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Old 01-29-2007, 06:37 AM   #1
J_Szucs
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Registered: Nov 2001
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Distribution: SuSE 6.4-11.3, Dsl linux, FreeBSD 4.3-6.2, Mandrake 8.2, Redhat, UHU, Debian Etch
Posts: 1,126

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Extremely slow system


I had a quite fast SuSE 9.3 system on a PIII 750 + 256M RAM + ATI radeon 7000VE.

Then I made some changes:
- replaced the vga card and the hdd (plus added a new, 160G hdd that has some dma issues, so I connected it alone to the secondary ide controller)
- accidentally killed cdrom, RAM, and probably the PSU, too and resetted BIOS by inserting the power connector of the cdrom the wrong way; so I had to replace cdrom, RAM and PSU, then loaded the bios optimal settins , also disabling some not used ports. Meanwhile overlooking the fact that probably the bios reset put the system hdd in CHS mode instead of LBA.

Then I installed two new systems on the machine:
- created a bootable vfat partition for w98
- the w98 installer said that the disk size is wrongly indicated in the partition table, and wanted to correct it, which I approved
- I installed SuSE 10.1, but the installer said it cannot create the swap file system in this partitioning scheme (the linux partitions are on an extended partition). I terminated and restarted the installer, and the SuSE installer created the swap partition without any problems this time.

And now my problems:
The system randomly slows down for very long times. It is often so slow, that grub loads in 10 minutes, konqueror or konsole starts up in 1 minute, and each of my keystrokes e.g. in kwrite shows up seconds later. Meanwhile it is this f*cking slow, I do not see any excessive swap or CPU usage.
An other thing I do not understand : I start "top" and see its CPU usage is below 1%. Great. But now I start an other application that loads slowly (e.g. konqueror), and I see that the CPU usage of "top" goes up to 10%, plus the konsole process it was started from begins to eat up another 20%. Why?

Could you give me some hints how to find the reason for this extremely poor system performance?
 
Old 01-29-2007, 07:21 AM   #2
IndyGunFreak
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Registered: Aug 2003
Location: Indpls
Distribution: Desktop- Debian Lenny, Laptops- Ubuntu 8.10, Debian Lenny UMPC- Ubuntu 8.10
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1st, I don't see how plugging a CDRom in backwards, can blow the motherboard and all its components. I've been building several years, and while nowdays they only plug in 1 way, most the time if they were plugged in wrong, that particular item just didn't work. Are you sure you didn't plug the motherboard connector in backwards(as that would blow everything on the board)?

Regardless, it appears you have the above issue fixed.

What are the new specs on the new, rebuilt PC? I' guessing you still have some hardware issues.

I'd also start looking at the memory you bought. Make sure they are the same speed, etc. It could be a bad memory dimm.

IGF
 
Old 01-29-2007, 11:48 AM   #3
J_Szucs
Senior Member
 
Registered: Nov 2001
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Distribution: SuSE 6.4-11.3, Dsl linux, FreeBSD 4.3-6.2, Mandrake 8.2, Redhat, UHU, Debian Etch
Posts: 1,126

Original Poster
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Doublepost deleted

Last edited by J_Szucs; 01-29-2007 at 12:17 PM.
 
Old 01-29-2007, 11:55 AM   #4
J_Szucs
Senior Member
 
Registered: Nov 2001
Location: Budapest, Hungary
Distribution: SuSE 6.4-11.3, Dsl linux, FreeBSD 4.3-6.2, Mandrake 8.2, Redhat, UHU, Debian Etch
Posts: 1,126

Original Poster
Rep: Reputation: 58
> 1st, I don't see how plugging a CDRom in backwards, can blow the motherboard and all its components.

But this is that just happened. The system had booted up fine before I inserted the power connector into the cdrom reversely. From that time on it did not boot until I replaced the cdrom and the RAM, too.

> I'd also start looking at the memory you bought.

I need not buy a new RAM module, because I have an old one that had been working well for years in this motherboard. That 256M SDRAM module did not happen to be in the motherboard when the connector was inserted reversely. So that module is OK, for sure.

> It could be a bad memory dimm.

I would rather suspect that the dimm slots on the motherboard are the culprit. I know that the first one of the three slots is gone together with the RAM module that was in it at the time of the reverse-connection. Now, no RAM modules put in that slot will work. So, I had to put the good RAM module into the second dimm slot, where it seems to work.

But, could a faulty dimm slot cause random slowdowns and random slow-starts?

Or, maybe the bios got damaged? It reported CRC errors following the reverse-connection, so I also did bios reset with the motherboard jumper.

> What are the new specs on the new, rebuilt PC?
PIII 750, 250M PC133 SDRAM, GF2MX200. I do not know the type of the motherboard, but according to the yast hardware detection (which run for 25 minutes, cause I am in the middle of a slowdown now :-(), it has a via82c694x chipset.
Drives:
- 30G ide udma100, CHS mode, connected to the primary ide controller and having the vfat and linux partitions and grub bootloader
- 50x cdrom udma66, connected to the primary ide controller
- 160G ide udma33, LBA mode, connected to the secondary ide controller, no system partitions, just a vfat and a reiser partition, mounted to /data_f and /data_r, respectively.

This is basically my old primary machine, revived now as my secondary machine. Only the 160G hdd was added to it recently (and the ATI card replaced with the nvidia one).
I know how this config could perform, as even SuSE 10.1 has been running on it for some weeks. Now, when the slowdown comes, it is 10 times slower than it used to be.

Last edited by J_Szucs; 01-29-2007 at 12:00 PM.
 
  


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