Question How can I speed up my Toshiba Satellite P55W-C?

Mar 27, 2020
I bought a Toshiba Satellite P55W-C new in 2015. It has slowed down to the point of being unusable. It has the following configuration:

System Toshiba Satellite P55W-C (all builds)
Motherboard FF40 0692
Memory 7 GB free of 16 GB @ 1.6 GHz
Display 3840 x 2160 - 32 Bit colors
OS Windows 10
BIOS Date 20150921
Uptime 0 Days
Run Date Dec 19 '19 at 05:55
Run Duration 123 Seconds
Run User USA-User
Background CPU 30%
CPU Throttled 99%

I ran User Bench Mark and got the following results:

Intel Core i7-5500U
49,319 User benchmarks, average bench 42%
U3E1, 1 CPU, 2 cores, 4 threads
Base clock 2.4 GHz, turbo 2.9 GHz (avg)
Performing way below expectations (18th percentile)
34.5% Below average

1-Core 64
2-Core 91.3
39% 77.7 Pts

4-Core 169
8-Core 149
22% 159 Pts

64-Core 158
11% 158 Pts

Poor: 19% ↑
This bench: 34.5%

Great: 50%

Intel HD 5500 (Mobile 0.95 GHz)
144,038 User benchmarks, average bench 4%
Toshiba(1179 F820) 1GB
Driver: igdumdim64.dll Ver.
Performing above expectations (70th percentile)

4.26% Terrible

Lighting 15.4
Reflection 16.6
Parallax 20.9
4% 17.6 fps

MRender 12.6
Gravity 15.2
Splatting 21.4
4% 16.4 fps

Poor: 3% ↑
This bench: 4.26%
Great: 5%

Seagate FireCuda 2.5" 2TB-$70
21,128 User benchmarks, average bench 49%
280GB free (System drive)
Firmware: SDM1
SusWrite @10s intervals: 4.7 8.2 12 6 4.7 5.1 MB/s
Performing way below expectations (1st percentile)

2.95% Terrible

Read 3.5
Write 4.2
Mixed 6.5
SusWrite 6.8
4% 5.25 MB/s

4K Read 0
4K Write 0
4K Mixed 0
0% 0 MB/s

Poor: 25% ↑
This bench: 2.95%
Great: 71%

Memory Kit Bench

44.9% Average MC Read 15 SC Read 10.3 Latency 90.6
Samsung M471B1G73QH0-YK0 2x8GB
16GB SODIMM DDR3 clocked @ 1600 MHz
MC Write 17.3 SC Write 13.5 44% 90.6 ns
12,424 User benchmarks, average bench 53% MC Mixed 15.1 SC Mixed 13.8
2 of 2 slots used 45% 15.8 GB/s 36% 12.5 GB/s

Performing way below expectations (8th percentile)
Poor: 41% ↑
This bench: 44.9%
Great: 58%

As you can see the range of performance is from poor to terrible. I was surprised to realize that my hybrid SSHD was rated so poorly. I tried an SSD but didn't notice any substantial difference in performance so I put in my desktop and reinstalled the SSHD. I suspect that was because of the poor performance of the other components.

I'm a fairly advanced software guy that can't figure out where to begin with what seems to be a hardware problem. I can't afford another Windows laptop right now because I've gone back to school. I need a Windows laptop for my classes, especially to run analytics and simulation software.

  • What can I do to improve this dismal performance?

  • Upgrade the CPU? If so can it be replaced on the mother board?

  • Should I get different memory?

  • Should I replace the GPU?

    I've struggled with the problem for several weeks and can't find a solution. I really need guidance from this community. Thanks in advance.


Aug 4, 2019
The only thing you could do is upgrade to a SSD and reinstall the OS. You can't change the CPU. You can't change the GPU.
As drivinfast247 wrote, an SSD and a clean Windows install can make a laptop feel better than new.

Back then when you tested the SSD, did you made a new clean install of Windows or did you just use a software to clone the drive? That could be the reason of not soo good performance.

Also you may need to clean the heatsinks and fan. Dust can be a real killer inside a laptop, specially after 5 years of use, high temp could be damaging your performance too.
Mar 27, 2020
drivinfast247: Thanks for the prompt answer.

I did not do a fresh install for the SSD. I used Samsung's migration utility to replicate my existing drive. I did not want to have to recreate my sw development environment from scratch. Now I see that the shortcut is the long way around because the machine is barely usable!

Understood about fixed CPU and GPU. What about different memory? What is the optimal memory for this machine?
To me, it sounds like something is terribly wrong with your windows installation or that your development environment needs more ram.

An ssd will help speeds if the hard drive is getting hammered all the time, but otherwise I don't see this as the main solution.

I would first try a linux live cd and see how it performs there. If it really 'wakes up' then you will want to test installing windows from scratch on a spare drive if you have one and see if that improves anything.