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You are here: MacNN Forums > Enthusiast Zone > Classic Macs and Mac OS > OS 8.5 suddenly v e r y s l o w s o m e t i m e s

OS 8.5 suddenly v e r y s l o w s o m e t i m e s
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Mac Enthusiast
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Sep 4, 2000, 05:25 PM
 
Every now and then, out iMac is suddenly very slow. It's a Bondi Blue Rev. B 233mhz with 160 mb of ram, vm on (1mb) and OS 8.5.1. I first noticed it when using Netscape, but today it started after I booted it up but before I used the computer. What happens is that the processing speed drops off to about 1mhz. Windows & programs open very slowly and the clock changes the displayed time about every 5 to 6 seconds. Today I booted the computer up but then got distracted. I didn't watch it boot up, but when I got back to it the screensaver had activated, and was moving very slowly. It moves so slowly you can't do any diagnosing, such as restarting with extensions off, etc. The only thing to do is a hard shutdown with the power strip, and then restart. It then works well every time. Other times this has happened I haven't paid attention to what started it, such as waking up from a screensaver, etc. This may not even be an OS problem, it may have to do with extensions, etc, but it happens so intermittently I can't very well try to run with the extensions off until it happens; the computer is then useless! I've run Norton, defragmented the hard drive, run disk first aid and rebuilt the desktop. Zap the PRAM? Delete some preference files? It just happens so occasionally. This time I also noticed that my Techworks CDR hd gone dead, but that has happened before without this slowing problem. Only a cold restart solves that problem too. I will disable this latest screensaver to see if that is causing it (I have had problems in the past with other Mariners screensavers). Also, this problem sort of coincides with the installation of the CDR and the printer problem I'm having. Sorry if this is long winded but I see a lot of posts that ask for more specifics. And yes, I did a search before posting.

Val
     
eucci
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Sep 4, 2000, 06:00 PM
 


a couple of little culprits that i've seen lately are:

-surprise desktop rebuilds
-sherlock indexing

and it's always wise to check EnergySaver settings.
     
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Sep 4, 2000, 11:07 PM
 
Forced to fire up the computer again today to listen to Pacifica Network News (it was mishandled again by the local affiliate) I noticed that about halfway through startup, just after the time/day appeared on the menu bar, it started doing the very slow thing. Eventually it booted up all the way, except for the control strip. I also noticed that the CDR was dead, but didn't notice if it glowed on initial startup (there is a yellow LED "read/write" indicator behind the button). Pressed the reset button on the side and it booted up normally, except for the CDR drive continuing to be dead. Are there startup preferences I can delete? I'll also look for strange things in the startup folder. And I'm also about to zap the PRAM. What do you mean by surprise desktop rebuilds? Is it rebuilding itself? And I've never Sherlock indexed. Should I? I have used Sherlock a little bit more than usual in the last few weeks.

Val PRAM
     
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Sep 5, 2000, 09:57 AM
 
no need to index HD's for find by content unless you are an author or reporter and have voluminous amounts of text files, imo

try deleting the invisible file named AppleShare PDS, delete the Servers folder

and try the freeware created by a member of our fora (slboett, with assistance by Victor Yee) available from his iDisk's public folder, his iDisk is named thebeatles and you can logon iTools and access his public folder and get the freeware there, it deletes a mess o' prefs files and may help you
     
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Sep 5, 2000, 10:56 PM
 
Deleted the servers folder (Recent Servers, in the Apple Menu); it was empty. Couldn't find the "hidden" AppleShare PDS to delete it; any ideas? Will try to find that freeware,if not I also have Spring Cleaning, which does the same thing, sort of. Thanks for all your help.

Val
     
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Sep 6, 2000, 06:42 AM
 
I once had some trouble with my Mac becoming too slow when I was using a desktop picture. Removing it and using desktop patern fixed that. You aren't using a desktop picture by any chance ?
     
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Sep 10, 2000, 06:43 PM
 
Well just a few suggestions…

You can download OS 8.6 free from Apple, so I'd suggest doing that A.S.A.P. Also, Apple suggests that you have Virtual memory set to 1.5 times the amount of physical RAM.

I know some long time users are anti-Virtual memory because it used to suck and cause crases, but ever since 8.6 its been a great thing when set at the suggested 1.5x physical RAM. (i.e. I have a physical 96MB RAM and 144MB virtual memory)

Of course if you haven't, every now & then I like to reset PRAM, rebuild the desktop & delete the caches manually.

One last thing, have you defragmented your Hard Drive lately? I do this weekly to keep it fast. How full is your Hard drive also? I like to keep at least 25% free.

I suggest doing all of these & see how that works for you. If so or if not, keep us updated either way.


------------------
Pax Christi,
-Nik!
In Christ,
Deacon Nikolai
http://nstanosheck.wordpress.com
     
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Sep 15, 2000, 04:59 PM
 
When the slow down happends, break into macsbug and type bye see if that helps. Also try deleting the finder, and system prefs


------------------
-See Yea!
     
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Sep 27, 2000, 01:28 PM
 
Tried some of the suggestions and they seemed to help, at least temporarily. Rebuilt the desktop, reset the PRAM, and stopped using a desk top picture and screensaver. Couldn't get into iDisk (don't have OS9, and don't want to upgrade before I have figured this out) and don't have macsbug. I have heard only bad things about OS 8.6 from coworkers and want to avoid it if possible. Added some VM to my existing memory (160 mb) but shouldn't that amount of physical memory be enough?

A few days ago I was watching the ballgame (iProRaid-TV) and had the After Dark screensaver activated (to try it out again); it started up and froze the machine; only a button reset would bring it back.

Today, I quit iCab and it got very slow just after iCab quit. Also at that point I noticed that the Techworks CDR drive went dead. I wasn't using it, but had popped the door open just after I had started the computer. Hitting the reset button restarted the computer just fine, but the CDR was still dead. Is a bum CDR causing this slowdown or is it going dead as a result of the slowing down? It's completely dead- if I looked in the Apple System Profilier it would not find any CD-ROM drive. Any suggestions of something concrete- not just "take the CDR drive out and see what happens" because this is still an intermittent problem.

I still need to run Spring Cleaning and delete the Cache files- I assume you are talking about Netscape and iCab. Where might I find them and what are they called exactly? I don't want to delete anything that I need and that won't be rebuilt.

Thanks- Val
     
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Sep 27, 2000, 08:40 PM
 
8.6 was great!!! i am surprised anyone told you different...

netscape's cache files are in the Netscape Users folder ( in the Preferences folder) and are in the Cache Ä folder (this is from memory as i will not use netscape anymore) and iCab's cache files are in the Preferences folder in the iCab preferences folder and in the iCab Cache folder

there is a simple workaround for using iTools on pre-OS 9 MacOSes, and it has been posted many times to the fora, and here again: http://www.acts.org/itoolstrick/

dunno what to tell you, concretely, about the dead drive
     
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Oct 1, 2000, 03:57 PM
 
One thing that you might try if the probalem is still plagueing you: go into the memory control panel and look at your disk cache setting. If it's not set to default, that could be your problem. If you have too much disk cache, than your computer can spend a lot of time searching the cache for files when it should be doing other things.

This happened to me when I got my spiffy new G3 with 128 MB RAM, I turned the disk cache waaaay up, and got periodic slowdowns... Like you said, down to about 1Mhz, especially when using programs like netscape that generate lots of tiny files, when then go into the disk cache, and cause even MORE slowdowns.

If you have a fast net connection, you might also cinsoder turning off netscpae caching, or set it low, to about 5MB....that might be part of the problem as well.
     
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Oct 2, 2000, 02:32 AM
 
just looked at the disk cache today, and it is set to default. also, i only have a dialup internet connection (33.6 on the sunny day; 28.8 during the 6-8 month rainy season) but i'm thinking of getting a DSL from Earthlink. would it still be a good idea to try cutting down on/turning off netscape cacheing? a strange additional thing- i noticed that the apple system profilier said there was no startup drive selected, but i wasn't getting the question mark in a folder at startup. went to startup disk in the control panel, and selected the hard drive as a startup disk (it wasn't selected). Still getting periodic slowdowns and freezeups. Was able to cause one yesterday by pushing in the Satanworks CD-R (it had been open for a while). the second I pushed it in, the computer got very slow and the CD-R went dead (no light, no open). hitting the reset button brought the computer back, but the CD-R was still dead. I'm beginning to suspect this piece of hardware, but can't figure out why it would slow down the computer. I'd love to yank it out right now, but have several CD burning projects to do this month.

Val


[This message has been edited by ValVashon (edited 10-02-2000).]
     
Clinically Insane
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Oct 2, 2000, 04:51 AM
 
Thats interesting...
Some apps do that with CD-R's.
Is it SCSI?
Whenever I have a CD in my CD-RW drive (dunno whether its only with blank CD's, or all CD's), and I open Audion (only constant example I can think of), it takes ages to open, and tries to read the CD-RW drive...
Strange. It should have nothing to do with it.
Just thinking, is it properly terminated? Check ID's, for conflicts...
It is SCSI right?

Cipher13
     
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Oct 3, 2000, 10:53 PM
 
No, it's one of those Techworks Internal CD-R drives that they sold for a while. I got mine second hand, since I missed out on buying one while the company was still offering them. The previous owner reported no difficulties with this one when it was installed on his computer. I did read somewhere (I think on these boards) that there was a problem with these drives going dead. While the company was covering it under warranty, they also weren't making any more, so I don't know what the solution would be. More about this problem- I also seem to be having a lot of memory related errors. I was getting a lot of Norton Crash Guard "Unmapped memory exception" errors for a while but they have slacked off a bit recently. This slowdown also feels like a computer would act if the memory is overtaxed, and sometimes the printer prints incomplete documents if they are picture-heavy. I have 160mb of physical memory and a total of 240 mb if virtual memory is added in. I have also increased the allocation to the printer and Appleworks. I also am using only about 1.3 gb of my 4gb hard drive. I'm about ready to yank this thing out at the end of the month to see if it clears up these problems.

Val
     
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Oct 9, 2000, 09:28 AM
 
Hey

I think performing a clean intstall should do the trick. Same thing happened to a friend's iMac rev b 32 mb ram and works much faster!

Hope this helps!!
     
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Oct 9, 2000, 10:14 PM
 
This sounds like it would work. I'm thinking that a "clean install" is of the system software only, and leaves other programs and files alone. Is this correct? It's less drastic than re-initializing the hard drive, right? I would then have to go back and update the firmware and the other iMac OS 8.5 (.1) updates if I have the basics of the process down.

I'm also thinking that this may be a hard drive problem. I have Norton, and when the computer is slow, I can see via disk light that it is reading off of the hard drive in fits and starts. I'm also thinking that the high number of "unmapped memory exception" errors via CrashGuard also point to a hard drive problem. If I bring it into an Apple Service Center can they listen to the hard drive working and tell if there is a problem?

Val
     
   
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