• This site uses cookies. By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. Learn more.

Poor hardrive performance ?

Think my hardrive(s) might be causing a bottle neck:

MSI KT4 Ultra
Athlon XP 2000+
256Mb PC2700
30Gb Maxtor Fireball3 Primary MAster
40Gb Maxtor D540 Primary Slave
DVD Sec Master
CDRW Sec Slave

Windows frequently grinds to a halt. Using Task Manager I know that I have memory free and only 11% processor usage

Any suggestions?


Have you switched on "Ultra DMA"In Device Manager /IDE Controller/Primary IDE Channel ?
all devices set to highest levels in windowes and bios.

was thinking:

1. the drives are rubbish
2. best not to have both hdds on the same channel

Originally posted by box2k2
all devices set to highest levels in windowes and bios.

was thinking:

1. the drives are rubbish
2. best not to have both hdds on the same channel

Unless a drive is going bad I wouldn't say they are rubbish.

You could try to seperate them on their own IDE channels if you can, but I have a similar setup and performance is fine.

What happens if you remove the slave so just the primary OS drive is connected? You could also try cable select option, but it really shouldn't matter.

Do you have the drives set up to power down after X minutes? If so, the added time to re-spin back up may cause the system to "freeze" for a few seconds. You can change this by viewing desktop properties -> Screensaver tab -> click the Power button. That's how it is on a Win2000 box (I'm at work) but it should be very similar on XP.
Haven't yet tried disconnected the second hdd. Was planning but just not gotten round to it.

Just now I was downloading 3dmark03, playing Mp3 in WMP9 and installing Windows Media encoder7.1 and the machine slows to a crawl and won;t accept my input.

Surely this should not be happening on a rig of this spec?

The only thing I have set in the power options is the monitor, so I don't think spin up times are the trouble

Might NAV2003 and Norton Firewall be contributing?


hardware monkey
Originally posted by box2k2
Might NAV2003 and Norton Firewall be contributing?
for sure. you need more memory. especally with programs like that running in the background. look in task manager and keep an eye on your "physical memory free".
Been watching that

HAven't used all the physical memory yet theres always free stuff.

The problem seemd to be the hdd being accessed and jamming the system up, almost as if it's hogging the system bus, as the processor usage and memory are fine when it happens.

Tried running last nite with the firewall and nav off but no differnece :(

I have just removed the slave hdd and things seem to be better... but its a little early for celebration


hardware monkey
IBM Deskstar 60GXP 40GB:
bandwidth: 71mb/sec
sequential: 22mb/sec

Samsung SV1204H 120GB:
bandwidth: 60mb/sec
sequential: 36mb/sec
The lower RPM might make a bit of difference, but shouldn't be anything really dramatic.

Not sure if that program you posted really means much but these are my scores:

Drive 0: Maxtor 80G 7200 RPM
bandwidth: 100.597 MB/sec
sequential: 41.615 MB/sec

Drive 1: WD 120G 7200 RPM 8MB cache
bandwidth: 58.195 MB/sec
sequential: 47.662 MB/sec

Kinda weird since the WD scores better in other HD tests.

You may want to give HDTach a try. You can find it at www.tcdlabs.com
The demo version only works in Win98 though. The full version adds NT/2000 support and DOES work in XP.
my pair of wd 60g/7200/ata 100's

bandwidth 91.35 (both)
sequential 48.xx (both)

(whew) at least they both perform equally...

Just thought of something though, maybe you could try and switch out cables. Sometimes cables can be p.o.s. or maybe got stretched or.....



IBM 102 GB, 7200 RPM, Ultra-ATA/100
Bandwidth: 89.349

Maxtor 80 GB, 7200 RPM, Ultra-ATA/133
Bandwidth: 84.672
Sequential: 45.226



seagate 408Mb: bw: 8.2 || seq: 6.4

ok, im joking - i havent tested it (although i do have one in a box (made of cardboard - not in a pc lol) at my parents house :p)

Members online

No members online now.

Latest posts

Latest profile posts

Hello, is there anybody in there? Just nod if you can hear me ...
What a long strange trip it's been. =)

Forum statistics

Latest member