02-19-2014 01:40 PM
33 12
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  1. iamtim's Avatar
    To completely close an app in Windows 8.1 swipe from the top of the screen and then hold it down once it's close to the bottom screen for about 3 seconds until it flips.
    Huh. I had no idea about that. Thanks, it's good info to have.

    (For what it's worth, I haven't had any issues with my RT being sluggish or freezing up. Worst that I've had on my RT was pre-8.1 update when I'd hit the power button in the UR corner to turn the screen off, the screen would shut off, randomly flash back on for 3-5 seconds, THEN shut off.)
    01-14-2014 04:47 PM
  2. WillysJeepMan's Avatar
    There needs to be a way to change the default behavior of swipe down because Microsoft taught people "swipe down to close" but it isn't really closing most of the time.
    I agree. It would be nice to be able to configure "swipe up" to do that.
    01-15-2014 12:07 PM
  3. coip's Avatar
    I have an original Surface - pre-ordered and received on launch day. I did start having problems that sounded somewhat like you're describing back on 8.0 during the spring of last year: horrible lagging, freezing, needing to shut down with the power button, etc. It got so bad I was convinced there was a hardware problem, but I decided to try a refresh first. Actually, I couldn't get the system to do a refresh, and it was becoming so unstable that I just decided to do a scorched earth reset. After that, it seemed to be working OK, and since I had blown everything away and was starting fresh anyway, I went ahead and put the 8.1 preview on it. Ever since, it's been working well up to and including today on 8.1 RTM. It's never been a speed demon, and it does get a little laggy at times, particularly in metro IE, but never freezes or has any significant delays in operation. (And I've got 2 other accounts on it for my sons, though to be honest, they don't use it much.) Plus I have 61 Metro app tiles pinned to my start screen as well as some additional IE shortcuts and the Office app tiles.

    As a second data point, I picked up one of the cheap refurb units off eBay for my mother and set it up for her, with accounts for both of us so I could handle running all the updates and the 8.1 upgrade. It's running just as smoothly as mine.

    Now I realize you've done refreshes, resets, and got a replacement device, so obviously whatever had happened to my Surface last spring isn't relevant to your situation. However, it's interesting to me that what should be essentially identical devices should be acting so very differently. Since none of the other suggestions seem to be helping, I'll throw out some that may be a little off the wall, but might not be entirely useless. I've numbered these to separate them, but they're not in any particular order.

    1. You mentioned that you thought the slowdowns didn't occur until after you added multiple accounts. Does the system seem slow if only one account is logged in? In other words, does just having another account make your surface run slow or does another account have to be logged in at the same time? Does deleting the other account(s) make the problem go away?

    2. Have you checked memory usage in Resource Monitor? When the Surface is acting slow, is there free physical memory? Some of the problems you describe sound like what can happen in Windows if it starts swapping heavily.

    3. Is your Surface always connected to a particular wifi network, like your home network? If so, can you try connecting to a different network? (A neighbor's wifi, or someplace with free wifi?) I've seen cases where a router starts having subtle problems due to being in the initial stages of failure or just going dumb and needing a reboot. However, most devices will still connect OK, but one will be a canary in the coal mine and suffer drop outs or slow speeds long before the others. In particular this happened to me with an older cheapy laptop at home that started having abysmal network performance with its built-in wifi. As a test I plugged a USB wifi dongle in and that worked fine. I figured the built in network adapter was dead, but it wasn't worth trying to fix it. A few weeks later, however, nothing could connect to the wifi network. After replacing my router, everything worked again, including the laptop.

    4. Do you have an SD card installed? Are you doing anything hacky with it, like the old 8.0 workarounds for the libraries, or some of the hacks for moving user accounts? If so, can you undo those and see if the problems go away? Even if you're not doing anything non-standard with it, have you tried removing it to see if that would help? (I have seen other device wonkiness tied to problems with SD cards.)

    5. Have you tried running any benchmark utilities just to see if there's something obviously wrong in terms of performance? I'm thinking something like PC Benchmark for the Surface hardware or Network Speed Test for your network performance. Just something to maybe help narrow down where the problem could be.
    1. It does seem to be much better if I completely restart the machine and sign in as just one user.

    2. I checked the resource monitor in task manager but didn't see anything abnormal.

    3.It is always connected to the same WiFi network, but my sluggishness is more to do upon logging in, so I didn't think it had to do with the network connection. I'll try turning off WiFi or connecting to a different network and seeing if that changes anything.

    4. No SD card installed for the past 3 months, although in the past I had one installed.

    5. Network Speed Test has always been pretty consistent with my other devices: about 6 mbps download speed. Not great, but that's normal for this house. I don't know how to do a PC Benchmark test.
    01-15-2014 07:14 PM
  4. prlundberg's Avatar
    I agree. It would be nice to be able to configure "swipe up" to do that.
    I disagree, but only because I see no point in a swipe down appearing to close the app but not really closing it. If you want to leave it running, you can hit the Windows button or swipe from the left to something else. Instead Microsoft added more confusion and annoyance to an OS that had already been hit hard by these kinds of complaints.
    howie likes this.
    01-17-2014 08:37 AM
  5. WillysJeepMan's Avatar
    I disagree, but only because I see no point in a swipe down appearing to close the app but not really closing it. If you want to leave it running, you can hit the Windows button or swipe from the left to something else. Instead Microsoft added more confusion and annoyance to an OS that had already been hit hard by these kinds of complaints.
    On mobile devices it is important to differentiate between "closed" and "really closed". There are times when one wants the frontend of the app to close, but wants key backend threads to continue to be active. For some apps, like a word processor, that doesn't make sense. But for apps that want to pop up notifications, like Weather, Twitter, etc. they need to have a background thread running. A simple swipe down on a notepad app should "really close" the app. (I haven't tested it to verify that)

    Swiping down to close the visible part of the app is the same way that Android operates. The app may continue to be running background threads. Task killers for Android are a whole cottage industry for this very reason. Kill the background threads and the app will automatically restart them. If swipe-down-and-hold truly kills the app (including background threads) then that is something that is superior to Android.
    01-17-2014 09:36 AM
  6. coip's Avatar
    Ugh, just an update. After the persistent freezing continued on my second Surface RT, I decided to send it in again for a replacement, which tech support deemed necessary as well, especially since my Surface RT (same as the first one), wasn't always recognizing the charger (a problem he said confirmed there was some 'software issue' with the Surface). I said that that this was the 2nd time this has happened--that I had persistent sluggishness, freezes, and inability to charge on both of my Surface RTs (the original and the replacement) and asked if this perhaps meant that there was something else going on here (e.g. some app or account setting tied to my account that kept mucking things up). He assured me that it was problem with the specific Surface RT. So, I exchanged it out, got a new one, set it up (and was careful to set it up as a new device, not to bring everything over [although I did check to sync start screens]) and within a day I'm having the same problems again: I'll boot up the Surface or log into my account and the start screen will freeze. Can't launch apps, can't shut it down or restart it; just have to wait it out. What is going on here!? So frustrated.
    02-18-2014 01:08 PM
  7. mrpuny's Avatar
    Ugh, just an update. After the persistent freezing continued on my second Surface RT, I decided to send it in again for a replacement, which tech support deemed necessary as well, especially since my Surface RT (same as the first one), wasn't always recognizing the charger (a problem he said confirmed there was some 'software issue' with the Surface). I said that that this was the 2nd time this has happened--that I had persistent sluggishness, freezes, and inability to charge on both of my Surface RTs (the original and the replacement) and asked if this perhaps meant that there was something else going on here (e.g. some app or account setting tied to my account that kept mucking things up). He assured me that it was problem with the specific Surface RT. So, I exchanged it out, got a new one, set it up (and was careful to set it up as a new device, not to bring everything over [although I did check to sync start screens]) and within a day I'm having the same problems again: I'll boot up the Surface or log into my account and the start screen will freeze. Can't launch apps, can't shut it down or restart it; just have to wait it out. What is going on here!? So frustrated.
    I'm really sorry to read that even with your 3rd unit, you're still having the problem with freezing. Unless you're the unluckiest person around, it doesn't sound like hardware problems at this point.

    I don't have much to offer other than your idea that there's something wrong with your account, like some sort of corrupt setting that propagates across installs, is something to investigate further. One thing I suppose you could try would be to do a complete system reset and then either use a local account, or create a new Microsoft account just for testing. Set that up as the only account on the device, and use the Surface for a while just with that and see if it still slows down. If not, then you could try adding your regular account and see if that causes the issues. Not sure what to do at that point, maybe try to elevate the problem with Microsoft?

    Actually one more thing. I know in one of your earlier posts you mentioned that the drive wasn't full, but I guess it's something else to confirm that you're not running out of space.
    02-18-2014 10:15 PM
  8. coip's Avatar
    I'm really sorry to read that even with your 3rd unit, you're still having the problem with freezing. Unless you're the unluckiest person around, it doesn't sound like hardware problems at this point.

    I don't have much to offer other than your idea that there's something wrong with your account, like some sort of corrupt setting that propagates across installs, is something to investigate further. One thing I suppose you could try would be to do a complete system reset and then either use a local account, or create a new Microsoft account just for testing. Set that up as the only account on the device, and use the Surface for a while just with that and see if it still slows down. If not, then you could try adding your regular account and see if that causes the issues. Not sure what to do at that point, maybe try to elevate the problem with Microsoft?

    Actually one more thing. I know in one of your earlier posts you mentioned that the drive wasn't full, but I guess it's something else to confirm that you're not running out of space.
    Yeah, I worked with Surface tech support for like 3 hours yesterday. We think it's some type of corrupted setting attached to my account (say, from a bad app download or something) that keeps getting reinitialized when I set up any new Surface with my Microsoft account. We did a full reinstall ("remove everything and reinstall windows") last night and made sure to set this up as a new PC (including not syncing the start screen), and I'm going to test it for a few days that way--that is, with just the preinstalled apps; I will not download any apps from the Store. I also gave them a list of apps I had previously installed and they're going to investigate them (although, now I wonder if it is an app on my wife's account...should've given them that list as well, but too late now). We'll see how it goes.
    02-19-2014 01:40 PM
33 12

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