Memory disappearing and processor slowing down

OK, so lately I’ve beenb having some serious issues with my PC. First off, my memory seems to get eaten up for no reason. I will start my PC, and after windows loads I use a memory program (MemMax), and it says I have less than 10% of my physicsal memory left…and I haven’t even done anything yet! I use the ‘optimize’ feature, and it brings that percentage up to 60%. But it slowly starts falling back down. If I leave my computer, still not having done anything, and come back in an hour, it’s back down to 2%. I have Norton AntiVirus and it founf nothing. I also use AdAware to get rid of spyware, and that also found nothing. This problem is very annoying, as programs run slow and sometimes I can’t even load them.

On the note of programs slowing down, my processor seems to be crapping out. Even after optimizing my memory usage, amny programs will still run slow and choppy. My PC is not unusually hot, nor do I run a lot of programs that need a fast processor…it slows down when I play 3D pinball for God’s sake!

Now, I’m not sure of these problems are related (they probably are) or if they are even the same problem, but either way I need a solution, so if you could help, I would appreciate it very much.

What version of Windows are you using? Have you tried hitting ctrl+alt+del to see what all’s running in the background of your machine? I’ve found that I’ve had programs running in the background that positively killed my processor speed and sucked up memory like nobody’s business. Once I killed them (and prevented them from loading on restart) the machine ran just fine.

I had the same problems on my PC when I was running Windows ME. I upgraded to Windows XP and have not had a problem yet. Here is a link to my post from a few months ago.

I am running Windows 98. When I hit crtl-alt-del I see a lot of programs runnning, however, I chose all of them myself in msconfig. I know that 90% of them (should) take up very little resources. Things like rundll and rundll32, as well as a programs for my pointer and mouse. I have actually been thinking about upgrading to XP, so maybe I’ll just wipe the harddrive and do that.

It is possible you may have picked up some nasty “spyware” somewhere in your travels on the net. Download “AdAware”. You can look it up on Run this program. You might be amazed to find the amount of unknown programs that are piggybacking your PC. AdAware will allow you to delete these programs very easily.

Well, as I said in my OP I do use AdAware, and it finds nothing. But another update:

I may have found the problem to some applications slowing down. I played 3D pinball, and it was oh so very choppy. I turned off the sound…no choppines. I went to my sound card properties and some things were checked that were specific to my crappy sound card. I think that it has something to do with making sounds ‘better’ somehow, I unchecked the options and the pinball ran fine with sound.

However, my memory still seeps away slowly as I leave my PC on.