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FoxyMX
07-07-2010, 03:56 PM
A friend's PC is horrendously slow, even in Safe Mode, which leads me to suspect that Windows itself is somehow gronked. It takes forever to load Windows, including in Safe Mode so I'm not sure that malware is the problem.

I have done a sfc /scannow which appeared to be fine and am now trying to do a repair but it will go no further than "Setup is starting Windows" after loading all the drivers, etc from a Windows CD.

It's a Compaq Presario with a restore partition but before I go that route is there anything else I can do to force a Windows repair?

It's running Windows XP SP3.

tweak'e
07-07-2010, 04:31 PM
reset bios and then go check the settings. had the odd pc where the bios would be tempermantal. change of battery fixed that.

also change the PSU to a known good one. usually start up is the most power hungry time and cpu etc will run really slow if it has high load and not enough power.
check the caps on the motherboard too.

Speedy Gonzales
07-07-2010, 04:35 PM
If its slow booting into safe mode as well, it doesnt sound like malware (it shouldnt run). Go to the IDE ATA / Atapi controller entries (in device manager) - Double click on the Primary / Secondary IDE entries , and see if its running in DMA or PIO mode (under advanced settings tab)

wainuitech
07-07-2010, 04:47 PM
Sounds exactly like the compaq PC I have here at the moment, WAS slow as a week , even in safe mode.

Went into msconfig, stopped the million and one items from starting in the startup tab, removed the antivrius with revouninstaller (Norton 2010) increased the Memory from 256 to 512MB -- hums along quite happy now, and that's the only things altered. Currently doing malware scans - so far nothing.

What you can do as well, in safe mode, click start/Run type in eventvwr when it opens, look at the windows logs/System - see if there are any errors that are repeating over and over.

pctek
07-07-2010, 06:07 PM
I'd give what Wainuitech says a go and if it doesn't make a significant difference, then yes, kill it and start over.
Sometimes a fresh install is best.

CYaBro
07-07-2010, 06:11 PM
I would also test the HDD for bad sectors as I've seen that cause speed issues in the past.
Also a defrag with a decent program might be needed.
Also check how much free space there is on the HDD.

FoxyMX
07-07-2010, 06:11 PM
reset bios and then go check the settings. had the odd pc where the bios would be tempermantal. change of battery fixed that.

also change the PSU to a known good one. usually start up is the most power hungry time and cpu etc will run really slow if it has high load and not enough power.
check the caps on the motherboard too.

Tried all that - no problems and no change.



see if its running in DMA or PIO mode (under advanced settings tab)

Running in DMA mode.



Went into msconfig, stopped the million and one items from starting in the startup tab, removed the antivrius with revouninstaller (Norton 2010) increased the Memory from 256 to 512MB -- hums along quite happy now, and that's the only things altered. Currently doing malware scans - so far nothing.

What you can do as well, in safe mode, click start/Run type in eventvwr when it opens, look at the windows logs/System - see if there are any errors that are repeating over and over.

There was hardly anything in MSCONFIG but unticked virtually everything just for fun. Again, no change. Nothing interesting in Event Viewer either.

Non of the USB ports will recognise my USB flash drive but I'm not sure whether that's because there is a problem with Windows or the hardware. There are no issues showing in Device Manager.

FoxyMX
07-07-2010, 06:15 PM
I would also test the HDD for bad sectors as I've seen that cause speed issues in the past.
Also a defrag with a decent program might be needed.
Also check how much free space there is on the HDD.

Lots of free space on the hard drive as it is only half full. Will test for bad sectors now.

Speedy Gonzales
07-07-2010, 06:16 PM
I can check with teamviewer. If they can install it. And its on the net. Then send the ID and pw to me in a PM.

FoxyMX
07-07-2010, 06:18 PM
I'd give what Wainuitech says a go and if it doesn't make a significant difference, then yes, kill it and start over.
Sometimes a fresh install is best.

Given that I can't get a Windows CD to load properly to do a repair I'm a bit nervous about doing a factory restore now.

FoxyMX
07-07-2010, 06:22 PM
I can check with teamviewer. If they can install it. And its on the net. Then send the ID and pw to me in a PM.

What do you need to check? I haven't been able to install anything properly yet as it's too slow so I don't think I'll get anywhere with Teamviewer.

Speedy Gonzales
07-07-2010, 06:46 PM
Whatever maybe causing it to go slow. Could be something they've installed hardware / software wise. Cant say what the prob maybe, till I check. How fast is it, and how much ram has it got?

wainuitech
07-07-2010, 06:50 PM
Given that I can't get a Windows CD to load properly to do a repair I'm a bit nervous about doing a factory restore now.You can at least try to eliminate a few bits of hardware -- Boot from a Live Linx CD, see if the CD/OS boots and works OK, this will at least eliminate the optical drive and most other Hardware.

What it wont eliminate is the original HDD, but you try to access any files on it Via the Live CD.

In a case like this, after disconnecting the original drive,I would attach another good HDD,(try for something small in size <20GB ), install windows on that, if it loads up OK, then at least you know theres a good chance the rest of the hardware is working.

Clone the original drive to another, make sure the clone is doing the exact same thing. Sometimes I have found, that even after running tests on drives, failed sectors or other problems don't show up till its cloned.

IF the clone acts the same as the original, wipe the original drive, reinstall Windows from a Standard XP OEM CD using the COA on the PC, install drivers as required.

Being a Compaq, they will be in a hidden folder on the C drive. The folder is usually called,Compaq, HP, BIN, or one other that I cant remember :crying ,Other wise download from HP/Compaqs web site.

Deimos
07-07-2010, 07:01 PM
Defrag it, sometimes that can help immensely if it has never been done.

FoxyMX
08-07-2010, 04:07 PM
You can at least try to eliminate a few bits of hardware -- Boot from a Live Linx CD, see if the CD/OS boots and works OK, this will at least eliminate the optical drive and most other Hardware.


Seems like it has multiple hardware problems. I found a Windows boot log that has a list of various motherboard drivers failing to load, confirmed by being unable to get to the log on screen when booting from a Live Linux CD. That also threw up a number of errors about the USB hub and this and that.

The owner said not to bother with it any further as he is going to upgrade to a new machine.

Thanks everyone for your advice. :)