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Slow computer - what can I do?


Hey there, everyone.

This time, I was hoping you could help me with a longtime problem of mine. The computer from where I'm posting this message - my brother's - has been slow for quite some time by now. The issue, here, is that there seems to be no actual reason for it to be this slow... Although Firefox windows (and every other program, I guess) works at normal speed, when I try to play videos (either Youtube ones or actual DVDs) or Flash content, they are terribly slow, lagging, etc.

The computer specs are:
Pentium 4, 3 Ghz
Hard Drive: 150 GB (50 GB free, in two partitions)
OS: Windows XP, SP3

Right now, CPU is at around 14% and FP usage is at 350 MB. The only open program is Firefox, but Ad-Aware and Avast processes are started, for protection, and the computer is still slow when it comes to the aforementioned content. Here are some of the things I've tried to do in order to fix the problem:

1- Scandisk, followed by a disk defrag
2- Scan for virus/spyware using Avast, Kaspersky Online Scanner, Ad-aware and Spybot S&D
3- Reinstall flash, and Firefox itself
4- Using IE (the same problem happens)
5- Starting the computer in Safe Mode + Networking (problem still happens)
6- Reducing the number of programs that load at startup
7- Uninstalling everything this system doesn't need
8- Running CCleaner, to get rid of unneeded files and unrequired registery entries

Unfortunately, nothing fixed the problem. I know an obvious option would be formatting this disk, but I can't do it, due to several reasons. Any more ideas on what I could be missing, that could fix this problem?

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Try turning off Ad-Aware or avast - running both could be causing a conflict. Also, try turning off all resident protection while disconnected from the internet and see if you can watch a DVD. Even though it looks like your system should be fast enough, it could be your graphics card is weak or failing. You might have more luck at a general computer forum or video forum since this one is geared more for Lavasoft products.

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