Log in ....Tribune

Monday, August 26, 2002
Dr Tribune

Q. I have an assembled PC with configuration of P-4, 1.6 GHz, Intel 845 chipset of odyssey, 40 GB HDD, 128 MB RAM, Windows-XP, Internal modem of Motorola. My problem is whenever I start my computer a box opens saying, "Insufficient memory to run this application. Quit one or more application and then try it again." After pressing OK computer functions properly and no problem comes after that. I have four partition of my HDD each having 10 GB of space then why this problem occurs.

Amit Saluja, Kapurthala

A. In order to solve this problem, first of all reduce the amount of disk space to be used for ‘System Restore.’ You can do this by going to System Restore and check the settings for the drives that you have been monitoring. However, if this does not solve your problem, then it would surely be a case of memory leak, which normally happens, when you install 16-bit applications on the system, and when they are a part of the booting process, so it generates the error mentioned by you on start-up. In order to solve this problem, click on Start/Run, type msconfig, then check ‘Selective Startup’, then uncheck ‘Load Startup Items’, then Hit ‘Apply’, and Close it. Now restart the computer, this will take care of your problem.

Q. I have an assembled PC with configuration — P 4 (1.7 GHz) via motherboard, P4XFM, 128 MB RAM, 40GB hard disk with 3 partitions, 56K external USB modem. I am using Win 2000 as OS. I purchased this PC nearly a month ago. I have the following problems:

1) Its speed is not up to expectations. Being P 4, its speed should be high enough but it is even slower than my friend’s P III.

2) It is having three fans. One is with power supply, another with processor and still another is at the back of CPU. But still it is heated up to 56 0C as indicated by Winbond HW Doctor. Also it indicates that my Sys fan speed is 0 but I have checked that it is functioning normally. Then what could be the possible reason for its heating up?

Also, a few days ago Norton anti-virus (which is up-to-date) detected a virus JS Exception Exploit while opening an MP3 songs downloading site. Is this virus responsible for my problems in any manner? I have scanned all drives with Norton anti-virus but no viruses were found.

Amit Sood

A. You have mentioned one of the possible solutions of the problem in the question itself. The heating up of processor certainly reduces the speed of the computer and could even harm it. The temperature mentioned in the problem is certainly on the higher side and should be in the range of 45-52 0 C depending upon the weather condition in the area. Moreover since you have also written that the system fan installed in the system is showing Zero speed, which means you need to check it for its proper installation. Also you should make sure that, if this fan is installed at the back of your cabinet then it should be installed to blow the air out of the computer. If it is not properly set, then also it will not help in lowering down the temperature. Also check out its RPM, if it is low then it needs to be changed. From the other details of the computer provided by you, the only other reason, which seems most likely for the under performance of your system could be the use of SDRAM since the motherboard (VIA- P4XFM) supports 400 MHz system bus frequency, but has 2 x 168-pin DIMM Sockets supporting PC133 SDRAM and 2 x 184-pin DDR Module Socket supporting DDR200/DDR266 DDR SDRAM. Now if you use the normal SDRAM in your DDR motherboard P4 computer, then the performance of the system is not optimised. Since now the price difference in the DDR RAM and PC133 RAM has narrowed so it always makes sense to use DDR RAM in P4 system. I hope changing the RAM will solve your problem. Also for increasing the speed of your computer please load the failsafe default/Optimal setting in the BIOS feature set-up. This will take care of any unoptimised setting in the PC and boost the performance of the system.

As far as your third query is concerned, I do not think that JS Exception Exploit can decelerate the PC performance. It is an exploit that allows Java applets to run arbitrary code on unpatched systems. In many cases, the applet may perform simple actions such as changing the Internet Explorer home page. It can also be programmed to run code to perform a mass mailing, as in the case of VBS.Loding.A@mm.

Q. I am unable to format my hard disk. I have a Seagate hard disk of 20 GB. I want to format my hard disk but am unable to do so. It gets stuck at 21 per cent and doesn’t show any error and comes out to command prompt. I tried to format using a bootable disk also but it gave the same error as my hard disk developed bad sector. My system configuration is P III, 600 20 GB HDD, Seagate with Win Me installed.

Nitin Loomba, New Delhi

A. The choices in your case are limited. As under the first choice, you can use Scandisk or other third party software like Norton Disk doctor etc, and once you fix the bad sectors, then you should try to format the hard disk. The second and more reliable solution could be low-level formatting. I hope these solutions will solve your problem.

Q My PC configuration is P II, 64 MB RAM, 650 MHz., Intel motherboard. My question is what is the maximum RAM that can be attached to the CPU. Are their any drivers or settings that are to be installed or changed after attaching the RAM on the motherboard? My second query is how can I disable settings option so that other users may not change screensavers etc. I have heard about policy editor as a solution for this problem but how to install it. My third query is that what is the most optimum configuration money wise and as well as performance wise of a P II computer with multimedia facility.


A. The RAM that can be installed in the computer would largely depend on the motherboard. Please check the motherboard manual for details like this. Also, there are no drivers or settings involved in installation of RAM. Regarding other queries the optimum settings of a P II computer would largely depend on a lot of factors like type of motherboard and its limitations etc. It would depend from case to case. For example, motherboard with onboard display and sound card will have different optimal configuration in comparison with the motherboard not having anything onboard. So, you have to detail your case with all information, for the optimal setting of the computer.

Q. I have P 4, 1.6 MHz 256 MB RAM, 40 GB hard disk, 128 MB sound card, Motorola internal modem, 16x DVD ROM. My problem is whenever I shutdown my PC after surfing or while surfing a message is displayed: "There is unknown error. The program will shutdown and if I close it, it gives next display. If the problem occurs try restarting." How will it be solved?

Rajinder, Shimla.

A. Please run scandisk on the computer in thorough mode as the first and basic step. This may solve the problem automatically as it will take care of problems like lost clusters, cross-linking etc., which could also cause this problem. However, if there are bad sectors, which are the prime suspects in this type of problems, it would also be taken care of by scan disk. However, if no bad sectors are detected, then you should run defrag also in continuation. However, other than scandisk and defrag, please clear the memory cache and disk cache and also delete all temporary Internet files. This will solve your problem.

Q. My problem started with uninstalling (not deleting) smart-explorer, which incidentally I installed after reading about it in the Login Tribune. I also uninstalled Norton anti-virus from my computer at the same time. My problems are:

1. Outlook Express and new mail message and mails in Inbox all take too long to open.

2. Unable to perform scandisk. It takes 4 to 5 hours and I have to restart it many times. Even when there was no screensaver, every few minutes it said drive’s contents changed. Restart all over again. I could do scandisk but it took 5 hours.

3.Similarly it is unable to defrag for the same reason as in serial number 2

4. I am unable to restart computer in MS DOS mode. It gets stuck with following message:c:\ c:\ windows\ system\ waveinit/az20/15/d1/L388/U330/M/S/GZ/3 waveinit 3.93 4D wave-dx PCI AUDIODEVICE FOUND @PCI ADDRESS 004SH(DEVICE09H) and gets stuck up there and has to be switched off manually.

5. After booting with a bootable floppy, I tried to format C: . I get the message: "insufficient memory to load system files, format terminated."

6. Tried to run scandisk in DOS mode. I got the message, "there is not enough free conventional memory to perform a surface scan. REM some device drivers from your config.sys file or in confg.sys, load EMM386.exe driver to load your other device into upper memory blocks using DEVICEHIGH = statements

7. Every time I start my computer, I noticed a message, "Please wait while set up updates your configuration files.

8. The wallpaper on desktop gets replaced with white screen "active desktop recovery."

Baldev Singh

A. I have thoroughly gone through your problem, but unfortunately I do not have any information about the computer. I would definitely need some basic information like operating system, hard disk capacity, amount of free disk space, system configuration etc for the solution of your problem. Since the solution may vary with operating systems, so this information is a must.

Q. My system configuration is Pentium P III, 866 MHz processor, Intel chipset 815e mercury motherboard, floppy drive, Samsung 52x CD ROM, 128 MB RAM, 40 GB HDD (6 partitions), Multimedia Samsung Keyboard, Samsung 15" Monitor, 52 KBPS internal modem, Operating System Windows Me. I am also facing the same problem of defragmentation whose solution you have given in one of your previous editions. But I don’t know how to increase swap files and stop programs running in the background. Please guide me.

My other problems are:

1. My computer doesn’t show the exact space used and left free on C: drive. It is 3.89 GB. Sometimes it shows used space 3.37 GB, sometimes 3.18 GB and at other times 2.88 GB.

2. Is there any way to repair bad sectors in the hard disk or is any software available.

3. For the last few days I am facing a peculiar problem. I asked my vendor but he told me that there is no problem. Actually what happens whenever I start my system the desktop shows and displays always lesser than the screen size? On restarting it will be normal. This happens whenever I start my computer.

Harpreet Singh

A Regarding your first problem, some temporary files are being generated when you work on it and these gets stored on various locations. The first one being in the C:\ Windows\ Temp directory. The other one’s are in the Document & settings> User>Application data>Cache. Also these are temporary Internet files and cache files, which gets stored on a PC. While some files are deleted when you shut down most of the iles remain on the system. This could thus result in the varying disk space on PC. To keep the PC tuned delete all temporary files periodically and also keep the browser free with resources. However, I cannot rule out the possibility of some virus also. But before that you should set right the things mentioned above. Regarding your second query, you can use software like Norton Disk doctor for treating bad sectors. Regarding the third query, please check the voltage of power supply, as this could be the reason for the problem mentioned by you. However, it could also happen due to weak electronic equipment like capacitors, which is taking more than normal time to heat up.