Laptop runs slowly after applications load

Running Windows 7 Pro on an HP 4545S laptop.  It has 4 gigs of memory.
It boots to Windows 7 quickly.  After I start the applications (see attachment) the laptop runs slower  and slower.  
I suspect swapping is the problem but I am not a Windows expert.
I have attached snapshots from the Windows Resource tool which I hope will be useful.

The laptop is attached to a Small Business server 2008 domain.
I have run Malwarebytes several times to be sure there are no virus problems.
The Anti virus (TrendMicro Worry Free Advanced) shows no problems.
I have changed the performance system settings to Windows Classic.
In "Performance Settings" I have selected "best performance".

The laptop manual says the maximum memory is 8 gigs.
Before I spend money buying memory, I want to make sure the problem is swapping and not something else.

Question:  What steps would you take to determine memory is the problem or something else?
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JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
If you look at the bottom of your display (above download), you have (in round numbers) 2Gb free and are using 2Gb. The list of software looks normal.

Now if you load a virtual machine via Virtual Box, the guest machine will need memory and in this case 4Gb might not be enough.

When I use virtual machines, I have 8Gb installed.

Do a fresh start up, connect to the domain and asses the speed of the machine. Then add one or two applications and test again. Do this until you determine which application is slowing the machine down.

If you give us the chart again, show CPU. CPU use is what might tell us what is slowing down.

Do all of this without a virtual machine.

Also do a chart showing disk usage as this will tell us if disk is excessively busy.
Natty GregIn Theory (IT)Commented:
defrag the hard drive, sometimes  the files are just all over the place
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Also run Disk Cleanup to remove temporary files. Lots of temp files will slow down a computer and Word and IE both use temporary files, so use of these apps can slow things down. This is why I suggested a fresh startup and loading applications slowly one by one to see what is causing the issue.
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web_trackerComputer Service TechnicianCommented:
I would run diagnostics on the harddrive, often when a drive has problems reading sectors on the drive the computer will respond slowly. You can run various hardware tests by using a selfbooting operating system such as the Ultimate boot disc. If the hardware tests fine then you know the problem is windows related not hardware related.
donpickAuthor Commented:
Mr Hurst:
I run Ccleaner each and every week.  I assume you are familiar with this program?  It deletes temporary files, etc.

You wrote: >>If you give us the chart again, show CPU. CPU use is what might tell us what is slowing down<<
I am not a Windows expert.  Please tell me in detail what utility I should run, what switches (if any) should be included, and, if possible, please include a link to a website which might tell me more about the utility.    Thank you.

Web_tracker:  I am not a Windows expert.  Please tell me in detail what program to use and how to use it.  Or please give me a link which describes what to do.  Thank you.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
Run Task Manager (right click on Taskbar and select Task Manager). Select the Processes Tab and sort by CPU. Once you see large CPU usage, get that screenshot and post it. Thanks.
donpickAuthor Commented:
Mr Hurst:  Thank you for your help.  I will post the screenshot as soon as possible.
donpickAuthor Commented:
Mr. Hurst:
I have attached snapshots of the Task Manager.  I hope these are of use to you.
I believe the names of the attached files explain the contents.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
There is nothing that is using excessive CPU that I can see. There are applications that I do not recognize but they are not CPU intensive.

You said you cleaned out temporary files.

So then the only thing left is to follow up on Web_tracker's suggestion to run hard drive diagnostics.

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web_trackerComputer Service TechnicianCommented:
It is hard to read the total number of processes that are running and the percentage of the CPU is running as you have that information partially cut off on the bottom of the pictures you posted. I to see things that are running that I do not recognize.  You also should be clicking on the button show processes from all users. I would download a copy of ccleaner, this is a free multi-facit tool that does a number of things: Cleans temp files, cleans the registry, you can easily turn off which applications that do not need to be running in the background, you can also uninstall applications that you no longer need.  But the main reason for asking to run the program is so you can turn off apps that do not need to be running all the time. This is better than MSConfig, because you do not need to restart the computer for you to make the changes. You do not need to have some of the apps running all the time, as when you want to start the application you run it at that time, it does not need to be running all the time. CCleaner can be downloaded from You can just download the free version.
donpickAuthor Commented:
OK, I will run disk diagnostics.  I have Ccleaner installed and I run it every week.  

>>But the main reason for asking to run the program is so you can turn off apps that do not need to be running all the time. This is better than MSConfig, because you do not need to restart the computer for you to make the changes.<<
    This is useful, did not know about this.  

If I have further questions I will create a new question.
Thank you all for your help.
JohnBusiness Consultant (Owner)Commented:
@donpick  - Thank you and I was happy to help.
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