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External Hard Drive & Slow Computer Problems

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#1 Sparky74


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Posted 27 June 2008 - 04:01 AM

Hey everyone. I will give you a little bit of information regarding my PC problems.

Firstly, I have a PC that was built by a computer shop for me. My PC would be around 4 years old now (ancient in this day and age I know).

I operate Windows XP. 80 gig - 512 Ram - 2.80 GHz I use it mainly to surf the web, music/photo storage and for games on my pc.

I've been having problems with my PC of late. IE and Fire Fox, both "hang" or "Freeze" often. I always seem to get "This programme is not responding". I have to use the task manager to close these programmes down most of the time.

So I started searching the internet, looking for ways to help me speed up my PC. I downloaded, AdAware, Spybot Search & Destroy and have Windows Defender. This helped but hasn't completely solved my problem. My next step (in my mind) would be to uninstall IE and re install it. (I use IE mainly and have FF for my back up when IE stops responding)

I regularly delete cookies, temp files, run disk defrag, etc. It all helps, but it doesnt stop my PC from freezing in IE or FF.

Sooooo, I read elsewhere that getting an external hard drive would be a good thing. Not just incase of a crash, but to help speed up my PC. I purchased a Maxtor One Touch 4 Mini - 120 GB. I have backed up my entire photo collection, music and video collection.

So now to my questions:

Would uninstalling and reinstalling IE help with freezes and hang ups?

Should I back up my whole C drive to my external hard drive? (depending if I have room left of course)

Can I safely remove photographs and music from my PC now that they are on the external hard drive?

How do I view the photos stored on the external hard drive?

Do I have to keep the external hard drive plugged into my USB port all the time?

The external hard drive didn't have alot of instructions, so I am basically clueless on how to use it.

I am sure as I become more involved in the forums, I will have plenty more questions, but these are the main ones that I have right now.

I appreciate any and all advice I get from you all.



Edited by Sparky74, 27 June 2008 - 04:02 AM.

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#2 Wildabeast


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Posted 27 June 2008 - 04:59 AM

I'm not sure I can answer all your questions, at least not so anybody could understand the answers, but...

Would uninstalling and reinstalling IE help with freezes and hang ups?

Should I back up my whole C drive to my external hard drive? (depending if I have room left of course)

Can I safely remove photographs and music from my PC now that they are on the external hard drive?

How do I view the photos stored on the external hard drive?

Do I have to keep the external hard drive plugged into my USB port all the time?

Unistalling IE, I don't think that's a good idea. Have you kept up on the XP udates? When did you last run chkdsk? If you haven't run it, go to start, run, and type in chkdsk and hit enter. It doesn't take long and may help. You can also run sfc /scannow, you need to have your XP disk in so files can be repaired or replaced. I have to sit by my computer while it runs because I have to click on the Retry button alot.

My external just has the files I think are important, photos, some Word files, things like that. You don't need to backup Windows, in my opinon.

You can remove photos from your hard drive if you've backed them up. I would suggest you put them on disk also, in case something happens to your external drive.

You should be able to access your external by going to start, my computer and it will show up there. Open it up and you should find everything you transfered.

I only plug in my external when I want to use it, either for backup or to get something from it.

Hope this helps... :thumbsup:

Edited by Wildabeast, 27 June 2008 - 05:14 AM.

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#3 dc3


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Posted 27 June 2008 - 05:08 AM

Hi Sparky74, and welcome to BleepingComputer.

Let's see if we can find out what errors are being recorded when the computer is freezing.

Look in the Event Viewer and see what errors are showing up at the time that this is happening. Each error will have its own date and time shown.

Start> right click on My Computer> Manage> Event Viewer.

Be sure that you choose System.

The error will appear in the far left column and will appear as a red dot with a white X inside. Each of the columns has a title at the top of them, the column that you want is the Event column. When you see an error follow it to the right across the page to the event column, there will be a set of numbers in there, this is the error code. If you right click on the error code a drop menu will appear, click on Properties, another page will open which will contain a description of the error.

Please post the error codes and descriptions back in this topic.

Before you uninstall and reinstall Firefox, let's see what kind of errors you are getting. If you would like to see what can cause Firefox to hang/freeze check out this site.

How much free space do you have on the 80GB hdd?

Once you have transfered your photos or other files you can delete the copies in the C: drive.

To view your photos you should be able to go to My Computer and click on the external hdd to open it and then click on the photos that you wish to view.

You don't need to keep the external drive plugged in all the time, only when you wish to use it, it won't hurt is to leave it plugged in though.

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#4 Adamsappleone


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Posted 27 June 2008 - 05:18 AM

Hello Kris and :thumbsup:

I take it that rebooting your PC did not help?
You could uninstall and reinstall IE and Firefox to see if that cures the problem or look in the Event Viewer for possible errors relating to the freezes or
you could try the following commands:

Start-->Run-->regsvr32 urlmon.dll
Start-->Run-->regsvr32 Shdocvw.dll
Start-->Run-->regsvr32 Msjava.dll
Start-->Run-->regsvr32 Actxprxy.dll
Start-->Run-->regsvr32 Oleaut32.dll
Start-->Run-->regsvr32 Mshtml.dll
Start-->Run-->regsvr32 Browseui.dll
Start-->Run-->regsvr32 Shell32.dll

I would wait till you get your problem corrected and your system is running good before you back it up, otherwise your just copying the problem and yes I would back up the C drive to the External
Once you've made new folders on your External drive for your pic's, music and such you should be able to safely remove them from your current drive.
With the External Drive connected you should be able to access it through Start/My Computer, and its not a bad idea to keep it plugged in.

hope this helps

Multi-Boot, Vista Ultimate x64, Windows 7 x64 & Windows 8 Pro x64

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#5 usasma


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Posted 28 June 2008 - 06:56 AM

I would first suggest a free, online scan to ensure that you're not infected with some sort of malware. Sometimes malware will corrupt your current protection - so using an independent, online scanner is a good double check.

(Be advised that some of these scanners will pickup things in "quarantine" from other anti-virus programs - so review the results carefully)

http://www.kaspersky.com/virusscanner Scan Only - no removal

<links compiled on 02/14/2008>

Then I would check the Event Viewer for significant errors (as dc3 has suggested)

Uninstalling/reinstalling IE won't hurt, but it's probably not necessary. If you're using IE7, try going to Start...Run...and typing in "iexplore -extoff" and press Enter. This will run IE7 without any of the addons loaded. If this stops the problem, then it's likely that one of the addons is causing the problem. Relaunching IE7 (without the -extoff switch) will let you disable them one-by-one to find the culprit.

Uninstalling IE7 is usually done via the Add/Remove Programs applet in Control Panel. This will revert you back to IE6. If the problem still exists, then you'd have to uninstall Service Pack 2 in order to see if that's the cause. Then, after fixing the problem, you'd have to reinstall everything (which will take a long while).

There's no need to backup your entire hard drive to the external drive. Even if you do, you won't be able to restore Windows with it. If you want to backup the entire hard drive, then you'd have to use an imaging program to do this (and you should be able to store the image on the external drive). If you image your current hard drive, you'll also be imaging the problems that you've got now - so I'd wait for that until the problems are solved.

An often overlooked facet in backup strategies is redundancy. If you delete the photos on your hard drive and your external hard drive has a problem - you'll stand a chance of losing everything. I believe that you should keep multiple copies of anything that you can't bear to lose. For example, at my wife's office, I backup her data to another hard drive on the same computer, to another computer in the same building, and to my home (via the internet). That way, should disaster strike, I've got the data in many places so I can easily recover it.

You can navigate to your external hard drive in Windows Explorer (tutorial here: http://www.teacherclick.com/winxp/t_4_1.htm ). Once there you can normally double click on a photo in order to view it.

You don't have to keep the external hard drive plugged into your computer. I've got several and only keep one plugged in - and that's the one that my automated backups go to.
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