I'm running WinXP (SP1) Pro on a Fujitsu-Siemens Amilo D 8830. 2,66 GHz P4, 512 RAM, Mob. Radeon 9000. The problem is that even as I'm writing this text, my CPU usage is at about 80%! I'm on a WLAN connection at my university, but this shouldn't be a problem. Everything is slow and laggy. Very annoying! What can I do to fix this problem? I would appreciate any help.
"When I started up my computer without a firewall on, I got some popup about an online casino, and needing to download some ActiveX thing? Not a good sign!"
That is called spyware! Ok! Get either adware or spybot from somewhere like cnet.com. Then install the program, update the program, and then run the program. After that is finished. Download an anti-virus program, update the program, and then run the program. Then find out if any spyware programs have been installed on your hard drive by opening control panel and then add/remove programs. Any programs that you did not install or do not recognize. Delete them. Download SP2 for XP and install it. This can be done via windows update. Then defrag!
Instead of using IE. You might want to use Mozilla.
(Calm down Blah. I know just a little about the I.T. industry. Just a little;-)
I took a look at the screenshot of Task Manager. I didn't see ANYTHING using 80% of your CPU cycles. All I saw was System Idle Process (percent of CPU cycles available (as in IDLE)) at 69%, which isn't at all bad.
The advice about anti-virus, anti-spyware/adware, and keeping that firewall up isn't bad. This is especially critical in a university setting, where you can often find the most hackers=per-square-yard of anyplace outside of Defcon.
I had one worm that seemed to use my computer as a spamserver. Whenever I shutdown my firewall, I would get a message from my ISP saying unplug your internet cable or they will cut off my connection! I installed SP2 like recommended and cleaned the bugs from my harddrive. It's running fine now. I guess SP2 helped more than I would have thought. Thanks to those who helped.