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Myself, along with several others in our office, have a standard company-issued laptop. Lenovo Thinkpad T510s with 4GB RAM, i7 M620 CPU and NVIDIA NVS 3100M graphics card. They are running Windows 7 Ultimate x64. Trend Micro 'OfficeScan' is installed - much to everyone's dismay.

Some six months after getting the laptops we all started to notice the following: When the laptop first boots up - it runs as fast as one might expect. After leaving it running for several days it becomes increasingly slow - to the point where opening a new program or browser tab can cause the machine to become completely unresponsive for several mintues at a time. I have attempted to run Xperf to work out what was using CPU/Disk during this time, but my skills in this area are a little lacking and nothing obvious jumped out at me.

One of my colleagues noticed the problem is exacerbated if you leave a browser running overnight, particularly with an auto-refreshing page open.

If we do close all our programs overnight, the problem still exhibits, but takes longer to show up. It might take several days of regular use before we see the slowdown to the same extent as one night of leaving a browser open.

Ultimately, I start seeing messages that Windows has 'adjusted my display preferences' to improve performance. It will turn off Aero by itself. Leaving Aero off does not seem to resolve the issue. Occasionally I see that the NVIDIA driver has crashed.

This leads me to suspect a display driver issue - but reinstalling the Intel driver and upgrading the nVidia driver has had no effect.

Help diagnosing the root cause of the issue would be appreciated. I suspect the answer will be 'xperf', but some assisstance getting a meaningful trace given the symptoms would be helpful.



Latest information: I left Firefox open an an auto-refreshing for two days and then attempted to analyze this morning with perfmon. First I closed all open applications and tray task utilities. Memory utilization at this point was 59% as reported by the task manager.

I then ran perfmon, opened Chrome, clear the cache (important! Performance is dramatically worse with a clean cache), and browse to an image heavy page with flash adds. Laptop seizes up for 3-5 minutes. Results as follows:

Overview Hot files enter image description here

Nothing in these results seems to me to account for the seizure the laptop had while trying to load the page.

Any other ideas? In the mean time, I shall look further into whether the disk queue length is relevant

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You probably want to give System Monitor by Rusinovich a shot. It collects a lot of data so heading to the documentation site will definitively help. To get an idea what it can do heat to this video. Also check out How to use Process Monitor and Do you use Process Monitor? – Darius Mar 3 '13 at 21:15

Sounds like something is eating memory until there's (almost) none left.

Couple/few ways to start to diagnose:

  • Perfmon - see here and here

  • Boot them in Safe Mode and leave them. If they don't exhibit the same problem then it's a driver, service or application issue.

  • Re-install Windows, update it, and install nothing else. Does it sill exhibit the problem? If not then it's a software issue, not the HW or OS.

If I was to take a wild guess, I'd say you're all running SQL server, and it's still set to the default "Eat all available memory" settings it likes to use. :)

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What is the Eat all available memory setting ? – ilansch Feb 21 '13 at 21:50
It's the default setting in SQL server to use all (until 5% is left) memory on the machine. It's also a very good assumption on techie007's part. – Not Kyle stop stalking me Feb 21 '13 at 21:51
@ilansch Check in SQL Mgmt Studio--> Right-click Database--> Properties--> Memory--> Maximum Server Memory. – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Feb 21 '13 at 21:53
how can i view my current sql setting and fine this memory consumption flag ? i am interested in knowing.. thanks – ilansch Feb 21 '13 at 21:53
See my last comment. :) Just keep in mind, SQL will use about 256MB above the number you set. – Ƭᴇcʜιᴇ007 Feb 21 '13 at 21:55

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