Solved 1.5 year old laptop not working well

March 3, 2014 at 21:04:37
Specs: Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit, AMD A6-3420m 4gb ddr3
I bought this used and did a fresh install of win 7 home premium 64 bit. (not pirated) I installed the drivers from the manufacturers website and installed all recommended windows updates. I'm using bit defender. Malware bytes reports no issues. Every 30 seconds or so the laptop stutters making it hard to type, surf the web, or play games. videos will continue to play sound when the happens, but the image freezes. the cursor still moves, but I cant click on anything. it's driving me crazy.

"there was this big bang once, now we're learnin' to use our thumbs"

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March 4, 2014 at 03:42:12
✔ Best Answer
Start by testing the hard drive, then the RAM.

You can't test either in Windows though, you need to test from a bootable CD which you have to make from the downloadable CD-image file.

hard drive test. download the CD Image for Hitachi Drive Fitness Test for DOS from here:

Install IMGBurn and use it to create CD from the CD Image file:

Now boot your computer from that CD and the testing program will open.

RAM test. Download CD Image for Memtest86 from here:

Again, use IMGBurn to create a CD from the downloaded file.
Boot your computer from the CD and memtest86 will run automatically.
Any RAM errors will usually appear on screen within first four passes.
To stop memtest, press the <Esc> key.

If laptop has more than one RAM module installed, remove one and test each on it's own so you know which one, if any, is faulty.

message edited by phil22

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March 4, 2014 at 06:03:02
A possibly faster check on RAM is to simply reduce to a single stick (if two or more installed); then see if things improve.. If they do with one or other stick in place and not the "other" then you know which stick is likely faulty...

Also sometimes just removing the RAM sticks and cleaning the edge connectors - with a soft pencil style eraser - and then re-inserting, then removing and re-inserting a second time - clears suspected RAM problems. Often seems to clean up oxidised contacts. Useful tip from Derek a while back.

Another option is to borrow, beg, "st..." an known good stick and try that in place of current RAM?

Memtest apps take a wee while; and I have known such utilities test RAM as OK - but the RAM wasn't.; as was determined/confirmed later by replacing that RAM.

If testing by substitution etc. doesn't point to RAM - no harm to run the utility anyway... If only for further re-assurance?

Incidentally very few people seem to advise to run memtests on each stick separately; which when one thinks about it, it's a good method (from phil22...).

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March 4, 2014 at 21:31:16
I generally recommend testing memory first before hard drive since a bad memory stick can give you false hard drive errors.
I generally recommend testing memory complete first and testing individual sticks if you get a bad test or it is unable to complete the test. This way you are confirming the system can run with the good stick and that the other stick is bad.

You have to be a little bit crazy to keep you from going insane.

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