Desktop PC hardware with hard drive - ByteWise / PC 911 in St. Paul Minnesota.

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Case Study 2 - Slow Computer

Frank repairing PC hardware ByteWisePC 911Richard thought his computer was running slow because of a problem with his Internet connection. E-mail ran more and more slowly, and nothing he did seemed to make a difference. He also speculated it might be a failing hard drive.

PC Repair: Software

Frank first checked for viruses. He performed a scan and found no fewer than 126 trojans, adware, and worms (many duplicates) embedded in different areas of his hard drive, and removed them.

But the computer still ran slowly! Frank backed up all data on an external hard drive, and reformatted the hard disk. He performed a hard drive check to see if the drive was failing or if there were any bad data sectors. (This is a more common phenomenon because 10 - 15 years ago, hard drives were manufactured with a 3-5 year warranty. Nowadays, manufacturers only provide 1-3 year warranties, and so drives are failing more often.) The hard drive checked out okay.

Frank then suspected that another virus was embedded into the hard drive's boot partition. He removed all the partitions, did a low-level format that zeroed out all the data, and then repartitioned the drive. Next, Windows and all applications were reinstalled. Anti-virus and anti-malware programs were added. Finally Frank restored Richard's data. Richard verified that the computer now ran at its regular speed when picking up E-mail—true happiness!

Frank left it to Richard to reinstall other programs he had downloaded separately such as: Google Earth, Blu-ray Player and iTunes.