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Before and After - software issues?

Nov 29, 2013 7:50AM PST

Around a year ago, I started to play real games on my 2006 top-class pc (Gateway GT5692). I played Portal, which I bought from Gamefly. The game ran smoothly with slight lagging between levels. Gameplay was almost fluid.

Last week, I wanted to replay the game. But everything ran slow and laggy. After messing with the graphics and audio settings (changing everything to 'recommended settings'), I still got only some good gameplay throughout. But firing a portal in any level caused the game to pause for a few seconds. I doubt anything serious changed in my pc over a year. No upgrades or anything. Does this have anything to do with Physical Memory or something? Any help would be greatly appreciated.

Discussion is locked

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Any use of...
Nov 29, 2013 7:54AM PST

... canned air and thermal paste? What's the specs on your machine Os etc.


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The Specs
Nov 29, 2013 8:00AM PST

Processor: AMD Phenom(tm) 8450 Triple-Core Processor 2.10 GHz
Installed memory (RAM): 4.00 GB (3.75 GB usable)
System Type: 64-bit Operating System

Computer came with Vista, but this whole issue takes place in Windows 7, which I updated to around 2 years ago.
I don't know any more specs, since I don't have the box.

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Nov 29, 2013 8:02AM PST

But what about the canned air and thermal paste.


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I don't know..
Nov 29, 2013 8:03AM PST

Sorry? I don't know anything about that...Not really a hardware person.

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Nov 29, 2013 8:10AM PST

This sounds like heat buildup to me. Every 6 months you should take the side off your pc and blast out the dust bunnies from the fans and cpu. Thermal paste dries out and needs to be replaced.

Google these for a guide on how to. I take it your fans are running?


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Nov 29, 2013 8:15AM PST

Very loudly in fact. I'm often afraid they'll die.

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Another symptom...
Nov 29, 2013 8:19AM PST

.... of heat buildup. check out what I said earlier. I'm sure some other members will point you the same way.


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Nov 29, 2013 8:25AM PST


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No probs.
Nov 29, 2013 8:31AM PST

But come back and let us know.
12.30 am where I am so off to bed. Best of luck.


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Works beautifully
Dec 3, 2013 5:18AM PST

I did everything you said. Even added a few more RAM sticks. Haven't done anything serious in terms of programs, but the fans barely turn on anymore. So quiet, so fast.

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Good to hear.
Dec 3, 2013 5:23AM PST

Glad you got it sorted. But remember, do the canned air about every 6 months.


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It could also be
Dec 3, 2013 3:46AM PST

That you have less space on your hard drive to be virtual memory or a fragmented drive that could be slowing down your system. Try getting rid of files you don't need, uninstalling programs you don't use, and do a Disk defragmenter and see if that helps.

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I ended up...
Dec 3, 2013 5:12AM PST

...Finding a program that tells me how much space each file is taking. I deleted 200 GB worth of temp files.

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That's a Great Start!
Dec 9, 2013 7:35AM PST

I also think that just using the functions for Disk CleanUp and Defragger are some of the first steps to take. What OS are you using?

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Post has been answered.
Dec 9, 2013 7:46AM PST

Check about four up from yours


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Heat Pads
Dec 10, 2013 3:02AM PST

Yeah, heat conductors are an easy fix. Toshibas have been notorious for this in my experience. You can do it yourself. I've had someone do it for $50 locally. (My time is worth that much.)

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What are you going on about.
Dec 10, 2013 3:17AM PST

The guy's problem has been fixed. He followed my suggestions and fixed it his self.
" Heat pads " have no place in this situation.


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Closing topic.
Dec 10, 2013 5:26AM PST

As this is solved, the discussion is closed.

Start a new thread if there is a new issue.

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Programs don't take up
Dec 9, 2013 9:39PM PST

alot of data but video and photos do. Try clearing cache and history in your browsers. Download CCleaner and run it.

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Missed this earlier
Dec 9, 2013 10:27PM PST

Missed this earlier, but people put WAY too much stock into this whole fragmentation issue. It might account for some delay in loading the game and levels within the game, but once those are loaded, fragmentation would be basically a non-issue. Simple fact is, very few programs are limited by disk throughput, and games aren't on that list.

Similar to the idea that a computer slows down the more the HDD fills up. Not true. It doesn't matter if you've used every last byte of space on a drive, as long as the OS doesn't need any additional space for virtual memory, it will run exactly the same as if the HDD were 75% empty. If the drive is full and there's a demand for more virtual memory, you'll know it pretty much immediately as everything will come to a screeching halt.

And while I'm at it, I'll also say that absolutely nothing CCleaner is capable of will do anything at all to resolve this issue. Dafydd had it pretty well pegged right from the beginning. If a game runs reasonably well at one point, but the performance then suddenly degrades, especially factoring in a roughly 7 year old computer and you're looking at heat related issues almost for sure. Adding more RAM to a system that old also wouldn't be a bad idea to help it cope with more modern programs that tend to assume a higher base level than was common when the system was manufactured.

The reason you see these answers offered up a lot of times is because you sometimes run into a computer hypochondriac who will absolutely not be happy until they find SOMETHING wrong with their computer that can be fixed. So you tell them to run some useless task like defragmenting. It takes a couple of hours, so the person is both out of your hair and assumes that there really must have been something wrong if it takes that long to fix. The problem is some percentage of those people will then go running all over the place acting like they're some great computer sage handing down wisdom for the ages about this defragmenting program and there are plenty of people who simply don't know enough to realize the person telling them this is full of it and hasn't the foggiest what they're on about. The two posts that came after dafydd's are prime examples of this in action.