View Full Version : veeeerrrry Slow computer

09-18-2005, 10:58 PM
I recently bought a new Compaq Presario computer, model #SR1303WM. Basic info is as follows:

Base processor

Sempron 3000+ 2.0 GHz:


333 MHz Front side bus

Socket A


Via KM400A



Manufacturer: Asus

Motherboard Name: A7V8X-LA

Compaq motherboard name: Kelut-GL6E

Memory Installed

256 MB (1 X 256)

You can also visit compaq.com, and see the product infor for more detailed bits by putting the product number up above it. I am running windows XP, fully updated.

It is completly stock, I have not yet upgraded anything. From the moment I bought this, it has run very slowly. It takes nearly 10 minutes to fully boot up (I do not have it opening any additional programs except outlook). And this computer is very very bad at multitasking. Anything over three open programs causes it to hang for nearly a minute, if not longer between switching from one to another. And opening another program when one is open causes it to hang just as badly. For example it I am on the internet and have firfox open, and I go to open MS word, it will hang for nearly a minute before fulling loading, then if I try to switch back over to firefox, it will again hang. And if I attempt to open another program...I might as well take a walk around the block.

It also hangs when I simply go down to the start menu, and view the programs.

What can be causing this? As I said, it has done this since I bought it, on a basic factory install. I have since filled a lot of the HD up with different programs and stuff, but regardless, it is still just the same as when I bought it. I have lowered the special graphics all down, raised the RAM pulled from the HD to use, defragged, cleaned out unused programs, ect.

I am thinking it might be either the RAM, since it only has 256 (although when I check the system information it only reads as 196..) Could this be the problem? I know XP sucks the RAM pretty bad. Or maybe something else.


09-18-2005, 11:20 PM
That computer should perform very well. You have a hardware issue of some sort.

I would complain ALOT to them if you have that option.

09-18-2005, 11:28 PM
Thanks. Yeah, I plan to complain tomarrow, I have been away for nearly 3 months do to work, so I am hoping they don't wonder why I am complaining till now...but yeah, I plan to complain :p


09-19-2005, 01:22 AM
Well you mentioned Firefox, so it's not completely stock. Since you mentioned Firefox, that means you've been on the internet to download it. Do you have spyware, adware or virus scanners on it yet? That could be a contributing factor from two sides of the coin. If you have those proggies running then they could be chewing up a lot of your available memory. If you don't have those proggies on, then you could have picked up something that is chewing up a lot of your available memory or processor or bandwidth.

Next question. Does your system have an onboard video subsystem, or do you have a PCI or AGP video card. If your video subsystem is on the main board, it will share system memory, reducing the available amount for operation of the computer. 256MB is a slim amount of memory for a system running XP in the first place. If you share, say, 64 MB of that 256 with your video subsystem, you're gonna be a slug.

Check out all of the questions there and evaluate your circumstances. The processor sounds quite adequate, but I'm suspicious about the memory and the virus/adware/spyware issues. Adding another 256, 512 or 768MB of ram will incrementally increase your performance, and ram is cheap these days. I run 1Gig of memory on my primary box and still get bogged down when I open too many proggies under XP. My Win2K machines that only have 512MB of ram never seem to bog down though. XP and it's accompanied bloatware is a memory hog.

Another thing you can check is the size of your swap file, and whether or not it is dynamic or fixed. A fixed swap file has always been my preference, because it tends to fragment the drive less. If your hard drive is large enough to handle it, set you swap file at a static size of around 2-3 times the size of your physical memory. Another good idea is to bump up the swap file size a little more and tell the system to not swap the kernel to disc... but that's a more advanced topic.

Speed of the hard drives is another issue. We can go on and on about a hundred different things that could affect your performance... from the quality of your power coming out of the wall to every peripheral driver on the system. Try the few things I mentioned above, and get back to us.

Complain to Compaq all you want, but be prepared to stay in a customer support que for a while, and get unsatisfactory responses from the people who only know one word... "NO".

09-19-2005, 08:34 PM
I have a Dell of less power and had the same 256mb RAM and shared video. I ran with up to 18 windows open regularly. MSN running, Yahoo running, AV running, and about 8 of those windows were FF. FF is not the issue.

Zero Tolerance
09-19-2005, 10:19 PM
I would check the CPU load in the task manager. When no apps are open...or even apps that are open and sitting idle should have no more than a 2-4% load on your CPU.

If your CPU is higher than that under no load. I would check for spyware running...or some type of app running in the background. Also if your CPU usage is really high.... Check your print spooler. You can turn it off and see if the CPU usage drops drastically. I have had several new IBMs have this very same sympton not too long after installing....with it being something corrupt in the print spooler...reinstalling the OS fixed it.