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Windows Thread, Odd Issue: Slow down 23:30 every night in Technical; I've started having a problem with my main development and office machine at home ever since I installed a new ...
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    contink's Avatar
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    Odd Issue: Slow down 23:30 every night

    I've started having a problem with my main development and office machine at home ever since I installed a new Samsung 2343BW monitor to the system and upgraded the graphics drivers.

    Every night now at around 11:30 the system either starts thwapping out very odd artifacts on the Samsung screen until it's basically unusable, while all the other screens display fine... or as happened this evening, the screen was offline and this time the whole system went into herky jerk mode with short freezes every second or so... It was as if a process was locking up the system but Task Manager > Processes indicated nothing was up.. Only the Performance graph gave lie to the CPU 99% system idle process...

    I'm in the process of updating the drivers now along with a bunch of WinUpdates I somehow missed but I'm curious if anyone else has come across an issue like this that is time related...

    FYI: installed and running.
    - Avast Pro
    - Spysweeper
    - Mamutu
    - Google desktop

    PowerColor 4850 ( 2 heads - 1=LG L225WT 2=Samsung 2343BW )
    Radeon 2650 (2 heads - 1=LG 1730S, 2=unused )

    Very odd... thought would be appreciated on this one.

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    Michael's Avatar
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    11:30pm every evening on the dot? I would say this is possibly a heat issue if you typically work the same hours every day/night. It has been quite warm recently and this also doesn't help if you have a small office or an office where you can't open any windows!

    The first thing you could try is rolling back the drivers. Did you really need to upgrade them or simply because you were installing a new screen that you wanted everything 'new'?

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    contink (5th June 2009)

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    contink's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Michael View Post
    11:30pm every evening on the dot? I would say this is possibly a heat issue if you typically work the same hours every day/night. It has been quite warm recently and this also doesn't help if you have a small office or an office where you can't open any windows!
    It's definitely not a heat issue as I'd barely done 15 minutes work this evening and the attic space I use as an office is cooler than it has been for days so that's not it. I also have a Skylight, fan, etc... so unlikely.

    The first thing you could try is rolling back the drivers. Did you really need to upgrade them or simply because you were installing a new screen that you wanted everything 'new'?
    Well I only installed the updated driver for the actual screen rather than the graphics card as that hasn't changed. Obvious reason for that was that otherwise the resolutions are all wrong, etc...

    I've updated anyway and incidentally I ran a scan on the system and along the way a ruddy hard drive failed in a RAID 10 array I have. Got 2 more on order now so I can replace the failed one and keep one spare but it was a bit of an unwelcome shock.

    Could have been something the RAID software does that was hitting problems but either way, still not 100% I've nailed the issue yet.


    Thanks for suggestions so far though Michael.

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    If not heat, how about power. How good is your PSU at smoothing out power issues, perhaps something on a timer (heater, neighbours AC, arc welder ) is powering up at 11:30 and destabilising the current going to your PC. If the PSU does not have good filtering abilities at the load that you are running it at then this could cause a power rail to loose voltage destabilisiing sensitive gear that is connected to it. Do you have a good UPS Unit in place and how good is the PSU in your system?

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    contink (5th June 2009)

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    no programs that have automatic updating enabled and scheduled at that time ?

    bio..

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    contink (5th June 2009)

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    elsiegee40's Avatar
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    Do you have an economy 7 type electricity meter? What time does it switch over to night mode and is the switch causing the blip?

    It shouldn't have any effect, but...

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    contink (5th June 2009)

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    sorry to hiijack your thread but while we are on the subject of weird things happening every night. I get up every morning to find Itunes running on my laptop in Itunes DJ mode and I have no idea why. Its probably an option I ticked at some point.

    on to your problem try a different screen or try a different computer on your screen in the same location.

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    contink's Avatar
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    Hmm... ok... in order:

    PSU: Got an Antec 500 Earth watts in the machine and though I've had problems with Antecs in the past, never something like this.

    UPS: Belkin F6C100xxUNV
    Checked the logs and it's not even setup to run any tests so it's not that

    Local Voltage:
    Can't say I've noticed any problems although I believe my server unit does do a bunch of high load tasks at around 01:30. Nothing else in the house kicks off then like washing machine cycles or similar. UPS logs (I have an APC on the server) indicate no power fluctuations either.

    Oh and no Economy 7 either

    Auto-Updates:
    Nope... nothing running at all. Checked defragger logs and that's not kicking in either. Scheduled tasks are not set for anything close to that.
    About the only thing I can think of is the Intel RAID running a check but that hasn't been running either.


    All in all I'd hazard a guess that this is the hard drive that was on its way or the PSU is starting to suffer a bit... Either that or one of my neighbours has created a "farm" in their basement and is lighting up the world but even that seems a little unlikely.

    I'll see what happens when I swap out the damaged Hard drive and see how we go from there.

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    The slowdowns without high CPU usage could be caused by a high level of interrupts - bust out process explorer and have a look to see if anything's going awry there.

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    contink (5th June 2009)

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    First thought I had was, do you really need a driver installed for your monitor? Monitor drivers are a waste of space IMO, just take it off. The only thing you changed in your software simultaneously to installing the monitor will be the monitor driver. Which you probably don't need.

    Of course it could all be a big coincidence and nothing to do with the monitor, but it sounds like you're sure they're linked.

    I wouldn't trust google desktop to play nice either...

    Do you use file sharing?

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    contink (5th June 2009)

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    Quote Originally Posted by Batman View Post
    First thought I had was, do you really need a driver installed for your monitor? Monitor drivers are a waste of space IMO, just take it off. The only thing you changed in your software simultaneously to installing the monitor will be the monitor driver. Which you probably don't need.
    Unfortunately the default driver does not support the monitors native resolution so that's a no go at this point.

    Of course it could all be a big coincidence and nothing to do with the monitor, but it sounds like you're sure they're linked.
    Yeah, I'd have thought so too... It could also be that the ATI CCC software uses .Net 2 which needed an update...

    I wouldn't trust google desktop to play nice either...
    LOL... well in this instance I think we can rule that one out as it would happen more frequently... not just at 11:30

    Do you use file sharing?
    Yes... over the network.. not P2P stuff like limewire or anything like that though... No iPlayer, Sky Player or other torrent style network sharing.

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    Right... now for the follow up.

    Ever since the monitor driver and .Net2.0 updates things have gone reasonably well... It seems the issue may have been more to do with screen saver and a slow down happening somewhere.. possibly even coinciding with the RAID checks that sometimes hit.

    Either way, I've since discovered that the last blip took out two hard drives... one in RAID and the other that was independent. Luckily only a 500Gb on the Raid and a 250Gb as the indie unit. Nothing vital lost and my replacements arrived today.


    I'm now trying to reclaim the RAID drive as it seems to be talking ok, aside from reporting the incorrect disk size.. but that's a different topic.

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