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Bookmem

Too slow Dell M2400 laptop

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Bookmem
Posted (edited)

I know this is a Vista era laptop and it isn't going to be as fast as later models. but it has a dual core Intel CPU running at 2.66 ghz.  But its benchmark nunbers are horrid in Win 7, 10 and Mint LDME.  It is so slow that the sound is jerky in  Karaoke players and XP laptops will run that software.  I have tried replacing the RAM and that doesn't help.  Have set the BIOS to default values, still no help.  Also, all three OS attremps were fresh, clean installs with no apps add except benchmark.  Looked at task manager in Windows and nothing is running in the background.  HWMonitor readings all look normal.  This laptop just shouldn't be this slow.

Edited by Bookmem

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abarbarian
10 hours ago, Bookmem said:

I know this is a Vista era laptop and it isn't going to be as fast as later models. but it has a dual core Intel CPU running at 2.66 ghz.  But its benchmark nunbers are horrid in Win 7, 10 and Mint LDME.  It is so slow that the sound is jerky in  Karaoke players and XP laptops will run that software.  I have tried replacing the RAM and that doesn't help.  Have set the BIOS to default values, still no help.  Also, all three OS attremps were fresh, clean installs with no apps add except benchmark.  Looked at task manager in Windows and nothing is running in the background.  HWMonitor readings all look normal.  This laptop just shouldn't be this slow.

 

MX-19 or antix may be worth trying out. I run MX-19 on a similar laptop and things seem to run ok. 😎

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raymac46

I have found that anything less than 4GB of RAM is going to be slow with most browsers these days. Also the graphics on an old laptop will be execrable. You can try a very light Linux like antiX or use the MX Linux Fluxbox option. Also try one of the lighter browsers like Midori.

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Bookmem
1 hour ago, raymac46 said:

I have found that anything less than 4GB of RAM is going to be slow with most browsers these days. Also the graphics on an old laptop will be execrable. You can try a very light Linux like antiX or use the MX Linux Fluxbox option. Also try one of the lighter browsers like Midori.

It has 4gb of RAM.  I refurbish old laptops on a regular basis and this in NOT typical of laptops of the era.  It is supposed to be a "top of the line", Dell business class laptop, capable of running "Aero".  It should be one of the best laptops of the Vista era and its running like the worst.

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raymac46
Posted (edited)

I assume your CPU temps are OK and you have checked for dust in the cooler. Can you run inxi -Fxz and post the result here? Likely you will need to use Nouveau with the Nvidia graphics you have and that isn't always the best solution.

I have a Vista era desktop that runs MX-Linux OK but I have upgraded the video card and have 6 GB of RAM.

If you have a cheap SSD around you could try replacing the HDD. Probably you have SATA1 in there but you could try. Not worth much upgrading but $25-$30 might be OK.

Edited by raymac46

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raymac46

Here is inxi from one of my laptops.

System:
  Host: ray-debian-T430 Kernel: 4.19.0-8-amd64 x86_64 bits: 64 compiler: gcc 
  v: 8.3.0 Desktop: Gnome 3.30.2 Distro: Debian GNU/Linux 10 (buster) 
Machine:
  Type: Laptop System: LENOVO product: 2347H76 v: ThinkPad T430 
  serial: <filter> 
  Mobo: LENOVO model: 2347H76 serial: <filter> UEFI [Legacy]: LENOVO 
  v: G1ET94WW (2.54 ) date: 04/22/2013 
Battery:
  ID-1: BAT0 charge: 42.2 Wh condition: 42.6/93.6 Wh (46%) 
  model: LGC 45N1011 status: Unknown 
CPU:
  Topology: Dual Core model: Intel Core i5-3320M bits: 64 type: MT MCP 
  arch: Ivy Bridge rev: 9 L2 cache: 3072 KiB 
  flags: lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 sse4_2 ssse3 vmx bogomips: 20751 
  Speed: 1304 MHz min/max: 1200/3300 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 2755 2: 2541 
  3: 2528 4: 2558 
Graphics:
  Device-1: Intel 3rd Gen Core processor Graphics vendor: Lenovo 
  driver: i915 v: kernel bus ID: 00:02.0 
  Display: x11 server: X.Org 1.20.4 driver: modesetting unloaded: fbdev,vesa 
  resolution: 1366x768~60Hz 
  OpenGL: renderer: Mesa DRI Intel Ivybridge Mobile v: 4.2 Mesa 18.3.6 
  direct render: Yes 
Audio:
  Device-1: Intel 7 Series/C216 Family High Definition Audio vendor: Lenovo 
  driver: snd_hda_intel v: kernel bus ID: 00:1b.0 
  Sound Server: ALSA v: k4.19.0-8-amd64 
Network:
  Device-1: Intel 82579LM Gigabit Network vendor: Lenovo driver: e1000e 
  v: 3.2.6-k port: 5080 bus ID: 00:19.0 
  IF: enp0s25 state: down mac: <filter> 
  Device-2: Intel Centrino Advanced-N 6205 [Taylor Peak] driver: iwlwifi 
  v: kernel port: efa0 bus ID: 03:00.0 
  IF: wlp3s0 state: up mac: <filter> 
Drives:
  Local Storage: total: 119.24 GiB used: 20.73 GiB (17.4%) 
  ID-1: /dev/sda vendor: Samsung model: MZ7PC128HAFU-000H1 size: 119.24 GiB 
Partition:
  ID-1: / size: 109.29 GiB used: 20.73 GiB (19.0%) fs: ext4 dev: /dev/sda1 
  ID-2: swap-1 size: 7.70 GiB used: 0 KiB (0.0%) fs: swap dev: /dev/sda5 
Sensors:
  System Temperatures: cpu: 46.0 C mobo: N/A 
  Fan Speeds (RPM): cpu: 2595 
Info:
  Processes: 200 Uptime: N/A Memory: 7.50 GiB used: 1.76 GiB (23.5%) 
  Init: systemd runlevel: 5 Compilers: gcc: 8.3.0 Shell: bash v: 5.0.3 
  inxi: 3.0.32 

 

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V.T. Eric Layton

I had a very similar Dell Latitude / Core2Duo laptop a few years back that ran like a scalded dawg with Slackware on it. This lappy only had 2Gig RAM.

 

Most slowness on older machines (and newer ones, too) is caused these days by all the javascripting and other carp on websites. They are HUGE resource hogs and browser makers have not figured out yet how to properly deal with this. Just last night in FF on a 6-core AMD processor machine with 12Gig of RAM, I had a slow down and a bit of herky-jerky going on with mouse and audio due to a horrendous amount of carp on the YouTube page and another page that I was viewing separately. Top showed FF sucking up about 4Gig of RAM and 40% CPU cycles.

 

It happens. :(

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Bookmem
1 hour ago, V.T. Eric Layton said:

I had a very similar Dell Latitude / Core2Duo laptop a few years back that ran like a scalded dawg with Slackware on it. This lappy only had 2Gig RAM.

 

Most slowness on older machines (and newer ones, too) is caused these days by all the javascripting and other carp on websites. They are HUGE resource hogs and browser makers have not figured out yet how to properly deal with this. Just last night in FF on a 6-core AMD processor machine with 12Gig of RAM, I had a slow down and a bit of herky-jerky going on with mouse and audio due to a horrendous amount of carp on the YouTube page and another page that I was viewing separately. Top showed FF sucking up about 4Gig of RAM and 40% CPU cycles.

 

It happens. :(

This isn't related to any browsing.  It is a hardware problem of some sort.  It is slow on EVERYTHING.  I think something to do with the nVidia GPU is throttling the CPU.  I've read some threads about it with the Windows drivers but it is also doing it in Linux.  

 

1 hour ago, raymac46 said:

I assume your CPU temps are OK and you have checked for dust in the cooler. Can you run inxi -Fxz and post the result here? Likely you will need to use Nouveau with the Nvidia graphics you have and that isn't always the best solution.

I have a Vista era desktop that runs MX-Linux OK but I have upgraded the video card and have 6 GB of RAM.

If you have a cheap SSD around you could try replacing the HDD. Probably you have SATA1 in there but you could try. Not worth much upgrading but $25-$30 might be OK.

This DOES show the problem:

CPU:
  Topology: Dual Core model: Intel Core2 Duo P8800 bits: 64 type: MCP 
  arch: Penryn rev: A L2 cache: 3072 KiB 
  flags: lm nx pae sse sse2 sse3 sse4_1 ssse3 vmx bogomips: 10640 
  Speed: 613 MHz max: 800 MHz Core speeds (MHz): 1: 624 2: 623 

This is the CPU portion of the inxi results.  Seems the CPU it being throttled to 800 MHz max.

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Bookmem

I just found this by searching "throttled to 800MHz".

Quote

BD PROCHOT stands for bi-directional processor hot.  This allows other sensors on your motherboard to signal the CPU which forces the CPU to use the minimum multiplier (8).  The CPU behaves exactly the same as if it was thermal throttling but in this case, the CPU temperature is fine.  On some motherboards, it can be either a temperature switch from the voltage regulator or a power consumption switch.  On your motherboard, it is very likely that the Slow Mode switch intended for LN2 users is failing.  The only fix is a new board.  This problem has nothing to do with Windows.  

 

ThrottleStop is the only free software available that lets a user disable the BD PROCHOT signal path.  When you uncheck BD PROCHOT, that blocks signals from the defective switch getting to your CPU.  A simple fix and after you disable BD PROCHOT, you should be able to exit ThrottleStop and the BD PROCHOT signal path will remain disabled.  ThrottleStop also has an option that you can add to the INI configuration file.

I'm downloading "ThrottleStop" now, but I'll have to re-install Windows before trying it.

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V.T. Eric Layton
2 hours ago, Bookmem said:

It is a hardware problem of some sort.  It is slow on EVERYTHING.

 

Ah... vive la différence! ;)

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zlim

Have you tested the hard drive? A hard drive going out could slow everything to a crawl. Since the machine is a business Vista laptop, it is older and could have been used hard.

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Bookmem
1 hour ago, zlim said:

Have you tested the hard drive? A hard drive going out could slow everything to a crawl. Since the machine is a business Vista laptop, it is older and could have been used hard.

I always buy laptop without harddrives.  I've tried a couple of drives that work in other laptops.

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Bookmem
Posted (edited)
18 hours ago, raymac46 said:

Tried ThrottleStop in Windows.  Didn't do anything.  Benchmark PC still says CPU max 800Mhz.  The only nvidia driver that works is dated 2008.  Anything newer causes Windows to crash, which means I have to jump through hoops to keep Windows from updating it.  I'm giving up and parting this thing out.

Edited by Bookmem

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goretsky

Hello,


Given the age of the laptop, I would suggest checking into the following maintenance/upgrades of the hardware:

1.  Remove, clean and re-paste heat sink(s) for CPU and, if present, GPU.

2.  Clean fans and air vents of any dust or debris.  Fans may need to be replaced if they do not rotate freely when gently tapped with a finger.

3.  Replace HDD with a SSD.  Given age of system (2008), it may only have SATA-I or SATA-II speed drive controller, but that will still offer a visible improvement.

4.  Upgrade system to 8GB of RAM, if you can find it inexpensively (2×4GB DDR2-800 SO-DIMMs).

 

After the hardware installation, perform a clean installation (not a cloning) of which version of Windows you intend to run.  Make sure you also install Intel's chipset device drivers.  If Dell has any device drivers or other machine-specific software for the laptop which will run on the version of Windows you are installing, install those, too.

 

Regards,

 

Aryeh Goretsky

 

 

 

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Bookmem

Well, I found the answer to the problem and I'm embarassed to report it.  After all the Dell laptops I've delt with over the years, I didn't realize the nag screen Dell gives on boot when you use a 65w AC adapter, is more than just a nag.  It is also what causes the CPU to throttle, in my case to .6 Ghz.  Unplug the adapter and run on battery, and the CPU runs full speed!!!  Use a 90w adapter and it also runs full  speed.  All this time, I thought it just took longer to  charge the battery with a 65w adapter.  I guess you can teach an old dog new tricks.  Didn't fix the nVidia driver problem though.😝

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raymac46

Well now that you have solved the throttling problem you can switch back to Linux where the Nouveau driver should work OK with the older Nvidia hardware.

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Bookmem
1 hour ago, raymac46 said:

Well now that you have solved the throttling problem you can switch back to Linux where the Nouveau driver should work OK with the older Nvidia hardware.

I'd have to pull it out of the junk heap and replace all the parts I've salvaged from it.🙂

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raymac46

We grow too soon old and too late smart. (Amish proverb.)

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