Desktops forum

Question

Why is my high-end PC lagging so badly?

by knightofcydonia98 / May 23, 2013 5:10 AM PDT

All of a sudden my PC has started to lag. My specs are:

-AMD Phenom 2 X4 980 (Quad 3.7 ghz)
-Radeon HD 6970
-8GB DDR3 Ram
-1x500GB HDD
-1x 250GB HDD

The specifications of my computer surpass the requirements for the games I want to play. For example: Grand Theft Auto 4 recommends a Phenom 9850 and an HD Radeon 3870. But yet I achieve 40Fps MAX which I cannot play with. Another example is Eu Truck Simulator 2. It recommends an Athlon X2 dual core and a Radeon HD 6670 but yet it stutters like mad. But it's not just gaming that my PC is struggling with at the moment. Browsing the web often causes the machine to freeze for at least 1 minute. Also, for example if I log into to Steam and while it's initializing I close Skype, the machine locks up for again 1 minute.

Also, it takes a long while to get turned on. If I press the power button the machine will make the whirring noise but the keyboard and monitor do not respond. It then continues to rev over and over again without coming on. To get it on I have to turn the PSU switch off and on about three times.

It is getting increasingly annoying and I would appreciate a solution to fix this problem. The graphics card achieves high scores on Passmark along with the CPU.

Thanks.

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All Answers

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Answer
Tell a little more.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 23, 2013 5:15 AM PDT

The hard starting could be a sign of a stressed power supply. But it looks quite new and time to tell its maker that you want it fixed.
Bob

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Answer
Here're some things to check
by wpgwpg / May 23, 2013 5:24 AM PDT

It sounds like you could have a virus or other malware. Get your antivirus program up to date and boot into Safe Mode. Note that some viruses can hide themselves from your antivirus program in normal mode, so you really need to scan in Safe Mode. To get into Safe Mode when you first power up, hit F8 about once a second until you get the menu and select Safe Mode. Then run a full system scan.
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Microsoft has suggestions and offerings at
http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/how-do-I-remove-a-computer-virus
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MS forum moderator Keith has some suggestions along this line at
http://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_7-performance/windows-explorer-has-stopped-working/6ab02526-5071-4dcc-895f-d90202bad8b3
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If that fixes it, fine. If not, use System Restore to go back to a date prior to the beginning of the problem. To run System Restore, click Start -> Programs -> Accessories -> System Tools -> System Restore. Click the box that says Show more restore points.
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You can check for corrupted system files. Open an administrator command prompt and run SFC if the above doesn't help. Click START, then type CMD in the search box, right-click CMD.EXE and click Run as administrator. Then from the command prompt type sfc /scannow.
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Finally if all else fails, you can check the rather cryptic system event log. To do that click Start -> Control Panel -> Administrative Tools -> Event Viewer. Once in Event Viewer click on the system log and scroll through the entries looking for those flagged "error" to see if you can find hints as to where the problem could be.
`
When you get your system back in good working order, I urge you to back your system up to an external hard drive and make regular periodic updates to it.
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I hope this helps. Good luck.

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Didn't work:(
by knightofcydonia98 / May 24, 2013 12:02 AM PDT

Nope, Avast found no virus when in safe mode, CMD didn't find anything wrong and Event Viewer is only between about 2 weeks ago until now as that's when I reinstalled OS to try and fix it. Although every few days it seems there has been a critical 'Kernel Power' error. I don't know if that means anything? Thanks.

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Answer
I just went through this
by itsdigger / May 23, 2013 5:44 AM PDT

the machine started getting a little glitchy at first ,not much but just little stuff was happening, games were a little jittery and once my optical drive drawer wouldn't open than one time my web browsers kept saying OOPS! You Broke The Internet . Next thing my power button was orange and couldn't power up the computer. Later it powered up. Just a bunch of unexplainable crap started happening all in a couple of days. Next thing ya know my power switch was orange again and the computer wouldn't start again and than it stayed that way. Turned out to be the power supply , I changed the psu and all is well now. Just a thought ...Digger

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Thanks.
by knightofcydonia98 / May 23, 2013 7:53 PM PDT

Hmmm. might try it, thanks:)

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Answer
Let's see
by bob b / May 23, 2013 8:39 AM PDT

Gpu......250w
Cpu......125w
Misc.....100w

Tell us you have a 700w or bigger quality single rail psu.

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Nope.
by knightofcydonia98 / May 23, 2013 7:53 PM PDT
In reply to: Let's see

No it's about 550W I think.

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Combined with that Kernal Power warning.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 24, 2013 3:56 AM PDT
In reply to: Nope.

Hard starting, Kernal Power, a quick addition of Watts seems to be pointing us to a PSU that was big enough when new.

But as you know, PSUs age and lose strength so not much new here.

Hit the maker up for a new PSU of the bigger size and offer to pay the difference.
Bob

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Cool.
by knightofcydonia98 / May 24, 2013 6:11 AM PDT

Not in contact with the seller anymore so I'll buy my own. What sort of things do I need to look for when buying? Thanks

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Here's what you want
by bob b / May 24, 2013 10:00 AM PDT
In reply to: Cool.
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Power supply replacement
by tumbleweed_biff / May 25, 2013 5:48 AM PDT
In reply to: Cool.

Here is a link to check out:
http://ati.amd.com/certifiedPSU

According to AMD: " ...one 150W 8-pin PCI Express® power connector and one 75W 6-pin PCI Express® power connector recommended" with a 550 watt or greater power supply.

Be certain that the power supply you purchase is at least 80+ Bronze certified.

To know total power required, you would need to calculate the power needs of each device - how many watts do the HDD's pull, the motherboard, fans, CPU, GPU, optical drives?

Add those up and you will know the MINIUM power supply needed. I expect you would want to have one which exceeds that number by 100 watts.

DO NOT, under any circumstances, purchase a low end power supply. Purchase ones from reputable manufacturers only. Too cheap and: a) it will not be very efficient, meaning you lose power due to supply ineffiencies b) cheap components for low durability c) poor quality control and d) you put your entire computer at risk. I made the mistake of letting someone sell me a low end power supply (Diablotek) one time: plugged everything in, turned it on, a power cable was mproperly wired and melted itself to the power connection of my new 1TB Hdd back when 1 TB drives were just appearing on the market.

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Answer
Sounds familiar
by tumbleweed_biff / May 25, 2013 6:00 AM PDT

A couple of months ago, machine began partially locking up on a regular basis. I would tell it to do something and it would siot there. The mouse would move and I could right click on the task bar and choose Task Manager, but Task Manager would not come up until it finished whatever it was locked up on first. When these lockups would occur, there would be no change in CPU performance/utilization (CPU is very close to yours ... 3.4 gHz I think ... usually at 25% or less utilizaiton when this would happen. I searched repeatedly for virus/malware/spyware, etc. to no avail - I am generally extremely good at avoiding such anyway.

I found one reference on the net which seemed to sound like what was happening to me and it said the fault was that some devices, the audio card in this case, would put entries in the registry which appear flawed to many registry optimization/repair utilities and after the utility was used, the machine would then experience these issues because of that supposedly invalid registry entry. There was a proposed fix, including a registry patch file, but that didn't work for me. I also then went through and reinstalled all the device driver software on the machine, but that only made things worse. Windows Media Center stopped working along with some other things so I finally gave up and performed a full reinstall of Windows. That has solved my problem - so far at least. I am still getting the software reinstalled on the machine as this happened very recently. I cant say it was a problerm in the registry, only that someone else identified a problem which could arise using those tools.

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Oops
by tumbleweed_biff / May 25, 2013 6:04 AM PDT
In reply to: Sounds familiar

I meant to add - In your case it definitely sounds like the Power Supply is a part of your issue, but it may well have a software element as well, such as a damaged registry entry ...

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Already done.
by knightofcydonia98 / May 27, 2013 10:31 AM PDT
In reply to: Oops

I've already performed a reinstall of the OS Sad Had no effect. But I don't want to spend a lot of money on a PSU for it not to be the problem:( Should I take it to a specialist so he can take a look at it?

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You could
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 27, 2013 11:23 AM PDT
In reply to: Already done.

But here the local counter charge is 120 bucks or much more than a new PSU.

-> Think about this. Can you unplug a few things? There's no need for the optical drive. Some folk have extra hard drives plugged it.

You might be able to curb it's power needs for a test run.

In closing, as a PSU ages, it has less power. Take a 2 year old PSU and on average it lost about 25% or more of it's capability. Depends on use, heat and stress but it's a common problem.
Bob

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"Specialist"
by tumbleweed_biff / May 27, 2013 3:48 PM PDT
In reply to: Already done.

A specialist will cost you far more than a power supply and then you would still have to buy a power supply. Purchase a power supply, install it, verify problem fixed (at least partially). If not, return the power supply. If it is then you had to do it anyway ...

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Will this do?
by knightofcydonia98 / May 28, 2013 12:00 AM PDT
In reply to: "Specialist"

I'm on a budget as the PC set my parents back £460 ($695) in March and they probably don't want to spend much more than it so will this do? I know it's not a known brand but it seems fine (£58 is $87) by the way.

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Did you try reducing the load?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 28, 2013 10:24 AM PDT
In reply to: Will this do?

I see two hard drives and you can run with one. It may have an optical drive and many things don't need that.

That's about 20 Watts in the power cut and maybe there's something else to unplug?
Bob

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Oops my last post made no sense.
by knightofcydonia98 / May 29, 2013 2:35 AM PDT

I meant to add a link http://www.amazon.co.uk/Cooler-Master-Lite-600W-Single/dp/B006E17BG0/ref=sr_1_20?s=computers&ie=UTF8&qid=1369845095&sr=1-20&keywords=600w+psu . And yes I unplugged a hdd. The cable connecting the plug socket to the PSU was actually making a fizzing/crackling noise last night :o It's actually getting worse. I was playing Skyrim just now and had to turn it to medium and even then nothing was working. Everything was flickering and it froze when I used magic and all the npcs were bobbing up and down, it was horrible. Plus Hitman Absolution keeps crashing and L4D2 has no sound:L They are just some of the current issues.

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That's a good clue it needs repair.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / May 29, 2013 6:32 AM PDT

I had a dual Pentium Pro machine years ago and the power connection to the main board fizzled and I didn't think about it because it stopped. Later it failed to start and when I got down to the connection there were fried pins and it resulted in me doing a creative repair. I had to desolder the pins, solder in heavy wire to another heavy duty plug system.

Since the machine was 4 years old I was not going to worry about it not being a standard AT power connection but wanted it to last a few years for its new owner.

Fizzing sounds on power connections is a good clue you have something to fix.
Bob

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That helps ...
by tumbleweed_biff / May 29, 2013 9:01 AM PDT

Yes, CoolerMaster are well respected products. Others are companies like Corsair, Antec, Enermax, In Win, OCZ, Sparkle, and others. When you select a supply, take a look at the reviews for the mfg and the supply, that should give you a good sense of confidence. Unfortunately, I don't know what is available across the pond.

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Oops
by tumbleweed_biff / May 29, 2013 9:08 AM PDT
In reply to: That helps ...

I forgot to mention - look for a power supply that is 80+ certified, bronze or better if you can afford it. Use that as your search criteria and you should find something within your price range.

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