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1STLITE 11-22-2006 08:09 AM

Gary - anybody - help please?
I think my system is having some issues. I have always been pretty good at figuring out what was going on with her, but right now I just don't have the time or the patience to figure out what it is I need to be doing to make things run more smoothly. I usually consult the folks at majorgeeks, but figured I'd just ask here - and ask Gary :wink: . I want to replace my system soon, but right now I can't. Last night it even shut down by itself, which really freaks me out.

Let me know what you need to know about it and I will tell you. I appreciate it very much. Right now PS is so slow I can barely work at all, and I have ALOT to get done. I am about to cry - seriously.

Thank you so much!


Craig Walters 11-22-2006 08:19 AM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
just a quick reply before i go to work. it sounds a LOT like a drive going bad. make sure you have everything saved to backups! check windows explorer to see if all your drive letters are showing up and check bios to see if they are showing there also.

NancyJ 11-22-2006 08:41 AM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
When did the problems start - did you do anything just before they started?
Are you drives compressed (is the text blue instead of black in the folders list)
If its shutting down by itself check that you have 'automatic restarts' turned off and error loggin turned on in you my computer->properties->advanced-> system settings and startup (or something like that)
If those are on look for an event in the event manager at the time you shutdown and look for a minidump - these will contain vital debugging information

1STLITE 11-22-2006 08:42 AM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
They show up in explorer no problem. I can't remember how to get to the bios, so any help there appreciated. And thanks for scaring the crud outta me, Criag. lol - j/k, I appreciate the help.

I have an external Seagate drive that I use for storing photos, etc. I also use it as a scratch disk in PS. IT is connected through firewire. I have always been able to get this machine to run really smoothly, and for the most part you would never know I only have 512 in ram. But over the last week or so this thing has just been running ridiculously slowly. I have trendmicro pc-cillin and it is updated and running as usual. I have not had problems with adware since using that and firefox, quite a while now. I just do not know where to go form here, since nothign seems to have gotten out of wack, at least not as far as my untrained brain can figure.

Last night when it shut down on me, I had just restarted (trying to see if it would speed up a bit - but it didn't, or at least barely did) and as soon as I opened firefox, and started tot type in an addy, it pop - screen went black and then the blue startup screen, and it restarted.

:bawling: :bawling: :bawling:

Jerryb 11-22-2006 09:19 AM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
There can be all sort of reasons for some of this issue you have and some of them is probably related to each other....

first, always a good idea to periodically backup your important files just on a routine bases ... you can never tell with pc's when they do fatal crash... with that said...
Now don't know what your it's systems stats are, and we don't know what some of the other issues you have... which maybe the actual causes... also don't if you have recently add/remove software/hardware at about the time your issues start! In general, when trouble shooting a system you want to know all the things that works right and allllll the issues with a system! and a little when problem started.

so for now... a lot of time some basic cleaning up of the system helps in many ways and maybe even cures.... and eliminate problems and help narrow down causes.. you may have already done some of these but I don't know.. if you have done them.. sorry... for being repetitive... smile

1. make sure you purge you internet cache and DEFRAG... that always helps in many ways.
2. of course do a antivirus and anti spyware scan.... malware can cause all sort of problems...!!!!
3. a important one... disable all needless programs that startup at windows boot .. go to you msconfig.exe>startup tab .. you can use these links to give guidelines on what to safetly disable....

note: disabling needless programs that startup at windows boot, does a few things..
a. it generally improves your overall system speed.
b. it regains some of your precious ram.
c. your system is more stable!!
bottom line everything work better, faster and smoother!

Now these are the basics, in my opinion that should be done...

if the issue still continues... I generally will look at some of the other programs that i keep for startups.... and see if one or two of them causing... and this is generally done by just turning them off temporally... and see what happens... for example... screen savers, firewalls, various virus/spyware scanners...

sooo.. do those things and things should be a lot better if not then need more info and then we start looking deeper into the system....

Oh by the way... I like your work I wish i was half as good as you are with photoshop....

one additional note: this link to a smartcomputing article... now it mentions some of the thing I have on startup but there a lot of other info init that might be valuable to you.......


Originally Posted by 1STLITE
I think my system is having some issues. I have always been pretty good at figuring out what was going on with her, but right now I just don't have the time or the patience to figure out what it is I need to be doing to make things run more smoothly. I usually consult the folks at majorgeeks, but figured I'd just ask here - and ask Gary :wink: . I want to replace my system soon, but right now I can't. Last night it even shut down by itself, which really freaks me out.

Let me know what you need to know about it and I will tell you. I appreciate it very much. Right now PS is so slow I can barely work at all, and I have ALOT to get done. I am about to cry - seriously.

Thank you so much!


T Paul 11-22-2006 09:24 AM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
I believe when things start getting slow it may be a hard drive about to go (of course also run defrag, checked for viruses and spyware as they can cause havic too). At least that is what I just went through and I am currently in the process of reinstalling and updating everything.

Until you get some real help try PC Pitstop (free evaluation of your system).
It also has a free disk health scan. Also check with the manufacturer of your hard drive. They usually have a diagnostic utility you can download and run to check your drive's performance and health. Unfortunately for me, my results told me that my drive was failing.

Ziaphra 11-22-2006 11:15 AM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
Is your fan working because it can behave like that when it gets hot...

Gary Richardson 11-22-2006 11:24 AM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
Just a couple of things to add.

If you're worried that you may have picked up an infection, post a HJT log here and I'll have a look at it for you.


Create a new folder C:\HJT

Download HijackThis.exe to this folder.

It is important you install it into this folder for the following reasons.
  • If you leave it on your desktop, backups can easily get deleted by accident.
  • If you put it in a Temp File, HJT and the backups may get deleted if we need to clear out your Temp Files as part of the cure.
Once it is located, Navigate to the folder using Windows Explorer or My Computer, and double click on HijackThis.exe.
    • Before your first scan, we need to check the configuration.

      Click on the Config button in the bottom right hand corner and confirm the following are checked.
      • Make backups before fixing items.
      • Confirm fixing & ignoring of items (safe mode).
      • Include list of running processes in logfiles.
      The other items should be unchecked.
  • Click the Back button to return to the Scan page.
  • Click on the Scan button, and wait for the scan to finish (this may take some time depending on the number of items in your log).
  • When finished the Scan button will turn to a Save Log button, click on this and save the log (by default to the same folder that HijackThis.exe is in).
To paste it into a Forum, do the following.
  • Navigate to your Hijack This folder.
  • Double click on the hijackthis.log file, a text document will now be open on your screen.
  • Click on Edit/ Select All, then Edit/Copy.
  • Open the Posting Screen on the Forum
  • Right click in the screen, and click on Paste. The text should now be in the message.
  • Press Submit.

(Sorry for the patronising tone and "baby" instructions, they're for use on forums where some of the users aren't too clued up).

Have you cleaned out your temp files lately? if they've built up you can have some really wierd effects.


  • Click Start > Run and type cleanmgr then click OK.
  • This will bring up the Disk Cleanup window.
  • Check the following entries.
    • Downloaded Program Files.
    • Temporary Internet Files.
    • Recycle Bin.
    • Temporary Files.
  • Click OK.
  • When a prompt pops up click Yes.

If you send me a HJT log I can check what's auto starting on your computer and recommend items that don't need to be run at startup (if any).

Did you get any error codes when it crashed? If so can you give details (the more detailed the better).

Lets have a look at the System log.


Right click My Computer, then click Manage.
This will bring up the Computer Management window.
Expand System Tools then click Event Viewer.
Double click System in the Right Hand pane.

Look for any Error indications (white cross on red background).
If found, double click the entry and an Event Property window will open.

We need details from that window, particularly the Event ID.

Craig Walters 11-22-2006 01:37 PM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
dawn, sorry, but it really does sound like a drive going. my system would suddenly reboot too, just before the drive finally gave out completely. and it was slow as molasses near the end. as it gets worse, things will act even more erratically and you'll find yourself waiting for chkdsk to chk your drives and files are going to be lost. BACK UP NOW!

frankly, i hope i'm wrong, but you have the symtoms.

as for bios, you get into that by when you first turn the machine on, you hit the 'delete' key before it gets to windows booting up. do this as early in the process, after the POST (the POST is a very low level check of the bios and system and will often give a single little beep when done and is always the first thing your system does), just tap the 'delete' key until you get a message or bios actually comes up. READ THE NAVIGATION INSTRUCTIONS! within bios and dont change anything. you just want to see if the bios can still see the drive. if it's showing in windows, it can, but if it stops showing in windows, chances are it's not showing in the bios. i suppose you dont really have to do this. like i said, if it's showing in windows, then it's showing in the bios and most likely if it's not showing in windows then it's probably not showing in the bios. so, you can skip the whole bios thing probably. i just like the confirmation.

if it is the drive and it's your system drive (the one with Windows installed on it), you're in for a bit of a headache, i'm afraid. with the symptoms you're showing, it wont just be one partition on the drive; it will be the electronics or mechanics of the drive itself and will affect ALL partitions on that drive. so, make sure ALL partitions on that drive are backed up!!

if it's the system drive, you're going to have to get a new harddrive and install windows all over again. and that means you're going to lose your registry and have to install all your software again. and again, i really hope this isnt the case. but auto-rebooting and slow as molasses speeds point to one or two main and crititcal things, a drive going bad or too much heat in the system or both. if the drive bearings, for instance, are going bad or the platter is starting to freeze up, you're going to be generating more heat than normal and that's always a bad thing.

and i really hate being the bearer of doom and gloom, but i just went thru this myself.... with the exact same symptoms. and i know T just went thru this also, so i'd take her advice about getting the drive checked.

you might also check your system log files. right click on the 'my computer' icon and pick 'manage' to find your logs. look for a warning or error that talks about bad sectors or blocks on a drive or other problems with a particular drive. this can be something of a pre-warning that something is going wrong.

if your system is anything like mine, you've got maybe (?) a week before complete failure (and that's no guarantee), during which time things will get progressively worse. handle it now, if you can.

and all of this doesnt invalidate anything anyone else has suggested. however, i will say that you shld check your disk FIRST before doing a defrag in this instance. if the drive is going bad, a defrag will likely only make things worse. and do check for viruses and spyware. you might also do a registry cleaning. a very fat registry can slow things down and even cause reboots in rare instances, so you've a lot of things to check here. basically, backup everything now and then see if you cant isolate what is doing all this. just doing 'corrective' things blind is not always a good idea. figure out the nature of the problem and where it is coming from and THEN handle it accordingly.

1STLITE 11-22-2006 03:07 PM

Re: Gary - anybody - help please?
Thank you everybody. I was working as you all were posting with trying to do what I can to figure this out. I don't need a defrag, automatic restarts was turned on, so I turned it off, no viruses or spyware that I can find, although all I have run has been Pc-Cillin's virus and spyware scans, ran the cleanmgr (got rid of some crap, no change in performance)

I got no error reporting or pop-ups when the computer restarted at all, which is why it freaked me out so bad (along with the running slow thing). I have had it crash on occasion, and it was always something that Microsoft would pop up telling me it was some driver or another, and get updated, etc. Nothing like that this time.

In the event viewer, I have a crap load of stuff, but mostly just little blue i's in a balloon. There are quite a few yellow triangles with exclamation points in them. Most of them say they are from WinDefend. Which says something, to me at least, because I thought that was a program that started when Windows started, and it seems like there used to be an icon in the little task bar, but a good while back that icon disappeared. Every now and again, my computer will start to run like crazy, and it is always that program eating up every bit of power. I will cancel it and restart and usually take care of that - should I just do in and delete that program? Is that ok to do, or is that come junk that MS is requiring now?

There is an error on there from the 21st, Source:dhcp EventID:1000
Hmm- looking back there is one of them every day at least back to the 5th. Any idea what that's about? If I am understanding it right it is something to do with my internet connection, says it lost the lease to it's IP address.

Still, no error at the time of the crash.

I hope none of this sounds too dumb to any of you. I can usually figure stuff out myself, but I don't claim to know too much about this stuff. :o: Hope I don't sound like an idiot.

Where do I go form here, besides backing everything up?
Also, could it be the external drive that is the problem? Or when you say drive going bad you are pretty much talking about the internal hard drive, right? :o:

Thanks again, everyone!! :bow: :bow:

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