Computer far slower than it logically should be

By Slayer_ ·
Anyone that has answered my questions before, this might seem familure....

Anyways, since ye ole 95 detonated and will no longer startup, I took the drive out, and stuck it in a slightly newer machine, set it up as a secondary drive, and now just use it as file storage. This drive is a modern 40 gig drive (the last year they made 40 gig drives) and its pretty fast. Worked great in the old system.

The problem:
This new system is inexplicably slow, and seems to be getting worse. As simple as browsing a drive, even the faster drive, is really slow, almost a full 3 seconds per folder. There is constant "window peeling" for everything you do, which is "usually" a cause of not enough RAM, but that is impossible, as 256 RAM is far more than Windows 98 needs, and a quick memory usage check, even after constant running for a month, shows 60mb of RAM free.
Running programs, everything, is all crazy slow. Once a program is running, it is good, but the initial loading is slow as well as the unloading. I even made a simple app in Vb6 that just displays a message, and closes, it took 10 seconds to load, 3 seconds to display the message, and 5 seconds to finish peeling the message off the screen. I thought it should just be that the 10gig C drive is ridiculously slow, far slower than the original 3gig HDD in ye ole 95, but that doesn't explain why every action has ridiculous window peeling. So My last guess is Windows is convinced it MUST use swapfile for everything, as it doesn't seem to be utilizing the RAM as good as Windows 95 did.
But I am not certain, any suggestions?

Even by the standards back then, this machine is borderline unsuable (Viewing a webpage is pretty much impossible, it never finishes loading it takes so long)

The brief system specs are
Windows 98SE
P2, 350mhz
C drive is a 10 gig drive, not sure of year or manufacturer.
D,E drives are partitions of the 40 gig drive
256 mb DIMM RAM, 2 out of 3 slots filled, RAM is fairly modern, dated 2002.

I do not had indepth knnowledge of this system as it was purchased a long long time ago, and wasn't used by me until recently.

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You have only been formatting the drive

by Jacky Howe In reply to It's ancient but

it hasn't been erased so it still has previous data on it. You may even find a formatting utility in the BIOS.
Aida16 will tell you what the drive is if you can find a copy.
You could also try another PSU.
Also you didn't say how many MB your Video card is. 4MB or under is pretty lame. Check your refresh rates for the monitor as well.

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The drive was new in 1999

by Slayer_ In reply to You have only been format ...

It was used for about a month or 2, then the system was put away, all work after that was done on my gaming system because it was the one with internet access. The gaming machine was also only a 200mhz machine with 64mb of RAM, but was 100 times faster than this machine for some inexplicable reason.

It has an 8mb video card (ATI Rage2), 4mb isnt lame , my old system had a 4mb card and it was good.

Based on how slow everything is, I doubt formatting will have an effect, if even a lasting one, however I do not have the driver disks for this machine anymore, so format is not a good method of doing this. I also don't have a win 98 install disc.

Try another PSU??? Please explain this.

Refresh Rate is set to 85hz @ 1024 x 768.

Bios is kind of sparce of options, I don't even see PCI BIOS shadowing in it like my old system. About the most advanced thing in the bios is the ability to reserve IRQ's.
(Ill be making a new question about bios/mobo problem leter, first I want this thing to get some power first)

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Try another PSU???

by Jacky Howe In reply to The drive was new in 1999

I thought that the System may have seen a lot of use. That PSU is almost brand new.
Drop your refresh rate to 60Hz and 800x600 and see if there is any difference.
It looks like you can only work with what you have so you are limited in what you can do.

Edited to add:

What was the performace like before you added the second drive.

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Before second drive?

by Slayer_ In reply to Try another PSU???

Just as bad.

FYI 60hz really hurts the eyes, but I'll try.

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K tried changing res and refresh rate

by Slayer_ In reply to Try another PSU???

Other than added eye strain, the peeling and slowness is still there. I timed it, to open the my documents folder, which is empty, took 15 seconds.

However, that is significantly faster than before the defrag, it used to take almost 2 minutes to open lol.

Now how to I make it as fast as the machine that was 2 years older... half a second.

Total boot up time was about 4 minutes, so not bad.

I think these performance improvement tipsx are helping, but there should be a lot more left in this machine, I know its hardware should be able to go faster.

Just had a thought, what if the Video drivers in it are so aweful that the 2D processing is taking forever??? Like I just tried Mechwarrior 3 on it, and it ran like a champ, Max graphics and everything.

Yikes finding drivers for this thing is hard, I keep finding versions that are apperently older than what is currently installed.

So for anyone that can help with this one, the Adapter tab in display properties says it is


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Says download not autherized

by Slayer_ In reply to K tried changing res and ...

What is that supposed to be?

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Have you thought about....

by ThumbsUp2 In reply to Computer far slower than ...

... the seek time on that old 10GB hard drive may be causing the problem?

What's the spin speed of the old 10GB drive? When it's accessed like when you're opening My Documents, do you hear any type of 'click'? Perhaps the head is sticking or slow moving.

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I don't hear a click but

by Slayer_ In reply to Have you thought about... ...

Those old drives were always very noisy, very hard to tell.

I tried running a SMART test on it, seems it doesn't support SMART.

I wouldn't doubt it has a slow spin speed, however I did do a surface scan on it and it went at a pretty good speed.

I used to have a HDD speed overclocker, maybe I'll find one of those again

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by Jacky Howe In reply to Computer far slower than ...

Support & Drivers and under AMD Support & Drivers

Download graphics drivers

and under Please select your operating system scroll down to Legacy Windows ME\98 and click on Legacy (Discontinued) and then click on Rage IIC

<i>Keep us informed as to your progress if you require further assistance.</i>

<i>If you think that any of the posts that have been made by all TR Members, have solved or contributed to solving the problem, please Mark them as <b>Helpful</b> so that others may benefit from the outcome. </i>

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