Results 1 to 13 of 13
  1. #1
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA 19103
    Posts
    19
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts

    High CPU usage by System process

    Recently I've experienced almost constantly the "System" process taking about 30% of my CPU cycle on a 3-core 2.80 gigahertz AMD Phenom II X3 720processor. The effect is to lock up my computer for anything from 1/2 second to 30 seconds, enough so that it becomes almost unusable. I've looked online and found several suggestions that haven't solved the problem so I'm hoping for help here. Here's what I've tried to fix the problem over the past 3-4 days.
    • Reboot - solves for a while (1/2 hour to 2 days), but then recurrs
    • Fix corrupted system files using SFCFix - fixed corrupted file, but problem returned
    • Restored C: drive from period before the problem occurred
    • Used Glary Utilities to fix registry problems - no effect
    • Run Windows Update to be sure I'm up to date


    I'm running Win8.1 64-bit with 8GB RAM and lots of free space on my HD

    Is it possible this is a hardware problem - I have no other indications of problems?

    Any suggestions for addressing this would be welcome.

  2. #2
    WS Lounge VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    8,180
    Thanks
    47
    Thanked 983 Times in 913 Posts
    Are you sure it's the Windows System process? Open Task Manager, right click on the System Process and select Properties. Is the file called ntoskrnl.exe? Does it live in C:\Windows\System32?

    cheers, Paul

  3. #3
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA 19103
    Posts
    19
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    As soon as it happens again I'll check. At the moment, with low CPU usage it is that file in that location..

  4. #4
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA 19103
    Posts
    19
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    Unfortunately it's happened again after a period of quiescence.
    I checked and the service file IS located in C:\Windows\System32 and is named ntoskml.exe
    I tried using Windows8.1 troubleshooting (from Control Panel) with no luck.
    Any suggestions on what to do next other than start from scratch would be most welcome.

  5. #5
    WS Lounge VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    8,180
    Thanks
    47
    Thanked 983 Times in 913 Posts
    Can you think of anything that you did / changed when the problem recurred?

    cheers, Paul

  6. #6
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA 19103
    Posts
    19
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    It's possible that I ran Glary Utilities' registry cleaner beforehand (I've done it before with no difficulties). I ran Windows troubleshooting afterwards in trying to track down the problem and it reported no problems.

  7. #7
    WS Lounge VIP
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Earth
    Posts
    8,180
    Thanks
    47
    Thanked 983 Times in 913 Posts
    Re-install time!

    cheers, Paul

  8. #8
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA 19103
    Posts
    19
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    Sad. OK.

  9. #9
    Lounger
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    40
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
    Quote Originally Posted by Paul T View Post
    Can you think of anything that you did / changed when the problem recurred?

    cheers, Paul
    I also use Glary Utilities' registry cleaner from time to time. It seems to me (short memory span) that it lets me backup the Registry before making changes. Is it possible to restore the backup? (I tried doing that the other day with CCleaner with no luck.) Maybe this would return you to the BEFORE state and then work from there. ANYTHING is better than a re-install! PS. I get those short freezes, too. Aggravating, but I just grit my teeth and wait, since my Restore partition was wiped clean by NewEgg when they 'refurbished' my laptop. GRRR!

    Good luck, though.

  10. #10
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA 19103
    Posts
    19
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    I didn't have to reinstall from scratch. I had a drive backup from 1/1/2014 that was clean, prepared by and restored by Macrium Reflect. After reverting to that I had to update Windows and Office and install a few new programs. It took a day of intermittent work, mostly watching things happen. It's now been about 4 days and I haven't had the problem recur. I"m going to stop using Glary (I may still use JV16) and hope. At least I've got good current drive images.

  11. #11
    Lounger
    Join Date
    Feb 2014
    Posts
    40
    Thanks
    1
    Thanked 2 Times in 2 Posts
    I'm glad this worked out for you, even with a partial restore. I have made MANY image backups but have not been able to use (OR trust) any of them! For some quirky reason, when I bought my 'refurbished' Asus laptop from Newegg I learned (after I received it) that they had removed the restoration partition, supposedly for privacy purposes. They then re-installed Windows 8.0 on the hard drive, but left me with NO WAY to reinstal or to 'refresh' it. We all know that a reinstal is inevitable. It's just a matter of time. I tried to make an image using Acronis True Image and Nero, but I never got a message that either one actually finished. I have since upgraded to 8.1 and now I'm hoping I can limp along until Windows 10 comes out! Either that, or BUY a disk for 8.1. WHY couldn't they just WIPE the hard drive and then re-install Win 8.0? Lesson learned: ALWAYS ask, UP FRONT, just what 'Refurbished' consist's of! I got a beautiful laptop, well equipped and powerful but no way to re-install the OS!

    PS I found out why my laptop was acting weird: I had a circuit breaker blow out for the microwave. I have a very good dynamic surge protector on my desk, which kicks out for high or low voltage. I had to kill the main power while working in the service panel. After I got it all fixed, I went online and ran a few things. Due to the erratic performance, I did a system Restart and left for some errands, leaving the laptop powered on. When I returned I found the laptop was 'dead'; no lights, no response. I soon realized that the battery had run down because my surge protector did it's job! I reset the protector and after a couple of hours the battery was charged and I was able to continue. Strange stuff! One thing after the other, I guess.


    Anyway, I'm glad it has all worked out well, for you and for me.

    PC Bob

  12. #12
    New Lounger
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Location
    Philadelphia, PA 19103
    Posts
    19
    Thanks
    0
    Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
    I'm very happy with Macrium Reflect. I used the paid version, but the free one works fine too.

  13. #13
    Administrator
    Join Date
    Mar 2001
    Location
    St Louis, Missouri, USA
    Posts
    23,577
    Thanks
    5
    Thanked 1,057 Times in 926 Posts
    @iampcbob

    If you have a Win 8.1 product key, see Create installation media for Windows 8.1.

    Joe

Tags for this Thread

Posting Permissions

  • You may not post new threads
  • You may not post replies
  • You may not post attachments
  • You may not edit your posts
  •