The system performance is slow after you install Windows XP Service Pack 2 or upgrade to Windows XP with Service Pack 2

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Article ID: 898583
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Symptoms

After you install Microsoft Windows XP Service Pack 2 (SP2) or upgrade to Windows XP with SP2, you experience slow computer performance. For example, you experience the following symptoms:
  • If you browse the Internet, the performance is slow.
  • If you try to download newsgroup e-mail messages, some or all of the messages are not downloaded.
  • There is excessive hard disk activity.
  • Overall system performance is very slow.

Cause

This issue occurs if one of the following conditions is true:
  • You have spyware or malware running on the computer.
  • You have viruses that are running on the computer.
  • You do not have sufficient free space on the hard disk.
  • You do not have sufficient random access memory (RAM) installed on the computer.
  • You have corrupted or outdated drivers.
  • You have too many files in the Recycle Bin or temporary folders.

Resolution

To resolve this issue, use one or more of the following methods.

Run a current anti-spyware program on the computer

For more information about how to run a current anti-spyware program on the computer, view the following spyware and malware removal resources.

HijackThis and CWShredder

http://www.spywareinfo.com

WinPatrol

http://www.winpatrol.com

Ad-Aware

http://www.lavasoft.com

Spybot-Search and Destroy

http://www.safer-networking.org/en/index.html

Pest Patrol

http://pestpatrol.com
Microsoft provides third-party contact information to help you find technical support. This contact information may change without notice. Microsoft does not guarantee the accuracy of this third-party contact information.

Run a current virus scanning program on the computer

Remove unused programs, increase the size of the hard disk, or remove programs from the hard disk so that you can install the programs on another hard disk

Windows can run very slow if you are running out of hard disk space. Depending on the types of programs that you run and the amount of programs that you are running, more memory may be required for the computer to remain stable and efficient. The computer becomes unstable if the amount of available hard disk space is low.

Upgrade the RAM

Windows can run very slow if you are running out of available RAM. Many newer operating systems and programs use more RAM when they are running. You may also experience slow system performance if you run several programs at the same time.

Examine Device Manager for old drivers and update them

Drivers can become outdated and possibly damaged to the point where they slow the system performance. To examine Device Manager for old drivers, follow these steps:
  1. Click Start, click Run, type the sysdm.cpl in the Open box, and then click OK.
  2. Click the Hardware tab, and then click Device Manager.
  3. Right-click the device, and then click Properties.
  4. Click the Driver tab.
  5. Compare the driver version on the Driver tab with the version information about the latest version of the driver that is released on the manufacturer's Web site.
To resolve the problems that are caused by corrupted or outdated drivers, install the latest drivers:
  1. Click Start, click Run, type the sysdm.cpl in the Open box, and then click OK.
  2. Click the Hardware tab, and then click Device Manager.
  3. Right-click the device, and then click Properties.
  4. Click the Driver tab, and then click Update Driver.
  5. Follow the instructions on the screen to complete the driver update.

Run the Disk Cleanup tool

To start the Disk Cleanup tool, click Start, click run, type cleanmgr.exe in the Open box, and then click OK.

More information

For more information about related topics, click the following article numbers to view the articles in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
310419 Computer speed and performance may decrease
838884 Slow system performance or your computer stops responding when you use Windows Management Instrumentation in Windows XP
832762 Slow system performance or your computer stops responding because of a memory leak in paged pool memory in Windows 2000 SP4
819634 You may experience performance issues after you install the 811493 (MS03-013) security update
The third-party products that this article discusses are manufactured by companies that are independent of Microsoft. Microsoft makes no warranty, implied or otherwise, regarding the performance or reliability of these products.

For help with system performance issues in Windows Vista, visit the following Microsoft web page:
Problems with overall system speed and system performance

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Article ID: 898583 - Last Review: March 6, 2013 - Revision: 4.0
Keywords: 
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