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Thread: Windoze (please help!) utility software

  1. #1
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Windoze (please help!) utility software

    Every time I go back to using my Windows OS (Win2000) I'm frustrated by a bunch of things, but I think if I could solve this one particular annoyance it'd make the experience sorta tolerable...

    When booting up, when starting up applications, or when doing just about anything, I am forced as a user to monitor my hard drive light and wait for it to stop blinking. Sometimes it'll stop for a few seconds, I'll be just reaching for keyboard, then it'll start up again. (this is aside from the usual background indexing and defragging stuff, which is at low priority) That's the only way I can determine that the OS or application is finally actually ready for me to use it. If I violate that and don't wait for the drive's intermittent scratching to stop, then bad things happen like drivers don't ever load or software crashes.

    It's a series of "wait... okay I think it's done, nope, hourglass... okay maybe now... nope hard drive's scrunching again... okay finally!"

    In stark contrast, I don't find that to be the case in MacOS or Linux. When the desktop comes up, or a window for an application, it's ready for use. When a dialog box asks you for your password, you may safely enter it at that moment without needing to wait to see if the cursor might in another moment hyperspace off to set focus somewhere else, or might turn into an hourglass just in the middle of your keystrokes. It's the little things like this that make the other OS's such a better experience.

    Is there some utility software that's out there that'll tell me "OS loading complete" so I don't need to wait any longer than necessary? Or that might even tell me when applications are done loading too? I know I can bring up Task Manager sometimes and watch the processor monitor, but that's not the level of convenience I'm after. I want push-info, not pull-info, if you catch my drift.

    Any hints/ideas? Help please!

    BTW, I have to use Win2K for some things, such as for AutoCad which only runs under Windows, and for watching lecture videos with RealPlayer. I refuse to install & let Real barf its files and AOL ads etc all over my clean Linux install, which absolutely never crashes. It took me a long time to sweep up the mess it splattered around my Windows OS & registry, including junk I told the installer not to load and trying to steal ownership of file types.

  2. #2
    Flashaholic* Quickbeam's Avatar
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    Default Re: Windoze (please help!) utility software

    Weird. I use 2000 for everything and never have a problem, even if I start working before all of the background apps have finished loading. Here's a possibility: watch the system tray in the lower right of the screen next time you boot up. When the last icon appears there, does the hard drive finish doing it's dance? That's how I can usually tell the OS and the background apps are done loading. It should be safe at that point to start working even if the HD is still working a little bit.

  3. #3
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Windoze (please help!) utility software

    Thanks Quickbeam

    I've got 10 thing in my System Tray, the last of which is HP's OfficeJet driver. That's one thing that makes me wait forever. Maybe I should direct a complaint to HP about that, because it certainly is one of the least stable things.

    There are at least 3 candidates for bad system performance on my machine. HP's OfficeJet driver, Norton's Antivirus, and RealPlayer.

    I need them, though, so I'm work around that by doing things like waiting for the darned HP driver to come up, and turning off Norton's background operations like autoupdate.

    For example, I have to wait for the scrunching to stop before ctrl-alt-del and logging in or the OS does bad things like gives me "explorer error". Very annoying.
    I can't start working before the HP driver loads or it'll never load at all.
    Stuff like that.
    The OS is relatively clean other than those known bad apps. And it's been reinstalled using Norton's Ghost which completely cleans up fragmentation, and speeds it up nicely at the same time.

    I dunno. I think if I can just get something to tell me either "slow down" or "I'm finally ready now" upon monitoring the activity of the OS & apps, then I'd have a more stable environment.

  4. #4
    Flashaholic*
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    Default Re: Windoze (please help!) utility software

    Windows 2000 shouldn't act that way. Sounds like you need to get rid of Norton, or you need a better printer driver, or you need to re-install Windows 2000.

    Your machine could be infected with spyware (try spybot) or a virus.

    You need at least 128 meg. of RAM or it will run very slowly. If your disk partitions are nearly full, you won't be able to defragment properly.

    By the way, XP boots a lot faster than Windows 2000. USB connected printers are handy because you can plug them in or unplug them at any time.

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