A Windows XP problem

I upgraded to Windows XP recently, and have since had a problem with games pausing. These pauses range from a fews seconds to as much as 10-15. I’ve experimented with various BIOS settings, but haven’t found the cause. It seems to happen mainly with 3D games. Can anyone offer a suggestion?

My system is a P4/2.26 GHz with 1 GB of DDR RAM, a GeForce 4 Ti 4600 and SoubdBlaster Live! Gamer sound card.



When I’m using a file sharing program in the background my performance in games become stuttery and awful. Do you have anything running in the background?

Did you perform a clean upgrade? Or did you install XP over your existing Windows installation? (If so, what version?)

If it’s when 3d games are running, try running a couple in ‘windowed’ mode with the task manager open and the CPU tab selected ( to see what process is using the most CPU - there might be something there.)

otherwise - I shall do the usual and sugguest Update drivers for everything. ( including the motherboard )… maybe even get the latest Direct X if you haven’t already.

Thanks for the suggestions.

I’ve already updated updated all my drivers, to no effect. (I wonder if I should go back to an older video driver?)

The only thing running in the background in my firewall, and the pausing occurs whether it’s on or off.

And, yes, it was a clean upgrade to a freshly formatted drive.


You could try turning off System Restore (right click “My Computer”, select the System Restore tab.)

XP does a lot of stuff in the background, but usually is good about not interrupting games and such.

Maybe your hard drive is in PIO mode? That would cause lots of pauses during any disk read. Check the IDE settings in the Device Manager. That can happen if XP detects any read errors on the hard drive.


Thanks. I’ll experiment with disabling System Restore.

(However, my main drive is SCSI, so that wouldn’t be the issue.)


I disabled System Restore and changed the SCSI drive’s properties, but this had no effect.


I’ve had a similar problem and been unable to track it down. I turned off the CDilla stuff from TurboTax, and it happens less often but still on occasion. It makes trying to burn CDs a treat.

I’ve had a similar problem and been unable to track it down. I turned off the CDilla stuff from TurboTax, and it happens less often but still on occasion. It makes trying to burn CDs a treat.

When the game freezes can you tell if there is hard disk access or not?

I’m thinking it MIGHT be the indexing service. I’ve heard it can cause problems, so have never actually had it running.

Without going into the windows services you can stop it by right clicking on each hard drive in the my computers screen and select properties. Then uncheck the “Allow indexing service to …” box at the bottom. Make sure it’s applied to all subfolders.

It’s a stretch.

[size=2]edited for clarity[/size]

I’m beginning to think it’s not a setting or conflict, but rather, an indication that some component of my computer is failing. I’ve gotten a couple of device failure errors in the last day, but no info on the source of the error. (Is this recorded in a file somewhere?) Is there a freeware diagnostic program somwhere that might help me find the source of this problem?



You can look at a log of device failues by opening the Administrative Tools in the Control Panel, and looking at the Event Viewer.

Thanks. The error log reveals that the driver for my graphics card was entering an infinite loop, and suggested updating it. Which I did. But, though I’m no l;onger getting errors, the pauses continue. :(

Lord, I hope I don’t have to replace this card. I haven’t had it that long. :(


If you had an ATI card I would recommend disabling fast writes, and maybe slowing the AGP from 8x to 4x. If you can do either it may be worth a shot. (you may have to do both in the BIOS)

I haven’t had a nvidia card in years though, so I don’t know if this is useful advice.

Don’t you have another video card handy to test with? See if you can get one of your mates to lend you one. It really helps to put a component that’s known to be good in, just for a quick sanity test. If it solves the problem, then you can decide how best to resolve the issue, whether it’s plinking around the BIOS, fiddling with drivers, or buying a whole new card.

“Handy” is the operative word. :) I have a bunch, but they’re all in storage and not easily recovered. I’ll see what I can dig out.


Never mind, folks. It appears to be a bad card. (I dug out a GeForce3, which worked just fine.) Back it goes. Sorry to waste everyone’s time, but thanks for all the help nevertheless.


Got my replacement card today, and was interested to see that XP identified it as a Ti 4800, which I hadn’t heard of before, Is that simply a 4600 for AGP 8x? Or is there more to that chipset?


Its probably just that you don’t have the latest drivers, so it can’t identify it?