Hey there Sign in to join this conversationNew here? Join for free

Why is my laptop suddenly so slow?

Announcements Posted on
Post on TSR and win a prize! Find out more... 10-04-2014
    • Thread Starter
    • 1 follower
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    OK, so as of Friday night when I shut my laptop down everything was running fine. Startup took seconds, every program ran smoothly, no slowdown occurred.

    Then Saturday I power it up, it takes 45 minutes to get to the desktop screen then randomly restarts several times while I try to load programs. Several error messages come up for .exe files I've never heard of (random letters such as cttssvzc.exe) sometimes, others they don't.

    If it's of any relevance, my laptop is a Packard Bell EasyNote with this spec:

    AMD Athlon II X2 processor P340
    ATI Mobility Radeon HD 4250
    4 GB DDR3 Memory
    320 GB HDD

    Anyway, I haven't downloaded anything or changed anything since Friday. I have no idea what could be causing this. So I figure, maybe it's the RAM. So I open Task Manager and lo and behold, this is what I get:

    Physical Memory (MB)

    Total 3834
    Cached 1948
    Available 1930
    Free 29

    The 'Free' figure varied between 0 and 50. I don't know much about computers but I assume this means something is eating up all my RAM so nothing can run quickly. I looked under the 'processes' tab but the only things with high MB levels were Google Chrome and Steam. I closed Steam (not sure why it was running anyway) but it didn't make much difference.

    I have Googled the problem but everyone just seems to recommend going to msconfig and cutting down the amount of programs launching on startup. I did this but to no avail.

    What's confusing me most is that I haven't downloaded, installed or changed anything since Friday. So what could have caused this and how can I fix it? Thanks in advance.
    • 4 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    try debugging, getting rid of unused files also empty your recycle bin, if that fails. GOOGle is your best friend
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    I would be tempted to re-install the Operating System because as it gets older there tend to be more and more useless files that have accumulated due to programs being unistalled and not unistalling everything. Moreover, you mentioned some strange executables running at startup that sound strange.

    If this is not an option then I would remove all programs that are not required, empty your recycle bin, and give your computer a good defrag. Once that is done I would then go into msconfig (windows key + r > type into the box: msconfig) then go to the 'startup' section and deselect any services that you no longer need. If in doubt, don't deselect it of course.

    The only other thing that I can think of is that you have a memory leak, in which case I think you will need to replace the RAM.
    • Thread Starter
    • 1 follower
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    Good tip on the recycle bin front. Didn't notice but it was bursting with deleted files, a lot of which seemed to be apps from iTunes for some reason (some 1GB+ in size), though I haven't deleted any recently... oh well, they're all gone now. They're still on my iDevices so I'm not too worried.

    I'll go through and uninstall programs that I don't need later on tonight, though I am absolutely clueless when it comes to reinstalling the OS. I'm running Windows 7 by the way.

    (Original post by GoldenToad)
    The only other thing that I can think of is that you have a memory leak, in which case I think you will need to replace the RAM.
    Never heard of a memory leak. How would that occur? And can RAM be replaced on laptops?
    • 4 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    (Original post by DrummingThunder)
    Good tip on the recycle bin front. Didn't notice but it was bursting with deleted files, a lot of which seemed to be apps from iTunes for some reason (some 1GB+ in size), though I haven't deleted any recently... oh well, they're all gone now. They're still on my iDevices so I'm not too worried.

    I'll go through and uninstall programs that I don't need later on tonight, though I am absolutely clueless when it comes to reinstalling the OS. I'm running Windows 7 by the way.



    Never heard of a memory leak. How would that occur? And can RAM be replaced on laptops?
    Cool man, let me know how you get on
    • Thread Starter
    • 1 follower
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    OK, so uninstalling programs didn't fix things.

    What I'm struggling to determine here really is the catalyst for the slowdown. Nothing changed on my laptop, so why on earth would it suddenly become so slow?

    I looked into the memory leak thing but every fix for that didn't work for me (e.g. opening the 'handles' column of the processes tab of task manager - still nothing was taking up ridiculous amounts of RAM. The total number of handles in the processing tab is around 5-10k... the performance tab seems to think I have 27,000 handles). Is there any other way to identify what program or otherwise is causing this issue?

    What's worse is when I open my Documents folder, the only thing that appears is a 'Microsoft' folder, and none of my docs... I tried to open a Word doc via the program itself and (after a lengthy wait in which it said 'not responding' several times) it came back with an error.

    I don't think the files have been deleted as when I click on My Computer the HDD usage is still the same. I just can't seem to access any of them.

    EDIT: I'm currently running a full system scan with Avast, though a quick scan showed no problems...
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    I'd probably restart into safemode and see if the problems still exist.
    • Thread Starter
    • 1 follower
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    I did, and they do. Uninstalled Google Chrome and using Firefox now which seems to be a bit faster, but documents still aren't loading.
    • 0 followers
    Offline

    ReputationRep:
    From my understanding a memory leak is when something goes wrong with the program (clarification?) however I don't think that is what's going on.

    Have you defragged your laptop? If not I would reccomend Defraggler as it is better than the default Windows Defragger.

    If defragging it doesn't help then I think that you might have to re-install the operating system.

Reply

Submit reply

Register

Thanks for posting! You just need to create an account in order to submit the post
  1. this can't be left blank
    that username has been taken, please choose another Forgotten your password?

    this is what you'll be called on TSR

  2. this can't be left blank
    this email is already registered. Forgotten your password?

    never shared and never spammed

  3. this can't be left blank

    6 characters or longer with both numbers and letters is safer

  4. this can't be left empty
    your full birthday is required
  1. By completing the slider below you agree to The Student Room's terms & conditions and site rules

  2. Slide the button to the right to create your account

    Slide to join now Processing…

    You don't slide that way? No problem.

Updated: April 29, 2012
Article updates
Reputation gems:
You get these gems as you gain rep from other members for making good contributions and giving helpful advice.