xp dell running slow and low virtual memory

By ssspssy ·
i have a dell with windows xp and i have yahoo dsl and my pc is running very slow it keeps freezing up.i keep getting the low virtual memory mesg. what can i do to speed it up and make it run better. And does anyone know if theres a list of running processes that i can check the running processses on my pc? thanks in advance and have a good one. linda

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by TheChas In reply to xp dell running slow and ...

If you have not done so, scan for spy-ware and ad-ware.

I use both AdAware and SpyBot Search and Destroy.

Next, how much RAM do you have?
And, are you using a fixed size page file?

For XP, I recommend a minimum of 512MB with virtual memory set to 512MB minimum with no maximum.

You need a minimum of 5GB free hard drive space for XP at all times.

As to a process list, TR used to have a download that listed standard running processes. I could not find it when I searched.

I do have a copy of the download and could email it to you.
Contact me via peer-mail if you want the file.


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Answer to Your Questions

by TheChas In reply to Mal-Ware


Here are the answers to your Questions:

Amount of RAM:
Right click on the My Computer Icon on your desktop or Start menu.
Select Properties.
On the General tab, under Computer should be your CPU type and speed, along with the amount of installed RAM.

Virtual Memory / Page File:
To check and manage your virtual memory settings, click on the Advanced tab of System Properties.
Under Performance, click on settings.
Click on the Advanced tab of Performance Options.
In the Virtual Memory section it should display the total paging file size.

To take control of virtual memory;
Click on the Change button in the Virtual Memory section.
If "System managed size" is selected, Windows is in control of Virtual Memory. If you get low virtual memory warnings with this setting, you may be running low on disk space.

I use the "Custom size" option, and set the Initial size to the amount of system RAM, but never less than 512MB.
Leave the maximum size blank and Windows will use what it needs should it ever need more virtual memory
Here is a good article on Virtual Memory:

As to free hard drive space:
Open My Computer.
You should have a list of all drives.
You may need to change the view to details.
For your C: drive, look at the Total Size and Free Space columns.
If Free Space is less than either 5GB or 10% of the drive size, you need to free up some hard drive space.


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by jdclyde In reply to xp dell running slow and ...

After the malware check (which is more likely these days) if your problem is not resolved, make sure you run an updated AntiVirus. I have been using freeAVG and not having any issues to speak of.

Clear your temp folder too.

At the RUN command, type<b> %temp% </b> and that will open up the current users temp folder. make sure all applications are closed, clear out that directory, and then reboot.

Any scans should be done in safe mode if you are experiencing problems like you are.

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system resources

by jdclyde In reply to viruses

after a reboot, before you open any applications, look at how much memory you are using. If you are over 120M used, you have an infection.

Is it always slow, or just during certain operations?

How many applications are open when you have this issue, and what applications are they?

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AutoRuns for Windows, but not for inexperienced users

by holmescd In reply to xp dell running slow and ...

In addition to the good advice you've already been given here's the link to a great utility I use a lot for checking running processes. It's called "AutoRuns for Windows" and is currently at version v8.54.


Here's the description right from the website:
"This utility, which has the most comprehensive knowledge of auto-starting locations of any startup monitor, shows you what programs are configured to run during system bootup or login, and shows you the entries in the order Windows processes them. These programs include ones in your startup folder, Run, RunOnce, and other Registry keys."

You can disable and even delete processes using this utility, so if you aren't sure of what you're doing I'd recommend that you invite a techie over for coffee and have him or her take a quick look at it. You'll probably be suprised at how many processes Windows uses and should NOT be disabled.

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by dj_viper2020 In reply to xp dell running slow and ...

well to see the process's of your computer press and hold ctrl+alt+delete and it should pop up task manager automaticly then go to process's. And from the sounds of it you need more ram so try throwing in a 1gigabyte RAM stick then you shouldnt have a speed problem either that or increase your virtual memory. To do that go into the control panel, then go to system, then advanced,then performance settings, then advanced in your performance options, then virtual memory settings, then read the Recommended in the(total paging file size for all drives), then go to custom size and put in the number that you see in your recommended size but put that same number in the open spaces, then press set, then get out of your system settings manager thing and it should ask you to restart your computer if done right

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