Windows Vista install on laptop may have created more noise

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Brightbelt
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Windows Vista install on laptop may have created more noise

Post by Brightbelt » Fri Mar 09, 2007 4:49 am

Hi,
Greetings. I bought a new HP Pavilion Laptop dv9030us recently and it had XP SP2 Media Center and it was very quiet for the most part. It has Intel Core 2 Duo, 1.66 GHz with 2 GB of RAM ddr memory, and two completely separate, internal 5400 hard drives.

I record on an external Seagate at 7200 and it has worked fine. I use Sonar 4 (when it was on XP) and I have Sonar 6 ready and waiting because of Vista. Incidentally, I am not able to do audio now on this laptop because I am waiting on Vista drivers from Mackie and Waves plugins. (I may be waiting for a while it seems!) So I'm using my desktop in my studio now since it is still on XP.

In short, after I installed Vista Home Premium, the laptop makes more noise. It sounds like the processor fan but it may involve the hard drives as well; I can't tell for sure.

There are several angles here and here are my questions:
1) Is there a way to reduce the noise while keeping this new Vista configuration?
2) Would uninstalling certain larger programs (like, say, Adobe Photoshop) make any difference in the noise level?
3) Assuming I am willing to give up on Vista, put in my recovery disks, and go back to XP and the laptop's factory configuration, what's to guarantee that the processor fan (or whatever the noise is) won't continue now that I've tried this different configuration?

I appreciate any suggestions or thoughts anyone might have. I figure why not tackle this problem now, even though I can't record at this time.

Many Thanks, Frank

denHerman
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Post by denHerman » Fri Mar 09, 2007 6:49 am

I too have noticed that my hard drive is doing more seeks since I installed Vista then it did when I used XP.
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DonP
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Post by DonP » Fri Mar 09, 2007 6:57 am

I think it's this smart pre-fetching of disk contents into RAM that it's doing.
I too recently got a new Vista install on a new laptop and found it was grinding the disk a lot.

However, I also noticed that it only does it for the first ten minutes or so - once it's prefetched all the stuff that it guesses it may need in the future disk access is a lot less.

I suspect that this is one of the reasons they changed the "shutdown" function into more of a "suspend" function.. because it then doesn't have to go off and re-pre-fetch the disk.

Just my 2 cents.

Brightbelt
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Post by Brightbelt » Fri Mar 09, 2007 7:33 am

Yes your idea about it being the first 10 minutes is possibly on the mark. It's still not totally certain.

But it is true that there are noticablely large intervals of time during which this laptop is just as quiet as before.

It may be that these noises revovle around re-logging in and/or inserting a CD or DVD into the drive.

Since I'm at a stand-still doing audio with Vista anyways, it's difficult to test the laptop at all.

When the drivers arrive that allow me to use Vista with audio, I'll test my laptop by letting it rest with the power off for at least 45 minutes before recording. Then I'll give it 5 to 10 minutes after booting to let the laptop settle. Than I'll record and see what happens.

Many Thanks for your responses.

Frank
www.frankbright.com

J. Sparrow
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Re: Windows Vista install on laptop may have created more no

Post by J. Sparrow » Fri Mar 09, 2007 7:34 am

Brightbelt wrote:In short, after I installed Vista Home Premium, the laptop makes more noise. It sounds like the processor fan but it may involve the hard drives as well; I can't tell for sure.
I'm not using Vista, maybe the new Aero interface could be the reason? It should put more stress on the GPU and thus more heat has to be dissipated.

butters
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Post by butters » Fri Mar 09, 2007 11:56 pm

Vista's SuperFetch is surely the culprit. Aero doesn't really consume that many GPU cycles. Rather, it consumes massive amounts of video RAM, but this only results in additional DMA traffic through your northbridge. This is not likely to significantly increase total system power consumption or cause your temperature sensitive fans to ramp up.

SuperFetch generates excessive disk I/O in an attempt to keep the currently running process from page faulting. This masks the inefficiency of context switching and process scheduling in Windows. Since hard disks consume a good deal of power and generate particularly annoying noise, it seems like an easy decision for quiet PC enthusiasts to disable SuperFetch when using Vista.

ReadyBoost, on the other hand, is of questionable use as a performance enhancement but is a potentially valuable technology for silencers. It uses flash memory as a disk cache, keeping frequently accessed filesystem data in silent solid-state memory. Flash is about 20x cheaper than DRAM (which is also used as a disk cache) and it's non-volatile. Therefore, it would be a good idea to buy an 8GB USB flash drive. They're less than $60USD at newegg and will keep the vast majority of your system files in silent storage, even across reboots.

Carefully selecting and modding hardware is the focus of SPCR, but understanding the functionality of your OS can also provide insight into how to silence your system. As an OS developer, I would like to see more noise-reducing OS mods discussed on SPCR.

Brightbelt
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Post by Brightbelt » Sat Mar 10, 2007 5:37 am

Does anyone know how one would disable SuperFetch in Windows Vista?
Thanks, Frank

CoolGav
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Post by CoolGav » Tue Mar 13, 2007 1:08 am

Brightbelt wrote:Does anyone know how one would disable SuperFetch in Windows Vista?
Googling brought me the following from a comment here:
Mario wrote:There is a way to disable superfetch in vista by setting the following registry key to a value of "0":

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Control\Session Manager\Memory Management\PrefetchParameters\EnableSuperfetch

A value of 1 prefetches boot processes, 2 prefetches applications and 3 is for both.

They should have given the option to turn this setting off in the computer management mmc but that works.
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StApostol
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Post by StApostol » Thu Mar 29, 2007 10:38 am

AFAIK, superfetch does not cause random grinding apart from system startup (for 2 to 3 minutes after booting in my system). I would say the real culprit is the indexer service that creates the search index for all files in your hard drive ("all" isn't correct technically but anyway). Try disabling either or both, and see if the situation improves.

Keep in mind that disabling any of these services will reduce performance by quite a lot (application startup times and instant search).

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