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System is very slow ONLY when using network connections

Posted on 2007-04-05
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Last Modified: 2013-11-17
This is an XP SP2 laptop, 1.86 Pentium M, 1GB RAM, that has recently begun working very slowly ONLY when it is either:

1) Connected to an office network using a CAT5 cable

---or---

2) Connected to an internet connect using it's wireless connection.

And by slow, I don't just mean internet apps (which are often slow and unresponsive), but also standard apps on the C: drive.  For example, when connected either of these two ways, it will take 25 seconds to bring up MS Word, and 30 seconds to bring up Adobe reader.  I can do it twice in a row (i.e. without rebooting) and it takes that long each time.  Then, I can unplug the CAT5 cable, and it will bring up these apps instantly, literally, just like it did in the past.  I can then plug back in the CAT5 cable, again without rebooting, and we're back to 25-30 seconds every time.

And things I try to do on this laptop while connected using the wired or wireless are often sluggish and non-responsive for long periods of time, like 15 - 60 seconds, such as opening documents, scrolling through e-mails, etc.

If I am in a hotel, connected to their network wirelessly, the way I can 'solve' this speed problem is by disabling the wireless card.

Note that there are no problems if I connect to the Internet via AOL dialup, or if I use my cell phone as a modem (connected to my laptop via USB).  In those cases I'm connected to the internet just fine, and all my apps work fast like normal.

For the past few weeks, it's been doing this only when I travel, and was fine on our office network.  But now it's having the same problems connected to our office network, and doing a restore back to when it was OK (last week) does not solve the problem.

Any ideas what I can try?  TIA
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Question by:sasllc
7 Comments
 
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haim96 earned 125 total points
ID: 18857667
could be that you got some kind of virus\malware\spyware
that try to send data in the moment you have any kind of connection?

did you scan you machine?
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by:Fred Marshall
Fred Marshall earned 125 total points
ID: 18858058
Right click in the task bar and select Task Manager.
In Task Manager, select the Processes tab.
Left click on the CPU column heading - then left click there one more time.
The highest use of immediate CPU cycles will be at the top of the list.
What process is using the most CPU?  (except System Idle Process).
Google on the name of that process or go to a site like www.processlibrary.com for information on that process.  
(Don't click on offers on any of the websites found - or beware.  Some of the sites you find this way with Google will try to sell you something or worse.)
Then decide if it's a virus or just a new "feature" in your internet security program!
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Author Comment

by:sasllc
ID: 18858475
I am doing scans as we speak.  Also, when you say that it might 'try to send data in the moment you have any kind of connection', note that I do NOT have this problem while connected to the internet via AOL dial up or with my cell phone.

I also forgot to mention that when this is happening I have often gone to task manager--and found that nothing at all was running consistently; various tasks would take 2% or 3% now and then, but that's about it.

I will report back soon.
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Expert Comment

by:haim96
ID: 18859312
are your sure that all network connection setting are good?
i guess you have some connection setting for every connection type you use,right?
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Assisted Solution

by:kadadi_v
kadadi_v earned 125 total points
ID: 18860697
for testing purpose disable the firewall ( xpsp2) or uninstall the norton internet security /zone alarm AV with firewall or Mcaffe AV  and then check configuration of workgroup or domain network seetings and also the DNS address configuration.




Regards,

V.K.
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Expert Comment

by:haim96
ID: 18860832
wow!!! GOT ZONE ALARM?!
this could be it! i used to use ZA but since last update it became pain in the neck!
apps took almost 1 minute to load  and the machine started to work fine after remove it.
could be the same effect by other AV software too...
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Assisted Solution

by:NetAdmin2436
NetAdmin2436 earned 125 total points
ID: 18864239
Sounds like a network setting to me (DNS). Is your cat5e connection set to automatically obtain IP addres and DNS server? Also, check for mapped drives and delete them if you have them.

Hope this helps
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