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I do run many progs at the same time and even dozens of IE windows, but I never had this problem. Tracing what I intalled is a nonstarter (more than issue might be at play) since it's complicated and I don't feel like buying a new pc or re-installign everything in this one.
I have symantec running always (live protection actually saved my @ss a few times) and I have taken out most not-needed progs from msconfig-start. No viruses/ spyware exist and I do defrags very often.
any other suggestions?
In task manager, look at the "Physical memory remaining" -- If it's less than about 10% of your 2GB, then either you've got a real memory hog program in there, or... you need more RAM.
I'm sure you've heard it before, but I have to repeat that evidently, Symantec's top priority is not system performance. There are many other equally-good AV packages on the market with a far smaller footprint and much less performance impact.
I did have many registry broken links
The registry is many times the reason for slowing PCs down. My experience is that cleaning the registry often gives more performance increase than running a defrag utility on the harddisk.
The most used part of your harddisk is probably the swapfile which Windows likes to use even if loads of RAM is available. One thing I have done on my PCs is to make a single partition with the size of 1,5 times RAM and put a fixed sized swapfile on it. With this configuration your swapfile will not be affected by fragmentation in your regular file system as all blocks in the swapfile are in sequence and located close to each other.
Do you guys have the live protetion on? I mean if you surf a bad site or open an email with a virus, does it protect you?
Obviously I can't compare ZA with how well other software does all this. Nor do I know anything about the full ZA suite which includes anti-spam, etc.
ZA Anti-Virus uses its own firewall, and my WinXP firewall was switched off when it was installed. It also provides a daily virus update which is usually very quick. It does the usual system scan, scheduled or when requested.