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Old 06-13-2009, 05:39 PM   #1
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Default Quad Core subjectively slower on some tasks

Hi

Am just getting around to tackling this having upgraded my old machine from an Athlon XP 3200 (2.2GHz) and an Intel i7 2.66GHz overclocked to 3.2GHz.

There is no doubting that this processor runs stuff like Photoshop CS2 and Lightroom etc much faster, just how they should be. My old Athlon used to struggle.

However, with everyday computing tasks there can be noticable lag. Examples are opening an excel spreadsheet, opening Outlook, add/remove programs population, applying changes to display settings etc. All usually just okay but not quite as instant as my old Athlon. There can be processing delays with basic tasks that just were not present with the Athlon. Task manager never really shows much activity. In fact I have never seen any core above 17% with the i7. These issues are always worse at start up when I can see disk activity but I am not sure what is going on.

I have been experimenting with Windows Desktop search which was certainly implicated. I have uninstalled this. I have also changed the settings on my backup application (Mirror folder) so that it does not run whilst the machine is starting up. These have definitely improved the situation but I still don't see much if nay improvement with these basic tasks.

Maybe I am just running into a hard disk bottleneck....?

Can anyone shed any light for me on what I am seeing?

Rest of the set up is as follows:
Case: Coolermaster Cosmos S
PSU: Corsair HX1000w
Mobo: Gigabyte GA-EX58-UD5R
Processor: Intel i7 2.66GHz o/c 3.6GHz
Cooling: Zalman CNPS 9700 LED
RAM: 3GB Corsair PC10600 1333Mhz DDR3
Hard Drives: Samsung F1 1TB x2
Graphics: 1GB nVidia GTX 280
Sound Card: Creative X-Fi Xtreme Audio 7.1
Optical: LG / Pioneer 116D
Monitor: NEC 2470WNX
Operating System: XP Home and Pro
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Old 06-13-2009, 05:49 PM   #2
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Default Re: Quad Core subjectively slower on some tasks

I have notice an improvement in performance with Win7 as opposed to XP on the same hardware. I don't have any hard evidence handy to show you. You might consider trying Win7 with your new hardware. Your operating system may make a big difference.

Ironically, my bottleneck it the hard drive:

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Old 06-13-2009, 06:14 PM   #3
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Default Re: Quad Core subjectively slower on some tasks

Thanks for that. I didn't realise the RC release was available. I am running XP 32bit on its own partition (data etc all on seperate partition with a mirrored copy to a second hard drive).

I have a free partition on the second hard drive (logical partition). Do you know if I should be okay running the 32bit XP and Win7 64bit from seperate partitions (and hard drives). I have numerous data backup strategies and have no worries reinstalling from scratch if I have too.

Thanks.
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Old 06-13-2009, 06:18 PM   #4
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Default Re: Quad Core subjectively slower on some tasks

Quote:
Maybe I am just running into a hard disk bottleneck....?
I would say this is definitely your problem, the activities listed are more dependant on HDD performance than CPU.
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Old 06-13-2009, 06:25 PM   #5
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Default Re: Quad Core subjectively slower on some tasks

Quote:
Originally Posted by worshipme View Post
I would say this is definitely your problem, the activities listed are more dependant on HDD performance than CPU.
Now that I think about it a little, I have to agree. My system is not too different from yours, and with Win7 you can see my bottleneck. I've got a 1TB Maxtor 7200rpm 32mb cashe SATA drive for the OS.
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Old 06-15-2009, 09:00 AM   #6
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Default Re: Quad Core subjectively slower on some tasks

Unless you get solid state, the hard drive will always be the limiting factor.
That hard drive is pretty fast though to be honest
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Old 06-15-2009, 02:05 PM   #7
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Default Re: Quad Core subjectively slower on some tasks

Hi

Thanks for the reply. Having got some of the apps that were running at startup under better control, I am noticing less of an impact. May also be the hard drive capacity in that the data takes longer to read in some instances than on my old 500GB drives.

If only MS would give control over Windows desktop search at startup and it better repected the idle time rule. May give it another go at some point. The search from within Outlook itself is working okay now. Before I installed and uninstalled Windows desktop search it wasn't finding anything that I knew was there!! Now it is, having completely uninstalled Windows Desktop search including the indexes!! Bizarre.

I'll try out the desktop search on the 64bit installation of Windows 7 to see if it performs any better.

Thanks again.
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