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Windows 7: Very slow boot time, decreased general performance

21 Oct 2011   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit
Very slow boot time, decreased general performance

Hi All.

I used to run my PC on Vista Ultimate 64bit and was very happy ith its performance, but after seeing it forget the window layout for the umpteenth time, I decided to install Win7.

Purchased a Win7 Home Premium 64bit Systembuilder package, formatted all my drives and installed it. Turns out there was a problem with the boot manager.
The repair function of the installation DVD didn't really do anything, so I re-installed the whole thing and this time it worked ... sort of.

I get to see my desktop pretty quickly, but then it takes more than 2 minutes to load the 3 sidebar gadgets, open Wampserver (which I need for work) and connect to my home network. During that time the CPU is near idle (1-10% CPU usage) but it won't respond to any commands. The "Computer" won't open, right-click menus don't open, etc.
In Vista I could play GTA4 with all settings maxed out at 55fps. Now the PC is struggling to reach 30.

Before the install, I have re-downloaded all my drivers from the various manufacturers' websites, to make sure they were all for Windows 7 x64. The Device manager isn't indicating any problems either.

I'm no noob when it comes to PCs and have plenty of experience with sorting out OS-related issues, but I'm truely lost here. This OS has been fighting me on this PC from day one.
I'm having all kinds of internet-related software problems (Skype failing to make calls, Wampserver not showing full connection, etc) and even resorted to another re-install recently.
On Vista the problems disappeared and it responded instantly, but I then installed Win7 again and I'm back at square one.

I must add that I have a laptop and a tablet on Win7 and neither of them is having any issues. I like Win7 and would like to keep using it on this PC, but with these problems I'm about to revert back to Vista. If anyone has any suggestions, feel free to respond.


Hardware specs :

MoBo : Gigabyte P67A UD3P B3
CPU : Intel Core i5 2500 @ 3.3 GHz (stock speed)
Memory : 16GB (4x4GB) GeIL Black Dragon DDR3-1333 CL7-7-7-24
GFX card : 1x ATI Radeon HD4870X2
PSU : BeQuiet! Dark Power Pro 850W
HDD 1 : OCZ RevoDrive X2 240GB (System disk)
HDD 2 : OCZ Vertex 2 60GB SSD (Game modding disk)
HDD 3 : Seagate ST31000340AS Barracuda 1TB 7200RPM (Data disk)
HDD 4 : Samsung HD240UI 2TB 5400RPM (Media disk)
DVD 1 : Sony Optiarc DVD RW AD-5260S
DVD 2 : Sony Optiarc DVD RW AD-7261S (Lightscribe)

The GFX card and PSU are 2.5 years old, but the rest of the PC was bought in March 2011. The motherboard was replaced in May due to suffering from the known SandyBridge issue with the S-ATA controller.

Software-wise :

I run the usual stuff. LibreOffice, Paintshop Pro, etc. Wampserver is required for my work, but that doesn't give any problems on my Win7 laptop. The problem appears on a default system, so I'm pretty sure that none of my applications are responsible.
Normally I don't use an antivirus on this PC. I'm a careful browser and have another machine with AVG for downloading.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2011   #2

Windows 7 Ultimate 64 bit SP1

Hi and welcome to 7forums!

1st where did you get the win7 dvd from?
2nd what antivirus are you using if any?
You might have low fps, because you haven't installed the drivers yet? (no CF)
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2011   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit

Hi Speedgamer01. Thanks for the welcome.

I got the DVD from my PC store. It's an official one, so that's not the issue. Most of the store's customers are smaller PC stores, but they sell to private customers as well.
I know it's not completely within the spirit of the EULA, but I guess most people use an OEM even on homebuilt computers.

I don't use an antivirus normally, but I installed AVG today and let it do a full scan just in case. Then I let ClamWin do another scan. Neither scan found any issues.
The PC has this problem even on a fresh install, so I doubt any virusses could cause it anyway. (unless Microsoft puts some supersneaky virus in the official Windows7 DVDs)

Regarding CF, I have the 11.9 Catalist software suite for the HD 4xxx series, and Speccy confirms that CF is indeed disabled.
On Vista I was also using the generic driver for the 4xxx series, so I'm pretty certain that CF was disabled there too. When gaming in Vista it also only used one GPU. I never took much notice of that tho, as the card was strong enough for my needs even on one GPU
I will try with a driver I just found that's specifically for the 4870X2, but I doubt that it'll make that much of a difference in terms of boot time.

TBH I doubt that any display-related issues can cause my networking problems. The slow boot might also be caused by network problems, as the network icon in the notifications bar is on "loading" for more than a minute.
I have just removed the network drivers, ran CCleaner and re-installed them, but to no avail.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

21 Oct 2011   #4

Windows 10 Pro x64

If you're feeling up to it, consider getting / uploading a boot trace following this tutorial:
Gathering a Startup, Shutdown, Sleep, Hibernate, or Reboot Trace
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2011   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit


Thanks for the suggestion, but I'm afraid I'm facing a bigger problem now.

I followed the steps VERY carefully and double-checked each one of them to make sure I didn't miss anything.
Upon entering the command line and hitting enter, the PC rebooted by itself and I'm now stuck with a BSOD.
No idea what the error is, as it reboots within milliseconds of the bluescreen appearing. I barely have time to identify the blue flash as a BSOD before it goes black again.

Startup repair and booting in Safe mode don't work. I can't attach my C drive to another computer because it's a RevoDrive as opposed to a S-ATA device, so I can't retrieve my latest stuff. Luckily I made a backup recently.

I'm afraid I'm giving up on this for now. This has been getting on my nerves for a month now, so I'm going to install Vista and run a full set of hardware diagnostics before I make the switch to 7 again.

I've used the same DVD on my laptop recently (abeit with the serial that came with that one), so I know it's not a file corruption on the DVD. Must be some conflict between win7 and my PC's hardware.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2011   #6

Windows 10 Pro x64

Boot to "Last Known Good", and then omit the +DRIVERS part of the command. You're hitting a bug, and omitting +DRIVERS will fix it.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
21 Oct 2011   #7

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit

Didn't work either. "Last known good" bluescreens too.

Might be a bad install somehow, but that would make it the 3rd one in 3 attempts.


EDIT : I gave up and installed Vista. Now I can open "computer" or IE as soon as I see the desktop. No hesitation whatsoever. the rest of the PC-using experience is more than twice as fast too.

I'm still curious about the problem tho. I don't see what I could have done wrong. Maybe I should go for dualboot, or set up a Win7 in Virtualbox to see how that responds.


EDIT 2 : Speedgamer,

Once more regarding CF : I did a bit of checking, and my card has it disabled during normal use. Whenever I launch a game that supports CF, the card goes into CF mode. Drivers are irrelevant here, that behaviour is hardwired into the card itself. So that was not the reason behind my issues
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Very slow boot time, decreased general performance

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