My computer can't run pretty much... anything. What's wrong?

I am on an older computer, older CPU, older processor, etc., but it's run perfectly for about 10 years now. Suddenly, it shut itself down and started up again. Now, my computer is incapable of starting basic programs (all of which on Steam) that ran perfectly before. The computer will display the hourglass and the app shadow, like it's soon going to open, for about 1/5 of a second, then it reverts back to nothing. I waited 40 minutes -- not seconds, forty full MINUTES -- for Fallout Shelter (one of the most basic Steam games in existence) to load before I gave up. My sister's friend decided to hit a bunch of buttons, and I'm pretty sure that it screwed SOME stuff up, but it seems unlike such a trusty computer to suddenly give up on me. I have, like, 40 anti-virus, anti-malware, etc. apps on this computer, so I doubt anything will get through all of the sieves undetected. Also, the computer-saur that I'm using is an HP Pavilion Elite HPE-400f PC with a single-core, 3.0 GHz processor, and a relatively new graphics card. So, give it to me straight, doc; is she gonna make it? What can I do?

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CloudV3 days ago

OMG same here! I found it fixes itself after like a day but is still a pain in the rear.

It's always difficult to diagnose these kind of problems without witnessing it first hand, but I'd have to agree with Vyger. An imminent hard disk failure would be a logical conclusion.

The other thing that stands out is when you said you have "like, 40 anti-virus, anti-malware, etc. apps" .. having more than one real-time anti-virus scanner running at the same time can be detrimental to performance as they will effectively work against each other. This result will be greatly exaggerated on a struggling system, make sure you only have one real-time security solution running at any one time. Having multiple on-demand scanners at your disposal however is perfectly fine.

In short, try the computer with a new HDD, try cloning your existing HDD to a new HDD if possible, but before you do anything try to back-up any important data and documents you have stored on the existing HDD.

Vyger4 days ago

All hard drives will eventually fail, it just a matter of when. If the drive is developing bad sectors it is going to die and be unreadable soon. From your description that is what is happening. The drive needs to be cloned to a new drive and then have a file repair done. Drive heads and drive platters wear out. How many millions of times have the disks spun around on those bearings? 7200 RPM times how many minutes?

If you don't know how to do it then get someone to copy the hard drive to a new one. Continuing to run it now while it is failing will only make it worse.

Fan blocked with crap, so CPU isn't cooling

rickharris4 days ago

Older!

Too slow,

Not enough memory

Desperately needs cleaning and reinstallation of OS

Not enough storage.

As systems improve the newer software takes advantage of these improvements and you PC can't cope.