Is this a glitch? Answered

Hello from the UK! I commented on some guy's comment, he spelt immense wrong and you know how I am with grammar and stuff... Anywhores, I posted it and it commented on two different people's comments!!!??? Just look at the screenshot! Thansk, Flannel UK

Question by NatNoBrains   |  last reply

avatar glitch!!!

When ever i go to change my avatar, there is no pictures in my library. but i can put pictures every were else. to show you i put the picture i want as my avatar under this paragraph.

Topic by dsman195276   |  last reply

iPod touch glitch Answered

Hi, I was wondring what is wrong with a ipod touch 4g that suffered minor impact trama (no cracks on lcd or screen). When you press the lock button, the screen turns on, but it has a lot of white thin lines going down it and the picture looks distorted. You can unlock it, but it still has the lines and the screen is still distorted. Can you tell me the physical problem and solution please?

Question by jbaker22   |  last reply

All Steps

Has anyone else noticed that if you go to the address of an instructable(url?) and type in "?ALLSTEPS" after the address, you can veiw all steps on one page without ever having to log on?

Topic by Rye   |  last reply

I was looking at a couple of older instructables...

Something funky was going on with the intro image notes. See here and here for examples. Is this a glitch? Or did this used to be a feature?

Question by kcls   |  last reply


Somethings wrong with Instructables! (Check out the pictures) Any ideas?

Topic by GorillazMiko   |  last reply

How to get ammo in infected on mw3?

I was playing mw3 with some friends the other day and I started the match I was the host. I made sure the infected person did not have ammo. During playing one of the infected people was shooting at me I think it was a glitch or a hack. Can someone tell me how to do that I would really like to know?

Question by steve-lane   |  last reply

Has this happened to anyone?

I accidentally opened a link while uploading images and working on an 'Ible in the new editor. After pressing the back button I ended up with this. Messing with it produced some weird things. Your thoughts?

Topic by Firebert010   |  last reply

How can I make the Answers subscription button work ?

I used to click the ( S ) BUTTON and any activity on the question would com to my email account ! I run Windows XP with the Firefox browser..

Question by iceng   |  last reply

Cannot post comments or reply to questions

When I tried yesterday to post a comment, it displayed a message: " Oops, something went wrong! " Today, I tried to reply to someone's question, but it wouldn't work: " Oops, something went wrong! " He was able to post the question, but that was eight days ago. That means this glitch happened between now and then.

Topic by Techno_Bot01   |  last reply

unpublished but too old for competition, what?? Answered

Iv been working on this instructable, trying to get the instructions just right,as it has been a complicated build and harder to explain. then i spot the lomography competition,and i think perfect, i try to enter it, to my great disappointment ,but im told its out side of the creation date range, i would have thought it would have been the published date that was this a glitch?. any thoughts anybody.

Question by crazyg   |  last reply

Why won't my draft publish?

I go to create my draft on whatever it is I am posting, then try to publish it because you have to publish the draft to have it viewable by others right? Every time I hit publish, it doesn't publish it. It just refreshes the page (or at least it looks like it is refreshing). Why is it doing this and how do I solve it?

Question by ajensen19   |  last reply

Why did my Dell E171FP Monitor suddenly go all glitchy? Is there an inexpensive way to fix it?

I have had the monitor for several years now and one day whilst browsing the interwebs the monitor glitched and turned mostly white with buggy bits of image here and there. I checked my pc, cables, graphics card and even hooked up another monitor everything seems fine, so the problem must be in the monitor itself. Is there a way to fix this or do I need to just buy a new one?

Question by A.J.B.   |  last reply

I can't comment, can someone help? Answered

Apparently, when I try to comment, it says "missing comment text" i am on an iPad, it used to work, but now it doesn't. Maybe it was some update? Idk. All I know is that it was working fine, then it failed. I have a temporary fix for comments on my instructables, but I can't comment on others! Please help! if you can, please fix this ridiculous problem. Thank you. ps. This has been going on for a while, so I think it's not just a one time glitch. if anyone is having the same problem, post to me in my orangeboard. I cleared my cache and it still doesn't work. I think it may be a bug brought about by an update or something. I put this in a forum. Btw here is a link to one of my instructables: here is a picture for reference.

Question by Pyronite67   |  last reply

little help here!!!

Ok this happened when i was playing metroid zero mission using VBA i used doublehelix but the 1st time i used it it didnt glitch but now it is permanent plz help if you can


Arduino and GPS data logging - code/hardwire glitch

I've followed Gabriella Levine's code using an LS20031 GPS module. A couple of problems: 1. Can I run the SD card off the 3.3V arduino lead rather than using 5V and stepping it down (as one sketch suggested using a resister array)? 2. I've attached an image of what my Serial Monitor is reading and can't get it to align properly, feed consistently, etc. I've tried changing many aspects of the code, reverting back to original after each. Nothing seems to help. The only time I get a stream of NMEA data is when I reverse the Tx and Rx at the Arduino and hold the reset button - then it pours in. 3. I checked with my local hacker group last night but not too many are working on GPS projects - I've pasted my code below. If someone can confirm the wiring of this, that would be great. I'm still early in my Arduino project work. I made some notes in the code so you can see where I think the problems are.  4. Could it be that the baud rate (57,600) of the LS20031 is just too high? Milton //Gabriella Levine - starting code // //code (no shield, just a MicroSD like mine, different GPS, same idea with some good additional ideas // original code source: //See website saved in folder for instructions on wiring - she has clear, direct approaches - very good. //My LS20031 GPS module (marked 1590R-A over a P) runs at a baud rate of 57600 (bytes per second) #include #include #include //this seems to be in the library but unclear - why isn't it orange like the others? #include // same with this - not sure what it's doing int ledPin = 13;                  // LED test pin int ledState = LOW; long previousMillise = 0; long interval = 1000; long previousMillis = 0; const int ledPin12 = 12; int rxPin = 0;                    // RX PIN int txPin = 1;                    // TX TX int byteGPS=-1; char linea[300] = ""; char comandoGPR[7] = "$GPRMC"; int cont=0; int bien=0; int conta=0; int indices[13]; const int chipSelect = 8;//changed from 53 on the Arduino Mega which Gabriella used const int LOCATION_FILE_NUMBER_LSB = 0x00; const int LOCATION_FILE_NUMBER_MSB = 0x01; File dataFile; void setup() {   pinMode(8, OUTPUT);   pinMode(ledPin12, OUTPUT);   pinMode(ledPin, OUTPUT);       // Initialize LED pin   pinMode(rxPin, INPUT);   pinMode(txPin, OUTPUT);   Serial.begin(57600); //GPS baud rate   // see if the card is present and can be initialized:   if (!SD.begin(chipSelect)) {     Serial.println("Card failed, or not present");     // don't do anything more:     return;   }   Serial.println("card initialized.");   Serial.println("Time, Status, Latitude, Direction, Longitude, Direction, Velocity, Heading, Date, Magnetic degrees, E/W, Checksum");   delay(1000); //this is the point where it seems to loop through without writing GPS data properly   // start the wire and RTC libraries:   Wire.begin();   //newlog();   dataFile ="NewGPS.txt",FILE_WRITE); //removed space before "File Write"   Serial.println("finishSetup");   delay(20); //this also seems to work as the SD Card does have this file with a few NMEA lines and then it just stops   for (int i=0;i<300;i++){       // Initialize a buffer for received data     linea[i]=' ';   }   } void loop() {   digitalWrite(ledPin, HIGH);;         // Read a byte of the serial port   if (byteGPS == -1) {           // See if the port is empty yet.     delay(100);   }   else {     linea[conta]=byteGPS;        // If there is serial port data, it is put in the buffer     conta++;                          //Serial.write(byteGPS, 0);     //dataFile.print(byteGPS, 0);     if (byteGPS==13){            // If the received byte is = to 13, end of transmission       digitalWrite(ledPin, LOW);       cont=0;       bien=0;       for (int i=1;i<7;i++){     // Verifies if the received command starts with $GPR         if (linea[i]==comandoGPR[i-1]){           bien++;         }       }       if(bien==6){               // If yes, continue and process the data         for (int i=0;i<300;i++){            if (linea[i]==','){    // check for the position of the  "," separator             indices[cont]=i;             cont++;           }           if (linea[i]=='*'){    // ... and the "*"             indices[12]=i;             cont++;           }         }         Serial.println("");      // ... and write to the serial port         for (int i=0;i<12;i++){           switch(i){           }           for (int j=indices[i];j<(indices[i+1]-1);j++){             Serial.print(linea[j+1]);           }           Serial.print(",");         }          Serial.println("---------------");         Serial.println();         if(dataFile)         {           dataFile.println("");      // ... and write to the serial port           digitalWrite(ledPin12, HIGH);           dataFile.println();           for (int i=0;i<12;i++){             switch(i){                          // case 0 :dataFile.print("Time in UTC (HhMmSs): ");break;                          // case 1 :dataFile.print("Status (A=OK,V=KO): ");break;                          // case 2 :dataFile.print("Latitude: ");break;                          // case 3 :dataFile.print("Direction (N/S): ");break;                          // case 4 :dataFile.print("Longitude: ");break;                          // case 5 :dataFile.print("Direction (E/W): ");break;                          // case 6 :dataFile.print("Velocity in knots: ");break;                          // case 7 :dataFile.print("Heading in degrees: ");break;                          // case 8 :dataFile.print("Date UTC (DdMmAa): ");break;                          // case 9 :dataFile.print("Magnetic degrees: ");break;                          // case 10 :dataFile.print("(E/W): ");break;                          // case 11 :dataFile.print("Mode: ");break;                          // case 12 :dataFile.print("Checksum: ");break;             }             for (int j=indices[i];j<(indices[i+1]-1);j++){               dataFile.print(linea[j+1]);             }             dataFile.print(",");           }           dataFile.println("");         }         else{           digitalWrite(ledPin12, LOW);         }         dataFile.flush();         Serial.flush();       }       conta=0;                    // Reset the buffer       for (int i=0;i<300;i++){            linea[i]=' ';                   }                     }   } }

Topic by IngenuityArts 

OK, what happened today? Answered

I could try and blame it on scoochmaroo. I heard she was cooking bacon in the office (lmao) WHAT HAPPENED?

Question by onrust   |  last reply

Why do my Answers keep disappearing and reappearing?

No, I haven't said anything rude, irrelevant, illegal, commercial, or otherwise spammy. Is this just a strange SQL database glitch?

Question by    |  last reply

Is it possible to add voice effects to outgoing VOIP calls?

The subject line pretty much says it all... I'm intrigued by the idea of prank calling my friends by processing my voice through audio effects (i.e. - using VST/AU plugins). I'm not even sure if this is possible, but it seems like there must be a way. I think illformed's Glitch plugin ( ) would be perfect for something like this. Any tips on how to hook this up? FYI: I normally make VOIP calls via my MacBook Pro, and I have Audio Hijack and a plethora of software effects installed already. However, I'm open to any and all suggestions - even if they can't be done with my existing setup. Thanks!

Question by exlxaxd   |  last reply

How do I have DirectX 11? Answered

So, somehow my computer running Vista & a 8500 GT thinks it has DirectX 11, and I'm trying to figure out how that works.  It's even an nVidia card, they don't even have cards or drivers for Dx11 out.  I just ordered a Radeon HD 5770 for the Dx11 support and I'm feeling a bit cheated (not a big ATI fan). It'd sure be peachy if I could somehow run Dx11 games on my nVidia card (not that a 8500 GT could handle it, but perhaps a GTX 260).  It's probably just some sort of wacky glitch with the frontend and I don't ''really'' have Dx11, but you never know...  Anywho, anyone have an inkling what's up with this?

Question by RelaxedSoup   |  last reply

how do i find /pirates of the caribbean/program/interface/ in potco on a mac?

I need to find /pirates of the caribbean/program/interface/ then in that  find interface.c if somebody could please tell me how to do that i would be so happy thanks

Question by alphawolfbrother   |  last reply

The notifications constipation may be over !!! maybe? Answered

After all this time of not getting notifications I just got a flood of all the past ones, its pretty funny like a major cork finally letting go.  So check to see if your emails have received something along the line of "you have 120 new comments" A big thank you to those who have been puzzling through this latest glitch. Here's hoping that this one is resolved for good.

Question by Vyger   |  last reply

Frequency Change on Futaba Receiver R138DP (PCM) originally tuned for 72Mhz

Futaba has discontinued their 50Mhz receiver Model R138DP, however its available in frequency range 72Mhz.  I have Futaba Transmitter 9-Cap operating on 50Mhz. I want to convert all my 72Mhz receivers to 50Mhz since there is nobody using 50Mhz in our model club so no chance of Frequency Clash, more over I experience Glitches on 72Mhz but non on 50Mhz. 

Question by Zahid H Khan   |  last reply

Charter accidentaly deletes 14,000 email accounts

Officials at Charter believe a glitch in software during routine maintenance caused the e-mail accounts to be deleted. The company is offering $50 credits to customers who were affected.A company representative told the news service that there was no way to retrieve the messages, photos or other attachments that had been sitting in people's in-boxes when they were deleted. is my email? Oh yea sorry, your account just got deleted...sorry.

Topic by Brennn10   |  last reply

An interesting dilemma?

Ok, so this is actually pretty interesting. We have a Netflix enabled Blu-Ray player. It connects to our wifi to run the streaming... But we have noticed something weird.... Every time a movie is playing, and the microwave runs- the movie abruptly stops and the player says "The network appears to be down. Retry?". This has happened consistently 4-5 times. So my question- is the microwave radiation enough to cause bumps and glitches in the network? The network is run off a Apple wifi routers, and it should be wireless N (5ghz) Any ideas if this could happen? 

Question by astroboy907 

how do i fix this minecraft bug? Answered

Theres been a bug going on in minecraft that is hard to fix.its a bug that,when you fly to much in creative, it glitches up and when you try to exit it keeps the cursor inside the box. its happened to me twice and when it does, you cant go to any other websites or anything. you cant type in anything and if you sign out of gmail (or any other mail site) it wont let you back on unless you type both the username and password. thanks for helping.                       nfk11

Question by nfk11   |  last reply

Internet Explorer can not open this website.

This is the message I get when I try to get acess to a website such as Radio  I am using a Dell desktop with Windows Vista Home Basic  and am stuck with Dial-up connection which runs pretty slow anyway.The display then shifts to a screen that says something like  This webpage could not be opened.  This is not a new problem.  It's been happening for months. Anybody got an explanation or way to keep this from happening?  I run Microsoft Security Essentials but it always comes up clean.  Does anyone else have this problem?  Could this be caused by a virus or spyware, or maybe a software glitch? Thanks for all replys!  LeShane 

Question by LeShane   |  last reply

how do i boot the linux iso from a usb flash drive when the the original os doesn't work?

I have an old IBM 390X that i have installed windows xp, but that has glitched and i want to install linux from a usb thumb drive, i have never done it before so i want to try it; i know how to install os's from cds and floppys. two more questions 1-can linux run exe's? 2-how do you edit the code in linux? because i heard that it was oped scource

Question by The nerdling   |  last reply

My clicker doesn't click anymore?

My ibook's clicker stopped working about 30 min ago for no reason. I don't think I noticed it doing anything weird before but I could be wrong as I usually "tap" my touchpad to click on something. I restarted it thinking that the hardware just glitched it self (don't play with your touchpad when you turn your mac on, doesn't do wonderful things) After realising that I hadn't gone into the root account since my reinstall to enable touch click system wide, I had a good time trying to log in once I was at the login screen (you'd think pushing enter would select your account but apparently not). Any ideas or is ma clicker all clicked out?

Topic by Punkguyta 

Can a board be bypassed? Answered

My sewing machine (a Pfaff 1171) dies after about 10 minutes. When I push on the peddle again, there is nothing... no hum - absolutely nothing. The light stays on.  Wait fifteen minutes or so, and it runs just fine...only to repeat the cycle.  Turning the wheel doesn't change the electrical situation.  It's almost as though a fuse is blowing and then resetting itself. I took it into the shop, and the verdict is that it's either the peddle (unlikely) or the board inside.  The board is no longer made.  If I turn the wheel, everything works... forwards, backwards, stitches and all that.  It's a great machine mechanically,  and I hate to lose it because of some glitch on a board.  Is there any way that a board could be bypassed?  I can survive without a bobbin sensor and being able to set whether the machine stops with the needle up or down.

Question by mole1   |  last reply

How To Get The System To Put Up My Question? Answered

Seriously, I KNOW this has come up before, but I am getting VERY frustrated at the seemingly endless flow of questions put up,-and mine? Nada! I am genuinely looking for tips on how to reasonably? guarantee seeing the question up on the site, instead of incessantly checking for something that -it becomes increasingly clear-is not going to appear! What WAS my Question?: ANOTHER technical glitch! I was notified on the 12th that I had Best Answer, but it isn't showing on that topic, and neither in my Best Answer list on my profile. I put up (my first!!) the link to the question, and am not going to do it again, in case THIS question goes into the ether. Well? Does THIS question meet with approval from systems/robots or whatever it is?

Question by Z..   |  last reply

Windows 7 explorer becomes unresponsive Answered

Sometimes my computer glitches and  I am not able to click on anything that has to do with the windows explorer process (desktop icons, taskbar programs, etc.)  I have tried ending the explorer.exe process, but i cant start it back up again because starting explorer.exe opens an explorer window (my computer, my docs, etc.).  The only way to fix this is by restarting.  Does anyone know how to prevent this?  The laptop I'm on is a Dell XPS L501X (i5 460M, 4GB ram (2x 2GB) NVIDIA GeForce GT 425M (1GB))  I am running Windows 7 home premium 64-bit EDIT:  This problem got weirder...Now it happens less frequently, but the problem goes away if I open Revo Uninstaller (maybe because the UAC message refreshes the explorer process?).  Does anyone know if that is the reason?

Question by budabob07   |  last reply

what does it mean when a instructable "is not found"? and will i ever be able to access it again??

Im kinda new to this site, so if this is a question already floating around, point me towards it, and i'll put on my dunce cap. With that said, it seems like most of the questions i could find were about authors who's instructables took more than a day or two to show up. i was attempting to build a laser (because who doesn't like lasers) based off moomeat42's "burning lasers for beginners." I recently attempted to look at it again, and the instructable link would send me back to the home page with the message "we're sorry, we couldn't find that one!" displayed on the top. I was wondering what actually happened (did the author take it down, or did the site glitch?) and if i would ever be able to view it again, or if it was gone forever? Also, this is kinda secondary, but that same instructable was not going to my favorites list, and i was wondering if anyone knew why.

Question by MAN OF MERR   |  last reply

Tempted to leave instructables just because of the new layouts

I may have only been here for 2 years but this site is changing a bit too much for my tastes. In those 2 years most of the major changes have been pretty recent. Why they haven't implemented legacy views yet baffles me. Or allowing us to customize our own personal layout. By personal layout I mean that each person can customize how the site looks to HIM OR HER. If they implemented that I would be willing to put up with the bugs and glitches it would cause just for the fact that it pleases my eye. What they seem to be doing is copying facebook's style. This absolutely sickens me. I HATE facebook and the only reason I got it was to see just how bad it is. The layout for facebook form over function. It is needlessly over complicated  I am a function over form guy. I bet most of the people here are function over form too.  Don't be a facebook. If you do I will take my 10$ worth of advertising else where. Maybe if a couple thousand leave you will get it.

Topic by tytiger33   |  last reply

My Amps! My Amps! *Screams an old crazy man in the deli section*

Yes yes, shhh I want to ask a serious question today. I traded one of my kenwood amps for my parents as their sony surround unit is really shitting out and the sound sounds terrible and the entire control panel on the front is messed up. I just want to know a couple things about the sony to see if I can fix something. The panel, well that's quite interesting to explain and if I posted a video of it you guys would probably think I edited it or something. So imagine this, the bass + and - buttons are beside the treble + and -, two sets of buttons. If you push one of the bass adjustment buttons, it glitches and turns the treble for example, up or down randomly and doesn't do what I wanted it to do. It's like this with all of the buttons and seemed to have happened after we moved here. And I know it didn't get banged around because it was transported in the back seat of a car on blankets to the new house and carefully carried in by me. If I say try to use one of the surround sound adjustment buttons it glitches out and acts like I hit another one that's beside it in any direction. Hard to explain but I'm just damn confused as to why it suddenly happend (dry solder connections?). Damn this post is long and it's only half Bad sound, I will not tolerate it under my household, but on the other hand it was a $400 unit back 5 or so years ago and I KNOW it used to sound good, with a such a profound richness of bass that just punched right through you. Now it sounds like shit, the sound is garbled, distorted when turned up, it's not really noticeable until you turn it up fairly loud. I have/had my technics tower speakers hooked up to it and they sounded like shit when I turned them up, yet on my kenwood they sing like the wedding singer days. Any ideas nachomoma? I'll add another note that for most of it's life it's been hooked up to a pair of 250 watt (peak) optimus floor speakers and whenever we played it, it got HORRIBLY hot and warped the top a bit when it was on, enough to push it in and make it spring back up again with quite a force. I liked this receiver a lot and would like to use it again, but I don't know where all these "degradations" came from and despite my useless amount of amp questions/bickering's about I would really appreciate any ideas from you guys. Thanks.. -Punk

Topic by Punkguyta   |  last reply

I have a windows 7 pc and it used to work absolutely fine until a week ago. It cannot sign in. HELP Answered

Last week I found my screen started glitching out (the screen displayed a static image) and then my pc became unresponsive. From that point on it would not sign in because "windows could not find my profile;it does not exsist) even though my account is still there. i can get to it on safe mode. Then i tried unplugging everything from the pc which worked and i could log in. BUT now I am lucky if it logs in after 15 mins or most of the time it wont log in at all. but if it does log in the pc is perfectly fine and it is fast and none of my files are missing. If i let it sit for more then 10 mins then the screen saver freezes and the whole process starts over. I have done a disk check at start up like a billion times and each time it says something about deleting a: (lastalive~1) or something. It was not a brand new pc but i wiped the Hard drive and it worked fine for around 3 weeks until last week. As im writing this comment it decided to log in and now im gonna use it. PLEASE HELP. also i have tried restore points but it doesn't help anything. :(

Question by samuel.koppert   |  last reply

Any idea on how to bypass Iboss Webfilter on Mac OS? Challenge!

My computer teacher gave us a challenge: our school used to have filters on most of it's computers, but they were taken down and replaced with something else. As a challenge, our computer teacher re-installed it on some computers and told us to try to get through it. I have had little success, my most promising moment being with a glitch in Firefox, that soon fixed itself and ruined my only gateway. To win the challenge, You have to get onto Facebook, myspace, and twitter, all of which are on the blacklist. Once there, you must post into a specific profile. You must do this three separate times, to illustrate that it can be done more than once. I know it is possible, because two other kids in the class have managed it, but I simply have no idea. The program is Iboss Webfilter by Phantom Technologies, and all of our computers are pretty new Macs. We have access on our computers to Firefox, Safari, Seamonkey, Camino, and Omniweb browsers. All proxy websites are blocked by the webfilter program. All firefox abilities are enabled though. Any and all suggestions or help is appreciated, If we pass the challenge, we get an automatic 100% in the class, because we have probably the coolest computer teacher ever. If anyone can give me a good solution that works, they get a patch!

Topic by ilpug   |  last reply

Lenovo laptop died!? Any ideas? Answered

I've got a "Lenovo Flex 2-15 Laptop" that recently just randomly shut down and died as if the battery and power was disconnected. I think this might have been caused by a faulty USB device drawing too much current. (specifically, a arduino-based gimbaled motor controller for camera stabilization on my quadcopter) When it was plugged in, the second I clicked to 'connect' to it via a GUI software interface for it, my computer instantly shut down. Since then it shows no signs of life. Any ideas what could have happened and why it does not boot? It appears to still be under warranty so I'll see what I can do. I really hope that bad things didn't happen. My gimbal still works, but I guess a glitch in the software on the gimbal caused a transient voltage spike or overload on the USB port and either tripped some sort of safety protection or even worse, the mobo failed. Maybe the 5V regulator in the laptop and the one in the gimbal didn't agree with eachother and got into a bit of a voltage war!?!?!? IDK. I have a sneaking suspicion that it is a faulty polyfuse between the battery and MoBo that's failed. The gimbal has a simple 5V 78m05 SMD regulator between the 12V lipo and 5V logic stuff. However the USB and 5V regulator share the same common connection. I think if something really bad happened, like the voltage regulator failing and dumping 12V into the USB port even for a short time, then I would expect the magic smoke to have escaped from the gimbal and the computer. From my experience, common AVR microcontrollers tend to fail pretty spectacularly with 12V. Since the gimbal still works, I am pretty confident that a low impedance 12V transient had not occurred. I think maybe the gimbal took too big a gulp of current and set off some sort of USB overcurrent protection. But I cannot open the thing, damn modern laptops don't even have removable batteries anymore GRRR! I'll file a warranty claim and see what happens, but does anyone have a better idea what could have gone wrong?

Question by -max-   |  last reply

Tracking down the speed problems on a laptop.

I've copied the conversation here so we could remove the information from the original instructable's comments.  I figure this would also be of some interest to other forum viewers who may have similar problems, or may be able to chip in. The long and short of it is, 92033 (Ed) has a refurbished laptop that takes literal hours to run a YouTube video on.  I suspect that it's due to a bottleneck with his internet connection.  Here's the conversation thus far: ---------------------------------------------------------------- 92033 (Ed): Thank you kindly for your prompt reply...appreciate it very much. I came across this site by accident in searching for something else and now I'm 'hooked' on it. :) So far I've read over 400 archived posts (whew) well as looking at the videos. The videos are somewhat of a problem because this new laptop only has 512 mg memory...LOOOOOng time to load. For watch a SLOW 5-minute You Tube video takes 5-1/2 HOURS to load...keeps showing a couple words at a time...need to get two new memory chips to upgrade to 2gb. Thanks again...Take care. ---------------------------------------------------------------- eddems: I think you're basic download speed is killing ya, not the laptop. check you're speed at, if you see the link near the bottom for the old test, run it, I like it's graph of upload and download speed much better. ---------------------------------------------------------------- 92033: Thanks much. I'll check it out. I ordered a 1gb SDRAM Memory chip which just arrived yesterday. Hope this speeds things up a bit. ---------------------------------------------------------------- harley_rly: i hear u man, my computer is hopped up, but i live out in the sticks and have dialup...i only get 24kbps at most :( ---------------------------------------------------------------- 92033: Maybe there's hope for 'us' yet. :-) I phoned Tiger Direct to see cost of an upgrading memory chip to go from 512mg to 1-1/2gb. The guy I talked to suggested I get "PC TUNEUP 2.0" which bypasses the Windows Operating System (I'm using Windows XP Pro) and speeds up the system. I gave it a try and ordered the CD (cost $39.98 - $44.77 postpaid). It hasn't arrived yet but will let you know if it helps as he claims it will. He said that if I just ordered a 1gb memory chip my system wouldn't notice much improvement as it is, but this CD should do the trick. THEN...when I DO order the Memory chip(s) to get total of 2gb my system should zip through like a rocket with the CD just ordered. I'll let you know when I get the CD and about the results. Just hope I haven't thrown forty-five bucks to the wind. Thanks for the contact...appreciate hearing from you. TAKE CARE. ~ ED ---------------------------------------------------------------- Javin007: PC Tune-Up "bypasses the Windows Operating System?" This guy fed you a load of crap. (I work on computers for a living.) PC Tune-Up does nothing more than clean up registries, defragment harddrives (if your OS even needs it, some don't) and keeps drivers up to date (which you could do manually.) That guy's an idiot, or just a liar. Could be both. Unless you were buying PC Tuneup 2.0 from Tiger Direct, in which case we can add "sleazy salesman" to that. What are the specs of the laptop? Go to Start/Run and type in DXDIAG. This will give you a quick snapshot of the specs. Specifically, I'm curious as to the processor speed/type. For a 5 1/2 hour "load" you're more likely looking at network slowdown issues (although 512 megs for XP is WAYYYY too little. I HATE when they put PCs together like that). The RAM upgrade will show significant speed increases, but no improvement with YouTube videos or other downloads. I'm glad to see you are returning the CD. ---------------------------------------------------------------- 92033: Thanks much for your input...appreciate it very much. I checked the DXDIAG as you recommended. Here's the info on it: IBM ThinPad Laptop PC. Model # 23738TU. Intel Premium M 1.70GHZ. 512mb SDRAM Memory chip.Page File- 351mb used,513 mb available. Direct Version-Directx 9.00 (4.09.0000.0904). 512 mb SDRAM-Actual 212 Ram. AVAST Anti-Virus. MS Windows XP-PRO.. Dialup Speed-40kbps. PC2700 SDRAM 512mb Memory Chip installed. I ordered 1bb memory chip which arrived yesterday. Now I have to figure out HOW to remove the bottom of this laptop to install it...lotta small screws on it. :-) Oh, total memory shows 32mb. I don't know if this means much to you. I note your comment that the added RAM memory WONT (?) speed up loading YouTube videos? Is that correct? If so, why not? Thanks again. Take care. ~ ED ---------------------------------------------------------------- Javin007: :) At the risk of boring too many people, here's how memory in a PC works: You have two kinds of memory: RAM, and Hard Drive (technically there's three, as there's also onboard video RAM on video cards, but this is primarily used for 3D video game textures, so can be mostly ignored.) Your harddrive's read/write speed is determined by the type of harddrive it is (most are SATA now) and the rotation speed (most are 7200 RPM, though the specs for your system say yours is only 5400 RPM, but there are 10, 15, and even 20K rpm models out there that are exponentially more expensive.) No matter what, harddrive memory will always be degrees slower than RAM. RAM on the other hand is a small chunk of memory that is "temporary" memory, but very fast. Its speed is determined by the type of RAM (DDR2 being the current common one for notebooks, though DDR3 is available with some motherboards (you can ignore this, though, as you can only handle 2 gigs max of DDR with your system). The motherboard will determine the limits for the RAM that can be installed.) When running *ANYTHING* on your computer, and I mean ANYTHING, it must first be loaded into RAM to be accessed by the CPU. The computer doesn't directly access the harddrive. So this means when your operating system is loaded (Windows XP) the entirety of all running processes for the OS have to be loaded into RAM. Now, Microsoft claims that Windows XP only requires a minimum of 64 megs of RAM, but recommends 128 megs. I challenge you to find me a Windows XP system that only uses 128 megs out of the box. It's not atypical for an XP system to chew through all 512 megs of your RAM, leaving no RAM available for other applications. (Interestingly, the default setup for your laptop is only 256 megs of RAM, yet yours is reporting 512.) What happens when there's no RAM left? The system has to then start trading things into what is called "Virtual Memory." VM is nothing more than a file on the harddrive that will temporarily hold information that SHOULD be in RAM, so the RAM can load more info. For instance, say you have a process that's using RAM, but you want to watch your YouTube video. As the video is ready to play, the system will take the other process's data that's in RAM, write it to the harddrive, load your video into RAM in its place, play a portion of it, write the video to the harddrive, load the data for the process to RAM, let it run for a split second (so it doesn't lock up), write it back to the harddrive, load your video into RAM and play a short clip, etc. etc. etc. The result of low RAM on your system is that applications will open slowly (seconds or minutes, instead of instantly or a few seconds) and they will seem slow to respond, will stutter, etc. With enough RAM, your system can freely open as much as it needs into RAM, and ignore the virtual memory and all the slowdowns that it causes. Now, all of this being said, NO lack of RAM will cause a streaming video to take 5 1/2 hours to play. This is 100% going to be related to your downspeed. (Go to and post your results.) RAM slowdowns tend to be most noticeable when shutting down, or starting up your computer, apps will open a little more slowly, they will be slower to respond to button clicks, and video will be very choppy. Anything that is causing a YouTube video to take HOURS will be due to the system simply waiting to get the video in the first place. RAM wouldn't slow down the receiving of the video, but it would cause the video to play weird once it's downloaded. So, all this being said, here's the summary: Your system has a 1.7 Ghz processor, and your RAM is most likely 333 Mhz DDR. If you bump your memory up to a gig, you should see a pretty significant improvement in that your computer will, overall, just "feel" faster. It'll be more responsive, and working with large documents will be many, many times faster. This won't, however, affect your YouTube experience (unless you were getting jittery video often, not the same as "buffering" video.) If you see "buffering" for a long time, your internet connection is your bottleneck. A test on will likely confirm this. However, if you get decent numbers on SpeedTest, then we could have something more sinister going on, though I suspect you'll find your numbers well below the 1 mbps rate. This brings us to actually changing the RAM. I've been out of the PC hardware realm (professional programmer now) for a few years, and was unable to find a manual for your particular model. However, if memory serves, this image should be a fairly accurate representation of the underside of your system: Don't quote me, but I BELIEVE the red circle will indicate the only screw you will need to remove to access the RAM. There should also be a small clip holding the RAM in place that you'll want to pinch to get the RAM out, and make sure that the new RAM snaps into place. (Sometimes you'll have additional empty RAM beds, and you can just put your RAM in there and end up with 1.5 gigs, but I suspect you'll have two 256 gig chips in there.) ---------------------------------------------------------------- 92033: Phew. Thanks again for your most indepth educational lesson. I appreciate all your help more than you realize. I attempted to answer this last night, typing in more than twice the amount of text as your to me, then suddenly realized there was a glitch and I was on another page...lost it all into the ionisphere. :-( Rather than try to retype all I wrote, I shut 'r down and went to sleep. Now I'm trying to recall all I wrote last night but failed to get mailed. I'm not a traditional typist, rather a one-finger bloke so you can understand the frustration there. I do, however, type at a reasonably good speed. With that said, let's continue. I went to search for Configuration of this IBM Laptop ThinkPad 23738TU and am copy and pasting it here. It's relevant to what I have to it is: ********************************************************************************** Overview Specs Features Includes Warranty Supplies IBM ThinkPad T42 2373 Specifications Part # 23738TU Key Specifications IBM ThinkPAD T42 2373 Manufacturer IBM Manufacturer Part # 23738TU Processor Type Intel Pentium M 735 1.7 GHz Data Bus Speed 400 MHz Cache Memory Type L2 cache Installed Size 2 MB RAM Installed Size 256 MB Technology DDR SDRAM Memory Speed 333 MHz System Type Notebook Storage Hard Drive 40 GB, 5400 rpm Storage Controller Type IDE Optical Storage Type DVD ROM Read Speed 24x (CD) / 8x (DVD) Display Type 14.1" TFT active matrix Graphics Processor / Vendor ATI MOBILITY RADEON 7500 Video Memory 32 MB Max. Resolution 1024 x 768 Audio Output Type Sound card Audio Codec AD1981B Compliant Standards DirectSound, AC '97, SoundMAX Telecom Modem Fax / modem Max. Transfer Rate 56 Kbps Protocols & Specifications ITU V.90 Networking Networking Network adapter Data Link Protocol Ethernet, Fast Ethernet, Gigabit Ethernet Expansion Expansion Slots Total 1 x front accessible Expansion Slots Total 2 ( 1 ) x memory 1 ( 1 ) x CardBus - type II Interfaces 1 x docking / port replicator, 240 pin docking 2 x Hi Speed USB, 4 pin USB Type A 1 x parallel, IEEE 1284 (EPP/ECP), 25 pin D Sub (DB25) 1 x display / video, VGA, 15 pin HD D Sub (HD 15) 1 x infrared, IrDA 1 x modem, phone line, RJ11 1 x network, Ethernet 10BaseT/100BaseTX, RJ45 1 x display / video, S video output, 4 pin mini DIN 1 x microphone, input, mini phone mono 3.5 mm 1 x headphones, output, mini phone stereo 3.5 mm Miscellaneous Features Locking device keyhole (cable lock), administrator password, hard drive password, power-on password, asset ID, IBM Embedded Security Subsystem 2.0 Compliant Standards ACPI 2.0, ACPI 1.0b, FCC Class B certified, CE, MPR II, UL, BSMI, cUL, NOM, VCCI-II Operating System Microsoft Windows XP Professional Software Included Adobe Acrobat Reader, PC Doctor, IBM Rapid Restore Ultra, IBM Update Connector, InterVideo WinDVD, IBM Access Connections, IBM Access Support, Access IBM,(OEM) Battery Technology lithium ion Capacity 4400 mAh Average Run Time 5 hour(s) Installed Qty 1 Ambient Temperature Min Operating Temperature 50 °F Max Operating Temperature 90 °F Humidity Range Operating 8 - 80% Dimensions (W x D x H) Unit 12.2 in x 10 in x 1.1 in Weight Unit 4.9 lbs Warranty 3 Years Limited Warranty on parts and labor. IBM 23738TU Summary ********************************************************************************* NOTE...I DON'T BELIEVE THIS...I JUST TYPED FORTY MINUTES REPLY HERE and it instantly scrolled up like speed of lightning and disappeared like last night. I'll ATTEMP to try again later. So please don't reply yet as you need to read my discoveries in changing the RAM chip. Meanwhile, thanks again...take care. ~ ED ******************************************************************************* TRY #3...I'm Back :-) Your diagram showing where the RAM chip is located was right on. Thanks. Here's my DISCOVERY :-( The RAM chip installed was NOT a 512mg...but only a 256mg chip. The ads ans specs say it's a 512mg...NOT SO. I was lied to by either the manufacturer or refurbishing company who removed the original 512 chip and reinstalled a 256 chip. I was lied to by the Tiger Direct guy on the phone. There are NOT two chip slots...only one. So I now have a useless removed 256mb RAM chip. Replaced with the 1gb RAM chip I just installed. So instead of having 1-1/2 gb RAM, I only have 1gb. Here's the crux. To. go to 2gb RAM I'd need to buy a full 2gb RAM CHIP and discard the 1gb for which I just paid $39.99 ($45.00 with s/h). This means another output of almost a hundred dollars plus the $45.00 just wasted because they wont accept return once the sealed chip plastic was opened...even though I had no idea there was only ONE SLOT in this PC instead of TWO like the Tiger Guy said. Now...crux #2...this new 1gb RAM does nothing more to increase speed. I just watched a 2.01 MINUTE YouTube video which took a HALF HOUR to load, so I threw the money away for nothing, eh? There is no noticeable change except the 'speed' shows it now as 41.2 kbps instead of 40 kbps. HOW do I get to speed this thing up to normal viewing in real time? I also saw an ad for 4bg RAM Gateway laptop with 120gb hard drive for $404.99 which is all suped-up with everything. I had to upgrade a LOT since I got this only four months ago...taking over a hundred hours to load it, like Internet Explorer 5 to 6 and then to 8 and now to 9. I'm using AVAST Anti-Virus, after trying for 23 hours to get ADVAR, then find out it didn't load because of problem on the servor's end. Added Firefox and upgraded twice. Loaded MS Protection but it created more problems so I deleted with AVAST which I like. Soooo...I've literally spent over 200 hours to get this thng where it's at now, plus the wasted money for the upgraded RAM chip.and I still don't have increased speed. HOW do I get it? IF the processor has to be changed does this mean I have to gut the thing and install a new motherboard? If so, what kind of money cost are we talking here? I bought this four months ago as a refurbished unit only because I was able to get it on payments of only $25.00 a month. If I had to wait to get $400.00 cash I'd never have it. :-) Okay...that's it for the moment. Thanks much again for your help offering and detailed instructions...appreciate it more than you realize. Best Wishes And God's Blessings To You And Yours In Everything Always. Most Respectfully... ~ ED  ---------------------------------------------------------------- Javin007: Well, let's start with the RAM. If you're running windows XP, you can assume all the extra processes (virus scanners, and whatnot) will be eating up about 512 megs of the RAM. First thing to do is check DXDIAG again (start/run) and verify that it's now reporting the correct amount of RAM. (Don't be surprised if it's like 9 hundred something megs or slightly more. It won't report 1024 or 1 gig.) This being said, that will leave you with the other 512 for your applications. This box won't be running the latest and greatest 3D games, but I suspect it was never intended to. If the heaviest hitter you'll have running is along the lines of photoshop, the 1 gig of RAM you have now should be plenty sufficient. I wouldn't worry about getting 2 gigs. Not for this rig, anyway. Also, Avast is a great (and free) virus protection, every bit as good as Symantec's Norton, so good choice there. If your youtube videos are choking out, we need to start by verifying that it's an actual speed throttling problem. Go to and run the speed test. Come back with the results.

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