• DougCuk



    Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 91 total)
    • in reply to: Restore points being deleted automatically #2508570

      As I understand it the reason restore points are being deleted under Win10 is that MS have changed the default action of the standard System Restore (SR) scheduled task – with no ability to over-ride. If you allow the standard SR task to run it creates a new restore point and then cleans out any restore points over 10 days old (this applies from 21H1 – older versions used 17 days) – regardless of the amount of disk space allocated for the System Restore shadow copies.

      The SR scheduled task runs the program “srtasks.exe” located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder – with the internal parameter “ExecuteScheduledSPPCreation”. The time period (for culling old restore points) is hard coded into this executable and none of the legacy registry settings (for System Restore) will over-ride this change. The best you can do is to Disable the “System Restore” scheduled task which prevents this automatic culling of restore points.

      Obviously by disabling this standard task you loose the automatic scheduled Restore Point creation this Task was designed to provide – but you eliminate the main cause of old restore points disappearing. You will now need to remember to create restore points using “Create a Restore Point” (available via Search in Win10) which does not trigger the automatic culling of old restore points. Restore points triggered by some program updates will still occur (and shouldn’t trigger a restore point cull) – but this depends on the installer requesting a Restore Point, which is becoming less common with current programs.

      Note however Microsoft have a nasty habit of resetting default (Microsoft) Scheduled Tasks during Feature Updates – so this Task can be automatically re-enabled without your consent – resulting in the loss of all restore points over 10 days old.

      Testing with Win10 21H1 shows that if you allow the SR task to run all System Restore Points are automatically deleted by the system once they reach 10 days old. The exception is the last remaining Restore Point – which I believe remains until the next Feature Update is installed. All restore points for previous Win10 versions are automatically deleted – as they cannot revert a Feature Update. So unless you are manually creating Restore Points on a regular basis – then in most cases you are likely to have only one Restore Point available in the event of a problem.

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    • in reply to: Windows 10 getting slower and slower running from an HDD #2473893

      @cyberSAR – I will certainly look out for this as a potential factor and then fix – and would be much faster and less expensive than a replacement disk. Obviously fitting an SSD has a wide range of additional benefits – mainly the faster load times of Windows and Applications – and when replacing older HDD’s you gain a new extended life-span for the main disk.

    • in reply to: Windows 10 getting slower and slower running from an HDD #2473862

      @cyberSAR In the cases you have seen does “Service Host: SysMain” show up in Task Manager as a high percentage Disk utilisation? I always check Task Manager to look for what process or service may be originating the high Disk utilisation – but have never identified Sysmain as a possible candidate. Always appears to be just a random assortment of “Host Processes” and other Windows system tasks. I shall try testing this Sysmain option when I next encounter a case of this type.

    • in reply to: Windows 10 getting slower and slower running from an HDD #2472866

      Been doing some more research on why swapping to an SSD (from an HDD) cures Win10’s recent major slow-down. Most of us look at the much higher data transfer speeds of the SSD and maybe the much lower latency before data is written or read – and assume that these are the only significant advantages.

      But there is another hidden performance boost with using an SSD – they have a much higher IOPS rating (input/output operations per second). IOPS measures the ability of a given storage solution to process read and write commands – measured as operations per second. Generally HDD’s will have an IOPS range of 55-180, while SSD’s have an IOPS ranging from 3,000 to 500,000. Some of the newer PCIe Gen4 NVMe SSD’s can reach 800,000 IOPS for random reads and up to 600,000 IOPS for random writes.

      So as I suspected the performance advantage of SSD’s over HDD’s is not just the faster data transfer rate – but maybe more importantly an SSD can process more read/write operations per second – anywhere from 20x to 4000x greater. This is what I think is the major issue with Win10 – the deluge of small read/write requests due to it’s incessant background tasks.

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    • in reply to: Windows 10 getting slower and slower running from an HDD #2469589

      I have been using SSD boot drives on all new builds and recommendations for the last 2 years or so – and also upgraded all but one of my own PC’s. With the price of SSD’s dropping steadily there is really no justification for any new build not to be using an SSD boot drive – regardless of the issue being discussed in this thread. Win7 doesn’t appear to suffer the dramatic issues I have raised in this thread – but if still using an HDD will appear sluggish compared to a machine using an SSD – one gets used to booting to desktop in 30 seconds.

      All my observations of the 100% HDD utilisation via Task Manager are on machines that were bought 4+ years ago when SSD’s were more of a luxury item – and HDD’s were still the standard drive for lower budget systems – and they were working OK with Win10 – maybe booting to Desktop in 60 to 90 seconds. Now those same systems are the ones that are having serious issues. Microsoft have “updated” Win10 with changes that now essentially require and SSD boot drive. So essentially we are having to fix something that Microsoft broke – on computers that were originally performing within acceptable limits but are now heading toward being unusable.

    • in reply to: Windows 10 getting slower and slower running from an HDD #2469510

      Just encountered another case of Win10 running very slow and the HDD stuck at 100% indefinitely. In this case a higher spec Lenovo Ideapad 520 with an Intel i7-8500 and a 2TB Seagate HDD.

      After checking there were no other factors found for the extreme slow running – other than the HDD redlining at 100% utilisation. The final check after all cleanup steps were done and the system restarted – the HDD was still stuck at 100% after 30 minutes with no sign of calming down.

      Cloned the HDD to an SSD (both SATA 6G drives) and then swapped the drives – on first boot I ran “Winsat formal” to reset the system performance parameters (makes sure Windows knows it now has a much faster main drive). Win10 now boots to the Desktop (with all icons loaded) in around 30 seconds and the disk utilisation drops sharply shortly after this – and hits 0% after about 90 seconds. And the whole laptop now feels like it should with an i7 CPU (4 core / 8 thread / 1.8GHz).

      All this was with 8GB of RAM – but the customer wanted to max out the RAM for architectural CAD work – so it now has 20GB. Unfortunately 4GB was hard soldered on the motherboard with only one slot for add-on RAM – with a max size of 16GB.

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    • @Charlie – I’m not saying the 1min 40sec is anything to boast about – but it is a heck of an improvement on the original 7 minutes. This was a customers laptop that was previously virtually unusable due to the HDD issue combined with the choice of Anti-Virus they had installed and a number of other resident tasks that I was able to disable. It was a low end model with a 2 core / 4 thread CPU running at 2.1GHz – so was never going to be fast whatever I did to it.

      For my own computers I have a number of older Intel i5 computers (2nd & 3rd Gen quad core) all now with SATA SSD’s (originally built with HDDD’s) with a mix of Win10 & Win7. Boot times are around 25 sec for Win7 and 30 sec for Win10.

      Interestingly I built a PC for a customer last year using an M.2 NVMe Gen4 SSD boot drive (running Win10) and it booted to the desktop in 22 seconds – so not much faster than basic SATA 6G SSD systems. So we are obviously reaching a limit at around this level – continuing to increase the boot drive speeds beyond SATA 6G levels doesn’t translate into faster boot times.

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    • The issues that I and others are seeing are much worse than anything I have ever seen over the 35 years of my computer experience – so not really a question of disabling un-needed services, clearing temp folders and running defrag. These were the normal tasks that we all used for years to speed up customers and our own computers.

      To give an example of the transformation from a recent case I worked on:
      Lenovo Laptop purchase in mid 2017 (running Win10 21H2) with a 1TB Seagate HDD
      With the original HDD – from switch on to HDD load below 10% took 7 minutes
      With the new SATA SSD – from switch on to SSD load below 10% took 1 min 40 seconds
      This is with no other changes and was after normal disk maintenance & cleanup tasks.
      Shutdown times improved from 30 seconds to 9 seconds.

      The worse your HDD specs and interface speed the worse the issue becomes. Laptops with cheaper 5400rpm HDD’s maybe running on SATA 3G are the worst – expensive 9600rpm HDD’s with good size caches and using SATA 6G connections are better. But even the fastest HDD’s are still showing signs of struggling to cope with what Windows is now throwing at the disk – especially on startup. The old standard tweaks are no longer sufficient to retain smooth performance when booting from an HDD.

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    • @Alex5723 – Searches that use a pre-existing index will always be faster than searching without an index – that is just a fact. Other search utilities often build their own indexes for that very reason.

    • @alegr – I choose which folders are indexed and remove any where I do not find it helpful. (Take a look at Control Panel -> Indexing Options to see which folders your system is indexing). For SSD based systems file indexing is not essential as read/write delays are much reduced – but can still be useful for speeding up search operations.

      While the Indexing Service will start at every bootup it should not actually need to do much until new files are added to a monitored folder. So it is incorrect to say that Windows “re-indexes” the content of your drives at every reboot – the only way that could happen is if you were somehow deleting the existing indexes at every shutdown. Plus new files are added individually to existing indexes as part of the normal write operation – on monitored folders. So unless something is mis-configured Windows Indexing should not consume noticeable disk resources unless you add 1000’s of files all at once or force a full reindex.

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    • @JohnW My minimum spec for any new PC I build or laptop that I recommend is now:
      Quad Core CPU, SSD Boot drive, 8GB RAM
      I will not put my name to anything less – it is just not worth the hassle of later complaints as to why it is so slow and requests to fix the problem. I agree it is no longer sufficient to run regular maintenance tasks and remove unnecessary resident software – the OS hardware demands on the boot drive are increasing faster than ever before. This issue is I suppose just a reflection of the dramatic evolution of affordable larger SSD drives over the last 5 years.

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    • @joep517 Even a basic SATA SSD appears to eliminate the issue I am reporting. I think it may be more than just the basic speed increase – the ability to handle large numbers of small read/write requests may be even more important.

    • @joep517 – Been at this lark (fixing computers) for a long long time now (started in 1987) – so yes all the traditional tidy up and cleanup tricks have been tried. But it seems that Win10 has evolved under our feet to the point where running it on an HDD is becoming annoying even with the better HDD’s (running at 9600rpm with a large cache, and using a SATA 6G connection). And where someone bought a low end laptop a few years ago (with a cheap 5400rpm HDD installed) with Win10 pre-installed – what was originally slow but OK is now getting to be unusable.

      The write speeds on some of these cheap HDD’s is very poor for small files (writing less than 16KB of data) – often running at less than 5 MB/sec and sometimes heading for 1 MB/sec. The speeds for large file read/writes is often quoted – and can be 80-100 MB/sec (for 4-16 MB of data). However I think the housekeeping disk tasks generated by Windows tends towards the smaller sizes of data and are thus heavily impacted by the poor performance in this area.

      Had one the other day – an Acer Laptop – only 3 years old – but with a very slow 1TB HDD. The Disk stayed between 80% and 100% utilized for 7 minutes after switch on – even after normal cleanup and resident task removal. Put in an SSD and disk was close to 0% by 1 minute 40 seconds – and laptop was actually useable right from arrival at desktop with no serious lagging.

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    • in reply to: Desktop occasionally doesn’t refresh #2466152

      I believe this is a known bug in Win10 (and most likely Win11 also) – the auto refresh is not always triggered when a new file is saved on the desktop from a browser (and maybe other software). My experience is that this happens at random – sometimes working OK but other times not – so it is not a settings issue if this is what is happening.

      Normally the files always shows in File Explorer but when you view the Desktop itself the file is not visible – you need to force a Refresh. Pressing F5 in File Explorer does a Refresh but NOT on the Desktop itself – you need to right-click an empty part of the Desktop and choose Refresh from the context menu to get the missing file(s) to appear.

    • Occasionally only 4GB but most have 8GB. But Task Manger shows that they are not bogging down due to CPU or RAM issues – it is the Disk that is stuck at 100% for long periods.

      Obviously you must also do a disk health check (read the SMART data from the drive) to make sure the drive is not having bad sector or communication issues. But in almost all cases the drive appears to be in perfect health – but is just no longer coping with the demands of Win10.

    Viewing 15 replies - 1 through 15 (of 91 total)