Windows 10 hangs/100% hdd use. Possible partition order issue?

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  1. Posts : 17
    Windows 10 Professional x64

    Windows 10 hangs/100% hdd use. Possible partition order issue?

    I've tried multiple different installations of windows 10 on my hp envy 17 laptop (no slug of a machine, i5-12gb ram etc) I'm also running windows 7 on the laptop in a dual boot situation. The disk has a built in HP recovery partition from the original windows 8 that came with it. Disc is formatted as GPT. I had split the HDD and started dual booting windows 7 as my main OS, but left the other Win 8 OS alone. When I went to install windows 10 to a new partition, the system became almost unusable. Hanging every few seconds, sometimes taking 1-2 minutes just to write a short series of words as each key press would take ages to register or the mouse wouldn't move. A significant amount of troubleshooting showed no particular reason.

    The only odd standout would be that the disc usage would keep spiking to 99-100% every time. As I watched in the task manager/performance manager, I'd be seeing 1-2 items highlighted in red with 99-100% disc usage, yet at only a fraction of the normal top write/read speed (something like 1.5mb/s) Even with that low a transfer rate, it just kept reporting the disc was at 100% usage while it proceeded to freeze for the next 10 seconds-5 min+.

    So I tried re-installing using different methods, different builds, trying possibly relevant forum advice like tweaking the paging file and fastboot settings as recommended. I had been trying to install to a clean, blank partition at this point. Eventually, I figured maybe I'd have more luck booting up the existing OEM windows 8 partition and doing the "get windows 10" upgrade route (over the dvd/usb clean install or upgrade route I had tried. No luck. Only marginally better.

    I've already tried getting proper drivers/upgrades. I've tweaked settings and tested the HDD in multiple ways. No errors or issues. This is not an SSD FYI. I should also mention, while all these issues continue to occur over multiple different Win 10 installation attempts, the windows 7 and windows 8 installations continued to run perfectly without disc issues. I could have all the problems on W10, reboot into Windows 7= perfect. Signs do NOT point to a corrupted or failing HDD. Any install was never just reinstalled over top, it was wiped to rule out cross contamination.

    One thing I haven't covered yet is this: During the installs, I originally had issues with being told "windows cannot be installed to this disk. the selected disk is of the gpt partition style" That would be fixed by using rufus to make the bootable usb with the file structure. Booting as regular UEFI boot mode OR legacy mode (windows 7 support) hasn't had any noticeable difference. So i've ruled out the boot mode as a source...I think.

    A few times I received a message about the partitions not being in the optimal/preffered order by the windows 10 installer. After having read about the issue at the directed ms link, it sounds like it could be an issue. I include the following screen shot of the partition manager, as I don't want to mess with the wrong partitions. Windows 10 is C drive in this case, H: is the windows 7 OS install.

    Windows 10 hangs/100% hdd use.  Possible partition order issue?-partition.png

    Oddly, it would seem that the order is ok. WinRE->EFI system->MSR (reserved)->wind 10 OS data partition. Apart from a random 1mb chunk, i'm a bit confused. When I tried installing win 10 using the same iso or source that had given me trouble with the regular install in a virtual machine.....Perfect operation! hair ripped out lol. Same hardware and setup worked great via Vmware, garbage on regular install. I'm wondering if the win 10 not being set as primary/boot could have an effect? Anybody?
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  2. Posts : 561
    Windows 10 Pro/Windows 7 Ultimate

    Holy Kow, all those partitions on one disk?! Well it's great that there is a WinRE partition there.

    Whenever I have to add a new HD to a system, if the original HD is failing but still readable, I use a partitioning program to move each partition starting with the last onto the new HD one partition at a time, it's a real pain.

    The main trick is to put any "system reserved" at the very beginning of the drive, and the Main Windows partition right after. I've seen a few systems where the recovery partition was the first partition after System Reserved, and those systems were practically impossible to in-place update Windows. Eventually I would pull the drive out and manually re-position the partitions so the System was the first after System Reserved. I had a Windows Vista laptop I updated to 7 that updated perfectly, but after a reboot, kept booting to the repair partition, cos it was first in line.

    Old copies of Hiren's Boot CD used to have a tool to tell the HD that the System partition should boot first, but I can't find any copies of that version of the disk.

    But as far as your issue, the order may have something to do with it, in most cases where I had 100% CPU, I would have a bad sector being detected in Windows and the CPU use was Event Viewer continuously making entries. Check your System even log for any "Disk" error entries.
      My Computer

  3. Posts : 7
    Fedora Linux

    I had a similar disk usage issue with windows 8/8.1. In the end there were only 2 possible solutions. 1) Use a different operating system and 2)buy an ssd. I went with installing a different OS.... Hopefully we can get this fixed for you. Which programs are showing really high disk i/o usage? Is one of them anti-malware service? If so I have a fix for that.

    Your insane partition scheme should not affect this at all. Are there any other drivers that you can update? Specifically the chip set?
      My Computer

  4. Posts : 561
    Windows 10 Pro/Windows 7 Ultimate

    Yah I agree, even with the crazy partitions, should not affect CPU usage. Pull up Task Manager and sort Details view by CPU usage Descending. If "System Idle Process" is not the top process, then kill whatever is above that.

    Also I still say check your event viewer for repetitive errors. My Windows 7 system was slowed to a crawl, until I opened event viewer and I was getting thousands of Disk Error messages. So I repaired the disk and they all stopped, system went back to normal speed.

    I use Hiren's to do disk repair, cos there are dozens of Dos programs that work for blocking bad sectors, manufacturer disk utility apps. Or go to your HD manufacturer site and get the right disk utility tool.

    Or, switch to an SSD, a little more expensive but you won't ever have any of the failures that go hand in hand with mechanical HDDs.
      My Computer

  5. Posts : 17
    Windows 10 Professional x64
    Thread Starter

    As far as "Insane" partition schemes That's kind of the goal. Two of you have said that it's insane...Yet all i've done is split my main data partition into 2 to be able to dual boot windows 7 without having to wipe the original HP install of windows 8. So HP decided to hijack some of my hdd space for a built in recovery partition, but other than that, any other partition is the work of OS install or some other process I don't know. So unless your referring to a dual boot partition layout with an OEM recovery partition as insane, what else is in there that gives you that impression? My thinking is that maybe their is redundant or leftover partitions that aren't needed or are causing it to choke. Have another look and tell me your thoughts.

    Something I wondered that never really occured to me... With the two OS installed, I only see one distinct set of EFI/MSR partitions. Is it just the one set of those partitions needed for both the OS? Wouldn't windows 10 and windows 7 require their own boot partitions?

    As far as the process to blame, that's another head scratcher. There ISN'T a single process to pinpoint that's always involved. Yes, antimalware is often one of the processes at the top (highlighted in red, showing low write/read speed yet disk usage at 100%). But sometimes it's svchost, sometimes system, etc... It's ever changing what process is the one supposedly choking it up.

    The last thing I mention because I forgot before...There is evidence of an issue before the system is even loaded fully! As in, if it's set to use win 10 as default OS and therefore uses the win 10 boot manager (light blue screen), it can take over 5 minutes JUST for the OS selection screen to show up. Really!

    Basically, anytime there is loading (before main win 10 GUI/logon screen), whereas normally you would see that black screen with a series of dots smoothly going in a circle over and over while the loading occurs in the backgroud like the image below
    Windows 10 hangs/100% hdd use.  Possible partition order issue?-win10boot.jpg
    The "circle dots" continually freeze and sputter and hang for seconds up to minutes. They may stop and freeze for a few seconds, restart for a few seconds, freeze again and so on and so forth. So to me, that indicates something is happening well before the OS even has a chance to load up anything that could cause problems. It goes without saying that safe mode has no effect.

    I don't want to risk destroying the win 7 install or the ability to boot if possible by going the idiot route and deleting partition without knowing what the hell i'm doing.
    Re: Hiren's boot cd: Did you have a specific version or utility in mind?

    Thanks in advance gentleman
      My Computer

  6. Posts : 17
    Windows 10 Professional x64
    Thread Starter

    Windows 10 hangs/100% hdd use.  Possible partition order issue?-scanhdd.png
      My Computer

  7. Posts : 17
    Windows 10 Professional x64
    Thread Starter

    Windows 10 hangs/100% hdd use.  Possible partition order issue?-hddscan.png
      My Computer

  8. Posts : 17
    Windows 10 Professional x64
    Thread Starter

    Windows 10 hangs/100% hdd use.  Possible partition order issue?-hddbench.png
    Just some screen shots to show what the status is on the HDD
      My Computer

  9. Posts : 7
    Fedora Linux

    Please take a screen shot of windows 10 resource monitor (when it is slow). Click on the disk tab and sort by writes (under "processes with Disk Activity").

    With the two OS installed, I only see one distinct set of EFI/MSR partitions. Is it just the one set of those partitions needed for both the OS? - Yes.

    Wouldn't windows 10 and windows 7 require their own boot partitions? - They should.....

    Does HP officially support windows 10 on the laptop? The proper chipseet drivers could help with this (maybe). Otherwise do you own a spare 2.5" HDD? You could install just windows 10 on it and see how your computer responds. Swap back once done. If it acts the same it could be an issue with win10 or chipset driver. If it acts different I would say it is an issue with win10 and your hard drive. For my acer and windows 8, I needed to apply a firmware update for the hard rive to "fix" it. That said it did garbage and I just ended up going to windows7/ubuntu 14.04.
      My Computer

  10. Posts : 17
    Windows 10 Professional x64
    Thread Starter

    Will get those screens up shortly. To last poster: clarification: you said you had to update the chips to "fix it", but that you ended up having to stick with windows 7/ubuntu? Did it fix it or not?
      My Computer


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