I got an Alienware m15x in August last year. While the specs aren't necesarily amazing, it could still run games at medium settings pretty well. Up until a few weeks ago, it was all smooth sailing. After downloading some possible virus infested files, my computer really started to lag. I tried to do a virus scan, but nothing came up. I did a factory reset, but I still get horrible lag. I mean literally like 1-2fps when I used to get 60 on Minecraft, or about 19-20 on the lowest possible settings. Black Ops is bad, even with low graphics. I don't know what the problem could be. Should I call Alienware? I paid $400 for warranty, so I'm pretty sure I have this thing covered. I just don't want to call, then have them say "sorry, if you don't have a specific problem then we cannot help you!".
My system specs are as follows (copied and pasted as is)
OS Name Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium
Version 6.1.7600 Build 7600
Other OS Description Not Available
OS Manufacturer Microsoft Corporation
System Name JACK-PC
System Manufacturer Alienware
System Model M15x
System Type x64-based PC
Processor Intel(R) Core(TM) i7 CPU Q 740 @ 1.73GHz, 1730 Mhz, 4 Core(s), 8 Logical Processor(s)
BIOS Version/Date Alienware A08, 8/24/2010
SMBIOS Version 2.6
Windows Directory C:\Windows
System Directory C:\Windows\system32
Boot Device \Device\HarddiskVolume2
Locale United States
Hardware Abstraction Layer Version = "6.1.7600.16385"
User Name Jack-PC\Jack
Time Zone Eastern Daylight Time
Installed Physical Memory (RAM) 8.00 GB
Total Physical Memory 7.99 GB
Available Physical Memory 6.16 GB
Total Virtual Memory 16.0 GB
Available Virtual Memory 13.4 GB
Page File Space 7.99 GB
Page File C:\pagefile.sys
My video card is an Radeon HD mobility 5730.
Did you try going into Task Manager and see if there are processes eating up your CPU or RAM? The same problem you're having happened to me a couple times, so I went into Task Manager, and noticed that there were a few processes eating up %15 each, with a few other processes using up massive amounts of RAM (3+ GB for one process).
If you have an anti-virus suite, what is it? AVG and McAfee have both used an unacceptable amount of system resources when I've had them.
The process in question for me that was eating up the resources was Ijji Reactor, which my sister must have installed when I loaned it to her for a few days.
If there aren't any processes shown in Task Manager eating up resources, they could either be hidden, or something else is causing it. Dust can cause systems to run slow, because it causes them to overheat.
Was anything else changed when you noticed the slow down? Unfortunately, I have seen some viruses/malware require a COMPLETE reformat of the hard drive to ensure it has been removed.
Call them now, you paid for a warranty, no reason for you to do all of the legwork on this when you paid extra for it.
^ +10: Even if you have to wait to send it in, it is best to get the process rolling. Be sure to document everything you can, including the date, time, and name of rep. just in case something goes sour.
If you're going to call them do it now. And DON'T reformat/change anything. If you do it's a screen for them to hide behind when they say "Sorry, you've voided your warranty" or "Sorry, we're unable to help you."