.

I'd stll want to see how 32 bit runs on there up to 4gb RAM which may be all that your mobo can support. Many Athlon x2 can only support 2gb in which case 32 bit would be essential.

Otherwise I'd go over the install closely with the Troubleshooting Steps for Windows 7 that are almost always revealing.
"Sorry if you'd rather deal only with the guy with 4 posts?" Really Greg? I don't mean to pi$$ on your parade but that attitude kinda blows. And I have no question as to your knowledge in this area, but so far, you're speaking at collegiate level to a novice...

The security software maybe should indeed be put on its own server. But, if I would rather it not, is it possible to get this computer's hardware up to snuff? Or is that something thats not "fixable".

I use Google for business and trust them as much as I do the builders of Firefox. Sounds like you have it out for Google's browser. I use both Chrome and Firefox but Chrome almost exclusively.

Quickly changing from 64 to 32 bit system maybe a breeze to you but, to most its not. I'll consider your suggestion only if that's my last resort in keeping this computer...thanks.

"mobo" ?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #7
gregrocker

 

Sorry it just seemed rude that you ignored my post without so much as acknowledging it and were so gracious to the guy who repeated one step I had already mentioned and is covered in my tutorial. However he was zeroing in on the right area as we saw.

Feel free to ask back any questions to clarify anything needed if you are confused.

mobo=motherboard

You can learn how much RAM your mobo can take by running Crucial System Scanner software to find out what type of memory is in your computer.

They also have competitive prices but you can search to compare by the Crucial part number and by highlighting the exact specs to rightclick to Search with Google (if Chrome can do that ) choose Shopping at the top, order by price and verify the specs are exact. Ask back with links if you are unsure.

The only hesitation is that its both your RAM and CPU that are peaking at the same time, so if you upgrade RAM much then the CPU will max out before the RAM does. I would still want to add a gig to see, or 2 gigs if it's economical and supports it.

It would be best to see if you can tame the Security software some. And I would still try 32 bit which has always given better performance on lower RAM PC's.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #8
bitoolean

Windows 7 Home Premium SP1 32bit
 
 

gregrocker I just made an account on this website. I'm not an expert, I'm just trying to lend a hand. The fact that I'm the new guy on this website doesn't affect the quality of my arguments... or are you just trying to make me look bad? :P I'm joking, you're obviously experienced but you gotta appreciate some competition. It's not bad for anyone But that was a kick under the belt hehe!

Talking about optimization, I use an optimized build of Firefox, it's called Pale Moon, but it's a resource hog due to the numerous extensions (add-ons) I've installed... Online benchmarks disprove that theory that one browser is a lot heavier than another on the machine, and that's especially true now that Firefox packs in its installer an auto-background-updater just like Chrome.

I also disagree that "many Athlon X2 only support 2 GB of RAM". Really? Have you looked into motherboards online? I had such a PC and it supported a lot more. Maybe you meant that many micro-ATX motherboards only support 2 RAM DIMMs, which would be an entirely different thing. I'm really curious where you get that information from.

Seeing as you are the senior forum user here, maybe you should have noticed that he's using a 64-bit OS on a 2 GB RAM machine, or maybe you think there's nothing wrong with that. Well, maybe not wrong, just plain... wrong...

I'm sorry if I seem up against you, I really am not. And I only look at this as a "competition" in the positive way.

Back to the subject, vitaminn: yes indeed it seems that what's upping your resource (RAM & CPU) usage is indeed the webcam security software (I'm not familiar with that process, so good thing you named it). Seeing as how much that software uses, I'd run it on a separate computer than the one I work on, unless that is it's main job of course (what I'm using it for). If you need to run it on the PC that you will be using, and since you were going to buy a better performing one anyway, I suggest you get one with several cores. The more, the better. So that the camera software runs on one core, and you do your jobs on other cores. Frequency is also important, but it comes second. RAM in these days is better to be at least 4 GB (that's a minimum), and will perform better anyway if it's at least two sticks of RAM working in tandem (dual channel). I'm not trying to discredit gregrocker and I'm not saying I'm an expert, and don't worry about the attitude, we are all humans...
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #9
vitaminn

64 bit Windows 7
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by gregrocker View Post
Sorry it just seemed rude that you ignored my post without so much as acknowledging it and were so gracious to the guy who repeated one step I had already mentioned and is covered in my tutorial. However he was zeroing in on the right area as we saw.

Feel free to ask back any questions to clarify anything needed if you are confused.

mobo=motherboard

You can learn how much RAM your mobo can take by running Crucial System Scanner software to find out what type of memory is in your computer.

They also have competitive prices but you can search to compare by the Crucial part number and by highlighting the exact specs to rightclick to Search with Google (if Chrome can do that).

The only hesitation is that its both your RAM and CPU that are peaking at the same time, so if you upgrade RAM much then the CPU will max out before the RAM does. I would still want to add a gig to see, or 2 gigs if it's economical and supports it.

It would be best to see if you can tame the Security software some. And I would still try 32 bit which has always given better performance on lower RAM PC's.
No worries... and I appreciate your candid response. Thanks.

Ill spend some digesting what you suggest. I honestly thought that if a computer came as a 64 bit machine, it wasn't possible to change it to a 32 bit machine... newbie stuff I guess. :/

When I look at the event viewer, its def over my head. ha. Time to dig in or just cough up the $$ for something that can handle more.

Cheers.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2014   #10
gregrocker

 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by bitoolean View Post
Seeing as you are the senior forum user here, maybe you should have noticed that he's using a 64-bit OS on a 2 GB RAM machine, or maybe you think there's nothing wrong with that. Well, maybe not wrong, just plain... wrong...
Since I stressed repeatedly that 32 bit may perform better for him with 2gb RAM, I did notice it.

When in 2009 I upgraded my Athlon x2 2gb was its max. I don't know what they can handle now because I've not kept up with them. It doesn't matter because if he could upgrade to 8gb RAM able to use all of it @ 64bit then most would be wasted when the CPU pegged out as it's about ready to do now with 2gb.

You both have great attitudes so stick around to learn with us. Even the members here who are top experts in their field are still learning.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
Reply

 Computer slow...hardware...what are my options?




Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search




Similar help and support threads
Thread Forum
Rural location, slow broadband options
Hi all So I live in a great location, no noise, great views... and a broadband speed of 0.23mb :( I have very poor mobile signal, due to living within a dip on a hill, so dongles aren't an option. :( The only option appears to be sat broadband but latency is a problem when playing first...
Network & Sharing
Options for viewing computer contents and browsing on my TV
I will be ditching DirecTV, probably next month. I refuse to continue to pay to view commercials and pay for zillions of channels I'll never watch. I have a Roku with Netflix, Amazon Prime, and Roxbox. I'll probably buy Playon and that should cover enough. But...I'd still like to have access to...
Media Center
Deadly Slow Network Speeds, software or hardware related?
Hey guys, I've been having some issues with my download/upload speeds lately after upgrading mobo/processor and OS to 7 x64 and I haven't been able to track it. My average wired on other computers are around: 25 (download), 7 (upload) and wireless I generally see: 13 (download), 4 (upload). This...
Network & Sharing
Limited options after multiple recovery still no hardware
I've been going in circles for a year now....I completed HP Min Image restore and backed up everything I could. I cannot install HP hardware and windows is partially functional on surface installs updates but errors before can be set up. I've tried to follow step by step many different options...
Installation & Setup
Video Hardware Error now causing slow boot up times
The other day I opened up a YouTube video and before it even started playing, my whole computer crashed. And crashed hard. At first it just froze, but then my music started looping really quickly and the entire display just got all "colorful" and pixel-ly. It's hard to describe. Anyway, I had to...
BSOD Help and Support
backup options for new windows 7 computer
I have installed on my computer windows 7 home etc. I would like to know one of the following please. 1) I have a dell official installation disc, can I copy the disc for backup purposes, just in case I lose it, or it gets scratched etc.. I understand that I would have to make an image and...
Backup and Restore


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 21:51.

Twitter Facebook Google+



Windows 7 Forums

Seven Forums Android App Seven Forums IOS App