slow file-opening on Win7

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slow file-opening on Win7
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mgbinnewhaw
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April 6, 2014 - 11:50 am
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Hello folks,
I've got a lowish priority problem (it has been on-going for at least 9 months). At first I put it down to a need to re-install Win7' but didn't get round to that until a month or so ago, when nothing improved. I'm retired so I don't do any proper work (i.e. work I get paid for!) and spend most of my day on the net, edifying myself on Youtube videos and lurking on my favourite sites such this one. For most of my working life I used Interleaf and FrameMaker on Unix platforms and got used to fast opening programs, so maybe I expect too much from MS with its necessary security protection.

So my question is: should I reasonably expect instant opening of ALL my programs? I realize this is a bit like asking how long a piece of string is, and may not be worth you good gents spending your time engaging in such a quest. However, I pose the question in the hope of challenging your pride in your ability to sort out the problems of we computer minnowsWinkSmile Obviously, I will provide system details, downloaded progs. etc. in screenshots, or in extremis via TeamViewer access.

For a long time I've been irritated by slow opening of all programs, most noticeably Firefox (but that's only because it's the most frequently used). Most programs I try take at least 1 minute to open and sometimes I have to double-click 2 or 3 times - or even right-click - to open mostly from shortcut icons on my desktop but sometimes from the .exe.

Regards,
mgb

PS. Looks like this is in wrong forum, but I don't know how to move it.

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Jim Hillier
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April 6, 2014 - 4:20 pm
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Hi mgb - Firefox is a notoriously slow starter, especially from a cold start. However, add-ons will often exacerbate the issue. Add-ons use up resources just like any other software, more add-ons generally means more system resources and slower loading times. Accumulated 'history' can also slow things down.

First off; have you set Firefox to "Clear history when Firefox closes"? To check this setting: click on Tools in Firefox's menu bar and then on Options. Now click on Privacy, across the top, to open the Privacy tab and in the "History" section you will see the option to "Clear history when Firefox closes". Is that option enabled (ticked)?

Alternatively; do you use CCleaner or similar regularly?

Add-ons: Try starting Firefox in 'no add-on mode' - in Firefox's menu bar, click on Help and then on Restart with ad-ons disabled. If Firefox starts up a lot faster, then it's a good bet that at least one of your add-ons is slowing things down.

The cure: try keeping the number of add-ons to an absolute minimum, install only those add-ons which are essential. If add-ons are at a minimum and Firefox is still slow to load, you will need to identify which particular add-on might be slowing things down - manually disable ALL add-ons and then enable just one. Work with Firefox for a while and compare startup times. Repeat this process, enabling each add-on, one at a time, until you identify a likely culprit.

As for program loading times in general: these times will vary from program to program but, if slow loading times is an issue across the board, then that is generally indicative of low system resources. Either the amount of installed RAM is too little to begin with or there are too many programs auto-starting with Windows and chewing up resources.

Please report back with details of your CPU and installed RAM - Go to Start>Control Panel>System and you'll see information relating to Processor and Installed memory (RAM).

In order to check the other possibility, too many programs auto-starting with Windows, we'll need to review your Startup situation:

Simultaneously press the 'Windows' and 'R' keys to bring up the Run command
Type msconfig into the Run dialogue box and then press Enter
In the System Configuration window, click on Startup, across the top, to open the Startup tab
Now take a screenshot, including every item with a tick next to it (multiple screenshots if necessary), and post the screenshot(s) back here.

Finally: security programs are generally the most heavy on system resources, please provide a list of all security programs you have installed.

From what you have described mgb, it sounds likely there is something not quite right somewhere. Hopefully, we'll be able to get to the bottom of it.

Cheers... Jim

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mgbinnewhaw
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April 11, 2014 - 4:20 pm
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Hiya Jim,

Thanks for your response and apologies for the delay in replying.

Your final observation

there is something not quite right somewhere

is exactly how I feel about it. Equally, it would be "nice" to get it sorted out.

I'm afraid I threw a red herring in by way of highlighting Firefox opening as being slow - with 24 tabs open it is acceptable as I cleared history, restarted without Add-ons, and the time to open was as near as dammit the same. I like to keep history for at least 2 months in case a Windows update clears System Restore and Firefox loses its current state-of-play (has happened too many times to be funny).

I use CCleaner once in a while (say every 5/6 mths.) , without cleaning F/F.

**I attach the requested screenshots, plus other things that my son always looks at very disapprovingly
whenever I need his help (in this instance, he inclines to the view "if it ain't broke, etc. and, anyway I'm much too busy to be bothered").

PS **I cannot upload the attachments. An error message says "HTTP ***** Upload URL might be wrong or doesn't exist". Also I cannot delete the queued files. Can you advise, please?

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Jim Hillier
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April 11, 2014 - 4:34 pm
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What are the file sizes of the screenshots? It may be that they are just too big.

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mgbinnewhaw
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April 12, 2014 - 5:06 am
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Hiya Jim,
Embarassed I checked each file before trying to attach it, and even the total size, to ensure each didn't exceed 1Mb (I mis-read the 100000) - three of them are about 220KB!!

OK. Here attached are the requested files

    Startup1.PNGImage Enlarger

    Startup2.PNGImage Enlarger

    System.PNGImage Enlarger

I'll have to split the others, unless you know another way to relay 250K files.

Regards,

mike b.

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mgbinnewhaw
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April 12, 2014 - 5:15 am
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Here's the last one:

    Security.PNG
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Jim Hillier
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April 12, 2014 - 7:10 am
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As I suspected, you have a whole boatload of unnecessary programs auto starting with Windows and running in the background. You need to disable most of those items.

Disable everything except for:

Item #2 Microsoft
Item #7 WinPatrol
Item #8 Avast
And item #9 KeyScrambler

Remove the tick next to every item except for the 4 items above, click Apply then OK and then restart your machine.

I have found Secunia to be a real memory hog, that is why I am recommending you disable that too. Just run Secunia manually now and then to check for outdated software.

The machine should end up being more responsive, let us know how you get on.

Cheers... Jim

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mgbinnewhaw
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April 12, 2014 - 10:33 am
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Thanks Jim,

My PC is certainly quicker to respond, and my RAM consumption is down to 33% from 50% and PSU activity is down to between 2 & 10% in quiescent state - so it's looking good!

Thank you very much.

Regards,
mike b.

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