Windows operations slow down after 1-2 hours of working...

After booting up and working online for an hour or two, using MS Word 2003, Excel 2003, Outlook 2003, and Firefox, operations within Word, Excel, and Outlook take longer and longer to complete. The types of operations that slow down are...

Opening a new file
Saving a file
Formating text or cells
Clicking a link inside an email
canceling a task
Any other tool bar action...

The time delay starts out at 5-7 sec, then increases to 10-15 sec, 20-30 sec, and if I work for 3 or more hours a task can lock up Word, Excel, or Outlook. Opening/closing programs still happens instantly, but this does not improve the slowing of task response... CPU usage jumps to 50-60% during these slow responses,then falls off to 10-15%...

If I reboot the PC everything works fine, but the slow down process starts over again...

I have a firewall, virus and spyware in place that are up to date, and I run total system scans weekly... no issues are found. Internet temp files are dumped daily and use a registry tool to insure that is clean. I built this PC and my main components are:

MSI P35 Neo MB
Intel Core 2 Duo E6420 Conroe 2.13GHz
4GB OCZ DDR2 (PC2 5400) Ram
XFX GeForce 7600 GT Video
Creative X-Fi Sound Card
Windows XP SP2

Any thoughts from anyone on what causes this? ... how to correct/eliminate it??

8 answers Last reply
More about windows operations slow hours working
  1. Your processor may be running too hot over time,

    you may need to purge your pagefile periodically if windows isn't doing if correctly.

    Also Office itself has a wierd way of applying itself for speed. It stores parts of itself in RAM that stay sometimes even after a reboot. You may have to reboot twice to clear them. RAM is normally volatile mamory and clears when power loss but somehow Office can use it as a store if you never fully power down.

    Your HD may even be failing and getting too hot. I got 2 fans cooling my hard drives.

    Finally your default templates may be corrupt. Normal.doc etc used to store your default settings for MS Word and similar for excel. Find them, rename them (As backup in case all goes wrong) and save a new normal.doc template in their place - see if this helps.
  2. One other idea, if your computer has it or if not download a free one.
    Get a system monitor that shows the sys temps and voltages. Run it at the bottom of the screen so you can track any possible changes. A low voltage situation can also cause over heating.
    try they should have a few monitors available there.
  3. mafadecay and pat...

    Thanks for the replies... I've been monitoring the system info but had not thought about the HDs. I added a HD monitor and after 3 hours of use here are the stats...

    CPU 89-91 F
    System 86-88 F
    HDD 0 75 F
    HDD 1 78 F
    CPU Core 1.336 - 1.360v
    3.3v 3.312v
    5v 5.087v
    12v 12.408v
    5v SB 5.048v

    I have 3 case fans and one of these is next to the HDs.

    I've also deleted the several times and I've run regedit and deleted the following key...


    This registry line can become cluttered if you use Word alot... when you reboot it gets recreated and is clean...

    The one item I had not considered is the pagefile... I've just spent the last hour reading about it on various sites and have learned how to purge/defrag it and about moving it off the system drive. I'm going to do this now, see what happens, and I'll let you know tomorrow...
  4. You temps and voltages seem fiine as long as they stay there over time.
    Many times after prolonged use I will goto safe mode delete the page file and then defrag. When thats done I recreate the page file so that it is pristine.
    One other thing I just thought of is indexing. Office used to use indexing in the past and would cause slow downs. Im not sure if it still does that as I currently dont have office installed and have no way to look.
  5. As Pat suggests Office does have its own mem hogging indexing of files and settings. However this would not cause the system to slow to the extent as described. If anything it would be slower at the start and then speed up.

    Just to be sure click on your start menu, goto all programs and then startup. If there is andything to do with MS Office in there right click it and cut. Then goto your desktop right click and paste. Reboot TWICE! Then see if any change.

    To put it back again it might not be where you woul dexpect so right click and copy file on your desktop then right click start menu and choose open all users. Go into programs and startup then right click paste. Reboot twice again. (You know the drill).

    Also yes monitor your temp constantly. Any change log down what you were doing at the time. If system slows when there is a change then you never know. You coul dalso try (Not swapping any cables) just swap the position of the hard drives over in the case. Obviously kill main power but do not unplug any IDE or power cables inside your case. Then monitor nad see if this repositioning allows more cooling.

    See if the 75 and 78 F change in any way. They might not but closer to the case fan may be just that cooling you need. Only extended use and monitoring will show for sure.

    You can try running chkdsk aswell cant do any harm. Also turn off system restore one drive at a time. Monitor for a while but beware any crashes and you will loose data so make regular saves. (Im sure you are used to saving all the time anyway).
  6. Just to add I think your temps are fine, but in the past I have had a HD start badly smoking and turned off seconds before it burst into flames. I was monitoring temp and it was misreading saying all was fine. Since then I am all about cooling, cooling, cooling. From a safety aspect, as you can imagine, this was not an ideal situation. The HD was still too hot to remove some 30 mins later.

    I do not know how large your case is but might be worth if you have any spare HD bays leaving an emply one above each HD. So it goes empty bay, HD 1, empty bay 2, HD 2. Can only help the heat dispurtion and cooling even more! I had to get a power splitter to extend the length of my power cable to reach the bottom HD but in my opinion was well worth the 69p. If yours is too tight you might have a cable tie around the power lead. Carefully snip it to give the extra reach.
  7. mafadecay and pat...

    Sorry for the delay in replying but there were other "non-PC issues" I had to deal with...

    I have been monitoring temps and HDs, CPU, and System have had no issues... all temps have stayed in the ranges I described before. I have an Antec SX1040B case which has good room for the HDs and I have a fan positioned that covers both...

    I'm using Office 2003 and could not find any issues with indexing... maybe they actually fixed something for once...

    I have nothing in my Startup folder... never have... so this wasn't a factor...

    I did run chkdsk and there were minor issues on C: that were fixed and have not shown up on rechecks...

    I did some research and learning regarding the pagefile.sys and moved mine from C: to another drive. It was fragmented and now is isolated from the drives I use to run and store data.

    Another thing I learned is how to insure that the PageFile is erased each time you shut down... Yes, it takes longer but then you start the next session with a blank PageFile...

    So... after all of this is the problem corrected?... No... it seems I can work longer before the Office tasks start slowing down but that is all I have accomplished.

    Thanks to both of you for your suggestions and help....
  8. There might be some options like below

    I think this is due to memory problem you should check ram it wont fresh as data accumaltes it .....install memory refresher.. ...try another slot of board for ram.

    2nd option is that it may b caused by any viral effect......u should install fresh windows. and then install Kaspersky Antivirus to check all disks.

    3rd... if u are working on big MB files that may cause memory suck...try using smaller files to find out if it is memory prob or wat ......

    gud luk buddy

    inform me results on ........
Ask a new question

Read More

Windows XP