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Intense hard disk access for 3mins


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#1 Biscuity

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Posted 15 April 2011 - 10:47 AM

Hi

I have this problem that I've been trying to diagnose for a month or so. It's proving difficult. The problem has been happing since around February this year. The computer build is over 1 year old.

Every few hours, I get constant disk access for approximately 3 mins. I don't have a virus, it doesn't match a schedule & I don't have much hair left. During the disk access (the pc disk light is on constantly), I can move the mouse, but nothing responds to a disk read/write for several minutes. The clock still runs & the CPU % is very low.

I assumed it was the hard drive & bought Spinrite as a last test as the drive had passed chkdsk constantly. Spinrite found no problem at all, not a single fault despite running it for about 12 hours on a maintenance run.

Here's an idea of the erratic schedule:
Day 1 freeze 16:00, 19.37
Day 2 freeze 09:12, 15:11
Day 3 freeze 10:16, 12:06, 13:30
Day 4 freeze 11:14, 13.08, 14.24

I try running resource monitor with the disk page up, but am finding it hard to diagnose the problem from it. Anything that shows up in disk monitor, I disable & try another test for a day.

I have disabled (one at a time):
Prevx, Acronis backup, desktop gadgets, search indexing, Skype, Google update.

I have installed the latest nic & graphics drivers. I have the latest chipset drivers & BIOS.

Full virus scans with Prevx, Malwarebytes. No malware symptoms.

Can anyone offer some advice please?

System:
Windows 7 32bit Ultimate
Intel DP35DP, Intel Core 2 Quad Q9650, Crucial 4gb DDR2-1066, XFX HD5750 1gb, WD Velociraptor 300gb GLFS, Enermax Liberty 620W
Connected to Microsoft SBS 2003 Premium
Running apps: Skype, Trillian, BOINC, Prevx, ISA client Firewall, Winpatrol
Regular cleans using Ccleaner for temp & logs, JV16 Tools for registry, Defraggler for fragmentation.
Browsing using Firefox 4 with NoScript.

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#2 Bill1821

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Posted 16 April 2011 - 12:00 AM

You can try this-

http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb545046.aspx

I haven't done that one for years.. I think it is diskmon or process monitor you will want- If I remember correctly diskview was a 'map' of your hdd- not current activity.


Diskmon I have forgotten if its 'difficult', but suggest a quick google of "how to use process monitor" as with all the switches 'turned on' the volume of info is so great............(its not a big problem- just not so intuitive.)

When you get comfortable with it then leave it running so you will be able to bring it up when the thrashin starts-

interesting it doesnt use a large ampunt of cpu also but........

Good luck and let us know how things work out.

Bill

#3 Biscuity

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Posted 16 April 2011 - 02:48 AM

Great link, thanks!

I'm already using process monitor, but not seeing anything helpful. Resource monitor (set on the disk page) has crashed the last 2 times the thrashing started. I've also not been able to find out what the blue graph line means in Resource monitor.

Diskmon looks just what I need. I'll feedback what happens.

Thanks again.

#4 Bill1821

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Posted 16 April 2011 - 08:34 AM

Another tool that may be useful is this:

http://www.hyperio.com/hIOmon/hIOmonBigPicture.htm

I have never heard of it before but looks like it may be useful to you.

Thats about it for ideas from me- When I get problems like this I usually just put hours of trying and a couple buckets of patience.

Anybody else?

Kinda suprised process monitor didnt work- yeah resource monitor really isn't much more than eye candy....

If all else fails maybe go to msconfig and disable everything in startup- could be your virus protection or just something trying to update--- if it works just turn stuff back on narrowing the field of possibles.

Good luck,

Bill

Edited by Bill1821, 16 April 2011 - 08:35 AM.


#5 Biscuity

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Posted 16 April 2011 - 09:52 AM

Thanks, I will try hIOmon

I've already spent a couple months on this...!

I used Prevx for my security, I uninstalled Prevx as a test with little effect. Uninstalling Prevx did make the instances last less time, but that could just be because Prevx wasn't "watching" the disk access.




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