by Unknown - 3/22/05 3:23 PM
In Reply to: High CPU usage... by jagwar
Personally, I don't subscribe to the whole disk defragmenting theory. I figure the amount of time you spend defragmenting a drive far outstrips any meager performance gains you might get from it, and it just adds unnecessary wear and tear on the drive. Maybe some day Microsoft will "innovate" a feature Linux has had for 5-6 years at least, in a self-defragmenting file system.
Given your situation, when you run a 3D game, it's not uncommon for your CPU to jump to 100% utilization. It's actually pretty normal. Especially with the "deep pipes" P4. Intel made a conscious decision to trade performance for high clock speed when they designed the P4. What I think your main problem is, is a lack of RAM. Contrary to the other poster, XP really only needs 256MB for itself, so generally you don't want to run it with less than 512MB. Of course the more the better, so if you ever see a deal on a 512MB stick, don't think that you need to remove your 256MB stick.
I would also be sure to scan your system for spyware. If you use Internet Explorer, it's pretty much a guarantee you've got some. You can search these forums or use Google to figure out how to get rid of the spyware... Keeping it off involves swearing off IE and Outlook Express. I'd suggest Mozilla Firefox and Thunderbird as replacements myself.
Later on, when your financial situation improves (and you've got at least 512MB of RAM), a better video card might not hurt. Since you neglect to mention what model card you have, based on the other specs in your system, my guess would be probably a TNT2 or GeForce2. Both are fairly antiquated for today's games.
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