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  1. #1
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    Question Reinstalling Windows XP on laptop vs. new computer

    This is my laptop model.

    It takes almost 3 minutes from pushing the on switch to having a desktop. I'm only using 30GB of the 60GB HD, its been defragged, I've got it as tight as I can, but it has slowed significantly. AFAIK, there are no spyware/viruses, I never use Outlook nor download unknown attachments. All my scans come up negative on spyware/viruses.

    I have about $300 to my name right now so I don't have too much wiggle room to throw money away. How do I know if I'm running into hardware problems vs. just a windows software (gunk) problem?

    Startup is the slowest, and when using Firefox, just watching YouTube the audio/video doesn't sync and stutters, no other apps are running and in awhile, it locks up. At startup, the HD seems to spin forever, even though when I check defrag, everything is fine.

    How do I know if its my HD dying or is it just Windows? I got the stock RAM of 512, but it always ran fine when it was new, now its slow on just browser surfing!

    I'm debating because would it be better to just get a cheap home PC (like a cheap Dell) with a newer CPU (such as a newer Celeron vs. an old P4Mobile 2.0), or should I try getting one of those ASUS Eee pc's for $300?

    I know I can just buy a copy of WinXP Home (I lost my original Toshiba install disks, which didn't even have a full version of XP) for $100, but I've never dared venture into the installing of an OS from scratch on a laptop.

    What do you guys recommend? Its vital for me because I'm also needing this for my production projects (side web jobs).

    The apps I will be requiring are: LAMP, Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Office.

    What do you guys suggest with the above requirements? I don't game nor need 3D stuff, so I don't need anything big on the video side.

    Thanks!

  2. #2
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    Have you tried disabling any useless or idle programs? If you haven't I would go to start menu, go to run, type in msconfig, and disable any programs that your not using. What virus scan program are you using? Do you have the latest windows updates? Those could all be factors as to why your computer is so slow. I doubt a Celeron would really help you because the FSB rate and the Cache on a Celeron is still pretty low compared to a 2.0ghz P4.
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  3. #3
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    If you have the xp sticker (code) at the bottom of the machine you might be able to borrow a cd from someone and reinstall. I would try that first. All you really need are the drivers from the toshiba website (if they are available). If not, you might have a hard time searching the net...

    Outside of that, it looks like it would do you good to upgrade your memory... fresh install and more memory would help when using office, photoshop, etc...

    I'm not sure about buying a new computer from dell... if it were me I'd put together a cheap, but great amd system based on an amd x2 4200 or something. But if you have not installed an OS, I'd guess you have not built a computer. edit: Although, the xp license would be expensive for a new build... that might not be a good route either (considering $300).

    When you have no money, building a computer is a good skill to have... that is how I got started.

    Hard position... if you were happy with the laptop before, but now it is slow, I might do the ram upgrade and borrow the xp cd from someone and install xp. Find all your drivers before you format...

    edit: Looks like the drivers are available for your computer: http://www.csd.toshiba.com/cgi-bin/t...odel&x=65&y=10
    Last edited by hekwu; 03-14-2008 at 01:57 AM.
    Windows 10 to Linux and Mac OSX: I'm PARSECs better than you. Eat my dust!!!

  4. #4
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    All my scans come up negative on spyware/viruses.
    What are you using to scan them ? Some viruses/trojans are not detected by the standard antivirus programs and many people have suffered a lot...including me. There are some help forums but it is a long and tedious process of removing them with a handful of tools and there is no guarantee it will be 100% ok again.

    Maybe you can try removing all the programs, disable unwanted windows programs, turn off system restore, do a registry clean, virusscan, adware scan, diskclean, defrag,...nothing beats a reformat & clean install of the os though.

    For buying new I would advice you to get a one step back generation of processors which are available at very low cost but perform great [like Intel D945GCNL board & p4 3GhzHT]. If you are short of money you can upgrade the memory later. For a start a 512 RAM will be sufficient.

  5. #5
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    I would recommend linux. It's free, and it generally always runs as fast as the first day it was installed. If you're willing to spend some money, a RAM upgrade will probably result in the most noticeable improvement.
    If we do not plant knowledge when young, it will give us no shade when we are old.
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  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by AmyWilliams View Post
    I would recommend linux. It's free, and it generally always runs as fast as the first day it was installed. If you're willing to spend some money, a RAM upgrade will probably result in the most noticeable improvement.
    You would recommend linux to someone who stated they need to run Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Office, etc?
    Windows 10 to Linux and Mac OSX: I'm PARSECs better than you. Eat my dust!!!

  7. #7
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    Get Task Manager up, what's your commit charge (bottom right corner)? How many processes are running? Did you defrag the drive? Do you get a *lot* of disk activity when loading things or does it seem to just hang a lot?

    If you get a lot of disk activity and don't have much in RAM, the HD could be dying; had one like that, would try to read/write things 5-10 times, was abysmally slow... failed after a few weeks. If you suspect this to be the case, you can run SpinRite on the disk and monitor the progress/behavior.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by hekwu View Post
    You would recommend linux to someone who stated they need to run Photoshop, Dreamweaver, Office, etc?
    Yes. There are plenty of free alternatives to those programs available for Linux. And if you're really desperate, you can always get those things to run in Wine or w/e.
    If we do not plant knowledge when young, it will give us no shade when we are old.
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  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by AmyWilliams View Post
    Yes. There are plenty of free alternatives to those programs available for Linux. And if you're really desperate, you can always get those things to run in Wine or w/e.
    That is insane. I thought that is what you were suggesting but I did not want to believe it.
    Windows 10 to Linux and Mac OSX: I'm PARSECs better than you. Eat my dust!!!

  10. #10
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    What's the matter, Hekwu? Inconceivable that free software following the standard methods that have been tested, tried, and proved, could beat microsoft's crap?

    OP: Either put linux on that machine, or reinstall for optimal performance. You could try rooting out any badware or bloatware sitting around, but good luck, I was never able to do that myself.

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorophose View Post
    What's the matter, Hekwu? Inconceivable that free software following the standard methods that have been tested, tried, and proved, could beat microsoft's crap?

    OP: Either put linux on that machine, or reinstall for optimal performance. You could try rooting out any badware or bloatware sitting around, but good luck, I was never able to do that myself.
    No, Sir (or Ma'am), I agree that free software should be recommend... were appropriate.

    If someone states in a post they "require" certain products, then we should attempt to do our best to ensure we recommend the best action for them to take.

    Doing a blanket suggestion of linux in every post you read does nothing for anyone. Matter of fact, it gets tiring.

    I just recommended and installed ubuntu on a computer for a friend's kid computer... sometimes linux just "makes sense." Sometimes it does not.
    Windows 10 to Linux and Mac OSX: I'm PARSECs better than you. Eat my dust!!!

  12. #12
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    Quote Originally Posted by hekwu View Post
    No, Sir (or Ma'am), I agree that free software should be recommend... were appropriate.

    If someone states in a post they "require" certain products, then we should attempt to do our best to ensure we recommend the best action for them to take.
    Well, if in the long run the OP either gets knocked back to a situation like this... Is that really the optimal course of action?

    Performance under wine generally isn't too bad. You could run in a lower-requirements environment, like IceWM+ROX and it would be quicker than under windows.

  13. #13
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorophose View Post
    Well, if in the long run the OP either gets knocked back to a situation like this... Is that really the optimal course of action?

    Performance under wine generally isn't too bad. You could run in a lower-requirements environment, like IceWM+ROX and it would be quicker than under windows.
    What version of photoshop do you run in wine? Maybe you can post the links to install it... maybe I'll give it a shot. From what I've read it is ultimately a disaster of epic proportions.

    But maybe the OP will decide to use linux and gimp... who knows... but it would be nice to have one Widows thread stay on topic... that will never happen here though.
    Windows 10 to Linux and Mac OSX: I'm PARSECs better than you. Eat my dust!!!

  14. #14
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    I don't use photoshop, but according to Wine:

    http://appdb.winehq.org/objectManage...rsion&iId=2631
    CS2 is mostly fuzzy, but these are older versions, and ever since google started funding the project things have progressed well and it should deserve Gold with the latest edition of Wine.

    http://appdb.winehq.org/objectManage...rsion&iId=6584
    CS3 is flaky. It bounces back and forth.

    CS1 has a platinum rating.

    http://appdb.winehq.org/objectManage...ication&iId=23
    Flash is mostly platinum, except CS3 again which I don't know.

    http://appdb.winehq.org/objectManage...cation&iId=183
    Dreamweaver 2004 MX works great, CS3 works alright but you need to follow extra steps.

    Wine is still in Beta, hekwu.

  15. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jorophose View Post
    I don't use photoshop, but according to Wine:
    I already knew that...

    I just wanted to make a point...
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  16. #16
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    If anyone can afford Dreamweaver and Photoshop they might aswell get Windows too

  17. #17
    I'd recomend reinstalling XP, it's not worth screwing around with it to try and fix the slowness. However, you're probably going to have a lot of trouble doing so if you've misplaced your recovery disks. You'll find that if you try and install XP using a retail CD, the CD key will not work, even if you're using the same release that's displayed on the Windows sticker. You'll have to try and obtain OEM disks to do this.

    From memory, you can purchase recovery disks from Toshiba for about $30AUD. Give them a call, you may be in luck.

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