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How Do I Fix this High CPU Usage Svchost Virus or Whatever It Is?


After I log in, my system slows to a crawl. Looking at task manager I see that my computer is experiencing high CPU usage. Looking more closely I see that something called “svchost” is taking 100% of my CPU time. If I kill the process suddenly other things stop working. Is svchost a virus? How do I fix this svchost problem?

That’s actually a composite question based on several reports I’ve been getting recently.

Svchost is not a virus. In fact it’s a required system component. You’ll often find  several copies of svchost running.

Svchost, or more correctly “Service Host”, is a program that is designed to run other programs and “hosts” many of the system services in Windows XP. Several copies of Svchost run more than one service, which is why when you kill an instance of svchost several things on your machine might stop working.

So why is one of the Svchosts taking all your CPU?

And what can you do about it?

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From what I’ve heard and have been able to tell, this is nothing more than a bug. A serious and annoying bug, but a bug nonetheless.

The bug appears to be related to the Windows Update service – the service that you’re supposed to keep running at all times so that updates will be automatically downloaded to your machine.

A quick way to tell if this is happening to you is to download Process Explorer and right click on the svchost instance that’s taking 100% of your CPU and then click on the Services tab:

Svchost running the automatic updates service

You can see that this copy of svchost on my machine is running not only The Windows Update service, but is actually running 29 services all totaled. So if you were to kill this instance of svchost you’d be killing all of those services and many features and functionality of your system would fail.

One Temporary Solution

One approach to this problem is to stop and then disable the Windows Automatic Update service. If you have it open in Process Explorer, as shown above, with Automatic Updates selected in the list, then just click the Stop button. If your CPU usage then drops to more normal levels, you’ve identified the problem.

To prevent the Automatic Update service from starting again, right click on My Computer and click on Manage. Expand Services and Applications, and then underneath that click on Services. In the resulting list on the right, locate Automatic Updates:

Service Manager with Automatic Updates selected

Right click on Automatic Updates and click on Properties. Change the Startup type to Disabled:

Automatic Update Service Properties

There are also rumors that Microsoft will be making the actual fix available in a future automatic update.

(You can also click Stop here if you didn’t stop the service earlier.)

Click OK and Automatic Update service should be disabled.

IMPORTANT: since you won’t be getting updates automatically, you should now plan on visiting the Windows Update web site periodically to make sure you keep your Windows up to date. As we’ll see shortly, this will also become important to resolve this problem “for real”.

Another Temporary Solution

Folks commenting on a previous svchost article have reported success by removing and reinstalling Windows Update.

Specifically a series of commands detailed at labeled Remove and Reinstall of Automatic Updates seems to resolve the issue for many people.

I haven’t tried this solution since I’ve not experienced the problem, but as I said, several folks are reporting good results.

A Permanent Solution?

There isn’t a permanent solution. Not yet anyway.

There are rumors that Microsoft actually has a fix, but that you need to call up and ask for it rather than getting it through normal channels. I’m not convinced that this fix is actually for this specific problem that so many people are experiencing.

There are also rumors that Microsoft will be making the actual fix available in a future automatic update. Ironic, since it’s automatic update that you may have turned off in order to work around the problem. That’s why I recommend making certain you regularly visit Windows Update and take the latest fixes to keep your system up to date, not only for this issue but for any other issues that may crop up over time.

Also, remember, once the problem is fixed, be sure to re-enable the Automatic Updates feature. It remains an important part of keeping your system safe and up to date.



I woke to find this automatic update waiting to be installed on my machine this morning:
Automatic Update Install of KB927891

This is the update that’s been frequently referenced as a resolution for this problem.

It’s possible, perhaps even likely, that this issue will now get put to bed. It’s your choice at this point: you should be able to visit Windows Update to take the fix, enabling Automatic Updates again should get the fix downloaded, or you can visit the knowledgebase article to get the fix.

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199 comments on “How Do I Fix this High CPU Usage Svchost Virus or Whatever It Is?”

  1. Before they sue for libel, let me say that I just spent a very frustrating 2.5 hours on the phone with Microsoft to obtain the following fix, so I’ll throw caution to the wind and overtly suggest that the culprit is a recent windows update and they do not want to admit it.

    Initial troubleshooting steps with tech – beware: He asked (and I refused) to uninstall my firewall (zonealarm) and antivirus (mcafee). Instead, I kept pointing him back to the previously-posted article ID 903737.

    The tech finally relented and sent the requested email (only after getting permission from his mgr). I sincerely hope this fix works for you too:

    1. Click Start, click Run, and then
    type net stop wuauserv .
    2. On the desktop, double-click My Computer, and then delete the drive :WuTemp
    3. Delete the drive:Windows System32Catroot2 folder.
    4. Open the drive:Windows folder, and then rename the SoftwareDistribution folder
    as SoftwareDistributionOLD.
    5. Open the drive:Windows system32 folder, and then follow these steps: a.
    Rename the Wuweb.dll file as Wuweb.dll.old.
    b. Rename the Wuapi.dll file as Wuapi.dll.old.
    c. Rename the Wuauclt.exe file as Wuauclt.exe.old.
    d. Rename the Wuaucpl.cpl file as Wuaucpl.cpl.old.
    e. Rename the Wuaueng1.dll file as Wuaueng1.dll.old.
    f. Rename the Wuaueng.dll file as Wuaueng.dll.old.
    g. Rename the Wuauserv.dll file as Wuauserv.dll.old.
    h. Rename the Wucltui.dll file as Wucltui.dll.old.
    i. Rename the Wups2.dll file as Wups2.dll.old.
    j. Rename the Wups.dll file as Wups.dll.old.
    6. Restart the computer.

  2. Thank you to all those who posted the manual fixes on this site! Hoorah!
    p.s. The MS tech I spoke with also mentioned that upcoming SP3 would be yet another way to fix the svchost problem.
    Finally, I also received the tech’s secondary solution, “WindowsUpdateAgent30-x86.exe”.
    If someone would tell me how to post it here, I’d gladly share.
    Kind regards,

  3. It should be noted that svchost.exe isn’t *always* a virus – there are a number of viruses that call themselves svchost.exe and run alongside the legit svchost.exe.

    I’ve seen this svchost issue automatic updates on a number of machines. What has fixed it on every one of them is this batch file:

    net stop wuauserv
    net stop bits
    net stop cryptsvc

    deltree /Y %systemroot%SoftwareDistribution_Old
    ren %systemroot%SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution_Old

    regedit /s “WSUSReset.reg”


    net start wuauserv
    net start bits
    net start cryptsvc

    wuauclt.exe /resetauthorization /detectnow

    where WSUSReset.reg contains:

    Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00


    Note this is for a corporate network environment running WSUS, but it should work exactly the same on a home PC (some of the steps are unnecessary on home PC’s, but won’t cause any harm).

  4. Thank You!!!

    After many frustrating days recently fighting this problem (including letting the laptop sit thre for 20-30 minutes waiting for the svchost to get done whatver it was doing., I found the simple step of disabling the Windows update service has worked like a charm. Shame on Microsoft for sitting on this fix (if it indeed a fix).

  5. Suddenly I started getting an infuriating situation where svchost was taking up 99% processor power – I knew this because as soon as I logged on I started task manager to see. I had to do a hard switch off to get out of the problem.
    Then I read these hints, downloaded adaware and ran it, and there has been no problem since. Interestingly, adaware did not find any cookies that I would have thought were harmful, but it worked!
    Well done, you saved me from a lot of work doing a restore.

  6. A real nice solution I found was rather than turning off Windows Update, give it its own svchost.

    Do this by typing in the cmd prompt:

    sc config wuauserv type= own

    If you notice in process explorer, one svchost has a bunch of things under it, including windows update.
    This command will give the windows update service its own svchost, and allow it to function without killing your computer.
    Open process explorer again, and see the windows update in its very own svchost.

  7. Thank you Leo! I spent about a day pinpointing the problem and found that it was Windows Automatic Update service causing svchost.exe to eat up 100% of my laptop’s CPU usage. I then spent another day googl’ing the web for solutions which none worked until I tried your suggestion to Remove and Reinstall Windows Update. I ran the script and the problem went away instantly. My laptop is healthy and happy. =) THANK YOU!!!

  8. We had this problem on all the PC’s at work – over 200, nearly all at the same time :S.. I called MS and got a patch/fix. Although even after running the fix it doesnt fix the problem every time. The only way we have been able to fix the computers is by logging in locally and then once the profile is loaded, restart the computer. Repeat this process until the windows update shield is showing and then select install updates and shutdown.
    This is the only solution that has worked for us. We have tried everything mentioned in the previous comments and then some, to no avail.
    Hopefully this helps someone!

  9. A while ago I figured out that automatic updates was the culprit behind svchost using 99% cpu, so I turned it off. Since then I have been going to Windows Updates to check for updates. It has worked well until today when this also resulted in svchost hogging 99% of the cpu again. !%#&^. and other very bad words.

  10. Hi. Was having the exact same problem, but only after upgrading from office 2000 to 2003 for some reason. Each time it started to happen, I restored the system to before the upgrade, which always worked but was highly frustrating! Put auto update in it’s own svchost as stated in an earlier – hey presto! It now works! Many thanks to all…

  11. Talk about a coincidence. The svchost.exe has been using all my CPU after installing an recent update from Microsoft, I was convinced it was a virus, carried out numerous virus checks but nothing showed up..then I read this…excellent.. it work. my cpu is no longer being drained and my only problem now is every time I activate windows update to update it drains the the cpu again…is there any thing that Microsoft can do about this ??

  12. I have spent the last week trying to sort out what the hell was going on with my laptop. My virus protection company wanted to charge me $100 to remove a virus (I thought that’s what their software was supposed to do!). Fortunately I found your site, ran the script to uninstall and re-install automatic updates and all is now well with the world. Thank you, thank you, thank you.

  13. hey pleaes i need desperate help on how to reverse this following process:

    sc config wuauserv type= own

    I did it and now the same problem occurs when i terminate svchost.exe and now my computer wont play any sound files anymore, and i tried restarting it and its still no use, can someone who knows comand prompt help me reverse the process so that automatic update is back under svchost.exe again?

  14. If it helps, there is a patch available that updates SVChost, that does’t require contact with Microsoft either that I’ve found fixes this patch- have a look at Microsoft KB927891 (you can download it here…… I’ve found this has fixed it in most cases (and I’ve seen a lot of cases of it…). Apparently it doesn’t affect all machines, so it’s not being pushed out as a critical update (although, ironically, given the cause, it probably wouldn’t help people much!).

  15. I have encountered the same problem. However, I am now having a host of other issues. I am getting a warning that my virus program may be out of date, but it is not and my AOL which used to start up automatically on the bottom of the task bar no longer appears. I turned off the automatic updates and rebooted, but it has not helped. Does anyone have any faith in the various fix programs that are advertised? Also, the updates my computer was trying to install was for Microsoft Office 2003, which I only have a trial version of. The updates would never install and I can’t seem to delete Microsoft Office using the Control Panel add/delete programs option. I also tried doing a system restore without success.

  16. Seems to be my problem too. Thought it was a virus but coulnd’t find a virus. I noticed Windows Update running but 0% of the updates showed as downloaded. Seemed to come about when downloading the Office 2003 updates.

  17. I’ve been pulling my hair out on this one. I’m glad someone has identified this as a bug! It’s totally mind-numbing that Microsoft could produce such a bug and I guess is waiting forever to fix it.

    I’ve been dealing with this for MONTHS! I even talked to the fine folks at Microsoft, but they were not any help at the top of the year. They said it was virus-like behavior and they could have a tech scan my computer. I opted out of that one though.

    Thanks Leo!

  18. I’ve had this problem with my desktop for months. I abandoned it ’cause it was too slow and started using only my laptop and the same thing happened to the laptop last week.

    I then found this web-site ran the reinstall.cmd scripts. I’ve sorted both computers out and they are working perfectly.

    Microsoft ought to do something about it. ‘Cos the update program is causing more headache than benefit.

    Cheers Leo!

  19. Thanks Leo. I’ve experienced the same problem. I’ve used the “remove and reinstall” and looks that the system is working properly. Now, the only problem is when I install updates again, cause I go back to the problem. I’ve also installed the patch KB927891, just in case…
    I was lost till I found your page. Please, keep uploading this topic if new solutions are found.

  20. There is an issue between Office 2003 and Microsoft update and Windows XP. If you have this combination, everytime Windows checks for Microsoft updates (not the Windows updates), it will cause to svchost.exe go up to 99% and takes all resources but 1%.
    If you wait long enough, the system will run normally eventually, after he has checked for updates.

    Visit to disable Microsoft updates. You can disable automatic updates temporarely to have a working computer again. Maybe you have to reboot. You can kill the task svchost.exe which is running at 99%, to gain control of your Windows.

  21. Here’s what I found when my “new” laptop froze up after what I thought was a routine microsoft automatic update. Following the patching instructions included with this patch resolved my problems entirely.
    You receive an error message after a Windows XP-based computer runs an automatic update, and you may be unable to run any programs after you close the “svchost.exe – Application Error” error message dialog box SYMPTOMS You configure a Microsoft Windows XP-based computer for Automatic Updates, and the Windows operating system runs an automatic update. Then, you may receive an error message in the svchost.exe – Application Error dialog box that resembles the following: The instruction at “0x745f2780” reference memory at “0x00000000”. The memory could not be ‘read’.
    CAUSE This issue may occur because of a problem with the Automatic Updates service. RESOLUTION To resolve this problem, apply the hotfxi that is described in the following Microsoft Knowledge Base article: 927891 ( You receive an access violation when you try to install an update from Windows Update after you apply hotfix package 916089

  22. Phew! At last. Thanks Leo This one has been driving me crazy. For the past 10 days I have had to open task manager as soon as the computer starts in order to ‘end process’ the svchost file that was maxing the CPU. Ir also accounts for the sudden loss of sound on the machine!

    I thought it was a virus but AVG and spywarebot didn’t find anything.

    I will find and reinstall the updates programme and fingers crossed for a permanent fix!

  23. I had this problem. After awhile my computer would overheat from running at 100% and shut down. I tried lots of things including patch KB927891. I had to back this out because it made it worse. The computer is running fine now. What did I do?? This might not make any sense but the only changes I did was to shut Mcafee down for a day and I changed the time of when the Windows automatic update would run. A strange fix for a strange problem.
    For the overheating, I also took my computer outside, opened it up and blew the dust out of the insides.

  24. I had this problem and I was about to completely re-install my PC after scanning the system with many different spyware and virus scanners for weeks . I was following the same procedure as Organicman writes earlier: start PC, open taks manager, kill the svchost taking 94% of CPU. The reset script for windows update service did the trick. Many thanks Leo for this golden tip!

  25. Add me to the list of frustrated and disillusioned Windows users. My “roommate” had been experiencing the same slowdown and hanging symptoms mentioned throughout this thread on her desktop, but things really got serious when my computer began acting the same way! Things got even more puzzling when a third computer started having the same problems. Truly, our computers were becoming next to useless, and chalking everything up to coincidence was becoming a stretch. I tried everything I could think of to fix things without success and was about to reformat. Then, out of curiosity, having noticed that “svchost.exe” was hogging system resources, I searched Google and was instantly “enlightened.” I wasn’t alone

  26. I contacted microsoft support the fix the sent me seems to have taken care of the problem and I am able to use automatic update with no problems. Here’s the answer I got from microsoft.

    Thank you for contacting Microsoft Windows Update Support. My name is Kino and I am glad to work with you. To contact me, you can send emails directly to my account: with the case ID SRX1035453845 in the subject line.

    From your description, I understand that the Svchost.exe reaches to 95% when running Automatic Updates. If I have misunderstood your concern, please feel free to let me know.

    I understand the inconvenience you have experienced. Please be assured that I will do my best to help you resolve the issue as quickly as possible.

    This error is most likely caused by a conflict between an old Windows Update Agent and Microsoft Update Installation Engine. Recently, we released a hot fix, which addresses this issue. Based on the current status, I suggest we try the following steps to troubleshoot the issue.

    Step 1: Download and install the hot fix for this issue.


    1. Visit the following link and download the hot fix to the Desktop:

    Update for Windows XP (KB927891)

    2. Refer to the Desktop and double-click the downloaded file to install it.

    If the issue persists, we can try the next step.

    Step 2: Manually download and install the new Windows Update Agent 3.0


    1. Visit the following link and download Windows Update Agent 3.0 to the Desktop:

    2. Refer to the Desktop and double-click the downloaded file to install it.

    After installing Windows Update Agent 3.0, please check the issue again.

    For more information related to this issue, please refer to the following Microsoft Knowledge Base articles:

    FIX: When you run Windows Update to scan for updates that use Windows Installer, including Office updates, CPU utilization may reach 100 percent for prolonged periods

    You receive an access violation when you try to install an update from Windows Update after you apply hotfix package 916089

    WSUS (Windows Server Update Services) Team Blog

  27. a task like this (windows update) which consumes much cpu, but isn’t time critical, should run at a low priority in the background, only running when there aren’t other tasks ready.

  28. Excellent information, can’t wait to get home and fix my wifes computer with what you have posted here Leo, thanks so much! This problem sucked several worthless hours out of my life just last night, hopefully tonight it ends.

    This may also help, released 5/14/2007 describing a memory leak in WMI. If WMI uses svchost, this may be the missing link:

  29. Here’s a step by step we used, that uses some of the above info:

    1 – Stop Windows automatic updates service, and disable the service. (100% cpu should drop.)

    2 – Install hotfix patch for XP pro:

    3 – After patch install and before restart, change automatic updates service, back to automatic.

    4 – Restart computer.

    5 – After restart, login and copy the text below in to a new notepad document and save it as: reset.cmd

    (Double click on the file to run it.)

    net stop “Automatic Updates”
    del /f /s /q %windir%SoftwareDistribution*.*
    net start “Automatic Updates”
    wuauclt.exe /detectnow

    5a – What does it do?
    The file stops the Automatic Update service, then flushes out the contents of the folder “Software Distribution”. It then restarts the Automatic Update service again before forcing an update cycle to start.

    6 – Run windows update from explorer, to verify it works, and cpu stays at normal levels. *Important*

    Should be good to go now, CPU will be “normal”.

    Hash: SHA1

    *** IMPORTANT ***

    Everyone please read the “Update” I just added to the article. It appears that
    Microsoft has pushed the fix for this out tough (ironically) automatic updates.

    Version: GnuPG v1.4.6 (MingW32)


  31. Small correction: After disabling the Automatic Updates service, you can’t get any updates. Even if you visit the Windows Update website and manually try to get patches, it will fail until the service is enabled. In fact, just starting the service is not sufficient, it must be set to an Automatic startup.

    If you are suffering from this problem, you can download Process Explorer on another computer and run it on the problematic machine without installing it. That is, PE runs just fine from a thumb/flash drive. Right click on the offending instance of svchost and lower its priority. It may still burn all the cpu, but when you use the system, you should have a higher priority so the system should run at a reasonable speed.

    Task Manager can also lower the priority of a process, but it can’t pinpoint the services running inside each instance.

  32. 9279891 did not work for me after two tries. The “remove and reinstall” does work. I think it is because (as mentioned in previous comments) auto updates is scanning the logging info for its internal use and takes a lot of time especially when the log is big due to a lot of pervious auto updates (and also the scanning algorithm might have just been changed after recent update ignorant to this fact). Remove and reinstall clears the long log so it becomes faster. I just wonder it might come back after many new updates. But who cares? I will just do the same again instead of digging out MS’s fix that does not really work for everybody. Thanks for the posts here.

  33. My svchost.exe appears to be sending information to a fake windows update site. Using netstat I found the server’s name to be Doing a whois, this does not appear to be a microsoft server. I am not able to recieve any windows updates via automatic or windows update site. When I try to update the svchost connects to footprint and eats my CPU. Could this be an svchost virus? Maybe svchost has been modified so that it loads an infected dll or something.

  34. Great article, thanks. The good news? Process explorer is great. I quickly confirmed that it was windows update eating eating my CPU. The bad news? KB927891 didn’t do a thing. So, I’ve turned off automatic update until MS fixes the problem. (Not that I’m sure how I’ll know when that happens.)


  35. On my computer the svchost problem was related to the DNS Client service. By disabling the DNS Client I was able to solve the problem. Each time I tried to access the internet the svchost.exe file would take up 100% of my cpu resources. The following svchost process was causing the problem.

    svchost.exe 980 Dnscache

    By typing services.msc into the run box and stopping/disabling the DNS Client everything went back to normal. I also disabled Automatic Updates and Windows Firewall (since I use a different firewall there’s no reason to run both of them and it can also cause conflicts to occur) just in case either of those services might cause problems as well.

  36. Well KB927891 is installed and automatic updates are turned off.

    But the problem persists!

    Why can’t MS get things together ? They may have to pay for divorce proceedings. My wife is really getting pee’ed off.

  37. I dwnloaded this fix and i would like folks to post what the CPU is running at after the fic is installed mine is still running at 75% to 85% that is of coarse with task manager running might be a littlelower without it running. Anyway I think this CPU usage is still high for and after shutting down quite a few services that i read carefully about doing firstbefore shutting them offin msconfig. I also do a clean boot,and have no non-microsoft programs load,upon start up and still 75% – 85% CPU usage. If after any of you have installed this update (hot fix KB927891) what are your CPU usages running at?? Mine is lower but wonder what decrease in CPU usage others are getting after the update. Thnx appreciate any input……..

  38. In light of information from this article I found that part of the problem can be associated to regsvr32.exe if it is not the most current version. I recently tracked the issue back to a non-Microsoft software deployment we had previously ago that would replace C:WINDOWSsystem32regsvr32.exe only on XP SP2 PCs from version 5.1.2600.2180 to version 4.0.0. The deployment team said this would not be an issue to accept these files as all attempts to use a CD and restore the files would fail.

    The first problem caused by the incorrect version of regsvr32.exe caused the installation of Windows Media Player 11 (WMP11) upon installation to max out CPU usage while attempting to install for three to four hours and although would complete it would not function fully (example: visualizations and codec

  39. I used RegCure and it appears to have fixed the problem. It takes them ages to send you the licence number once you hvae paid your $35 but it works a treat.

  40. I tried to fix a PC that actually froze immediately after booting into windows XP. Virus and spyware checkers did not identify any problems. After working through the diagnostic mode in MSCONFIG I eventually identified the problem to be The Windows Management Instrumentation service – another incarnation of SVCHOST.EXE. Turning off the service resulted in a normal boot and a working operating windows system. Closer comparison of the executable located in the windowssystem32 folder with two (2) other PCs running the same OS (including updates) revealed that the SVCHOST.EXE on the problem PC was dated 4/08/2004 whereas the other PCs showed it dated as 3/08/2004. I deleted the problem PCs file, replaced it with the 3/08/2004 version and have not had a problem since. This post is being writen on the problem PC. Virus or otherwise infected file? Who knows, its worth a play – it worked for this PC.

  41. I just had this problem on a Dell Optiplex SX270 and had scheduled a motherboard replacement on it before I read your article and followed you advice. Your suggestion worked perfectly and it was the Windows automatic updates service that was causing my CPU useage to go to 99%. After disabling the service the computer bacame stable and responsive.

    What was interesting was that the Dell guy showed up and did the motherboard replacement. I told him what I had done to alleviate the problem, but he wanted to do the replacement anyway. Amazingly, that actually fixed the problem! Windows automatic updater could be turned back on and the computer was fine. In other words, it was actually a hardware problem that I had circumvented by turning off that automatic uptates service.

  42. Hi
    I have a worm insvchost.exe ,is called worm.win32.Small.r.although Kaspersky 7 finds it but cannot disinfect it.what have I to do to get rid of this worm in system32 folder.I used nod32 but also the same problem.I have no way but re-installing windows because the system is so sluggish. I think there is some problems with ICAgent30.exe that our institute install on PCs because while I end task it the system works better,I think.I have no automatic update in computer management section!!!waht do you suggest me?

  43. Hi there,

    This is a persistant issue. I have done all that was suggested but still have an issue. I disabled the Auto Update service as described and all was well. However, on next boot I had the problem again. With a little investigation I have discovered its related to the Firewall settings. If I switch off the firewall, the problem disappears. The service is Shared Access / Windows Firewall Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) and the Dll is INATHLP.dll. My REGSVR.exe is the later version.

    I do not want to leave the firewall off so I have put the priority for this instance down to the lowest value and am suffering it.

    If you can help that would be great – otherwise, I am contemplating a re-install of XP.

    Kind Regards,

    Bill Harte

  44. Wife’s laptop running at 100% CPU. Tried everything I knew to do. Downloaded Process Explorer and it told me that “Spyware Terminator” was the culprit. Have no idea if it hung up or what. Didn’t show as a running application but, killed the process and immediate fix. I run the same Spyware on my PC and have never had a problem. Have to admit, I don’t even know if this fits your Svchost category

  45. I found another solution for you. My SVCHOST.EXE was maxing out my CPU only on DNS request, in tracking it, it was the DNSRSLVR.DLL that was the problem. In order to fix, I had to go into services, right click on the DNS Client, select properties, then Click on the Log On tab. From there changing it to the local admin or domain admin accounts works fine.

  46. I have found my own solution to this problem. I use one of 2 programs that keeps a watch on processes that use a lot of CPU time and lower the priority for these processes. One of them is Process Tamer ( and the other is Process Lasso ( I always hated how I would go to a machine and whether it was automatic updates or manually updating the machine would freeze while looking for updates. Well using these programs will keep you computer usable while doing updates. The main machines I have noticed the problem on all have Celeron P4 processors. I hope these programs will be of use. Thanks for the interesting article.

  47. Hey, just thought i would add this. My service host was hogging all the memory it could because of my stupid HP printer network… I killed it and everything went back to normal.

  48. I had the same svchost issue on two computers and tried everything above with no good result. I finally disabled the HP Digital Imaging Monitor and all was OK. This is piece of software that sits around and waits for a button to be pressed on an HP Multi-function printer/scanner/fax. It can be temperarily disabled by right clicking on it in the lower right corner of your display and selecting exit. It can be removed from the Startup folder to permanently render it harmless.

  49. I tried your fix to my 100% CPU usage problem, disabled the updates….worked great! But, re-booted and same problem as before, except now the automatic updates shows as ‘ disabled ‘? Curious, not sure whatelse could have ocurred? Plus, I am a computer programmer, so, I have a lot of experience with pc’s and software………

  50. I had this same problem, and followed your advice. Once I downloaded Process Explorer, I was able to see all the processes tied to the svchost.exe that was tying up the CPU. I went into Computer Management (as recommended) and disabled Auto Updates. This didn’t solve the problem. I then started to disable other services until the problem did go away. It ended up being the “HID Input Service (HidServ).” From the description of this service, it seems like it handles predefined hot buttons and some other multimedia devices. Hopefully I won’t need it for anything important.

    Thanks for the help! Hopefully this will help others with the same problem. And hopefully Microsoft will provide a fix.

  51. Had same problem with HP printer software. svchost running CPU 100%, other programs crashing. Even with digital imaging monitor tuned off, still occurred. Uninstall HP software, back to normal. Found a fix on internet. Reinstalling HP software, then Going into services and changing HP settings from Automatic to manual fixed the issue.

  52. Thanks this has helped alot. I had the svchost cpu problem and tried diableing updater but still occured. So I went through one at time and stopped RIP Listener which is a servce that listens for information from a router and that stopped the cpu usage problem, but while this has been happening I have had no conectivity can not ger IP address from network. There was also an unauthorized user account under RIP Listener. So with RIP Listener disabled will I be able to get conectivity?

  53. Another vote for the bloody HP service. The Process explorer that was mentioned in this article is truly a wonderful piece of software – it showed me immediately that the culprit was the HP Network Devices Support service. The solution was to simply stop the service and change its property to “manual”. Thanks for the help!

  54. It appears there are a number of resolutions to the svchost high usage issue. This occurred on one of my four PCs and turned out to be a DNS Client issue. Some weeks ago I added a new “host” file that exceeded 641K. I replaced the host file with the original which is 1K and the problem is gone.

  55. I had this problem a few months back on my Windows XP SP-2.

    When i did a netstat -a i found many ports open…

    Then i used a software called proxifier to find out which program is trying to connect to the internet/network… as my firewall didnt come usefull for this…

    there was some file (cant remember the name) in windowssystem32…

    I deleted it using hijackthis and then my pc was running good for few days…

    But the virus came back again…
    I guess its a network virus. And not a bug.

  56. this problem occured on my pc 3-4 days ago.
    I tried every solution given in this site. Disabled the automatic updates but it didn’t work. so downloaded process explorer.
    I tracked svchost.exe threads, there i fount that msvcrt.dll is using all the CPU.
    can anybody solve this issue?

  57. I too had a problem concerning with svchost virus, I too worked a lot on that, and got a solution, for the help of users, I am providing the link to my article Getting rid of svchost virus. This article is recommended for those who have problem concerning with virus called svchost, and not with those related with printer, or other things. Those viruses cannot be detected using antivirus softwares, they are called as rootkits. Just read my article if you want to fix the virus which I have explained.

  58. Has anyone had this problem AND had explorer hijacked? Using task manager I too changed the HP settings to manual and found another problem: iexplorer keeps launching to ad sites, even when I am using firefox, I see it opening multiple instances in the process window. I have scanned several times for spy/ad/viruses and it seems to keep on happening.

  59. I had a user experiencing long periods (hours) of high CPU utilization from svchost.exe. Unsure that I wanted to run unproven (freeware) “reg cleaner” I learned about Microsoft Process Explorer on this web site and ran it. I was immediately able to determine the cause of the problem.

    It was an HP (who else) printer discovery service that was installed during a recent all-in-one printer connection. I shut down the offending service in System Manager and CPU usage dropped instantly. Now I can confidently address my problem with the offender!

    Thanks to Ask Leo!, I was able to learn about, identify and correct the problem without the risk of potentially currupting an ‘unbroken’ registry. Thanks Leo! Scott

  60. My XP computer was running fine UNTIL I installed the hp c7250 printer last week. Now I get the 100% cpu usage with svchost.exe. I can kill the process, but that is temporary. Is there a permanent fix? Has anyone contacted HP about this?

  61. I think I found a fix for my problem, or at least a workaround. My problem was caused by a HP utility called “HP Digital Imaging Monitor”. The solution was to go into the “System Configuration Utility” by typing msconfig from the run command. Next, I went to the Startup tab and unchecked “HP Digital Imaging Monitor” so that it wouldn’t startup everytime I started my machine. The “HP Digital Imaging Monitor” monitors my connection to the printer and alerts me if I lose the connection. It is really not necessary anyway so it doesn’t even need to be installed, so removing from startup will not decrease any functionality of the printer.

  62. THANK YOU DON! I have had this svchost cpu-hogging problem since installing an HP wireless printer. I just stopped the auto startup of “HP Digital Imaging Moniter”, and my CPU usage has returned to normal. Hooray!

  63. Leo, thank you very much for your help on this problem. For a few weeks I had been experiencing a sluggish, 100% usage not knowing what the issue was. Coincidently, however I had installed a new HP Wireless D7460 printer, and after reading the comments after the article I thought that would fix the problem. It didn’t, so I proceeded to Microsofts Update site and downloaded all the newest available updates. After that didn’t work, I searched the update under your 23-May-2007 Update. After installing that and rebooting by computer, I was happy to see my CPU usage to drop to normal levels! Thank you for your help, it’s greatly appreciated!


  64. I too just purchased an HP all-in-one printer and noticed cpu usage @ 100% and sluggish response. After 3 hrs on phone w/ HP tech support, he told me to upgrade my XP to Vista or to purchase a Security Sweep to correct the problem. After installing Norton 360, my problem still existed. Thanks to your website and reading Don’s post re: the disable of HP Digital Imagining Monitor .. problem was fixed! Maybe HP’s tech support in India should subscribe to your site!!

    Hash: SHA1

    “Maybe HP’s tech support in India should subscribe to your


    Actually I have been contacted on occasion by various folks
    in tech support roles for major companies. And I also have a
    fairly significant readership in India.


    Version: GnuPG v1.4.7 (MingW32)


  66. I, too, had this problem after installing an HP all-in-one wireless printer (HP C4385). Disabling the Digital Imaging Monitor did not help for some reason, so I uninstalled the printer drivers & software and emailed HP’s tech support. I got the following suggestion:

    1. Click Start Menu >> Click

  67. 3/13/08. We have a recently cleaned and reinstalled Win XP SP2 + all current updates on which svchost.exe was grabbing all of the available CPU and things were unbearably sluggish. Looking at Task Manager sorted by CPU I noted that ALG.EXE was at 0% but also near the top of the list. It’s Application Layer Gateway for 3rd party plug-ins and for Windows Firewall. We’re behind a firewall so disabling Windows Firewall solved the problem. However, what the heck was WF doing that kept it banging away at ALG -> SVCHOST? It could be a problem for folks not already behind a firewall. Fortunately, I use Zone Alarm Internet Security Suite on XP and Vista so WF doesn’t run actively.

  68. my notebook running XP is having a similar problem but with 95% of CPU power running on a program named wmiprsv.exe no matter how this application is closed/removed/delete, it keeps coming back – presumably it is part of Windows’ system file.

    at a complete loss

  69. on may 11, 07 a comment posted by “guest” suggested typing at the C: prompt: sc config wuauserv type=own so that windows update has it’s own svchost
    is there a way to undo this command (long story)
    by the way, the windows KB927891 patch didn’t work but re-loading networked HP printer without the imaging software helped
    though the auto update still runs up the scchost on occasion (per process explorer)

  70. My computer is extremely slow as of late and when I open up task manager there are several iexplorer.exe processes (taking up 90% CPU usage) even when I aren’t using the internet. When the previous problem had not yet arisen, there is was a process named ‘remote cash dale.exe’ – I have no idea what that is but it uses a whole lot of my CPU (ranging from 50%-99%). The two processes now take it in turns to torment me by slowing my computer to an unbarable speed. Please could you give me some advice?

  71. when i play games my cpu usage goes high.some times system will automatically restarts.some svchost process some times some other process is taking high cpu. the same problem will revealed when i installs any software alsi

    i have formated entire system and reinstall but the problem still there and one thing is when i open bios also my cpu gives noice
    Is it hardware problem
    please help me

  72. looks like my svchost is screwy too, it’s been hogging CPU for a week or two and got really bad the last couple of days

    I’m using XP home SP2, and have updates thru KB945533 on 4/14/08 including the KB927891 patch

    my usual browser is FireFox

    CA Security Center didn’t find a virus or spyware

    I had AutoUpdate turned on to download but let me manually install but turned it off completely and svchost.exe seems to be OK now

    except, I went to Windows Update using IE7 this morning and when I try the auto check for what update(s) I need the green status indicator just keeps moving across the bar and it never gets further, I let it run for an hour, I’ve tried this with both CA addons and firewall disabled as well as popup OK for

  73. I had to call microsoft support. They ran tool to re-register all the DLLs using regserv. This solved the problem.

  74. Getting updates via Windows Update site is now impossible.

    However, I’ve found a site that will allow you to get your updates using Firefox browser and presumably other browers. I installed it and it works! (I used their tool vs. the regular install because I have no knowledge of how to install unsigned plug-ins)

  75. I put Help Service and Windows Update service in their own svchost and this fixed things.
    Now Windows Update starts up at boot and hardly consumes any resources at all, and periodically when it and Help Service come on they don’t consume much resources any more.

    I used the “sc config wuauserv type= own” and “sc config helpsvc type= own” commands

  76. Hi,

    Hi, Since yesterday my laptop is getting slow because of windows updates. I did net stop wuauserv the cpu bacame 0 % busy, a few minutes later it bacame again 100% busy and again wuauserv was binded to svchost taking 100% cpu. process monitor helped a lot identifying this.

    The SOLUTION came up in some other forum:

    And the solution to my laptop cpu 100% busy problem was to run the following script:

    regsvr32 MSXML3.dll
    regsvr32 WUAUENG1.dll
    regsvr32 WUAPI.DLL
    regsvr32 WUAUENG.DLL
    regsvr32 WUAUENG1.DLL
    regsvr32 ATL.DLL
    regsvr32 WUCLTUI.DLL
    regsvr32 WUPS.DLL
    regsvr32 WUPS2.DLL
    regsvr32 WUWEB.DLL
    net stop WuAuServ
    rename %windir%SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution_buggy
    net start WuAuServ

    By the way, I believe this script should be harmless to run…

    Hope this may help everyone solving the same problem!


  77. My CPU operating 100% was due to low connectivity. Once I turned power off at source and replugged all the connections at the back of the tower including the blue pin plug with the two screws to ensure they were properly connected, my 100% CPU problem was solved

  78. I set a recovery point every time I made a change to my system and was able to pinpoint where things went south with Svchost. It turned out that my HP printer utilities for my C7280 caused the SVCHOST/CPU issue. Process Explorer helped me identify and confirm this as it tuned out a HP DLL was caught in a loop. As this DLL only sniffs for IP address changes related to the HP device on my home network, and I had hard set the IP for that device, I could easily shut it down and set it to manual.

    Problem solved for me. I guess that SP3 is not watertight for all different devices esp when these are relatively new.

    I therefore strongly recommend using Process Explorer.

    Good luck to all and thanks Leo!


  79. FWIW: About two weeks back I had this problem with svchost hogging all my CPU for over four days (using WinXP Pro SP2). I tried all the suggested fixes I could find, even did a reinstall in place — all to no avail. I was about ready to shoot my PC, when I tried simply disabling my “DNS Client” service. _Immediately_ the problem disappeared! That was a week ago, no fallout has occurred, and I’m still savoring the way my PC is running.

    BTW, this is repeatable: if I restart the DNS Client service, svchost goes berserk; turn it off and the problem goes away.

    Frank D

  80. My system has had the same problem from time to time. Recently, the culprit(s) this time was, Service Pack 3 update…It caused my USB Wireless Network Adapter to go down. At startup, I constantly received missing “AirPlusCFG.exe” and WZCSLDRZ.exe” alerts after the update (cheap way for Microsoft to do coexistence testing…all is forgiven). CPU usage remained at 100% and the system never settled down all night. After troubleshooting the next morning, I found and immediate fix on the device’s, D-Link, Web site. Also, Microsoft’s “Outlook Connector” will set my CPU over the edge. By the way, I have the same HP C7280 on my home network and HP DLL, or some other missing DLL, can definetly gobble up CPU resources and will/may not show up in Task Manager. I currently have 5 programs running and 58 processes with CPU usage ranging from 3-22%…10 of which are svchost…System is purring!! By the way Leo, I truly truly miss the North West!!

  81. Hello about this issue regarding high cpu usage from svchost.exe i think i isolated the problem to microsoft update when a user has applications like Microsoft office this occurs when trying to update all software at once with “Microsoft Update” i had several issues with this problem as i work to aftermarket technical support . You can turn off Microsoft Update at the update site that Microsoft Update takes you to. Dont know if that helps in your case i corrected many windows installations in this way give it a try if you allready depleted other solutions

  82. Hi Leo….I luckily found your web site regarding this issue when I did a google search for svchost. I have spent days with tech support to try to resolve this issue that something was using 100% of my cpu. I thought it was my internet provider…a virus…my computer…etc. One tech called me back at 3 am this morning after doing many scans to find the problem, only to tell me he could not fix it. He recommended I reformat my computer. I started to google svc this morning and came accross your site. I followed your instuctions to download the Process Explorer and to run it to find out what the problem was. When I discovered through that what was using 100% of my cpu…I immediately knew that was my problem. It showed me only 1 .dll file to be the problem, and it was my NEW HP printer software. I called HP, and a tech helped me delete files and re-install my printer…and guess what…my cpu went down to 2%!!!!!!!!!!Thank you so much, and I wish others success in solving their issue with svchost 100%cpu problem

  83. I’m not seeing any cpu problems when I run task manager, but my system slows down just the same. I have noticed that when I open an eBay tab ( in Firefox )thing go down faster, so now I don’t leave eBay tabs open any longer than I need to.

  84. Hi Guys

    im new here so bear with me i have always been ok with PC’s and i could build one and strip one just fine BUT laptops are alien to me and this scared me tonight because….

    im a DJ and tonight i was at a gig, 10 mins beofore i start i turned my laptop on and the first thing i noticed is the windows XP blue loading bar is moving at the speed of light! then it loads in to windows. the clock was FLYING round i thought it was strange but thought it would settle… i opened my music player and things go worse the muisc was all distorted like there wasnt enough memory to support the player i hit C-A-DEL and the CPU usage was going up and down like a yoyo and jumping from 0 to 100% like wildfire i tryed re-booting no diffreence! i restarted and went in to BIOS the system clock in Bios was doing the same i tryed 2 more resets and then all of a sudden PRESTO like nothing had happend its all ok again…

    i just dont get it!!! any thoughts???



  85. I have been getting CPU spikes to 100% at regular intervals. They seem to be related to my network – when I disable the network, the spikes stop. My network has 2 computers, one connected wirelessly and one connected by cable. Task manager showes that the network itself is not using a lot of CPU

  86. Hi,
    I’ve also been struggling with the problem of SVCHOST usurping 100% of my CPU – I tried many of the typical listed solutions like disabling windows update etc, all to no avail. However, I just found the culprit process that was responsible – it was none other than DNSCACHE !
    Using the command “Tasklist /SVC” from CMD Prompt, I was able to match the PID of the problem SVCHOST process to object that was using it – in my case, it was DNSCACHE. What I guess was occurring was that after every start-up, when trying to connect to internet, DNSCACHE 1st wanted to update – this could take quite some time in some instances, and as I’ve discovered, was completely un-neccessary. The fix was to STOP the DNSCACHE service, then set it to DISABLED, all within LOCAL SERVICES. Problem is now gone, and internet access is fully functional. Hope this is of some help to others with similar problem.

  87. Thank you Leo! This actually worked! I downloaded the Process Explorer and at once was able to identify the PUA causing the potential problem of 100% CPU usuage. The tool is so useful and with my newly purchased McAfee Anti-Virus, I’m assured that PUAs and Spyware will find it difficult gaining a strangle hold on my laptop. Adios! Gracias!

  88. The key for me was to use Process Explorer. This is a wonderful tool that will allow you to isolate which service is responsible for the 100% cpu usage. In may case, it was related to HP Device Network Support, which is for my HP PRINTER!!! After disabling this service, my 100% cpu useage issue disappeared immediately (which I could tell because I was running Task Manager and looking at the Processes tab sorted by CPU…I also enabled Process Identifier column, also referred to as PID, to find out what ID was responsible). Many thanks to Leo!

  89. The fix you offer up here, disabling WU merely shifted the problem around for me.

    At first Svchost/wuauclt was the app that was hanging at 99% CPU usage. In turn I disabled WU and Windows Firewall, which stopped the machine from immediatley shooting up to 100% processor usage on startup.

    But then another app would, after a few minutes, move in and take the place of those two. Sometimes it is LSASS, sometimes it is WINLOGON, and sometimes it is an app related to AVG Antivirus which I just installed after a number of tries. It can’t complete the virusscan because even if I kill other processes, eventually it gets to LSASS which cannot be killed. I’ve hung at 99% processor usage with SVCHOST (Services), wuauclt, WINLOGON, LSASS, and applications related to Process Explorer and AVG.

    Additionally I cannot boot the machine in Safe Mode because of a blue screen error that says that the video driver can’t initialize.

    So if I can’t boot in safe mode and random applications keep causing the machine to hang at 100% processor usage what am I left with?

    Netstat shows that there are connections to the machine (listening if I remove my network cable) on ports 135, 445 etc.

  90. Hi Leo, i think mine is not a svchost, what is system idle process that takes about 99 % CPU? it’s slowing my computer. how can i stop it?

    Idle is the task that Windows does when it has nothing to do. In otherwords, if your computer is 99% idle, then it’s not doing anything. Idle does not cause your computer to slow down.

    – Leo
  91. angela: “idle” means that your computer does nothing. There is always an “idle” process showing the percentage when the CPU is resting. The processes plus the “idle” always takes 100% in total. Having “idle” close to 100% means that your CPU is free. You computer might be slow for other reason which does not require the CPU working (slow internet, slow/many disk writes etc.) so it has nothing to do with the “svchost” problem.

  92. Hi Guys,

    Very helpfull info :)

    but i have a different problem in here, the Process explorer shows “Interrupts” is very high usage on the CPU history Column.

    Any help please.

    thnx alot

    More often than not, that indicates a hardware problem. The trouble is determining which piece of hardware. Any particular devices acting up? Check those out, or remove them temporarily and see if it clears up.

    – Leo
  93. This article helped me track down the SVCHOST culprit on both XP and Vista Machines. It is the HP software that the OfficeJet All-In-One installs to watch for system stuff. Ending those services stopped the usage.

    Now I’m experimenting another way. With task manager, that SVCHOST wouldn’t allow you to change the priority–even if you ignored the warning. With Process Explorer you can. So I’m going to let the processes run, but change them to low priority. That way, if something else needs the processor, they shouldn’t interfere. We’ll see.

  94. on my system (running XP) the HP printer drivers (very poor software indeed!) spiked up svchost cpu time. Reading previous comments, however, the problem seems to be with the svchost process itself, cos everyone has different process to unleash processor utilization! now, if Microsoft actually has a solution, they should make it available. Otherwise, they should find one asap. No, wait, they’re too busy trying to get vista to work in a decent way!!! buddies, lost cause!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  95. I used process explorer, downloaded from Microsoft web site, to identify the problem svchost.exe. Clicked on properties and then services. Found that it was a recently re-installed HP printer file that was monitoring my network. I stopped it and no more CPU problem.

  96. Thanks so much! After 8 months of having this problem, the ProcessExplorer program helped me find the culprit (my HP Digital Image program).

  97. I downloaded the Process Explorer and I think I found the culprit on my computer. I recently installed a new 4-in1 HP unit and it has an image monitor that must run constantly. As soon as i disabled it, my computer sped up to normal. I am so glad that I found your site!!

  98. My issues is my svchost is 5.1.2600.2180 (xpsp_sp2.rtm.040803-2158) even though I have installed sp3 and all updates.

    anyone in MS land have a util other than SFC that will do a MD5 check on all windows files and update accordling… (SFC doesn’t do it)

  99. I read somewhere else that the 100% CPU/Svchost.exe issue is related to HP printers. Nice to see it’s here, too. After reading that, I went through each Service (via Start/Run/services.msc) in alpha order. I “Stopped” each one that was Automatically started. Waited a bit. Had the Task Manager open so I could watch if the offending 99% SVCHOST.EXE stopped, too.

    When I got to the “HP NETWORK DEVICES SUPPORT SERVICE” for my HPC6280 All-in-One printer, bingo! So I changed the Properties to “DISABLE.”

    I rebooted. Did not start up again when I opened Internet Explorer 7.
    I tested printing after rebooting. Works fine.

    Having said that, we have a home network, Linksys wireless router, DSL modem, 1 PC, 2 laptops, and a Wii, a HPC6280 printer and an HP Deskjet 712C printer. If your system is more complicated than that, I don’t promise the same results.

    We did the same fix on my husband’s PC this morning, and it is working and printing correctly.

    Thank goodness for Forums like these!

  100. The svchost.exe is still a problem for me, though I have used Automatic Updates and am running with the most current updates to date January 2009. No viruses appear off Symantec scan as well as MS Malicious Software scan. When I disable automatic updates from Services, reboot, and view Processes, there is another high CPU usage on regsvr32.exe.
    I’ll have to try reinstalling the Windows Update details, but I am a bit nervous about it. I’ll be sure to make a backup first.
    I’ll check back for posts.

  101. alright guys, i found that one of the svchost.exe is one of the problems… but its kinda of a combination of the HP Image Monitoring Module thing as well. i closed down both of those and my cpu chilled out. hope that helps

  102. The issue was the HP printer for me as well…this defintely seems to be the fix! I simply used the steps above and stopped the HP imaging monitor and then disabled it. CPU went from 100% to 10% immediately. Printer still works as well! Thanks for the help everyone!

  103. Thanks! this helped me out a lot. I was told it was my processor, that I had a trojan, that I needed a new bow…..5 minutes – fixed. I couldn’t stop the service from the downloaded application, but I disabled the auto-update and restarted – all good. THANKS

  104. I had the same expierience, and the problem was not a virus, but it was because the PC with the svchost.exe process was trying to connect to another PC(B) that was connected as a shared network drive.Now on PC(B) the network was not running, and all I need to do was start the network, and voila! problem sorted!
    Hope this will help anyone expieriencing this kind of problem.

  105. I have been having this problem on three of the 24 computers I maintain. I tried all of the fixes. None worked. All three computers are HP’s. The only thing they have in common is I have them using Microsoft Wireless Entertainment Keyboard 7000’s and Wirelesss Laser Mouse 8000’s with Tranciever v3.0 for Bluetooth. I found that these Microsoft products are causing the problem in my case.

  106. Thank you SO much…my problem seemed to stem from use of an HP All-in-One Printer but as soon as I “stopped” or disabled the HP Network Devices Support Service my CPU dropped like a rock from 100% down to less than 10%. Everything works faster now. I love my HP Printer – but the program is a real memory and CPU hog.

  107. not sure if this is a good fix for the CPU usage problem. The Windows Update Service isn’t just required for Automatic Updates (Windows Updates) it’s also required to be running to install WIndows Updates, at least with Windows Vista it is. If you disable the DNS Client Service it should fix the problem. If you can’t disable the service you may need to boot into Safe Mode and set the service to Disabled from there then restart.

  108. I checked out the computer management section’s Automatic Updates tab to be disabled from the start. the issue im facing is that when i am logged on to the internet my comps’ fine and the svchost doesnt act up. But when i logoff and start doing things offline my processor starts to heat up can someone please help me? i appreciate it

  109. I used the process explorer to find the source of the lockup of my computer. The culprit was a HPSystem program running under svchost. I killed the process and everything works fine. Multiple calls and emails to HP has produced no resolution. The source of the program is the printer installation associated with an L7580 Officejet. I have to kill the process everytime I reboot. Classic case of GARBAGE software delivered with a classy piece of hardware. I hope HP finds that ticking off their customer is worth the savings of providing junk Software developed overseas.

  110. I too have SVCHost using about 95% of my cpu, I downloaded the process explorer and all i see is generic host process for win 32. I also have an HP printer on my network but I am not sure how to see if the network services is running. any ideas?

  111. Thank you so much for this website! I found my problem was the windows update issue and I was able to fix it using the how to stop Windows update. It was easy to follow.
    Thanks again!

  112. I have not had any particular problems with SVChost blocking up my CPU. What I am curious about is my firewall frequently pops up with the question “svchost is trying to access the internet.” (Or words to that effect)”Allow? Deny?” I always click “deny”. My question is (a) why is it trying to access the internet and (b) am I correct to continue to deny it access?

    Cheers Patrick

  113. OMG, I have spent endless amounts of time trying to fix this problem and thought I would have to reformat my hard drive. It was the HP Network Device Support for my HP Officejet Pro L7780. Thank you! It dropped it from 100% to 2-10% in a moment.

  114. hi, i do a stupid thing he other night, i was playing but my cpu went to slow so i try to kill some processes. then i, piss off, kill a svchost.exe with a user name Network Services; It appears a message that my system have an error and it rebooted, i was more piss so i wait to shutdown, but instead of waiting to turn on the windows and shutdown properly i turn off the computer, then a couple of days later i turn on the windows partition and my network card appears with “Connection null or limited” or something like that, i was strange because in my linux partition i could navigate well. So i try to uninstall the controllers of the NIC, enter safe mode and try to navigate and nothing happens, the error still was there. I even repair and then format my windows partition with my cd of windows but neither of them work. i can understand why with a format, that obviously change all the windows archives, it didnt work. Do you know what happend and how can i repair it?? Thanks for answering

  115. Hi,
    Just tried everything to fix this same problem – eventually discovered it was my Tom Tom Sat Nav programme which was running in the background that was causing the problem !
    Just thought I’d mention it incase it helps others.

  116. I had the same trouble – 100% usage. Tried registry cleaning, but no significant difference. Then I came across the above comments re HP. I was using an HP Deskjet F370 for its scanning feature. Hmm, I wonder?? Uninstalled it and the problem has disappeared completely. Looks like HP might have a basic problem in their software philosophy. I’m running XP Home SP3. I’ll be looking for another scanner.
    Thanks for this forum.
    Tom C.

  117. I also have CPU 100% usage problem for
    Vista 32-bit sp2 ultimate.
    P4-3.06Ghz processor , 1.5Gb Ram , G-31 motherboard ,On-b 286Mb VGA(in xp 128Mb),500Gb HD .
    In vista ratings my computer represent as 3.0
    Please Help
    Sorry about my English …..

  118. I always format the windows drive and reinstall the windows. It works for a few days ! ;)
    Norton Internet Security is the best for this issue !
    Have a nice Time !

  119. My system is showing 88 to 90% CPU usage.

    I had some issue earlier while i was writing DVD in the middle of it said my windows was corrupted.then i restarted my sys i took 15 mins to restart but (earlier it use to take 1/2 min to 1min).when i check my CPU usage it shows 90% and it was very slowwww.Then i formatted it then it was ok.after 2days i started my pc again it took soo long time then i found the CPU was again 88 to 90% usage i was not runing any app however it is showing 90% usage…Could some one help me how to fix it??????:(:(:(:(:(:(

  120. Ok, i’ve had this computer for going on two years. I have yet to have any major problems out of it, but just recently I got it connected to the internet again, and that’s where my troubles began. I tried seeing if it was only giving me issues when I was online, but it was still going. been trying to fix for two weeks now but nothing is working. I have SP3 so the hotfixes don’t want to work. The download manager or what not tells me it isn’t necessary to download this being it should already be there. What do I need to do… i’m at my wits end here.Help me Leo Notenboom, you’re my only hope.

  121. Hi there. I had the svchost.exe memmory leak on my pc but (stuped me) i end task-ed it. After that my whole OS become a dissaster… i entered safe mode so i can use system restore but it couldn’t run and i restarted the pc. Since then i’m in some sort of “semi” safe mode … i can’t do anything with files (copy, move, del) and i still have the memmory leak … When trying to run system restore a message shows saying something like “system resote is not save for your system. reboot and try again”. I tried everything i know and some suggestions on the internet but didn’t find a way to solve the problem. Please help

  122. I read an ealier post: “…eventually discovered it was my Tom Tom Sat Nav programme which was running in the background that was causing the problem !”
    I had the same thing (CPU Usage running @ 100% and the fan on my PC sounding like it was about to explode!), so I uninstalled Tom Tom Sat Nav and my PC is back to full normal working order; no noisy fan, no freezing. So thanks to Kevin Scoot and Leo.

  123. Thanks for the tips. I had 100% CPU usage and was nearly totally disabled for days. Found it was caused by two print jobs lurking. So I went to Control Panel, Printer and Faxes, and canceled the two print jobs. Very simple. Now everything works like a charm!

  124. my pc started showing 100% I was completely disapointed that i might end up repairing the PC during these christmas holidays, the above solution especially repair/reinstall method worked brilliently… chero

  125. Well, from my experience with problems such like that before I’ve decided to un install my cracked trial version of norton antivirus.
    I was suspecting that the antivirus is problem, after uninstallinf every thing comes to normal.
    best wishes for everybody.

  126. I managed to delte my svchost virus using malwarebytes’ antimalware, it quickly detected svchost with the quick scan as a trojan or virus, automatically quarantined it, and now it’s gone, and I scanned my computer again with 4 different virus scans that all came up clean.

  127. If you have an Intellimouse Without the drivers loaded it may cause the HIDSERV.DLL service (runs under svchost) to use 100% of CPU resources. Try unplugging any extra mice or keyboards, or install the correct driver. You can disable HID from services.msc to test if it is the culprit.

  128. “Specifically a series of commands detailed at labeled Remove and Reinstall of Automatic Updates seems to resolve the issue for many people.”

    Thanks so much, this seems to have worked for me!

  129. lol why dont u just open your task manager and click view then update speed then select normal.
    oh would u look at that your CPU usage is back to working right

  130. While grateful to find this article, it didn’t help!! Everything started after I tried to go to a website (for examples of business letters.)

    I downloaded the process explorer and the svchost killing my CPU only had two services included:DCOM launch and TermService. I turned off updates to check if it made a difference anyway…it didn’t. What now? I have been running every antivirus I can. Even paid for some….

    HELP! Worse possible time this could happen.

  131. Hi Leo,

    My issue was a bit different, but the help you provided here guided me in the right direction, and gave me enough help to fix it. My “hogger” of CPU, for some strange reason, turned out to be the Windows sidebar. I thought it had been acting a little weird lately, with these borders around the edges that do not normally appear. But I had no idea that it was causing the CPU problem. Afer I closed Windows sidebar, it fixed it. My fan has been running constantly for weeks. Thank you VERY much for your help!! My ears feel much better now!!

    I was afraid that once I re-opened Windows sidebar, that the same problem might start happening again, but so far so good. I know I should probably still clean my computer, so I will have to work on that too. Thanks again!! You rock!!

  132. Hi Leo,

    Just another note. I also found this link helpful. It’s a link to a Microsoft support site. Apparently other people have been having the same problem with the windows sidebar hogging CPU.

  133. Hi all,

    In my case, it turned out to be a piece of software (apparently running under svhost.exe (dcomlaunch)) that came with the installation of my windows mobile phone, in my case the Xperia X1.
    The responsible programme was [b]wayfinder maploader[/b]. This programma needs to be updated with the februari 2009 version. This was what solved the problem for me.

  134. my problem with the CPU usuage is the very last item under Window Tash Manager- tab– processes -called “system idle process SYSTEM: it goes up to 99 all the time. I Don’t how to fix it.

    It’s not something that needs fixing. 99% idle means that your computer is doing nothing 99% of the time. That’s perfectly OK.


  135. Hi Leo, I was having a problem but really did not noticed untill it got serious. I was working on my PC and if I had to open an Internet connection when Tried to Close it or work on it, it freezed, then I used the task manager to terminate this process, the screen looses all the icons at desktop for a few seconds and then they came back, also a windows message: “Windows can not find C:Documents”, I look for help on the net and foud a stupid one: “If the system asks you for C:Documents, so create a folder in C, called Documents”, what a solution!
    I keept my search for help and for this SVCHOST theme, that

  136. Holy crap, this really helped! I assumed since I’m still running on the Windows 7 trial, this is why I’m getting high CPU usage. Since it’s a trial, I can’t get any windows updates, but now that I turned it off, my computer is running like a beast. Wow, seriously, I am so happy for this information.

  137. None of this worked for me….I tried just about everything I came across for hours last night (100% CPU under svchost.exe). The last thing I tried was running the free version of “Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware” (I had tried other anti-virus/malware that didn’t find anything up to this point). It found quite a lot the first time through and I ran it a second time for good measure. Everything is back to normal this morning…maybe this will help if none of the other recommendations are working for some poor soul out there!

  138. Thanks for your bib effort to help every has the “svchost.exe” kie me. You know, I set up my OS many times. Now I know the solution.
    Thank you again very much.
    Love Yarith
    Siem Reap, Cambodia.

  139. Excellent..thank u soo much..

    mann you are amazing..i formatted my comp.. tuk it to soo many repair shops..

    but thank u ..this totally worked..thnx again!

  140. i had the same problem when i was turning on my internet rooter..imposible to serf and when i was out of internet the pc was staying cpu usage 100% for ever.. i installed “Malwarebytes ‘Anti-malware”
    ,scanned my pc and found 86 infections.Problem is over. Thanks Ron.

  141. i followed your advice and downloaded proccess explorer when my cpu showed 100% and discovered the task manager update speed was paused i did not even know that setting was there and thought i had a virus thank you for your article

  142. hey, i try to do what you said by stoping the auto update, but my cpu is still running crazy. should i disable the auto update? also to let you know beeter about my problem. my svchost doesn’t take the cpu usage, but when i use any kind of program the cpu usage go high, and jump up and down crazy. please help me. also to anyone who reading this and know how to fix this problem please help me. thank you

  143. hi, good afternoon, ok first nice answer u solve my problem, but i have another one thats is worst, its the process rundll32, can u help me please? the process is taking the 100% not 99%, 50% just 100%, that happens when i open a program, an .exe, or ++everything++ if i finish the process the program is finished too, im crazy with that,what can i do?

    thaks for the time u take to read that, and i hope u can help me bye bye

  144. I had this svchost.exe problem but it was not due to automatic updates.. There was an email worm which kept trying to send emails and Symantec email proxy kept blocking it.. When I right clicked on the one of the svchost.exe processes in process explorer, I could see a lot of network activity going on…

    Here is an article which explains some steps for any process that takes 100% CPU:
    I was facing high CPU usage with Firefox recently and it went up to 100% in a few minutes after opening… It caused my CPU to overheat and even caused it to shut down in the middle… Happened a lot when I was using Facebook. May be the reason was that Facebook was refreshing often…

    I had recently installed a plug-in for Firefox and thought that might be a problem.. After disabling that plugin, it has been good so far…

    Here is a link in which you will find a lot of troubleshooting steps for CPU going up to 100%..Also, has a lot of other relevant links inside the article, which helps to go into more specific troubleshooting:

  145. Hi Everyone,

    I have found that this is effecting not only Windows XP systems but also Windows Server 2008 R2, no cases recorded of Windows 7 systems being effected.

    Found that this works in our environment, thanks to previous posts.:

    net stop wuauserv
    net stop bits
    net stop cryptsvc

    RMDIR /S /Q %systemroot%SoftwareDistribution_Old
    ren %systemroot%SoftwareDistribution SoftwareDistribution_Old

    regedit /s “WSUSReset.reg”

    net start wuauserv
    net start bits
    net start cryptsvc
    wuauclt.exe /resetauthorization /detectnow

    but when doing Windows Updates, on MS’s Site on Windows XP systems, that the CPU spikes up to 100% again, and when you close IE it stops. Could someone advise?
    Thanks Justin

  146. In my system this svchost-CPU issue was caused by McAfee virus scan. Killing svchost after every reboot fixed the problem, but with side effects like not being able to open Microsoft website, and losing network connection after a Hibernate. I found another solution later.

    Open the McAfee console – Configure virun scan option – Uncheck the option “Start Activeshield every time system starts”.

    This procedure disables the virus scan , but it lets you do actual work on your computer!

  147. I have 100% CPU usage and do not see any process that is at 100% at any time. My CPU does not go to idle? How can I find the process that is causing this problem?

  148. O/S: Windows Vista Home Basic SP2
    Manufacture: Hewlett-Packard
    Model: Presario V3000 (V3411TU)
    Processor: Intel Celeron M 520@ 1.60GHZ
    Memory: 2GB
    System Type: 32 bit O/S

    “SVCHOST used high CPU resource” & way to solve this.

    **This might be one of the issues that lead to your SVCHOST problem**

    I am a vista user for 3 years now. I always update my windows for the latest update and there is no problems happen before… Until one day… suddenly my laptop is kind of slow… even watching video the video seems hang-up several times.

    I try to find the reason for this and when I open the (Window Task Manager), I see the oddest thing ever… my processor is working so damn hard. 1st I though the reason maybe my video that I watch might have some virus or what… but there is no virus when I scan… I try to restart it again and the processor still working hard…

    Doing some research to find the reason for CPU high usage, it takes me several hour (I am a noob) to find the resource. I found out that (SVCHOST) is the reason for the processor to work harder and it related to the (DCOM Launch and Plug & Play).

    I flash back my previous usage of the laptop and remember that I used the (windows optional update to update some driver). I never used it before and before the problem occur I used it to update the audio driver, graphic driver, wireless driver and some other that I don’t remember… its about 7 optional update that I install… I think that is the source of the problem.

    I do some digging on the internet and found that some people disable their ENHANCEMENT at their audio setting so solved the problem… so I test it and it still would not stop… so I down grade my audio driver latter, and it solved the problem.. It goes back to normal…

    So for people that have this problem, you might try to down grade your audio to a latter audio if you have recently upgrade a new version.

    For your information, my original audio driver is:-

    Conexant High Definition Audio (2007 driver) I upgrade to…
    Conexant High Definition Audio 2 (2008 driver) – I upgrade using windows update. (This is when the svchost problem happens.

    By downgrade back to Conexant High Definition Audio (2007 driver)… the problem no logger exists…

    Don’t burden you mind trying crazy suggestion, just try this… you wont lose a thing down grade you audio driver… Good luck

  149. I have the latest updates, switched automatic update off everywhere and scanned the machine with AVG for viruses and I still have this SVChost problem, It sometimes abates if I switch all internet browsers off and pull out my wireless aerial.

  150. I thought I had it fixed by turning off Automatic Updates (WinXP Pro SP3)… all the recommended patches and updates are applied, but the svchost just fires up to about 99% again after about 1/2 hour. Any ideas or suggestions?

  151. wuauclt.exe clogging my machine is the last straw.
    I have all updates to XP installed (Aug 2011) The volume of comments and suggested fixes indicate that MS haven’t been able to really solve the problem.

    I’m now looking at Apple and expect to buy a MAC.

    Hopefully MS will sometime learn to be more responsive to widespread problems.

    Adios Microsoft.

  152. how do i fix my cpu so my movies come out better. and not skipping

    That’s usually not the computer, but the speed of your internet connection. Make sure that it’s fast enough and that no other programs or computers are using it heavily.


  153. Ive been digging around for a solution to the problem for sometime, ive also used this technique to disable my windows defender which causes a lot of CPU usage as well, Great Job!!! Worked for me running from 1% to 9% now instead of 100 haha thx

  154. Thanks for an insightful and analytical explanation to the svchost issue, Leo. Saved me anxious moments.
    Keep up the good job, as always..

  155. THANK YOU BERY MUCH LEO,,,,, i have been looking for a solution for my CPU high usage with no results till i found your solution that returned my computer to normal,,,, THANK YOU THANK YOU

  156. Ok I just have high CPU Usage on a HP Pavillion Desk top running Windows 8
    It is running at 98% and I get High CPU usage messages constantly.
    I have disabled as much as I can, and I don’t think the SVChost is the issue for me I checked them all and they are all under the Win 32 umbrella, so not a virus… Any suggestions? Is this just a microsoft issue? I have searched the internet and all responses are from 2007 to 2012… nothing in 2014… not even sure what to search for 2014…. So very frustrated!

  157. ====++++SOLUTION FOR WINDOWS 7++++====

    Hey there,

    I’ve been having this problem on Windows 7 and have had to disable the wuauserv service, which is certainly an inconvenience! The answers on this page have helped.

    It seems like, a few years late (!), there is an update that deals with this problem on Windows 7. Only took me 2 or 3 hours to find(!).

    Please see KB3050265

    I have run it but haven’t restarted yet to test.

    • That update definitely seems to have helped. I went to msconfig to reset wuauserv to start on startup.

      I didn’t get a process spiking to 900+ MB of memory. Instead it went up to 170 MB memory and then dropped to 150MB after a few minutes. It is still running and has a high cpu, but it isn’t freezing my system.

    • And the fix only came out this month, it may not have been a “few years late”. I didn’t have this problem until fairly recently. Maybe there was a problematic Windows 7 update just awhile back.

  158. Mate, You are a legend. After a long 4 days trying to figure out the svchost problem. (I had just done a fresh install form disk Win Vista) YOUR Reset, Repair and Reinstall Automatic Updates fix sorted out my problem.
    Thank you a million times over.

  159. For more than a year I had problem with my laptop W7 high CPU load,51 % without working.Three month ago I disabled automatic updateing.
    Two days ago I decided to enable automatic update and search for updates.After 4 hours there was 19 items to update.I did update and I have no more problem
    with High CPU usage.Now CPU on idle is 0-1-2 %

  160. I today connected my to my pc and got this high cpu usage error
    Not only my pc is affected by it but also my ps4 is not resounding and giving me the disk error.
    I tried your method to help my pc but my ps4 still gets some error and not connecting to wifi and I can’t play online games
    can you help me PS: the top article on google result {link removed} didn’t helped at all.

    • I have zero PS4 experience so I can’t help you there, other than to say I have no idea how high CPU usage on one device (PC) would affect the other (PS4).

  161. Leo, How are you?

    I have a questione. Can VPN protect my computer from viruses?
    In this article – {link removed} – I read that it is not possible, But I don’t understand yet.

    • A VPN opens an encrypted connection between your computer and the VPN server. The VPN accesses the website for you and sends all of the incoming and outgoing traffic to you. Nothing in that process blocks malware. Other than anonymity and encryption between you and the VPN server is the same as if you didn’t use a VPN.

    • A VPN does not protect against malware. You can still download malware regardless of what kind of connection you have. a VPN protects you from snooping.


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