So, this is sort of weird.

By Knives55
Dec 2, 2006
  1. I have an HP lap top with Windows XP professional and for some crazy reason, periodically when I check the system icon it says the processor is .8 ghz instead of the 1.8 ghz which it truly is. Sometimes it is 1.56 or some such. I haven't really noticed if that's related to any system problems but some times certain programs (games) process much slower then usual. This is strange and a relatively new occurance. I'm wondering what might be causing it, how it's detrimental, and how to correct it.

    Thanks a lot.
  2. Rick

    Rick TechSpot Staff Posts: 4,573   +65

    It's called SpeedStep. Your laptop scales its CPU speed according to usage, heat and power sources. This is perfectly normal.

    If you'd like more control over the speeds, check out notebook hardware control.

    Overtime, as laptops get clogged full of dust, overheating occurs. In fact, even some new laptops exhibit overheating due to poor design engineering right off the shelf. When the processor hits a certain temperature threshold (60*C, for example), it will throttle itself down to a lower speed to compensate for the heat. This could very well be a reason why you've only recently started noticing slowing in games, although there are many other possible explanations as well. :)
  3. Knives55

    Knives55 TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Wow, that totally makes sense.

    I'm in Iraq as it turns out and as such there's probably a buttload of sand in this thing. I'm going to take it out to the air compressor like right now. Thanks a lot.
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