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Looking for computer upgrade suggestions

by blacktalon.357 / August 28, 2009 10:46 AM PDT

Hey everyone,

I've got an older computer (bought it in 2005) that I like to play World of Warcraft on but I get a very sluggish frame rate (around 5-8 FPS) in large scale raids or whenever there are 25+ NPCs or players on the screen. I'm trying to figure out what components I should upgrade to improve my FPS performance but I'm not exactly sure where to begin.

I've got an AMD Athlon 64 3500+ Venice 2.2GHz 512KB L2 Cache Socket 939 Single-Core Processor, an ASUS A8N-SLI Deluxe 939 NVIDIA nforce4 SLI ATX motherboard, 2GB (4x512MB) of Corsair XMS 184-Pin DDR SDRAM DDR 400 (PC 3200) Dual Channel Kit Desktop Memory Model TWINX1024-3200C2PT, an MSI NVIDIA 9600GT 512MB graphics card, a 200GB 7200RPM Seagate Barracuda SATA hard drive, an AuzenTech XPlosion 7.1 7.1 Channels 24-bit 96KHz PCI Interface Sound Card, a LITEON Black DVD burner 2MB Cache ATAPI/E-IDE and an Antec 550W power supply. I use Windows XP Pro service pack 2 with cable internet and up-to-date drivers.

My best guess as to what I should upgrade first would be my motherboard and processor, or maybe even my power supply if I decide to get a 2nd graphics card for an SLI setup.

Any thoughts or suggestions as to what route I should go would be extremely helpful.

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I would think
by Jimmy Greystone / August 28, 2009 11:37 AM PDT

I would think that system would be plenty capable of acceptable performance. Of course important details were left out about the video card. Namely the type of RAM it has onboard, and the memory bus size. If it's 512MB of GDDR memory with a 64-bit memory bus, then a new video card would likely do wonders.

Also, do you have 2GB of RAM in a dual channel setup where you basically only have 1GB of actual usable memory, or do you have 2GB of RAM in a single channel config? If it's the former, then more RAM would likely help a lot.

And on an unrelated note as far as game performance goes, you really should install SP3. Which does help prevent malware from exploiting security holes patched in SP3. And malware could also be affecting your performance.

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video card specs
by blacktalon.357 / August 28, 2009 4:06 PM PDT
In reply to: I would think

Looks like I forgot to add this section, but my graphics card is an MSI NVIDIA GeForce 9600GT 512MB 256-bit GDDR3 PCI Express 2.0 x16 HDCP Ready & SLI Supported.

As far as the RAM is concerned, I have 4 sticks of 512MB (~2GB) that I simply inserted into the 4 RAM slots on my motherboard. My bios shows that I have 2048MB of RAM installed, but I'm not sure whether its setup for dual or single channel (I'll check my bios again after I finishing writing this post).

I'll look into getting SP3 for WinXP.

Thank you for your assistance, its very much appreciated! Happy

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Don't upgrade that hardware.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 28, 2009 11:08 PM PDT

It looks nice enough.

One time offer to you! -> Post your HIJACKTHIS LOG (see google) for me to see if you have some overlapping protection software or other bad thing.
Bob

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HIJACKTHIS log file
by blacktalon.357 / August 29, 2009 3:06 PM PDT

Logfile of Trend Micro HijackThis v2.0.2
Scan saved at 1:03:26 AM, on 8/30/2009
Platform: Windows XP SP2 (WinNT 5.01.2600)
MSIE: Internet Explorer v6.00 SP2 (6.00.2900.2180)
Boot mode: Normal

Running processes:
C:\WINDOWS\System32\smss.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\winlogon.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\services.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\lsass.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\svchost.exe
C:\WINDOWS\System32\svchost.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\spoolsv.exe
C:\Program Files\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support\bin\AppleMobileDeviceService.exe
C:\Program Files\Grisoft\AVG Anti-Spyware 7.5\guard.exe
C:\Program Files\Bonjour\mDNSResponder.exe
C:\Program Files\Network Associates\Common Framework\FrameworkService.exe
C:\Program Files\Network Associates\VirusScan\mcshield.exe
C:\Program Files\Network Associates\VirusScan\vstskmgr.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\nvsvc32.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\PnkBstrA.exe
C:\WINDOWS\System32\svchost.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\WgaTray.exe
C:\WINDOWS\Explorer.EXE
C:\WINDOWS\Logi_MwX.Exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\RunDll32.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\WinSys.exe
C:\Program Files\Common Files\Real\Update_OB\realsched.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\RUNDLL32.EXE
C:\Program Files\QuickTime\QTTask.exe
C:\Program Files\iTunes\iTunesHelper.exe
C:\Program Files\AIM\aim.exe
C:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe
C:\Program Files\Curse\CurseClient.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\rundll32.exe
C:\Program Files\iPod\bin\iPodService.exe
C:\Program Files\Ventrilo\Ventrilo.exe
C:\Program Files\Mozilla Firefox\firefox.exe
C:\Program Files\Trend Micro\HijackThis\HijackThis.exe
C:\WINDOWS\system32\wuauclt.exe

R1 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Internet Settings,ProxyOverride = *.local
O2 - BHO: Adobe PDF Reader Link Helper - {06849E9F-C8D7-4D59-B87D-784B7D6BE0B3} - C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 7.0\ActiveX\AcroIEHelper.dll
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [zBrowser Launcher] C:\Program Files\Logitech\iTouch\iTouch.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [Logitech Utility] Logi_MwX.Exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [NvCplDaemon] RUNDLL32.EXE C:\WINDOWS\system32\NvCpl.dll,NvStartup
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [CmPCIaudio] RunDll32 CMICNFG3.CPL,CMICtrlWnd
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [WinSys] C:\WINDOWS\system32\WinSys.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [nwiz] nwiz.exe /install
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [TkBellExe] "C:\Program Files\Common Files\Real\Update_OB\realsched.exe" -osboot
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [AppleSyncNotifier] C:\Program Files\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support\bin\AppleSyncNotifier.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [WinSys2] C:\WINDOWS\system32\winsys2.exe
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [NvMediaCenter] RUNDLL32.EXE C:\WINDOWS\system32\NvMcTray.dll,NvTaskbarInit
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [QuickTime Task] "C:\Program Files\QuickTime\QTTask.exe" -atboottime
O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [iTunesHelper] "C:\Program Files\iTunes\iTunesHelper.exe"
O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [AIM] C:\Program Files\AIM\aim.exe -cnetwait.odl
O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [MSMSGS] "C:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe" /background
O4 - HKCU\..\Run: [CurseClient] C:\Program Files\Curse\CurseClient.exe -silent
O4 - Global Startup: Adobe Reader Speed Launch.lnk = C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 7.0\Reader\reader_sl.exe
O8 - Extra context menu item: E&xport to Microsoft Excel - res://C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\OFFICE11\EXCEL.EXE/3000
O9 - Extra button: Research - {92780B25-18CC-41C8-B9BE-3C9C571A8263} - C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\OFFICE11\REFIEBAR.DLL
O9 - Extra button: AIM - {AC9E2541-2814-11d5-BC6D-00B0D0A1DE45} - C:\Program Files\AIM\aim.exe
O9 - Extra button: Messenger - {FB5F1910-F110-11d2-BB9E-00C04F795683} - C:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe
O9 - Extra 'Tools' menuitem: Windows Messenger - {FB5F1910-F110-11d2-BB9E-00C04F795683} - C:\Program Files\Messenger\msmsgs.exe
O16 - DPF: {6414512B-B978-451D-A0D8-FCFDF33E833C} (WUWebControl Class) - http://update.microsoft.com/windowsupdate/v6/V5Controls/en/x86/client/wuweb_site.cab?1251529572000
O16 - DPF: {6E32070A-766D-4EE6-879C-DC1FA91D2FC3} (MUWebControl Class) - http://update.microsoft.com/microsoftupdate/v6/V5Controls/en/x86/client/muweb_site.cab?1152809019546
O23 - Service: Adobe LM Service - Adobe Systems - C:\Program Files\Common Files\Adobe Systems Shared\Service\Adobelmsvc.exe
O23 - Service: Apple Mobile Device - Apple Inc. - C:\Program Files\Common Files\Apple\Mobile Device Support\bin\AppleMobileDeviceService.exe
O23 - Service: AVG Anti-Spyware Guard - GRISOFT s.r.o. - C:\Program Files\Grisoft\AVG Anti-Spyware 7.5\guard.exe
O23 - Service: Bonjour Service - Apple Inc. - C:\Program Files\Bonjour\mDNSResponder.exe
O23 - Service: InstallDriver Table Manager (IDriverT) - Macrovision Corporation - C:\Program Files\Common Files\InstallShield\Driver\1050\Intel 32\IDriverT.exe
O23 - Service: iPod Service - Apple Inc. - C:\Program Files\iPod\bin\iPodService.exe
O23 - Service: McAfee Framework Service (McAfeeFramework) - Network Associates, Inc. - C:\Program Files\Network Associates\Common Framework\FrameworkService.exe
O23 - Service: Network Associates McShield (McShield) - Network Associates, Inc. - C:\Program Files\Network Associates\VirusScan\mcshield.exe
O23 - Service: Network Associates Task Manager (McTaskManager) - Network Associates, Inc. - C:\Program Files\Network Associates\VirusScan\vstskmgr.exe
O23 - Service: NVIDIA Display Driver Service (NVSvc) - NVIDIA Corporation - C:\WINDOWS\system32\nvsvc32.exe
O23 - Service: Pml Driver HPZ12 - HP - C:\WINDOWS\system32\HPZipm12.exe
O23 - Service: PnkBstrA - Unknown owner - C:\WINDOWS\system32\PnkBstrA.exe
O23 - Service: PnkBstrB - Unknown owner - C:\WINDOWS\system32\PnkBstrB.exe

--
End of file - 5581 bytes

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I see an old AVG/Grisoft product and Mcafee.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / August 29, 2009 9:38 PM PDT
In reply to: HIJACKTHIS log file

I'd uninstall that AVG/Grisoft as we've seen Mcafee not like that.

I also see 3 IM programs and Ventrilo. Which can you eject for now?
Hope this helps,
Bob

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New CPU
by MrKassner / September 1, 2009 9:16 AM PDT

All I can say is get a new CPU, doesn't have to be fancy and new top of the line stuff, just upgrade to a dual-core or even a quad-core if your motherboard supports it and you want to spend the extra. You will be amazed at how fast your computer will be with more then one core, it's literally like having the power of two computers.

Note: After looking into your motherboard you will need to upgrade your it too to upgrade your CPU, so you'd be looking at a total upgrade cost from $100 to $200.

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