Dell Dimension 3000 running slow

By necee99 · 14 replies
Aug 13, 2012
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  1. can you take a look and help me figure out why my dell is so slow these days. I have did a system restore back to factory settings and it still is pretty slow. I know they say the older a computer gets the slower it gets, even if it is clean and restored, is that true? What can I do to optimize my speed and speed it up?
  2. Zen

    Zen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 861   +50

    Well first off I do have t say that the Dell Dimension 3000 series is a pretty old machine, so it doesn't surprise me that the thing is slowing down in it's older years. The 3000 series if my memory is correct, the 3000's first hit the market back in somewhere around June, July maybe August of 2007. As far as helping you possibly making this old beast faster or operate more smoothly and such, we're going to need a little bit more information then just the computers name and what series it falls under. We already know it's a Dell, we know it's apart of their Dimension line and we know it's in their 3000 series, but the following information might be helpful..

    Processor? Celeron, Pentium 4, Pentium 4 with H/T
    How much RAM your playing with?
    How old and how large is you hard drive?
    Any upgrades?
    Operating System?

    Answer some of those questions if you can first! Because that will give us a better idea as towards possibly throwing you out some ideas.
  3. necee99

    necee99 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 139

    processor- Intel Celeron (r) cpu 2.66 Ghz
    x86 family 15 model 4 stepping 1 genuine intel 2660 Mhz
    ram 512 MB
    hard drive, original I assume, 35 GB
    no upgrades
    Windows Xp home service pack 3
  4. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    You do have an old bear! Zen, I think it might even be dated before 2007- I have a Dell Dimension 4300 that's older than 2007.

    The last driver update for the processor- Intel Celeron (r) cpu 2.66 Ghz was 4/1/2004 512MB of RAM is the minimum to have Windows XP run decently. You can check to see if there is another total of 512MB you can add>>>
    I plugged your system into the Crucial site and got this:
    2GB kit (1GBx2), 184-pin DIMM, DDR PC2700 memory module> $59.99
    Your Dimension 3000 System Specs>>
    System specs as shipped by the manufacturer.
    Scan your system to view your specific system configuration.
    There is no other recommendation. But the scan might come up with something.
    Tell us what kind of maintenance you're doing>>> regularly: It should be the following:
    Delete temporary internet files?> this will help:
    Run this once in a while so the files don't pile up:TFC (Temp File Cleaner)
    Download TFC to your desktop
    1. Open the file and close any other windows.
    2. It will close all programs itself when run, make sure to let it run uninterrupted.
    3. Click the Start button to begin the process. The program should not take long to finish its job
    4. Once its finished it should reboot your machine, if not, do this yourself to ensure a complete clean.
      TFC only cleans temp folders. TFC will not clean URL history, prefetch, or cookies. TFC (Temp File Cleaner) will clear out all temp folders for all user accounts (temp, IE temp, java, FF, Opera, Chrome, Safari), including Administrator, All Users, LocalService, NetworkService, and any other accounts in the user folder.
    Open Windows Explorer:press the Windows key + E:
    Double click on My Computer> Right click on the C Drive> Properties:
    1. Uncheck both 'Compress drive' and 'allow indexing'
    2. Click on the Disc Cleanup> follow the prompts
    3. Choose the Tools tab> Error Check> Click on Check Now
      [o]Check both boxes on the screen that comes up> Click on Start:
      [o]You will get a nag message that you can just close.
      [o]Reboot the computer and the Error Check will begin in a few seconds. Let it finish- the system will reboot itself when done.
    Note: If you have not done or do not do the Error Check regularly, this will take a while so don't sit and watch it!

    Go back and reopen Windows Explorer> Tools tab> Defrag> Click on Defrag now> then press the Defrag button at the bottom of the screen that comes up. Depending on how much fragmentation there is, this could also take a while.
    Reboot the computer and see if you notice any difference.
    Zen, what do you think about running HijackThis to see what can be stopped or removed?
  5. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    A step that will help remove Tracking Cookies: Please make sure you follow the line Make sure everything found has a checkmark next to it
    SuperAntiSpyware Home Edition Free Version
    • Please download SuperAntiSpyware from HERE
    • Launch SuperAntiSpyware and click on 'Check for updates'.
    • Wait for the updates to be installed
    • On the main screen click on 'Scan your computer'.
    • Check: 'Perform Complete Scan then Click 'Next' to start the scan.
    • Superantispyware will now scan your computer,when it's finished it will list all/any infections found.
    • Make sure everything found has a checkmark next to it, then press 'Next'.
    • Click on 'Finish' when you've done.
    It's possible that the program will ask you to reboot in order to delete some files.

    Obtain the SuperAntiSpyware log as follows:
    • Click on 'Preferences'.
    • Click on the 'Statistics/Logs' tab.
    • Under 'Scanner Logs' double click on 'SuperAntiSpyware Scan Log'.
    It will then open in your default text editor,such as Notepad. Paste the notepad file here on your reply
    Reset Cookies

    For Internet Explorer: Internet Options (through Tools or Control Panel) Privacy tab> Advanced button> CHECK 'override automatic Cookie handling'> CHECK 'accept first party Cookies'> CHECK 'Block third party Cookies'> CHECK 'allow per session Cookies'> Apply> OK.

    For Firefox: Tools> Options> Privacy> Cookies> CHECK ‘accept Cookies from Sites’> UNCHECK 'accept third party Cookies'> Set Keep until 'they expire'. This will allow you to keep Cookies for registered sites and prevent or remove others. (Note: for Firefox v3.5, after Privacy click on 'use custom settings for History.')

    I suggest using the following two add-on for Firefox. They will prevent the Tracking Cookies that come from ads and banners and other sources: (addons will be version dependent)
    AdBlock Plus
    Easy List

    For Chrome: Tools> Options> Under The Hood> Privacy Section> CHECK 'Restrict how third party Cookies can be used'> Close.
    (First-party and third-party cookies can be set by the website you're visiting and websites that have items embedded in the website you're visiting. But when you next visit the website, only first-party cookie information is sent to the website. Third-party cookie information isn't sent back to the websites that originally set the third-party cookies.)

    Reset Cookies in later versions of Chrome:
    • UnderTheHood has been changed to 'Show Advanced Settings" in later versions:
      • Click the wrench icon tools menu on the browser toolbar.
      • Select Settings> Click Show advanced settings.
      • "Privacy" section> Click Content settings to adjust your permissions for cookies, images, JavaScript, plug-ins, pop-ups, and location sharing. All web content, except for pop-ups, are allowed by default.
      Please paste the Superantispyware log in your next reply.
  6. Zen

    Zen TechSpot Paladin Posts: 861   +50

    Well I do indeed stand corrected! With a little research I found out the the first line of Dell Dimension 3000's hit store shelves back in late 2001 to early 2002. So like wow, I just learned something! :)

    Why not, sounds good to me! Why not have him run the program, might turn up something!

    Honestly, with a computer built back in 2001/2002 and used for God knows how long, hours to days to weeks to months straight at a time, it doesn't surprise me that the thing is giving us the old "I'm tired" symptoms. If this computer came into me via a client the first couple things I'd touch on first is dating some of the hardware, like the hard drive, getting a true fix on how old the insides truly are. Then would come my usual disk defrag with Auslogic's, next run CCleaners Application and Program scan and clean, then I would run the CCleaner registry scan and repair, the last run a total anti-virus scan, whole system, everything, hidden stiuff, sub-folders, archives, the works! Also I'd give the thing a good dose of can'd air and give the thing a detailed interior cleaning, for if the vents and fans and heat sinks are filled will the common criminals, over heating can contribute to slower PC operations.

    If my usual quick fixes like the above and stated didn't work, then I seriously would be looking at hardware upgrade options. New hard drive, upgrade the RAM count, possibly a new power supply, replacing or adding to the cooling fan count, that kind of stuff. Perhaps touching on some of that may help things out here as well.
  7. Doctor John

    Doctor John TS Enthusiast Posts: 204   +15

    I had a fairly similar vintage Dell Inspiron 5100 laptop with even less resources (sadly recently demised :'(), which was beginning to creak a bit, but until the very end it cheered up enormously just with a memory upgrade, 256MB -> 512MB (obviously I agree with all the other sound advice! (y) ).
  8. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    You did not tell us about this:
    Is my computer clean?

    C: is FIXED (NTFS) - 34 GiB total, 9.456 GiB free>> you have almost no hard drive space available. Free space should be a close to 80% as possible. This shows only about 28% free.
    Install Date: 2/17/2010- did you get this compouter from someone. It's not likely it was new in 2010. You said no updates, so it doesn't sound like a reformat/reinstall was done.

    You problems at that time:
    A BSOD that is handled by a reboot can be an indication of not enough memory. Basically what happens is that the available RAM gets used and there is no more for the next action. So at that point, the system can crash. A reboot can restore some of the memory that was in use and the cycle will start again

    Broni said he didn't see any malware: >Clean 7/26/2012, but didn't have you clean up the programs that had been used. When you didn't reply back in the 5 days, he closed the thread- so let's get rid of that stuff:

    Removing all of the tools used and the files and folders they created
    • Uninstall ComboFix and all Backups of the files it deleted
    • Click START> then RUN
    • Now type Combofix /Uninstall in the runbox and click OK. Note the space between the X and the U, it needs to be there.
    • Download OTCleanIt by OldTimer and save it to your Desktop.
    • Double click OTCleanIt.exe.
    • Click the CleanUp! button.
    • Select Yes when the "Begin cleanup Process?" prompt appears.
    • If you are prompted to Reboot during the cleanup, select Yes.
    • The tool will delete itself once it finishes.
    Note: If you receive a warning from your firewall or other security programs regarding OTC attempting to contact the internet, please allow it to do so.

    Note: If any tool, file or folder (belonging to the program we have used) hasn't been deleted, please delete it manually.
    • You should now set a new Restore Point and remove the old restore points to prevent infection from any previous Restore Points.
    • Go to Start > All Programs > Accessories > System Tools
    • Click "System Restore".
    • Choose "Create a Restore Point" on the first screen then click "Next".
    • Give the Restore Point a name> click "Create".
    • Go back and follow the path to > System Tools.
    • Choose Disc Cleanup
    • Click "OK" to select the partition or drive you want.
    • Click the "More Options" Tab.
    • Click "Clean Up" in the System Restore section to remove all previous Restore Points except the newly created one.
    Empty the Recycle Bin
    Removing those tools will help a bit. Combine that with the maintenance instructions we have given. Then let us know if you have a noticeable difference.
    Note: I do see a lot of processes running in the background. Some can be stopped and/or taken off of startup.

    You have a slow processor, minimum RAM and almost no hard drive left. Good idea to start saving those pennies toward a new system.
  9. necee99

    necee99 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 139

    thx for all you guys reccommendations. I am going to try all of them. you all are awesome! A couple of days ago b4 I started this tread, I restored the dell 3000 system back to factory settings by f11, hoping this will fix all but I see it did not. After Broni told me he saw no virus or spyware, I assumed it just needed taking back to its old self. Wrong. I know now how badly I need a ram upgrade, I will look into to getting one to install or just look into retiring my old bear. I love the suggesion from I think Zen, to take it apart and clean fans, etc. Should I do this for laptops also? I am the family's go to fix-it and my dad has an old Bear Dell inspiron 6000 running on same small specs. do I try to take it apart and clean fans too?
  10. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    Cleaning the inside is not going to be the main concern alone> that would be like cleaning the outside of refrigerator but not throwing away any spoiled food inside. IF it's just a heat buildup, you would most likely be having more frequent crashes.

    The maintenance suggestions we gave you are basic for any computer with the Windows OS- no matter of age, or which version of the OS you have.

    This system came out 11 years ago. By restoring back to that time, you now have all the pre-loaded junk from Dell again.
    The specs for you dad's computer are not the same: He has a different, faster processor, larger hard drive (almost twice yours). It came with 512MB RAM unless he upgraded, but can go to 2GB max.
  11. necee99

    necee99 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 139

    I pretty much have an idea about what I need to do with the dell 3000 desktop. as for my dad laptop inspiron 6000, it has 248MB Ram and 33 GB hard drive and 1.35 Ghz processor. less than mine. I just install avast and found it has a virus even after the restore process. I am about to follow the rest of the virus removal steps for the laptop. do I need to start a new thread to get this looked at? or can I just continue it on this thread?
  12. mailpup

    mailpup TS Special Forces Posts: 7,186   +469

    For virus removal please start a new thread in the Virus and Malware forum. Thanks.
  13. necee99

    necee99 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 139

    ok thanks
  14. Bobbye

    Bobbye Helper on the Fringe Posts: 16,334   +36

    For the record: your dad didn't get what he paid for. Here are the specs for the Dell Inspiron 6000:

    Packaged Quantity 1.0
    System Type Notebook
    OS Provided Microsoft Windows XP Professional
    Service & Support 1 year warranty
    Notebook type Mid-size laptops (6-7.5 lbs.)
    Screen type Widescreen
    Wireless capabilities Bluetooth,
    IEEE 802.11b,
    IEEE 802.11g

    Processor / Chipset
    CPU Intel Pentium M 740 / 1.6 GHz
    Cache L2 cache - 2.0 MB
    Front Side Bus 533.0 MHz
    Chipset Intel 915GM/PM
    Platform Technology Intel Centrino
    Features Enhanced SpeedStep technology,
    Power-optimized processor system bus,
    Execute Disable Bit capability

    RAM 512.0 MB ( 2 x 256 MB )
    Max RAM Supported 2.0 GB
    Technology DDR2 SDRAM
    Speed 400.0 MHz / PC2-3200
    Form Factor SO DIMM 200-pin
    Slots Qty 2
    Empty Slots 0.0

    Floppy Drive None
    Hard Drive 60.0 GB HDD / 5400.0 rpm
    Storage Removable None
    Optical Drive DVD-ROM
    Read Speed 8x
    Optical Drive (2nd) None
    Hard drive type Portable
  15. necee99

    necee99 TS Enthusiast Topic Starter Posts: 139

    News Flash. WOW! thanks.

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