Happy Friday! Today's question is from James, who asks what svchost.exe is and why it is sucking up all his Windows system CPU resources. This is a popular question, and it has come up quite often in e-mails to me. Even within the discussion for this week's topic, you find that many other folks using Windows XP and Vista mentioned that they have also experienced or are currently experiencing this issue.
While there were many explanations by our members as to what svchost process is, the two articles that were recommended by our members that I found most helpful in explaining this whole bit were not from Microsoft's support site, but from the How-To Geek Web site "What is svchost.exe And Why Is It Running?" article and "Stop svchost.exe from stealing CPU cycles" from the CNET download blog by our own CNET staff writer Peter Butler. These cleared up things quickly.
After reading the articles and all the shared experiences by our members of how to eliminate these issues with svchost.exe, I realized that the svchost.exe process could be caused by multiple programs on your system--ranging from firewalls, printer programs, and burning software to software update services. So while high CPU cycles can all point to svchost.exe, it's not svchost that is the problem, but ultimately the underlying software, service, or even a possible virus/spyware that is causing that instance of SVCHOST to run so much. And the best way to eliminate some of these processes is to narrow it down to the worst offenders and eliminate them. One program that many members recommended to help discover these offending process is to use Process Explorer version 11.33, which will help break all the svchost.exe processes down in details, so that you can find those programs or updating services and stop them. Check out some of the featured member answers to get you going. Good luck on the discovery of those offenders and if you have any additional tips you'd like to share about svchost.exe, please join us in this week's discussion. Thanks everyone for your help on this!
100 percent CPU usage caused by svchost process, need help
Hi, I am frustrated by a process that takes the CPU in my computer to
100 percent use and then lets it drop back to about 50
percent every couple of seconds, which seems to run while my
Vista 32 computer is idle with no programs actually running
other than Windows. The usage report shows the offending
"thing" to be "svchost," whatever that is--but it can hog up
to 78 percent of the CPU, making everything else run like it
was an old 286! Can you please tell me what this process is?
Is it something I can disable? How I can fix this very
frustrating problem! Thank you.
-- Submitted by:
Featured member solutions for last week's question:
How do you future proof your digitally archived documents? Hello, over the years I have accumulated a lot of data in various forms. I have written documents, my own and those sent to me by others; I have photos in many different file formats; I have videos in several formats and I have converted tapes to digital; finally, I have a large collection of audio recordings. You might also say that I have a large software collection--it begins with DOS 1.0 for the OS family and MS Word 1.0 for the word processing family. My question relates to archiving all of this material. What format(s) should I use for each to future proof my collection? I may need to access documents 10 or 15 years from now and who knows if the future word processors will be able to open today's .doc files. Will PDF always be universal? Photos, video, and audio all have efficient compressed formats, but which ones will survive 50 years from now? What do we need to do today so that future generations are not left with a useless alphabet soup of file formats?
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