XP taking about 8 min to boot and 12 to respond

This is a discussion on XP taking about 8 min to boot and 12 to respond within the Tech Board forums, part of the Community Boards category; My XP is taking forever to boot and even longer to actually be consistently responsive. I have 3GB of RAM ...

  1. #1
    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
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    XP taking about 8 min to boot and 12 to respond

    My XP is taking forever to boot and even longer to actually be consistently responsive.

    I have 3GB of RAM and regularly use Spybot, Diskkeeper, Avast, and Comodo Pro to maintain my system. Recently I removed AVG 8.0 and ZoneAlarm b/c while they were once good products they are not now.

    I've checked the task manager during bootup and sorted the processes by CPU usage. I cannot find anything suspicious except for the fact that it takes about 4 minutes to go from 21 processes to 30 processes. Processes never used to take this long to start. It's almost as if something is holding my drive back. I've checked the event logs and can find nothing noteworthy.

    So far I've turned off the indexing service, Windows firewall, and several other non critical services to help out. I also deleted everything from the Windows/prefetch folder and the temp folders on all drives.

    It's still taking forever to boot. The only other option I can think of is that my profile is either too large or corrupted somehow.

    Any help or ideas would be much appreciated. Maybe it's time for a reinstall?

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    Defrag?

    After that, disable all your security programs and anti-virus programs and then restart to see if that helps. In my experience, those (the av and security programs) are the ones that really drag it down.
    Last edited by robwhit; 09-17-2008 at 05:47 AM.

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    Are you on a domain?

    Something happenned a while ago that kills my boot times if my network cable is attached at boot, but only if the XP / Server2k3 PC is a domain member. I don't see the problem on NT 2000 Workstation machines.

    Boot with network cable attached: 13 minutes
    Boot without network cable attached: 120 seconds (Still long, but I do have a huge profile).

    Plugging in the network cable after booted, all runs fine.

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    Malum in se abachler's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Bubba View Post
    I have 3GB of RAM and regularly use Spybot, Diskkeeper, Avast, and Comodo Pro to maintain my system. Recently I removed AVG 8.0 and ZoneAlarm b/c while they were once good products they are not now.
    it sounds like you simply have too many applications installed. The registry gets full and it lags the system because 99% of applications do not properly clean up the registry after themselves and/or put irrelevant information in the registry that shoudl more properly go in a local settigns file. The only real solution is the bi-annual reformat adn reinstall. That works great for me.
    Until you can build a working general purpose reprogrammable computer out of basic components from radio shack, you are not fit to call yourself a programmer in my presence. This is cwhizard, signing off.

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    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by abachler View Post
    it sounds like you simply have too many applications installed. The registry gets full and it lags the system because 99% of applications do not properly clean up the registry after themselves and/or put irrelevant information in the registry that shoudl more properly go in a local settigns file.
    Are you sure? Somehow I doubt that is the actual cause.
    I do admit that Windows do get cranky when having been installed for long.
    Suggestions to try?
    - Disable ALL startup programs. See if it helps. If it does help, enable them one-by-one and see which one causes problems.
    - Run registry cleaner (all cleaners seem to clean up different stuff too).
    - Run registry defrag.
    - Run hard drive defrag (while it may not matter that much when on low %, it really does make a difference when there's a big % fragmented). I use PerfectDisk, a very efficient defrager (or so they say).
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

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    Banned master5001's Avatar
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    Uninstall all unused drivers as well. After a few years we often end up with tons of printer drivers and drivers for peripherals that are no longer in use. That is unlikely the culprit for such a huge slowdown, but it sounds to me like there is probably no one cause to your situation. Its probably more like a pile of issues.

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    Super Moderator VirtualAce's Avatar
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    All my drives are completely defragged. I think there is a problem in the .NET framework somewhere b/c any app that uses it is extremely slow. MSVS 2005 takes forever to load and I know it uses some of .NET.

    It's also getting slow during runtime when I click on different apps. I get an hourglass for a bit and then no hourglass and then 2 min later the program starts.

    It's getting really annoying and my PC is acting like an old Pentium 120 with 256MB. Games, surprisingly, are not suffering any slowdowns. It's all inside of Windows itself.

    Also it seems the 8 min bootup is only during a restart condition. A cold boot takes about 3 min which is about right for my current setup. Windows is supposed to boot in 30 seconds but that's with a super clean registry and almost no drivers installed. Even the Core 2 Duo in my dev box at work doesn't come up in 30 seconds.

  8. #8
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    I'm assuming this computer wasn't always taking that long to boot up? How long has XP been installed on that system?
    Did this happen suddenly, or has it been getting slower over time? If it happened suddenly, figure out if you installed any drivers or software around the time that it happened.
    Also, as rdrast said, if the system is on a domain, that could be the cause. The IT guys in my last job messed up some firewall and/or policy settings and my system was taking about 5min to login.

    Here are some links with useful performance tips:
    http://www.tek-tips.com/faqs.cfm?fid=6085
    http://www.tek-tips.com/faqs.cfm?fid=1393
    http://www.tek-tips.com/faqs.cfm?fid=4017

    Also, I don't see it in those links, but moving the Windows pagefile to a separate partition (or drive) is a good idea. I create a 4GB FAT32 partition only for the pagefile. Otherwise if the pagefile is on C: and the C: drive starts getting too fragmented, the pagefile will also get fragmented into smaller chunks all over the drive. Obviously this isn't the cause of your enormous slowdown, but every little bit helps.
    "I am probably the laziest programmer on the planet, a fact with which anyone who has ever seen my code will agree." - esbo, 11/15/2008

    "the internet is a scary place to be thats why i dont use it much." - billet, 03/17/2010

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    maybe some hw got unseated and the reset pin isn't getting a good connection or something.

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    Banned master5001's Avatar
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    Hmmm I have read that having the pagefile on your primary partition is good practice. You can make the pagefile statically sized to prevent some of the fragmentation issues. Typically what I do is on a clean installation, manually set the pagefile to a static size.

    "I didn't do that, so now what?" you are probably thinking. Turn off virtual memory, and defragment again (it should go swiftly this time). Then enable virtual memory on whichever drive you are going to have your page file. I am not saying it has to be on your primary drive. Put it where ever you think it has the best shot at not being one big ol' fragmented file.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by master5001 View Post
    Hmmm I have read that having the pagefile on your primary partition is good practice.
    Maybe that advice has to do with putting the pagefile closest to the outter edge of the disk where there are more bits/rotation? In that case you could just make your pagefile partition the first one, followed by the C: partition...
    The other micro-optimization is making the pagefile partition FAT32, since it has less overhead than NTFS, and security isn't an issue since the pagefile isn't accessible when Windows is running.
    And yes, making the pagefile a static size is also a good thing. I do that too.
    "I am probably the laziest programmer on the planet, a fact with which anyone who has ever seen my code will agree." - esbo, 11/15/2008

    "the internet is a scary place to be thats why i dont use it much." - billet, 03/17/2010

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    Quote Originally Posted by cpjust View Post
    Maybe that advice has to do with putting the pagefile closest to the outter edge of the disk where there are more bits/rotation? In that case you could just make your pagefile partition the first one, followed by the C: partition...
    The other micro-optimization is making the pagefile partition FAT32, since it has less overhead than NTFS, and security isn't an issue since the pagefile isn't accessible when Windows is running.
    And yes, making the pagefile a static size is also a good thing. I do that too.
    But with 3GB of RAM, I very much doubt that the pagefile will be used at all (or at least not very much).

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    Please don't PM me for help - and no, I don't do help over instant messengers.

  13. #13
    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    On XP, it's always used...
    But you can disable the pagefile completely.
    Myself, I never noticed any remarkable slowdown or such by moving the pagefile to another partition / drive.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

  14. #14
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    Quote Originally Posted by Elysia View Post
    On XP, it's always used...
    But you can disable the pagefile completely.
    Myself, I never noticed any remarkable slowdown or such by moving the pagefile to another partition / drive.
    You are then contradicting yourself - if it's always used and you can disable it, how does it work. But lets assume that the OS writes to the pagefile, I'm pretty sure it doesn't do so to any great extent when there is plenty of memory, right? So pagefile location or other small optimizations with regards to pagefile shouldn't make the difference between a couple of minutes and 8-10 minute boot time.

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    Compilers can produce warnings - make the compiler programmers happy: Use them!
    Please don't PM me for help - and no, I don't do help over instant messengers.

  15. #15
    C++まいる!Cをこわせ! Elysia's Avatar
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    From what I know, XP always writes stuff to the pagefile and happily pages it out when it feels like it. That's why, even with lots of memory, you can feel apps being slow sometimes. Because it needs to page it back in.
    However, if you disable the page file, XP can't rely on this behavior. I'm not sure if it really works to your advantage or not, though. Not really an expert on when it happens, so I never made any tests.
    Quote Originally Posted by Adak View Post
    io.h certainly IS included in some modern compilers. It is no longer part of the standard for C, but it is nevertheless, included in the very latest Pelles C versions.
    Quote Originally Posted by Salem View Post
    You mean it's included as a crutch to help ancient programmers limp along without them having to relearn too much.

    Outside of your DOS world, your header file is meaningless.

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