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Web pages cause memory leak in virtual memory

By MathMartian
Jul 7, 2011
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  1. System specs:
    Manufacturer: Dell
    Service Tag: 4JSRJ81
    Model: Dimension 5100
    Original RAM: 1 GB
    Current RAM: 512 MB DDR2
    Virtual Memory: Custom settings: 2-383 MBs No. 1 HD 2-382 MBs No. 2 HD.
    Video Card: Stock - All I know is that it is a ATI graphics card, I don’t know how to find the model number.
    Motherboard: Stock – Same thing only I don’t even know the brand.
    Main Hard Drive: 144 GBs - 95.2 GBs free - File System NTFS
    Second Hard Drive: 69.8 GBS 42.1 GBs free
    Processor: DIM5100 Intel Pentium 4 CPU 2.80GHz 2.79 GHz.

    When I first started to try to speed up the computer for my mom it had one problem/symptom. If a web browser was left up the virtual memory would continue to increase in size until it had increased from 400 MBs to around 900 Mbs. It rarely got above 900mbs because by the time it reached 900 my mom would ask me to fix it again. Once I shut down the browser windows the pf usage would hold steady for a while then sharply drop down to 320mbs.

    Sometimes it would just be slow overall and I knew of two things to speed it up. Defragmenting the hard drive and deleting cookies. Eventually I learned how to delete flash cookies and I added that to my list of fixes. Sometimes all it took was deleting cookies sometimes more. Since then I have added a one item to my repertoire, cleaning the register via ccleaner. These fixes have always been temperamental; a couple days later I would have to do it again. Now none of these work. They might take the edge of the slowness but I have still seen faster snails.

    Can’t have more than one application running at a time or computer is too slow to use.
    Recently if anything is left open the computer will slow down.
    Task manager shows plenty of available resources.
    If the computer is slow and I try to close a program it will normally stop responding.

    Recently I received a BSOD from my computer. I will attach a picture of the computer screen to this post.

    It got so slow recently that my mom gave me permission too buy 2 gbs of ram for her computer. So if that is the solution I can do it but if there are any other possibilities I would like to check them out first. It is so slow that I have become accustomed to taking naps in during the response time the computer takes to do anything.

    Once something a program is running and I have been using it for a while without any changes between programs it runs just fine. It responds quickly to any commands within the program. It is just when I try to open a program, switch between programs or close a program that it is slow.

    Note: I have ran memtest86+ for about 10 hours overnight and it detected no errors.

    Also when I run the hard drive defragmenter the diagram of my hard drive usage is normally terrible. On average I deframent the hard drive weekly each time the diagram shows 1/3 to ¼ of my files as corrupted. Could this be bad RAM?

    I updated my graphics driver within the last week so I doubt that is the problem.

    Any help would be great I have tried googling my problem to no avail. Even if you (a reader of this post) don’t know how to fix this, could you let me know if this is definitely not a RAM issue?

    Thanks,
    MathMartian

    P.S. this post has been edited. My previous version wasn't very well written.
     

    Attached Files:

  2. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    Can you please look into C:\windows\minidump folder and provide us with latest dumps (max. 5) from there, please zip them in a single file and attach with your next post.

    Secondly, just to be on sure side that there is no malware related issue with this PC, please download malwarebytes and run a full scan after upgrading its definition database.
     
  3. MathMartian

    MathMartian TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I looked in C:\WINDOWS\minidump. The folder was empty. I right clicked on the folder and looked at the properties and it said the folder took up 0 bytes of space.

    Is that even possible? When I have seen empty folders they have taken up at least a kb of space. Is there something I can disable that will allow me to see the contents of the folder?

    I may have cleared the folder inadvertently via ccleaner. There is an option to clean windows. I just looked and one of the things it cleans (deletes) is labeled memory dumps. If I have cleared it is there anything I can do to recreate it? e.g. Trying to get the computer to crash. If so, is there anything I can do that will probably crash the computer?

    When I run the computer in safe mode it isn't as slow. Does that help any in the diagnosing of the problem?

    I will update this post with the results of the malwarebytes scan later.

    UPDATE:
    Malwarbytes detected three infected objects. I have attached the .txt log file.
     

    Attached Files:

  4. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    Apparently ccleaner must have erased whatever dumps were created by the BSODs. Anyway, although we can 'force' your machine to crash again but we will get to that later.

    For now, I will suggest you to look into Event Viewer logs of your system, you can find those by going to, Control Panel > Administrative Tools > Event Viewer. Look into system logs, and specifically focus on yellow / red tagged events and see whether you can find something useful to shed some light on these errors.

    Your computer, or for that matter any computer, will feel slightly faster in safe mode because the OS is running with only very essential drivers being loaded by windows.
     
  5. MathMartian

    MathMartian TS Rookie Topic Starter

    I have attached the log files to this post. I edited out all the entries that were not either a error of a warning. The logs for Internet explorer and Media Center were empty so I have not attached them. The security log only has one entry.

    Thanks for everything,
    MathMartian
     

    Attached Files:

  6. MathMartian

    MathMartian TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Update:
    It would appear that the malware that malwarebytes removed was the problem. I left five tabs open overnight and the pf usage remained steady at 511 Mbs. As for the BSOD it only crashed once and since then I have had no more crashes problems.

    Thank you, Archean, for all you help. I think that the malwarebytes program fixed it.

    -MathMartian
     

    Attached Files:

  7. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    i. Please upgrade .NET framework on your PC to the latest version. This may help in resolution of all sidebyside errors logged in the Event Viewer Logs.

    ii. Check whether your system is correctly configured to sync time with the MS Time Server (e.g. my system is configured to do this by syncing with time.windows.com).

    iii. Some service(s) is not notifying the Service Control Manager at the specified time that it is ready.

    To determine why the service is not connecting, do the following:
    • Verify that all the services are configured correctly. (you will need to go to Admin Tools > Services, and check each service)
    • Verify that the system is in a healthy state, for example, it is not running low on resources.

    As you are on system with 512MB Ram it can be the case in certain situations. Have you correctly configured the Page File?

    iv. There were also errors with regard to cdrom, probably due to bad blocks on CD media.

    I have only touched the recurring errors in the system logs. Happy computing and in case you need any further assistance please let us know. Regards
     
  8. MathMartian

    MathMartian TS Rookie Topic Starter

    Thanks for your help. It turns out I do need more help.

    I. I updated my .net framework from 1.1 to 3.5 SP1.

    II. I synchronized my computers clock to time.windows.com. Windows was and is set to automatically synchronize every couple weeks or so.

    III.
    I will check to see if the services are configured correctly. And update my post with the results later.

    As for verify that the system is healthy I am not sure what all to check. I already know that the CPU is normally idling around 2% and, to my inexperienced eyes, the CPU would not appear to be the problem. Could you please tell me how to perform a check-up on my computer or tell me of somewhere where I can learn how? Or perhaps I could create a new topic on the matter?

    BTW I have tried using Google Chrome and Internet Explorer instead of Firefox and if anything they were slower.

    I re-configured the Page File so that the minimum and maximum are both set to 700 MBs.

    -MathMartian
     
  9. Archean

    Archean TechSpot Paladin Posts: 5,682   +86

    I would advise you to leave the page file size to auto, because you do not have enough RAM and at some point your system can run out of virtual memory as well with this new setting; also ensure that there is reasonable free space available on the OS Partition. And that is what I meant with 'system in healthy state' in my previous post. For the rest you seem fine IMO.

    Lastly, although you have ran malwarebytes on this computer, I'll still advise you to start a new thread in Malware and Virus forums, post your malwarebytes logs there and request for assistance. This is to ensure that there is nothing suspicious on your system.
     

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