For questions concerning computer, or computer-related, performance. Please include metrics in your questions.

learn more… | top users | synonyms (3)

24
votes
6answers
73k views

Windows 8 hard disk usage 100%

This is a problem I've seen described in many places: Super User (here, here, here and so on) Microsoft support forums (here, here...) The Lenovo forums have some users complaining about this too (...
23
votes
5answers
19k views

Why is my /dev/random so slow when using dd?

I am trying to semi-securely erase a bunch of hard drives. The following is working at 20-50Mb/s dd if=/dev/zero of=/dev/sda But dd if=/dev/random of=/dev/sda seems not to work. Also when I ...
23
votes
6answers
5k views

Is it possible to format a hard-drive too often?

Every couple of months I find my computer becomes sluggish, so I format the hard drive then reinstall Windows to keep it running fast. I've been doing this for about a year without any adverse effects;...
23
votes
4answers
4k views

How to tame Linux responsiveness, memory, and paging

First question on overflow =)... +100 bounty. Couldn't think of something I really cared about until now: I'm really fed up with the state of Linux desktop responsiveness, e.g. http://brainstorm....
22
votes
3answers
9k views

Which have better performance Two 2GB RAM sticks or One 4GB RAM stick? [closed]

I am planning to buy a new PC. The mainboard has 4 memory slots, The PC has Windows 7 64-bit installed. Which approach is better regarding the performance buying: Two memory sticks of 2GB? One ...
21
votes
1answer
40k views

What happens if I use RAM of a faster speed than the CPU supports?

Looking at the Intel E3-1230v2 CPU, under Memory types it says "DDR3-1333/1600". My question is, in what way does the CPU limit the RAM speed? What would happen if I put in a DDR3-2133 RAM chip ...
20
votes
7answers
2k views

What to do with a ton of extra memory?

I have 8gigs of RAM in this machine. I never really use more than say 4gigs (includes my virtual machines I use for dev testing). What can I do with this extra space to best improve system ...
20
votes
7answers
2k views

Is defragging relevant to improving disk performance anymore?

Does it stil make much difference, now that we have much faster and larger HDDs? Generally I find if disk performance is getting too slow, it's probably because of too little free space, and the ...
20
votes
7answers
30k views

Are we supposed to manually delete the contents of /tmp?

I was under the impression that “old” files in /tmp will be regularly deleted. However, it seems to me that /tmp will just grow as long as it wants to, and nothing will be deleted. Some people say it’...
19
votes
8answers
45k views

Bitlocker Performance Impact on SSD

I've put a brand new SSD into my work computer and my IT department wants me to use BitLocker. I read one of the other threads on BitLocker performance on standard harddrives, but I was wondering - ...
19
votes
4answers
13k views

Does changing Windows XP theme to classic enhance performance?

A lot of my colleagues and friends who are still using Windows XP use the Windows Classic theme (i.e. the Win98-like theme, unlike the XP theme). Some of them just like it, but some others say that ...
19
votes
4answers
3k views

Why is a single thread spread across CPU's?

I'm just curious why the scheduler constantly moves an app between CPUs, rather than keeping it on one. It looks a bit silly to have 4 cores at 25% rather than one at 100%. Does it has to do with ...
19
votes
2answers
12k views

RamMap “Empty standby list” drastically speeds up PC. Is there a better way to do this?

Many people are educated on how Windows Memory manager caching work by reading Microsoft white papers, etc. However, there are relatively few documents that describe real-world performance issues (...
18
votes
5answers
24k views

Super slow opening my downloads folder

I have an exe file in my download folder that I half downloaded through utorrent (it's not piracy, a legit file from people who use bittorrent to distribute large files). I think I tried to open it ...
18
votes
3answers
6k views

Bad NTFS performance

Why is it that NTFS performance is so lousy compared to, for example, Linux/ext3? Most often I see this when checking out (large) source trees from Subversion. Checkout takes around 10-15 minutes on ...
18
votes
10answers
16k views

Does storage capacity affect hard drive performance?

I read somewhere that smaller (in terms of disk space) hard drives are faster than equivalent but bigger hard drives. How true is this? In other words, say I have two hard drives. Both are of the ...
18
votes
6answers
39k views

What regulates Intel SpeedStep CPU throttling? Can I get some control of this on Windows7?

I’m trying to get a big virtual disk file compressed (using WinRar) before I go home today, but my CPU frequency keeps merrily going up and down between the nominal 2.8 GHz and a measly 800 MHz! The ...
18
votes
4answers
1k views

Why is my Windows unbearably slow? [duplicate]

I use Windows since ever, sometimes Linux, sometimes OSX. Since Windows ME/2000 I have been having this major problem: I install a fresh copy of Windows, it boots fast as hell, everything goes ...
18
votes
6answers
4k views

How do I conduct a perfomance test of my internet connection?

Right now I'm in the process of possibly switching from a Cable provider to a DSL provider. I have both connections live, and before I cancel one or the other, I'm wanting to do some exhaustive ...
18
votes
4answers
12k views

Fast VNC from Windows to Mac?

I regularly need to connect from a Windows box to an OSX box over VNC. OSX has VNC built-in as part of its "Screen Sharing" tool, but for some reason, it's much faster to connect from OSX to OSX or ...
17
votes
7answers
976 views

Why is distributing random pieces of a file faster than a contiguous transfer?

Why is it said that BitTorrent is faster, partly, because it transfers random pieces of a file instead of transferring it from start to finish in a contiguous/linear fashion? EDIT: But why do they ...
17
votes
8answers
52k views

Why is VNC on Windows so slow?

In a test, I could stream a full HD movie across our network from my friend's computer, no problem. It's as fast as I could want. But VNC is painfully slow. We've tried Real VNC and Tight VNC, I've ...
17
votes
7answers
3k views

How to measure disk performance? [duplicate]

A friend has asked me to perform maintenance oh his computer. The described symptoms point to a performance issue with the hard drive. I want to objectively confirm this suspicion by measuring the ...
17
votes
2answers
765 views

Why upgrade to solid state hard drive on desktop computer

Why upgrade to a solid state hard drive on desktop computer if non-solid state hard drive speed = 6GB/s and solid state hard drive speed = 6GB/s Will I just be paying more to get less space? they ...
17
votes
4answers
21k views

How to control RAM / swap usage

Is there a way (application) to control RAM / swap usage policy at application level. I have some applications that I use all the time and I want them to stay in RAM all the time and there are also ...
17
votes
5answers
27k views

Windows is very slow with my new SSD

I have a laptop HP probook 4520s with Core i5 M480 @ 2.67Ghz, 4Gb RAM, 640 GB HDD Radeon HD 6370m 1GB video card. It would seem like a good stack for work, right? But My HDD has ...
16
votes
2answers
12k views

SSH is slow to make a connection [duplicate]

I just installed Ubuntu 11.10, and whenever I try to SSH into my servers it's very slow. Before it displays the password prompt, it can take between 40 seconds and 60 seconds. I use: ssh myuser@...
16
votes
1answer
9k views

Google Chrome is slow to localhost

For some reason Google Chrome is slow when I'm working against localhost. I had the same problem in Firefox 3.5 but I changed some IPv6 setting in about:config which fixed the issue. I think the same ...
16
votes
8answers
22k views

Why does GIMP start up so slow on my machine?

Is there any way to speed up GIMP's startup time on Windows Vista Home Premium 32-Bit 1.6 [Dual] Intel Processors? On XP [different computer], it loads in less than 3 seconds. On Vista, it takes 20 ...
16
votes
1answer
32k views

How to increase VLC RAM buffer for offline files?

I would like to configure VLC player to preload a significant portion (like a hundred megabytes or so) of a video file from the hard disk to RAM before playing it. Is this possible?
16
votes
4answers
40k views

What is the cause of a high CPU usage of 'system and compressed memory' in Windows 10?

There is an observation to be made for Windows 10 on my laptop running with 24G memory available, and 2.5G used. There is no 'memory pressure'. Other questions have looked at memory consumption (...
15
votes
6answers
21k views

How to increase performance of Remote Desktop

How can I increase performance of Remote Desktop on windows XP sp3? A better network connection is not an option, this is for at work. I have suggested a network upgrade to my boss and it is not in ...
15
votes
2answers
2k views

Does the Intel i7 offer real improvement over its predecessors? [closed]

As the questions title asks, do the new processors from Intel offer real, as in noticeable, improvement over the previous quad core ones? What does the i7 actually offer that is new or is it simply a ...
15
votes
5answers
1k views

Why do HDDs suffer from performance loss due to capacity decrease?

Today I was looking over my HDD datasheet(a Western Digital 500GB WD5000BPKT) and I noticed that for its entire family, the "Performance" row "Host to/from drive (sustained)" is nominally decreasing ...
15
votes
6answers
18k views

“Task Manager” addon for Firefox?

Are there any addons for Firefox that can replicate the performance monitoring of Task Manager in Windows - seeing memory and CPU used - but for all the tabs in the current Firefox session? I want to ...
15
votes
3answers
66k views

Should I install my operating system on my SSD or HDD?

I'm currently deciding whether to install my Operating System on my SSD (solid state drive) or HD (hard drive). Will I be having programs on the HDD and the OS on the SSD or vice verca? Which will ...
15
votes
5answers
18k views

What's wrong with disabling the Windows page file?

People say that you always need a page file, and that it will increase performance, but my Windows 7 is set to run without a page file. I simply don't understand why people say this - I have 6 GiB of ...
14
votes
14answers
47k views

What's the fastest way to transfer files between 2 computers? [closed]

Let's say that I have 80Gb of data to transfer from one computer to another. What's the fastest method to transfer that files? Network transfer? DVD Recording? Copying in a pen drive? Removing one ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

Would it improve the write performance to fill a reformatted drive with zeros?

I have a 2 TB drive which was filled to >99%. I’ve delete the partitions with fidsk and formatted them with mkfs.ext4. So as far as I know, the actual data which was on the drive does still ...
14
votes
3answers
1k views

Why would an incorrect password attempt take a lot longer to process than a correct one?

The most prominent place I've noticed this is when SSH-ing at work, but I feel like I've observed this behaviour elsewhere too. When I try to log into Linux servers from my Windows desktop at work, I'...
14
votes
4answers
3k views

Bash completion makes bash start slowly

Starting a bash on my ubuntu system takes about 2 seconds. If I remove loading /etc/bash_completition in .bashrc it starts without delay. Of course I don't want to give up completition and I don't ...
14
votes
2answers
35k views

Good OS X Hard Drive Benchmark

What software can provide some insight on the performance of the hard drive in my MacBook Pro? I would be interested in both sequential and random read and write performance. This is in the context ...
14
votes
3answers
3k views

Do SSD hybrid drives perform better than HDD + ReadyBoost flash?

Seagate has released a product called the Momentus XT Solid State Hybrid Drive. This looks exactly like what Windows ReadyBoost attempts to do with software at the OS level: Pairing the benefits of a ...
14
votes
6answers
19k views

Is there a way to transfer thousand of small files faster on Windows 7?

I noticed that if I transfer a few large files between two hard drives, it's pretty speedy, at around at least 30 MB per second, but if I transfer thousands of files less than 5 KB, it is ...
14
votes
3answers
5k views

Why does HDD activity slow the whole System down (on Windows 7)?

If I copy a large amount of data from on drive to another (physical) drive my whole system is running slow. I am using Windows 7 64bit version on an Intel Core 2 Duo 3 GHz. This is the situation: ...
14
votes
3answers
13k views

VMware Fusion performance degrading after few hours

I've been having an issue with VMware Fusion for some time now, where the VM (running Windows) runs fine initially, but will slow down to a grind after some time (best guess is a couple of hours). It'...
14
votes
3answers
4k views

How can I verify that my SSD is performing as it should?

I've got a brand new 256GB SSD (Crucial CT256M225) which should have stellar performance. However, on my (also brand new) Dell Studio 1557 with Windows 7 Professional 64 bit, it's only giving a ...
14
votes
3answers
2k views

What to put on a MacOS X SSD?

This question clearly doesn't have one answer, so here are few assumptions: I want to add an SSD to my Mac, let's say a MacBook [Pro], with the primary goal of speeding up my workflow. The hard disk ...
13
votes
5answers
25k views

On Mac OS X how can I monitor what is using my internet connection?

I've got a relatively limited broadband connection (I live miles from the nearest exchange) and from time to time net access (but nothing else) slows to a near crawl. I know from a bit of monitoring ...
13
votes
8answers
12k views

if we do not use any wallpaper on desktop will it increase performance of windows?

if we do not use any wallpaper on desktop will it increase performance of windows?