Hi, thank you for submitting your question to Answers.Google, I hope I
can provide the information you are seeking.
What you have is likely a multi-part problem. It may be malware, it
may be a hardware problem specific to XP, it may be both.
The good news is that there IS something wrong with XP which is
probably at least partially responsible for your problem. Even better
it is easy to fix this bug and I will describe it and how to fix it
But, first, you need to learn about something called system restore so
you can shut it off. Otherwise any problems you remove may just get
loaded right back into your system.
Look in Start, MyComputer, Properties, System Restore if you are
comfortable doing this, otherwise see this site for specific
directions on disabling and re-enabling system restore
Next, download and run a good anti-spyware tool. Don?t worry, some of
the best are free for personal use.
Start with ad-aware
Install it and run it, then delete anything which looks questionable.
If you don?t want to do that for some reason, go to
where you can run an online scan.
Run a good anti-virus program. If you don?t have one with current
signatures, try an online scan.
Panda has recently added anti-spyware scans so you might want to try
this first but I haven?t evaluated it personally. Their antivirus
tools are excellent.
Now, you need to defrag your hard drive. I know you did it once or
more, but do it again, or at least check to see if it might be useful.
You may also have an overloaded startup sequence, that is, too many
You will find 4,517 programs which might be loaded in your startup at
Clean out your system.
The way to start this process is to go to
Run MSConfig, a good basic troubleshooting tool. See the Microsoft
Knowledge Base Article 310560 at www.microsoft.com
See http://netsquirrel.com/msconfig/ for simple instructions on using msconfig.
You will find more information on troubleshooting XP problems at
There is a specific support page for XP Home
Now, if you have already done all of those things, you probably don?t
need to do them again right away, just proceed as follows:
In addition to the disk fragmentation problem and an overloaded
startup sequence, you have a unique OS bug that can really slow things
down on some XP systems.
For an IDE drive interface?the one on most computers these days?the
fastest way to load files into memory is direct memory access.
Unfortunately, XP will sooner or later boot with DMA disabled, and
when it does, every bit of data has to go through the CPU, which slows
Open Start, Settings, Control Panel, System Properties, Hardware,
Device Manager, IDE/ATAPI controllers. Go to the Primary or Secondary
IDE Channel, Advanced Settings. Select ?DMA if available.?
This can also be a problem on other operating systems but XP has a
specific bug which can cause the computer to change this setting
For more on this kind of problem you might check out
Thank you again for turning to Answers.Google for help. I have
experienced exactly the problem you describe and it was the XP bug
which had caused a new setting. By the way, there is also a way to add
a second hard drive in XP systems in a way that they can take over
some of the page memory functions and that will improve performance
but that won?t fix your particular problem