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Lag upon startup, gone upon restart. What could cause this?

Last response: in Windows 7
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May 28, 2012 5:26:31 PM

Randomly when I start up this laptop, a Dell XPS 15 running Windows 7, everything will lag graphically. When I minimize or maximize windows, it goes in slow motion. Interestingly, things like typing this post are not slowed down at all. Games play in slow motion, but songs play at normal speed. If I restart the computer, upon resetting everything works fine at maximum speeds. It seems to only happen after the initial start-up, but when it comes it stays and nothing I do can make it go away aside from restarting the computer.

I have tried updating my graphics drivers and going into the task manager and ending every single process on the list that wasn't protected. The former did not fix it, and the latter changed nothing. I have run the latest updated version of Microsoft Security Essentials and everything has come up clean.

Any ideas why this is happening, what issues look for, or how to stop it?

P.S. - For future reference was there a better forum section to have posted this question in?

More about : lag startup restart

May 29, 2012 6:09:02 AM

ok, it seems u do not have enough RAM or ur hard-drives a almost full,
try disabling the aero theme
and try this
go to run type "msconfig"
a dialog box should appear
there go to the boot tab
advanced options
check on number of processors
select the max and restart u shud nt have any problem
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a b $ Windows 7
May 29, 2012 6:46:21 AM

pull the power from the laptop and battery...flip it over and check that both ram dimm are seated..sometimes they can walk or pop out. if they look fine reseat them. i would run memtest just to check your ram..I would also download seatools or wd tools and check your hard drive.if the drive is fine i would do some house cleaning..run ccleaner...malware bytes and if your anti virus is out of date or expired i would update it microsoft..advast/avg all have free anti virus.also before you do install another one check to see that you dont have two running now at the same time.
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May 29, 2012 7:45:25 AM

cbervibin and smorizio: Have you actually read what he said? He said rebooting solves the problem.

Now, my question is, does it matter how long it's powered off? As in, you shutdown, after the power goes off wait 5s and turn on....does it still run slow?

Does the power on stage (everything until windows mouse appear) differ between power on (slow-running) and reboot (normal speed)? What I mean, does it look like resuming (from hibernate or standby) when you turn on as opposed to a full start? I'm asking this because more and more manufacturers implement techniques like restart-followed by standby/hibernate instead of shutdown, so the next start would be quicker with only startup apps (seen the tech advertised with Asus, Acer, Lenovo). Sometimes resuming from low-power states can be problematic.
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May 29, 2012 3:49:42 PM

cybervibin said:
ok, it seems u do not have enough RAM or ur hard-drives a almost full,
try disabling the aero theme
and try this
go to run type "msconfig"
a dialog box should appear
there go to the boot tab
advanced options
check on number of processors
select the max and restart u shud nt have any problem


It has 4GB of RAM and, when this issue is happening, neither the RAM or CPU are anywhere near even 1/2 of their maximum capacity. The hard drive has only 60GB of data on it and can handle a total of 450GB so I'm only using a little more than 1/8th of its capacity. I don't think either of them are being pushed to their limits. With that in mind do you still recommend I try what you've suggested here?
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May 29, 2012 3:52:24 PM

smorizio said:
pull the power from the laptop and battery...flip it over and check that both ram dimm are seated..sometimes they can walk or pop out. if they look fine reseat them. i would run memtest just to check your ram..I would also download seatools or wd tools and check your hard drive.if the drive is fine i would do some house cleaning..run ccleaner...malware bytes and if your anti virus is out of date or expired i would update it microsoft..advast/avg all have free anti virus.also before you do install another one check to see that you dont have two running now at the same time.


I will look into this after I've tried out what mathew7 has suggested, I don't want to start taking things apart before it is absolutely necessary as I am uncomfortable with messing around with laptop hardware since I've never done it before. I have run CCleaner recently, cleared out everything and fixed all registry issues. I updated the Nvidia graphics drivers and I uninstalled AVG before installing MSE which is keeping fully updated through Windows Update. It wouldn't hurt to run Malware bytes though, I'm a big fan of their program.
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May 29, 2012 3:57:31 PM

mathew7 said:
cbervibin and smorizio: Have you actually read what he said? He said rebooting solves the problem.

Now, my question is, does it matter how long it's powered off? As in, you shutdown, after the power goes off wait 5s and turn on....does it still run slow?

Does the power on stage (everything until windows mouse appear) differ between power on (slow-running) and reboot (normal speed)? What I mean, does it look like resuming (from hibernate or standby) when you turn on as opposed to a full start? I'm asking this because more and more manufacturers implement techniques like restart-followed by standby/hibernate instead of shutdown, so the next start would be quicker with only startup apps (seen the tech advertised with Asus, Acer, Lenovo). Sometimes resuming from low-power states can be problematic.


The issue only happens after I have gone to the start menu, selected Shut Down, and shut the computer down that way. I only do this when I will be leaving the computer off for hours, such as overnight.

I believe the power on stage seems to run a bit slower when the computer is loading up for a slow session, like when I see that little circle with the blue dot in it swirling around, signifying that it's loading, it seems to be spinning slower than usual. It doesn't look like it's resuming from hibernation on the initial start up though, it always seems like a fresh boot.

I believe there has been one single instance where a restart did not fix the problem, and it was running slow after the restart as well. But I have never been able to repeat that and it may have been a fluke or something else. At all other times, after a fresh start-up has everything going in slow motion, restarting it has made it run at full speed again.
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a b $ Windows 7
May 30, 2012 12:59:35 AM

sounds like the grease on the hard drive is gone or thicking. causing at cold temps the drive to have stickation. because it runs fine after it warms up. if it not the drive then it could be a contoller chip on the mb..
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May 30, 2012 10:44:34 AM

Hi I just want to say I'm getting the exact same problem on my laptop

I dont know why it happens but restarting usually fixes my problem.


Games run in slow motion and so do the windows aero effect things.
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September 11, 2012 8:36:08 PM

I'm having the same problem on my desktop. It's an i7 950 on an ASUS Sabertooth board with 12GB of RAM and a GTX 680, a pair of WD RE4 1TB drives in RAID1 and a Crucial Adrenaline 64GB Cache SSD. Performance is typically not a problem, but this glitch is driving me nuts.

Certain Aero effects are very sluggish, like when I right click on a program in the taskbar to bring up the context menu. Tribes runs in slow motion, the intro video to Civ4 and tabbing to the Steam Overlay are all very ponderous, trying to watch a movie in VLC is a stuttering slideshow. Other things are completely unaffected, like audio playback, browsing the web, etc; the system isn't being universally slow, just certain aspects of it.

Temperatures all seem to be within the norms, resource usage is low. I have the latest drivers from nvidia installed, windows updates are current. A restart usually fixes it, but I've just tried shutting the system down overnight and just now another 3 times to no avail.

I've done a little googling and it looks like I'm not the only person having this problem, but no one seems to have a definitive solution. Any knowledgeable people out there who can shed some light on the matter?
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September 11, 2012 8:41:22 PM

You got Java 7.7? Maybe that vulnerable program has some problems that it is causing. Clean your computer with Ccleaner and scan with superantispyware and malwarebytes and any antivirus you have. Even try Windows Defender. If they all come clean, it might be a hardware problem.
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September 11, 2012 9:04:29 PM

I'm using Java6, and I'm pretty sure it's not a virus/malware problem. :p 
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September 11, 2012 9:50:23 PM

Okay, so you might want to get it checked out or find a super expert on this site
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September 24, 2012 10:07:34 PM

i just encountered the very same problem: aero- effects are in slomo while both cpu and ram- usage are totally normal.
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September 27, 2012 10:27:37 PM

I did a clean (total uninstall and then fresh install) of the latest nvidia drivers and that seemed to clear it up for me. Haven't had it happen since.
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October 4, 2012 12:37:46 AM

I have the same kind of problem 1 out of 15 times windows 7 runs in slow motion on start up. I'm sure it has nothing to do with my ram or processor since i have an i7 and 16 gb of corsair vengeance memory. It's gotta be a software problem, maybe just a coding error missed when they wrote the operating system.
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November 10, 2012 2:19:12 AM

Hey everyone,

My Dell Inspiron N5010 with windows 7 Ultimate has the same problem.
It starts good most of the time but every once in a while, it starts lagging. The lagging starts at the bootscreen (windows animation).
On lagging startup I have checked my components and hardware in the following places:
1. Computer Properties
2. Re-running the windows performance assesment test
3. System Information (msinfo32)
and everything seemed fine.

The videos I play, even the low resolution, seem to have very low fps in vlc and windows media player but play good in KM Player.

My laptop has i3 processor, 512 MB graphics card, 4GB RAM, 500GB HDD.

A restart solves all these problems, but Can't it be fixed??
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November 10, 2012 2:28:41 AM

As I said before, the only fix I've found is to completely uninstall my video drivers, restart, and reinstall them again from scratch. Try it and see what results you get, I'd be interested to know if it works for you as well.
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November 10, 2012 3:32:09 AM

ckholt83 said:
As I said before, the only fix I've found is to completely uninstall my video drivers, restart, and reinstall them again from scratch. Try it and see what results you get, I'd be interested to know if it works for you as well.


I've tried that. I reinstalled windows and all the drivers, but the problem won't just go... :'( 
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November 15, 2012 2:01:51 PM

Problem Solved...

Just updated my graphics driver from dell website.. and its solved :) 
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October 28, 2013 1:53:33 PM

AntaresX said:
Randomly when I start up this laptop, a Dell XPS 15 running Windows 7, everything will lag graphically. When I minimize or maximize windows, it goes in slow motion. Interestingly, things like typing this post are not slowed down at all. Games play in slow motion, but songs play at normal speed. If I restart the computer, upon resetting everything works fine at maximum speeds. It seems to only happen after the initial start-up, but when it comes it stays and nothing I do can make it go away aside from restarting the computer.

I have tried updating my graphics drivers and going into the task manager and ending every single process on the list that wasn't protected. The former did not fix it, and the latter changed nothing. I have run the latest updated version of Microsoft Security Essentials and everything has come up clean.

Any ideas why this is happening, what issues look for, or how to stop it?

P.S. - For future reference was there a better forum section to have posted this question in?



never choose "Dell" from power options, choose some one else and i recommend to choose "power saver" and restart that's it
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