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Purchase More Ram?


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#1 pattirose

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Posted 05 October 2007 - 11:38 AM

I just bought this HP computer and it's been running slow the last couple days, so I called tech support to see what the problem was and if there was anything I could do or delete to speed things up. He just told me to buy more RAM.
Today I was looking at the task manager and see the physical memory is 958 cached 479 and free 22 - can I delete this cached memory? Is that what's slowing down my laptop?

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#2 madman6510

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Posted 05 October 2007 - 02:45 PM

While the tech support guy was "technically" right (more RAM does = more speed), try looking at this topic to make sure that your problem isn't with malware, or lack of maintenance, which can slow down your computer A TON, and it will also save you the $50 you might have spent on the RAM.

EDIT: Also list how much RAM your computer currently has, as well as the operating system version and the processor speed.

Edited by madman6510, 05 October 2007 - 02:51 PM.


#3 pattirose

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Posted 05 October 2007 - 03:26 PM

I have 1 GB RAM and VISTA and AMD Athlon 64 X 2 dual core processor TK53 1.70 GHz. (32 bit operating system) I have 160 GB harddrive with almost all of drive D full of HP recovery and 40 GB of drive C is full out of 140 total.

It was running worse than a dial up connection, it took 2 hours to run a Norton quick scan and 5 hours to run the Windows Defender. It took a minute or more for a page to come up on anything I clicked on. Now it's back to what it was before, I removed a couple movies but I don't see how a couple movies can make that much difference?
Everyone told me before I bought this new laptop that the dual processor makes a huge difference and it would be sooo much faster than my old laptop - I don't see any difference and my old one was 5 years old before it died. I would like to know what exactly is to blame here so I won't make the same mistake with the next laptop I buy down the road.
Is it HP? VISTA? Or the RAM? Norton?
I was under the impression that it was a large harddrive that was needed to make things run smoothly?
Sorry for all the dumb questions but I'm new at this and trying to learn.

#4 Sterling14

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Posted 05 October 2007 - 04:14 PM

Yes vista is a resource hog. For vista Premium 1gb is the recommended minimum (even though 512mb, half of a gigabyte, is the technical minimum amount needed) My friend got a new computer with Vista premium and 1gb ram. He would usually have 40-60% memory usage with just the computer idling. Once he got 3gb his memory usage dropped to about 5-15% usage.

My recommendation is to get another 1gb stick of ram. You can also, run spyware/virus scans frequently. Also, close any programs that are running. Check the bottom right of your computer screen next to the clock, and close some of those things that you don't need.
"I think there is a world market for maybe five computers." - Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, 1943

#5 Mr Alpha

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Posted 05 October 2007 - 04:32 PM

Today I was looking at the task manager and see the physical memory is 958 cached 479 and free 22 - can I delete this cached memory? Is that what's slowing down my laptop?

No, that cache is speeding your computer up. Remember folks: Unused RAM is wasted RAM.

It was running worse than a dial up connection, it took 2 hours to run a Norton quick scan and 5 hours to run the Windows Defender. It took a minute or more for a page to come up on anything I clicked on. Now it's back to what it was before, I removed a couple movies but I don't see how a couple movies can make that much difference?
Everyone told me before I bought this new laptop that the dual processor makes a huge difference and it would be sooo much faster than my old laptop - I don't see any difference and my old one was 5 years old before it died. I would like to know what exactly is to blame here so I won't make the same mistake with the next laptop I buy down the road.
Is it HP? VISTA? Or the RAM? Norton?

5 hours to run Windows Defender? Something is seriously wrong. Your machine shouldn't be that slow. It is not a bad purchase decision that is causing this. Rather something isn't working as it should. Did those scans find any malware?

I was under the impression that it was a large harddrive that was needed to make things run smoothly?

A bigger hard drive doesn't help with performance. Running out of hard drive space can slow things down though.

Yes vista is a resource hog. For vista Premium 1gb is the recommended minimum (even though 512mb, half of a gigabyte, is the technical minimum amount needed) My friend got a new computer with Vista premium and 1gb ram. He would usually have 40-60% memory usage with just the computer idling. Once he got 3gb his memory usage dropped to about 5-15% usage.

Having a high memory usage isn't a big deal. This won't start to slow down until you run out of memory (close to 100% memory usage). To be fair having a lot of extra memory lets Vista cache stuff and so speed up application loading.

Edited by Mr Alpha, 05 October 2007 - 04:32 PM.

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#6 pattirose

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Posted 05 October 2007 - 05:10 PM

Thanks for your replies everyone - I appreciate it. That link posted above is extremely helpful and I"ll try some of the things mentioned as soon as I figure out the safe mode thing, which I see also has a link to a thread on how to do it.

Next time I'll go with the 2 GB of RAM, when I bought this one the laptops with them(2GB) were a few hundred $$ more so that's why I went with 1 GB. I didn't know it mattered and now I do. Memory usage is the same as physical memory? It says mine is 60% and the cpu usage is always really low 5-10% Is that important?

And no Defender found nothing. It spent alot of the time checking 8 zipped files but since removing them it's working like it was when I bought it. I haven't installed adaware or spybot or zonealarm yet but I probably will.

#7 DaChew

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Posted 06 October 2007 - 02:38 AM

When you download a lot of "data", it's always best to back it up to an external hard drive or burn it to cd or dvd anyway.
Then before doing routine maintance you can delete it off of your system partition, if you clean up all your mess, temp internet files, recycling bins, etc then run defrag and malware scans, it's all a lot quicker.
Chewy

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