very SLOW response when using console...

May 24, 2010 at 13:27:36
Specs: Windows Server 2003 , Dual QC E5405 2.0Ghz/4GB
When I log on to my Active Directory Server running Windows 2003 Server via the console (not RDP), the system takes a very log time to show the desktop. Once the desktop is displayed (about 5 minutes after log in), the system is very sluggish and slow to respond. This is specific to when using the mouse to select either the [START] button/menu or Desktop Icons and responds at a snails pace. It's not the actual mouse that is slow to respond just the items icons/application short cuts I select with it. I can use [CTRL+ALT+DEL] to open task manager and that pops up immediate. I can then use Task Manager to run a [New Task] manually and those task/applications runs perfectly fine/fast and seems normal. It seems to be slow only when I’m using the actual Desktop or the [START] button menu (crazy/slow). The system is clean of Viruses and Malware etc. At one point this system was running the DFS and FRS services but those services have since been stop on this server since they were not really being used.

Any Ideas would be greatly appreciated.

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May 24, 2010 at 14:44:31
I have only ever seen this kind of problem on a system that is running out of free RAM. Check your Task Manager and see how much of your RAM is free.

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May 27, 2010 at 08:32:05
There is plenty of RAM available... almost 2GB free RAM. I am comparing the services running on a Backup AD server that is an identical box compared to the AD that isn’t working right. So go back and forth to see what is essential and what might be missing or not needed on the one having the problem but no real progress yet. I ran ‘dcdiag’ and nothing seems to stand out as being wrong.

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May 27, 2010 at 08:50:16
If it is not in the Server then it is probably in the Wire.

Have you tried some ping tests or looked at the amount of traffic following to and from the computer?

Also, you may want to compare Netstat reports between the two servers to see if there are any unnecessary ports open. Also check your Tracert to see how many hops the traffic is going through and where the bottle neck might be.

The problem with all of this is it would not explain why the terminal is slow. I have had a server like this but it was box that I dedicated to Exchange Server (which is a memory hog) and only had 2 GB of RAM on it which is why I thought of RAM.

There has got to be a service or program that you missed. I would look at your task manager and review which tasks and services are using the most CPU and Memory. You may want to try Microsoft's Process Explorer...

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Related Solutions

May 27, 2010 at 09:42:04
This appears to only be a local issue.

I would suggest the following:
run chkdsk /f on all drives
defrag all drives
make sure antispyware/malware is updated and you are clean
come up in safe mode to compare response time. if normal [not slow] that points to an app(s) hogging the system.

It would also be great if you provided the server specs like if the hard drive(s) are raided.

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May 27, 2010 at 12:07:12
The problem only exists if I try and use the desktop interface/start but etc… If I manually hit CTRL+ALT+DEL and use task manger to start a new task that session of the task runs exactly as expected. The network i/o to that server is fine no slow issues at all, it is only slow if I am at the server console and try to use the server via the desktop interface.

The server specs for the 2 servers are Identical:

Chassis: 3u Rack Enclosure
System Board: Intel S5000VSA w/2 GB NIC
Processors: (2) Intel Xeon QC E5405 2.0Ghz
RAID Cntrl: Adaptec 3805 8 SAS PORT
Hard Drives: (4) Seagate Cheetah 450GB
RAID Config: RAID 10
DVD: Slimline DVD R/W
OS: Windows 2003 (not SBS)

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May 27, 2010 at 12:18:47
On the performance tab is it set for apps or background processes?

If you bring up task manager what is taking the processing time?

In this servers tcp/ip properties what is it pointing to for dns?
Same ip as your internal dns server?

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May 27, 2010 at 12:47:02
Performance tab: Processors Scheduling: Background services and Memory Usage: Programs

CPU usage NEVER goes above 3% on the Performance Tab

The process with the highest usage of Memory is:

services.exe and it uses: 171,636K

Other processes use anywhere between 55,852 (sqlservr) to 33,252K (beserver.exe) and lesser misc other applications.

System Idle Process basically sits at 99%

The system is 100% clean of Virus/Malware for sure.

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May 27, 2010 at 13:13:45
In this servers tcp/ip properties what is it pointing to for dns?
Same ip as your internal dns server?

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May 28, 2010 at 08:19:03
Server 1: The server I'm speaking of that is running slow from the GUI console perspective has an IP address of:

Server 2: The other identical server has an IP address of:

DNS Configuration on the TCP/IP settings are as follows:

Server 1: Primary DNS
Alternate DNS

Server 2: Primary DNS
Alternate DNS

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May 28, 2010 at 08:40:53
That eliminates name resolution as a culprit.

Results of safe mode?

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May 28, 2010 at 08:46:46
Can't do Safe Mode until the weekend since the server is the AD server and holds Roaming User Profiles. But I will do SafeMode Saturday morning and post back.

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May 28, 2010 at 11:51:56
account you are logging into the server with, does it also use a roaming profile? If so then perhaps there is too much stuff/links on the desktop

if safe mode is faster then you need to look at msconfig and eliminate programs startups to determine which is causing the issue.

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May 28, 2010 at 12:25:19
I log in as 'administrator' in this case and no roaming profile is used for this user.

MSConfig [start-up] only has 2 items that load.



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May 28, 2010 at 14:31:03
OK Safe Mode boot... Since it's a holiday weekend the company closed early today so I stayed after and did some further testing since no users were logon.

Safe Mode Boot: All acted normal. There was no lag or desktop IU slowness etc. The server acted 100% normal as I would expect it would act all the time. Obviously certain functions would not work such as Active Directory Users and Groups etc. since that can't be run during safe mode. But I tested a lot of different things and all acted normal. I did a CHKDSK /F on all drives and all were ok, no errors.

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May 28, 2010 at 22:50:16
It has to be something that is not loaded in safe mode but is under the normal boot that is consuming the cpu time.

Process of elimination, one program at a time. Or compare the list of processes/apps in task manager when in safe mode and regular mode to narrow it down.

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May 29, 2010 at 08:34:17
Yeah I've kind of done the process of elimination before. But remember what I said above... the CPU is not being hit hard... maybe 3% CPU usage at the most I think I have seen it hit 4% before but never higher then that. Also the RAM used is not to bad either and about 60% is free of the total. This is why the makes no sense to me. About 5 months ago after having this problem for a while, I even did a repair install of the OS but nothing changed. The SQL that is running is only for Backup Exec... So I will start by stopping those services and see what happens.

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May 29, 2010 at 09:36:07
Do those services not load under safe mode?
What account are they running under?

What you describe in your first post is that of cpu utilization or disk utilization.

When sluggish do you see the hard drive light blinking or solid?

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May 29, 2010 at 13:13:14
I run under Administrator, I have also tried a secondary user that is in the Administrator Group. I even created a user that is a power user and part of domain users but still the same problem under any user it appears.

Active Directory Users and Groups and it said "can't be ran while in safe mode".

The hard drive lights to not act unusual, they blink here and there some times fast and some times longer durations but still blink and every solid on.

"CPU time".. I was mistaken of that meaning CPU Utilization.

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