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I am having intel945 mother board and pentium D 3.20 Ghz processor , using xp professional

even then my system is very slow what might be the problem.

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What is your PC slow at doing, anything or specific activities such as, say, looking at Flash videos/apps or some such like? –  Bonus May 19 '10 at 13:02
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RAM does not make a PC faster. It simply allows your PC to do more things at once without hanging. –  Corey May 19 '10 at 16:12
    
More information will help you get better answers. You've tagged this question "Internet Explorer" -- is it browsing in particular that you find to be too slow? –  JRobert May 19 '10 at 19:30

7 Answers 7

I agree with everyone else here that the question is quite vague, but I'm not sure the hardware may be the way to go. What sort of maintenance has been run on the computer? Have you run Disk Cleanup (Start --> Programs --> Accessories --> System Tools --> Disk Cleanup)? Are antivirus, system updates, and firewall updates fully applied? If not, malware or spyware can be slowing you down, and MalwareBytes or a similar application can help (search for spyware cleanup here to get some great guides). Is there a lot of small files on your system? Contrary to popular belief, defragmenting the hard drive CAN (at least) marginally improve speed as more fragmentation requires more time to read and access files, or lots of small files spread accross the drive mean more time required to access them all. If these have been run, and the computer is still slow, have you done a search on google for improving windows xp performance? There's a lot of good guides available to get more speed out of the system.

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Windows gets cluttered up over time. If it's been a few years your most reliable bet is to backup your data, re-format the hard drive, and re-install Windows. Make sure you have your CD and license key!

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It could be an accumulation of dust in the system causing the processor to overheat and the CPU throttling kicking in to keep the temperature down.

Open up the system and if necessary clear and large accumulations of dust and crud that you can, especially from around the CPU.

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Probably crap software. A perfect example of this is some Brother printer stuff I put on my iMac. Recently I noticed that a process "NETServe" (accessing a lot of Brother files) was using 60-70% of my CPU.

Check your running processes, and worst case backup anything important and lay a clean install of Windows down. I know people that do this like clockwork simply because of the crap the gets built up.

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To achieve "fast", one must first define "slow".

Download a full system benchmark/assessment such as Sandra. Sandra is nice because it shows you the performance curves of common hardware. Run all the tests one at a time and compare the results to similar equipment.

If all your hardware checks out OK, then you have a software problem. You can take two paths here.

  1. Diagnose and repair. This may take a lot of time. Find some operation or benchmark that runs slower than published results on similar equipment. Make a change (I would start with toggling your Anti/Virus off) and try it again. Repeat until you identify the problem.

  2. Just reinstall Windows and applications. Back up your data first. This is "hard work" but is not open-ended like option 1.), you know when you'll be finished. Unless you have a pernicious driver or application that is the problem, this is most likely to fix a software problem.

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Before doing the benchmark, worth checking your CPU load whilst supposedly idle. –  Bonus May 19 '10 at 13:01
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+1 for indicating that "slow" needs to be defined before we can tell what "fast" is. Oh, and back up before doing anything! –  afrazier May 19 '10 at 14:22
    
@afrazier, backup first is always a good idea. –  kmarsh May 19 '10 at 14:26

As Dmatig said, it could be your hard drive as this is one of the first things to go.

If that doesn't stop it, it could simply be you have accumalated a lot of rubbish over the years (I am guessing you have had this machine for at least ~3 years).

I would recommend uninstalling everything you do not need then running a program such as Microsoft / Sysinternals Autoruns and delete all entries that you do not need and you should see your machine speed up.

If you are still having problems, consider reinstalling Windows - however that would be the extreme thing to do. If it doesn't help, you could have other hardware failure.

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Why the down vote? –  Xavierjazz May 19 '10 at 13:13
    
I didn't downvote, but my guess would be it's for telling the user to go about deleting things and making other changes without without first figuring out what's wrong. –  afrazier May 19 '10 at 14:20
    
I don't think a general cleanup is a bad idea, and changing things is one way I figure out what things have gone wrong. While not the most structured, focused answer I don't think this answer deserves to go negative. –  kmarsh May 19 '10 at 14:25
    
I could of written the answer better, but I am mostly happy with it - it is what I would do... if a computer comes to me with the user diagnostic of "slow", I would first go through add/remove programs and get rid of all the toolbars, junk and various other stuff, then look at autoruns and delete various things (usually Adobe, Apple, Java updaters/starters) and that generally speeds up the machine... If it is still slow, I would take a deeper look at hardware, but the above usually fixes it up. –  William Hilsum May 20 '10 at 0:37

This question is very vague it's hard to even begin to guess, but my initial reaction is your hard drive is flaking out. Try replacing it to see if that improves performance, or running some form of hard drive maintenance software (e.g. Spinrite).

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Or if your C:\ drive is almost full, or if you've got virus running rampant, or if it's been turned into a mailbot slave or....... –  BBlake May 19 '10 at 11:35
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Right, it's like diagnosing a sickness from somebody saying "I don't feel good" –  Dmatig May 19 '10 at 11:37
    
+1 for the drive answer and mostly for have "The Court of the Crimson King" as your icon! –  drewk May 19 '10 at 14:35

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