My PC behavior is erratic.

August 21, 2010 at 20:32:41
Specs: Windows XP
Because PC was at times slowing to a crawl a complete reinstall of WIN XP was completed in Jan 2010. This appeared to be successful. However intermittent hesitations and unresponsive programs events continued and are worse now (August 2010).
When problem exists every command can take 1 minute or more to execute. Some or all windows may go to blank white, or whole screen to black for some time. Program may show as "Not responding" for a while and then return. If left for some time PC response may or may not return to normal. I have had the screen go black and stop. Two attempts to reboot were required to reboot.
All attempts to isolate the problem have failed. I have tested the HDD (Health is %98%, Performance is 100%).
Replugging RAM and HDD data cables appeared to improve matters the first time this was done, but did not change results on subsequent repeats. The Events Viewer logs sometimes show 2 System errors: (9 and 51), "The device, \Device\Ide\IdePort0, did not respond within the timeout period", and "An error was detected on device \Device\Harddisk0\D during a paging operation."
I run AVG9 AV(free), and clean registry frequently. I do not suspect software.
I suspect a motherboard fault. How can I confirm that?
PC is AMD 2400, 2,4GHz, 480MB RAM, HDD 40GB (3.9GB spare on C:, 21GB on D:)

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August 21, 2010 at 21:19:54
The system as described appears to have 512mb ram with 32mb of that shared with onboard graphics card. A relatively small harddrive with a smaller "C" partition.

The reasons for slowdowns can be both software & hardware related and in your troubleshooting description you have not indicated whether or not you regularly conduct cleanup maintenance.
When was the last time you defragged the drive? I would also suggest you download CCLEANER SLIM and use it to free up additional drive space. Windows accumulates an enormous amount of useless files, Temp files etc that can slow things down considerably.
What diagnostic tool did you use to anylize the harddrive performance?

Goin' Fishin' (Some day)

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August 22, 2010 at 03:34:37
Increase your Ram from 1/2 a gig to a minimum 2 gig of ram...
Turn off your Microsoft updates and run the CCleaner.

Your Computer is in laymens terms; is suffering from a short term memory issue... when its doing the math it has to some time stop and start again because it can not remember all the math its being asked to do ... (looses count half way through a problem and needs to start again)

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August 22, 2010 at 03:43:11
(Short Term Memory Thangy) That is what the paging issue is making reference too....
probably best to uninstall some of the Microsoft updates too.
This can easily be done by going to control panel.. then and ad remove programs... then when that window appears click the box up the top that says include updates....

Do this after you have increased the amount of ram... because other wise you will be there for a long time uninstalling them.

Then download a copy of Zone Alarm to protect your PC while on the net...

That will fix your frustrations..

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August 23, 2010 at 20:19:15
Thanks for the responses. I can advise in reply to the questions raised:
Cleanup maintenance is carried out regularly with Registry FirstAid and Ashampoo WinOptimiser6. Last defrag was 2 weeks ago. Pagefile is defragged every reboot.
The HDD performance data was with Ashampoo HDD Control. (Trial program now removed). Since I use XP win firewall and a modem/router I see no need for Zone Alarm as well.
Many services are either disabled or set to manual. The Startup list in configsys comprises 6 items only.
This PC is intended as a backup and for family member to learn on so does not need a lot of HDD capacity, nor memory. I will however trial increasing RAM to 1GB.
Meantime after some slowness set in about 30min after wakeup today, all hesitations an now slowups have been acceptable, considering AVG slows opening of all files. As no changes were made to the machine I still do not know why it sometimes grinds almost to a stop.

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August 24, 2010 at 20:34:02
Installed 2 x 512MB RAM and PC seems to be behaving as it should. Have yet to test shutdown as previously PC would not complete shutdown sequence.

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