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Windows 7: Sorry this is Vague: Need help with Laptop Please

10 Apr 2018   #1
TDKMate

Win 7 Pro 64 SP1
 
 
Sorry this is Vague: Need help with Laptop Please

Sorry the title is vague but I don’t have much to go on. I have a relative coming over on Mother’s Day and he wants me to fix his Toshiba laptop (PSLY5U-00Q01T) because “it’s running slow.” That’s all l have to work with.

My biggest problem is I don’t ‘fix’ computers and I know nothing about laptops in particular. I Googled the specs for it and apparently the thing doesn’t even have a USB port (!?) but is suppose to have an optical drive.

I need help on helping him please. I imagine I should burn some kind of ‘rescue’ disk so I can run some diagnostics, but what do I put on it? I can think of MalwareBytes and CCleaner but I’m not sure I should install stuff on his laptop, it may complicate things. How about some sort of antivirus scanner? And I’m sure I’ll find tons of junk on it that’s useless and messing things up…

I appreciate any tips and tricks you have!


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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10 Apr 2018   #2
samuria

win 8 32 bit
 
 

first job is run msconfig and see whats running at startup
My System SpecsSystem Spec
10 Apr 2018   #3
TheDeerDude

Windows 7 HP x64
 
 

WinDirStat can can help you visualize what's taking up space on the hard drive, and delete it. Download WinDirStat

Disk Cleanup is also a good start - run it as an administrator to clean up more stuff.

You could also uninstall any software they are no longer using that is taking up space.

CCleaner is a good idea.

Scanning the laptop with Malwarebytes will help you remove any malware and PUPs, so also a good idea.

Like @samuria said in his post - using the MSCONFIG utility will allow you to see what programs run at startup and disable unnecessary ones

If the laptop has no USB ports, you could use the optical drive to transfer files onto it. Any utilities that you install, can be easily uninstalled after you have finished.

Hope that helps
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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11 Apr 2018   #4
TDKMate

Win 7 Pro 64 SP1
 
 

Hi All. Some good tips! Thanks. Any good AV programs that could run from the CD/DVD?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
11 Apr 2018   #5
Botard

Windows 7 guest, Debian host
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TDKMate View Post
Hi All. Some good tips! Thanks. Any good AV programs that could run from the CD/DVD?
Hi TDKMate,
mcAfee stinger runs DVD drive is good to try. It can detect and remove malware and viruses. I don't use it yet, but I think the tech are using this kind of program for their job. Make sure you download the latest version in a clean PC.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Apr 2018   #6
TheDeerDude

Windows 7 HP x64
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Botard View Post
Hi TDKMate,
mcAfee stinger runs DVD drive is good to try. It can detect and remove malware and viruses. I don't use it yet, but I think the tech are using this kind of program for their job. Make sure you download the latest version in a clean PC.
"I don't use it yet", "I think the tech are using this kind of program" then I would suggest that you do not recommend it, not to mention it's a McAfee product.

welp now I feel bad lol sorry, I just have a strong dislike for McAfee in general
My System SpecsSystem Spec
12 Apr 2018   #7
Botard

Windows 7 guest, Debian host
 
 

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by TheDeerDude View Post
"I don't use it yet", "I think the tech are using this kind of program" then I would suggest that you do not recommend it, not to mention it's a McAfee product.
That's completely fine. It just a word I used had nothing more to say, so don't take it literal. Clearly, the bolded words implies a suggestion not a recommendation. But, thanks for clarifying, my English is suck.

Personally, I used comodo rescue disk but the advantage of stinger is a standalone free tools ready to scan and remove the threats no need to update the virus definition each time you run it. MajorGeeks has a video and recommend it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 May 2018   #8
TDKMate

Win 7 Pro 64 SP1
 
 

Hi All. My out of town relative finally brought over the laptop. I spent a few hours on it on Mother's day, and he had to leave. He left the unit with me, though. I had time last night to work on it some more.

It turns out he got it from friend who got rid of it because it ran so slow. It's about 10 years old and hasn't been updated in years. It took so long on first boot that I thought it was broken for good. I ran msconfig but didn't really find much. But it did have a ton of what I figured was conflicting stuff. I installed MalwareBytes, CCleaner and surprisingly they came up clean as did MS MRT.

So I started uninstalling all the junk he had on there, started with the 3 year old AVG, figuring it was trying to phone home. And down the long list of software that potentially was doing the same. I used Revo Free to do so and totally wiped it, running CCleaner after each uninstall.

Oh, it was painfully slow process... I kept Task Manager open on the Processes tab and noticed that one, of many, svchost would use 88-98% CPU cycles. Not sure if I should, I ended that one task and things, obviously got faster. Being an old 2 core AMD CPU, it's just not fast anyway.

I lost count on programs I uninstalled, but it had to be at least 15-20 (multiple video editors, multiple email clients [he uses gmail], Skype, card readers, and more).

So now it'll boot in less than 3 minutes, but shortly after, I still have the svchost problem pop back up. At least that's a little better as before all the uninstalls, the svchost problem started right when the computer did.

So I'm thinking the next step will be to install Avast AV then hook it up to the internet and let it do all the outstanding updates. With the svchost problem, it might take a day or two, though, as I don't have the time to watch and keep canceling the task...

Any other ideas or suggestions?
.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 May 2018   #9
Snick

Win 10 x64, Linux Lite, Win 7 x64, BlackArch, Kali, VMWare Workstation Player, OpenVPN
 
 

Use Revo Uninstaller Freeware - Uninstall Programs
How to Uninstall Programs and their Leftovers using Revo Uninstaller Freeware

HitmanPro 3.8 on-demand scanner
HitmanPro 3.8 (64-bit)
You might want to run
CCleaner on default settings to clean/remove junk
Also
Disk Cleanup : Extended - Windows 7 Help Forums - Seven Forums
My System SpecsSystem Spec
23 May 2018   #10
mrjimphelps

Linux Mint 18.2 xfce 64-bit (VMWare host) / Windows 8.1 Pro 32-bit (VMWare guest)
 
 

Defrag his hard drive - now that you have deleted a lot of junk from the hard drive, it is a good time to defrag the drive. If it is badly fragmented, it will run slow.
  • Restart the computer into Safe Mode - defrag runs a lot faster in Safe Mode, because not much else is running in the background.
  • Open File Explorer. Right-click on C: and choose Properties.
  • Click on the Tools tab.
  • There should be an option for Defrag or for Optimize. That will get you to Defrag.
  • Run Defrag a few times, till the drive is as defragmented as it will get.
  • Restart into normal mode.
Another thing you can check: How much memory does the computer have? Typically, the more the better. However, if he has 32-bit Windows, the maximum useful amount of memory is 4 GB. (Actually, a bit less than that.) If he has 32-bit Windows, and less than 4 GB, suggest to him that he increase it to 4 GB. If he has 64-bit Windows, increase the memory to 8 GB, if he doesn't already have that much. Lots of memory can make a noticeable difference, especially if he has 64-bit Windows.

To check the amount of memory, and whether or not his Windows is 32-bit or 64-bit, open File Explorer, and right-click on Computer. Choose Properties. This will show you a screen which will answer both of these questions.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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 Sorry this is Vague: Need help with Laptop Please




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