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How can you figure out where the bottleneck on your PC is (CPU, HD, RAM) so you know what to get "more of" on the next PC?

How can you figure out where the bottleneck on your PC is (CPU, HD, RAM) so you know what to get "more of" on the next PC?

I'm getting a new PC soon and I've been looking at CPU and RAM options then realized that maybe my HD is my bottleneck.

Asked by: Guest | Views: 86
Total answers/comments: 2
Guest [Entry]

"Article on the Performance Monitor in Windows XP. However, The Process Explorer, below, does a lot of that for you.

And SysInternals Process Explorer (now owned by Microsoft) is a great simple tool for measuring a lot of this. It'll show % of max utilization for CPU, RAM, etc as well as showing peak and showing a running graph.
The fellow who created it (blanking on his name) keeps it running and then when (not if :-) his PC slows down, he looks over at the graph to see what what the bottleneck is (RAM, CPU, HD, etc.) and then what app is the biggest load of that resource."
Guest [Entry]

"Here's the Idiot's Guide to PC Bottlenecks, Short Version. You can safely assume that due to the laws of physics and the engineering of the modern PC, this is it for application-agnostic bottlenecks.

Generic PC components, from slowest to fastest:

USB-1
Optical drive
Network (wireless)
Network (wired)
USB-2, Firewire
Hard drive (std, IDE)
Network (wired, gigabit+)
Hard drive (std, SATA-II)
Hard drive (SSD)
GPU, RAM, system bus
CPU

Now, any of them can be ""the"" bottleneck for a certain application or system configuration. If your application is slower than you think it should be, you have to consider everything about the PC to find the problem.

That's when benchmarks and measurements come into play, and things get complicated. Without knowing what application you're optimizing a PC build for, you can't optimize properly.

If all you want is to max out your hard drive speed, buy an SSD drive to go with whatever CPU/RAM/motherboard combination you decide on."