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My main computer these days is a Laptop with an SSD.

Besides that, I have a desktop gaming rig. It is from last year, but it still runs recent titles really well. Crysis 2, Witcher 2, Diablo 3, not a problem.

However, after startup it is really slow. Like, Firefox will take half a minute from invocation to window. Steam will take minutes until it is up and responsive. Even the task manager takes, like, dozens of seconds to show up.

Later on, Firefox takes less than five seconds to start and everything is snappy, but the system will take at least fifteen minutes until it gets realistically usable. Luckily, it can be used to start games beforehand, so this is not usually a big problem.

The hard drive is about half full and not fragmented. However, this really seems uncomfortably slow to me, but then my day-to-day computer has an SSD and my expectations might be off. I am really not sure any more.

So, is there something wrong with my system or is this really expected behavior?

Edit: I am running an i5 760 @ 2.8 GHz with 4 Gb of memory on Windows 7 x64 with a Radeon HD 6800.

Edit 2: It seems the "slow" time at the beginning is caused by MsMpEng checking all the executables of all the games I have installed. Thus, this will have built up slowly as I installed more and more games. But why is MsMpEng doing that on every startup?

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How much RAM does the machine have? What CPU? Was it always this slow? Or did it gradually get slower? Or was it suddenly slow one day? – David Schwartz May 26 '12 at 22:05
@DavidSchwartz I updated the question with my specs. I don't know if the system was always that bad or if I just got used to a faster system somewhere along the way. – bastibe May 27 '12 at 12:53
up vote 2 down vote accepted

On Windows 7 there's a great utility called "Resource Monitor", it will show what apps are using the disk/cpu/network/memory (sort by the different columns to zero in on a particular resource usage).

Fire it up and watch what's running. Also, have a look in your Event Viewer to see if there are any services having a problem during start-up.

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It seems at first, the Radeon driver is using a lot of processing power, then MsMpEng is checking all steam executables. This seems to be what I percieve as the slowdown. But why is it doing that? – bastibe May 27 '12 at 12:50
I'd check out the Radeon forums for that (along with the normal boring advice of making sure you're running the latest drivers). Also, if you type 'MsMpEng Steam' into Google it looks like there's a few people with that issue. – snowdude May 28 '12 at 10:20

Use ccleaner to clean up your PC

Then defrangment the C drive (windows partition)

Last thing, click start, type msconfig and press enter.

In the start up tab, disable all the item and enable which you really need.

Restart your computer abd check if some thing is missing while start up. Repeat the msconfig step.

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Easier said then done. Even advanced users cannot easily figure out what is actually needed and what can be disabled, especially with brand-name systems that come with everything preloaded (e.g., which are drivers and supporting apps for hardware, and which are just extraneous apps that are not necessary). You would have to do a whole lot of research to check each item. – Synetech May 26 '12 at 23:51
You missed the Services tab. Despite it's not recommended to disable services if you're not knowing what you're doing, it is necessary to check the services if you want to eliminate all boot time delayers. The Steam service for instance is known for causing problems during boot (slow, black screen - as described in my answer). – wullxz May 27 '12 at 4:35

I have the same issues like you. Last year I had some strange behaviour where my Screen turned black for half a minute or so after logging in. I think, the problem might be Steam on my computer (it was last year - I still have to check if it is the problem again) and it could also be yours.

But if you want to clarify that, I suggest you to run Soluto on your computer.
Soluto monitors all starting programs on boot and logs, how many seconds they delay your boot time. With Soluto, you should be able to resolve which app is slowing down your machine on boot.

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You can also try Little Registry Cleaner which also allows you to remove unneeded startup entries. I would also recommend doing a disk defrag.

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- says the CEO and founder of Little Apps which made Little Registry Cleaner... Would +1 for effort, but naaah. xD – Cipi May 29 '12 at 13:03

I use PC Magazine's "What's Going On" app to monitor my system. Whenever something is taking too long to respond, I open WGO to see what the status is. Sometimes, it's my AV tool doing an unexpected update, sometimes it's a runaway app is using way too many resources.

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Sometimes my PC became so slow – then I checked the processes in Task Manager and I saw so many processes running, even though I did not execute them.

If it happens to you too, the easiest way is to update your antivirus. I use Microsoft Security Essentials to scan my PC. That solved the problem.

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