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Windows 7: Extremely slow boot+log-on, poor performance after clean install

26 Nov 2011   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium x64
Extremely slow boot+log-on, poor performance after clean install

Well, I guess I'll just jump right into this. As the title says, I recently did a clean install of Windows 7 (deleted all my hard drive partitions, including the system reserved one, reformatted and then installed Win7) and since then I've been noticing some strange issues that I did not experience before.

The first issue I noticed is that my performance is slightly slower than it was before. Programs take much longer to load, almost a minute just for Google Chrome or Skype (version 4, not 5.5 which has a giant memory leak), which before would load in the blink of an eye. Even opening My Documents (which is practically empty right now save for a few small .txt files) or My Computer takes the same amount of time. When I'm using Paint Tool SAI, a small and compact art program, my strokes will sometimes take almost 30 seconds to appear. Needless to say, as an artist, this is extremely inconvenient and annoying, even though it's only a couple seconds. Even with Adobe Photoshop CS5, Skype, Google Chrome, DAZ Studio 4, and Paint Tool SAI running all at once, with my virus protection on in the background, my physical memory usage tops out at only about 70% and my CPU stays pretty low, and I don't get any increased slow-down. It just runs the same as before, with the occasional halt in the middle of doing something, or my words having to "catch up" as I type them.

The time it takes for Windows to boot is also very concerning. From restarting or turning on the computer to seeing my desktop, it takes nearly ten minutes, and another five or so after that for anything to actually be usable. The pulsating Windows logo lights don't appear for at least a minute or two, and then when logging on the blue Welcome screen appears followed by a black screen. I do not have a solid color as my background, nor do I even have my icons displayed, or any gadgets active. This continues to happen even in Safe Mode or with a clean boot. When I log on, my memory usage is less than 5% CPU and up to 20% physical memory. No programs load on start up, not even my virus protection.

Next, I've started experiencing sound problems, another thing which has never been a problem in the past. Audio playback is full of clicks, pops, static, drag/lag, etc. System sounds seem okay, and when I do a sound test it sounds great, but the start up jingle drags on sometimes. Music files and Youtube videos take a beating, though.

My Event Viewer is riddled with errors, almost all of them related to boot performance or standby performance, while the others are either issues with shut down performance or the desktop window manager. Here's a list of the event IDs. If you want me to upload the actual log file, please just let me know.

Boot Performance Error IDs:
100 (multiple)
101 (multiple)
102 (multiple)
103 (multiple)
106 (multiple)
108 (multiple)
109 (multiple)
110 (multiple)

Shutdown Performance Error IDs:
203 (multiple)

Standby Performance Error IDs:
300 (multiple)
301 (multiple)
302 (multiple)
303 (multiple)

Desktop Window Manager Error IDs:
500 (multiple)
501 (multiple)

Here's just some information on my computer as well. I realize some of it is probably unnecessary, but for the sake of being detailed...

OS: Windows 7 Home Premium x64, version 6.1.7600 Build 7600
Computer model: Dell Studio 1747 laptop
Processor: Intel Core i7 CPU Q720, 1.60GHz, 1600 Mhz, 4 Cores, 8 Logical Processors
BIOS: Dell Inc. A11, 7/13/2010
SMBIOS Ver.: 2.6
Boot Device: Device/HarddiskVolume1
Hardware Abstraction Layer: Ver. 6.1.7600.16285
RAM: 4.00 GB
Total Physical Memory: 3.99 GB
Available Physical Memory: 2.72 GB
Total Virtual Memory: 7.98 GB
Available Virtual Memory: 6.59 GB
Page File Space: 3.99 GB

All resources under the Hardware Resources tab in System Information are listed as having an OK status.

I have two hard drives, both 500 GB for a total of 1 TB. There are two partitions, both 500 GB. Just before I tried installing Windows on the unused partition, to see if it would work any better there, but at the second step (copying Windows files or something like that), I got an error that said Windows could not find the necessary files, and the installation aborted.

Things I've tried:
-Attempted to install Windows 7 on a separate, unused partition (installation failed)
-Clean boot (no difference)
-Safe mode (no difference)
-No additional programs are loaded on start up, not even anti-virus software (no difference)
-Multiple virus scans (nothing detected)
-Removed the battery (no difference)
-Start-up Repair (no problems detected)
-Defragmented (only 10% fragmented at the time; no difference)
-Disk clean up (only 600 Mb freed, no difference)
-Added registry key DelayedDesktopSwitchTimeout with value 5, base hex to Policies -> System (seemed to help immediately after adding, no effect now)

As you can see from the length of this post (sorry about that!), I'm getting rather desperate. My classes start up again in late January, and since we don't have a family computer, I really need my laptop to be functioning properly so I can do my school work and art. ):

Thank you so much in advance for your time.

My System SpecsSystem Spec

27 Nov 2011   #2


You're pretty thorough, but here's more troubleshooting steps to comb the logs for repeat errors, use System Resources and test the hardware.

If you're steps varied much from these steps to get a perfect reinstall, based on thousands done here, I'd consider trying again after wiping both HD's and unplugging all but the target for install to check against boot sector corruption from failed prior attempt: Reinstalling Windows 7
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Extremely slow boot+log-on, poor performance after clean install

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