Disk Usage Causing Bottle Neck?

I've noticed that my fairly beefy PC slows to a damn crawl whenever disk usage peaks, often becoming intermittently unresponsive for several seconds at a time. So basically whenever I'm downloading something, installing something or dealing with a somewhat large file, things start chugging along. I've monitored hardware usage, and the only thing that's spiking is disk usage. The drive in question is an SSD though, so I thought read write speeds wouldn't have such a massive hit on performance.

So I'm wandering if it actually is the drive slowing things down, or is it possible something else is at play?


  • Old and worn out SSD could, otherwise no easy answers come to mind.

  • Have you run a disk benchmark and are you getting the expected speed from the SSD? Because there is a small chance that it might be caused by the disk controller on your motherboard. Try updating the motherboard drivers or changing the SSD over to another disk controller if your motherboard has more than one.

  • My bad I read the post wrong.

    What storage type are you using and what motherboard and slots.

    Could be a mismatch of hardware and slots otherwise maybe just too many things competing for disk usage time.

    Sorry I don't know.

  • Sounds like you have computer aids, run malware/ spyware/ rootkit and virus scans pronto.
    Better yet re-install, as a rule of thumb a good machine has a clean install annually.
    Beefy machine is a little arbitrary what are your specs exactly?
    BTW how old are the components?

    Another thought could be an SSD on the way out… Time for a M.2 ;) perhaps?

  • I have had this issue. I am guessing your boot drive is a SSD.

    Make sure nothing used regularly is installed on the HDD. I have used a HDD for game installs. I guess one of them installed anti piracy or cheat software in the background on the HDD, causing regular stutters.

    Defrag your HDD (DONT'T DEFRAG SSD's). If it's not taking most of a day or more, it is only a fast defrag. Defrag again with a full defrager.

    • You can use Windows' built in Resource Monitor to find out exactly which processes are reading / writing to your disk(s), that should help you figure what processes you need to kill / uninstall to fix the issue.

  • Run UserBench (2min test) to compare the harddrive speeds (and all your other PC parts) to other people with the exact same model. Post the results link here….


  • I split all my stuff across different drives and the drive I use a certain SSD nvme on runs like crap, when exploring files on that drive then Explorer becomes unresponsive for a second or two. I should turn on turbo cache, but I don't have a battery. Then again the drive is backed up to OneDrive automatically, that's probably what's causing the slowness in the first place.

    Anyway if you have spare sata or m.2 slots you could buy another ssd, a really good one, and migrate your windows to it, and relegate your old drive to the trash maybe. Sell it on eBay. If there' something constantly writing to the drive, then make that thing run on a different drive so it only ties up that drive for that one thing. If you do adobe or similar then make sure you have a lot of scratch disc room spare, on your fast primary SSD should be fine, same with your apps on your c drive is fine if speed matters.

    Even if your drive has some feature not enabled it still coudl be a bottleneck for your user experience, you said your computer was beefy.

  • Time to change your SSD. It's dying.

  • Thanks for the replies. Currently on the work PC so will run some benchmarks tonight. I also checked my mobo BIOS, and a new version was released a month or so ago, so might try also flashing that. If I still run into issues, it sounds like the next step is installing a new SSD and migrating Windows across.

  • Check the event viewer and the drive SMART status - look for something amiss there.

    Get a disk speed test utility to check the drive speed.