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Some Musings and Tips About Task Manager

You can get to Windows Task Manager by right clicking on the task bar traditionally at the bottom of the desktop and clicking Start Task Manager.

You will get a view similar to this: (W8 is different.)

You can also get to Task Manager by holding down the Ctrl key followed by the Alt and Delete keys.

 Here are a few things that Task Manager can do for you without getting excessively geeky.

In the applications tab if you have a program that is frozen, and you’ve tried the normal stuff of clicking the red X at the top of the window, and right clicking the application on the task bar and choosing exit, try clicking the program in Task manager, and then End Task. Sometimes it still takes a while, but you can continue working on something else while it closes. If, a few minutes later, the program is still open and still stuck, it may be necessary to save all your work and reboot. In Windows 7, as you shut down, it will probably still be stuck and won’t shut down, unless you choose the option to Force Shutdown. Again before you Force Shutdown, give Windows a few minutes to rescue your program. If you have to use it, you probably will lose any data you had in the program that wasn’t saved.

Performance is the next area to consider. This is extremely interesting to watch at times. It can give you an idea of what is is going on in your computer.

Right now I am using an AMD Quad-Core processor, with 8 GB of Ram on my laptop computer. I have the article I am working on, my browser open and a download going. Here is what the performance section looks like.

Now I have added a screen video recording program. Huge difference.

What has surprised me over the past year and a half of observing this particular computer with different and multiple programs running at once, is that I don't ever remember seeing the memory spike over 4 GBs. The CPU usage has hit very close to 100% many times, and I get messages requesting to change out of Windows Aero.

I have another AMD Quad Core computer (desktop) with a much larger processor and only 3GBs of memory plus a similar video recording program.

It does the same thing as the other one. The processor spikes out and the Ram almost never bumps the top.

Since my early geekhood back in the 1980's when I built my first dual floppy drive computer, I have been told the importance of having lots of memory. Whenever I buy a computer, I almost always have chosen high memory over a high speed processor.

The desktop mentioned previously was a gift from a friend so I could help him with a project he was working on. Again the same thing happened with the programs he needed me to use in doing research for him- extremely high CPU usage and the memory definitely not maxed out.

Now I am a typical production type user. I rarely use my computer for entertainment. As you can see from above, I occasionally create a movie for myself on a subject. I take screen shots, edit photos, use assorted writing programs including Office, and on some occasions use a spreadsheet. There are other programs I use as well. I work it hard. I say all this to share with you that my most recent conclusion is that if you are using a computer for general work purposes 4GBs of memory will probably do you and instead get yourself more processing power.

For more computer tips and ideas check out the ZookaWare youtube page.

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