Windows Legacy OS forum

Question

CPU usage in the 85-100% range, everything freezing up

by genie10 / November 14, 2011 2:01 AM PST

All of a sudden my computer is running EXTREMELY slow. Check the CPU and it is ranging in the 85-100%. Try running Bit Defender Antivirus, it won't even finish. Any ideas. I'm running Wind XP

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All Answers

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Answer
What you forgot to tell.
by Kees_B Forum moderator / November 14, 2011 3:48 AM PST

The processes (from the processes tab in Task Manager, sort on CPU%) that are responsible for all that CPU use.

Kees

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What I forgot to tell.
by genie10 / November 15, 2011 5:12 AM PST

Yes, I looked in the processes tab in the Task Manager and nothing was using an unusually high amount. I saw the Memory usage and nothing was over 40k, but yet the CPU usage is ranging from 65-100% and is mostly 95-100% Outlook will open but won't connect to the Internet. IE or Mozilla won't open and running Bit Defender it never completes. Computer has been intermittently shutting down over the past few months but just goes to a blue screen and restarts itself. After it restarts it has a box that says Windows has just recovered from a serious error. All along while that was happening I was running Bit Defender and it wasn't catching anything significant.

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Answer
What computer is this?
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 15, 2011 5:47 AM PST

And has it been maintained?

As we see XP machines age, you find many that never cleaned the machine, replaced failed fans and may not want to replace the dollar's worth of heat sink compound.

And as it crashes, the OS can be corrupted. At least we can start over after we fix the hardware.
Bob

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Dell Dimension 8300 8yrs old
by genie10 / November 16, 2011 1:18 AM PST
In reply to: What computer is this?

The computer is not new, about 8yrs old in fact. It is a Dell Dimension 8300. Running Widows XP. It has been maintained. We clean it regularly and I have replaced a few hard drives, sound cards etc. I have never replaced the fan however. Upon examination of the processes tab I watched the CPU usage jump around radically over the course of a few minutes. The main user is vsserv.exe It is using about 36k in mem. but I watched for a few minutes and it is the one that jumps from 1-99% of CPU useage which then directly corresponds with the CPU usage on the bottom of the box. The wierd thing is that the amount of memory that it uses never really changes. I'm not a computer geek so excuse me if I sound ********. Could I have a virus or malware or does this sound like some hardware issue?

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Yes.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 16, 2011 1:58 AM PST

But at this age I would be replacing the CPU heatsink compound (it's about 1 dollar) and as I button it up I check the CPU fan and dust off the other little heatsink on the other chips.

If you feel it's malware, try Grif;s scans at 7726-6132_102-5098912.html?tag=posts;msg5099421

Bob

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Where do I get a heatsink compound?
by genie10 / November 16, 2011 4:00 AM PST
In reply to: Yes.

Where and how do I get a heatsink compound and can I replace it myself?

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Many places.
by R. Proffitt Forum moderator / November 16, 2011 2:02 PM PST
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Also
by Jimmy Greystone / November 16, 2011 9:45 PM PST

Also, on a system that old running XP, it might be worth checking into the XP DMA bug (google it). It'll only take a few minutes to check if it ends up being a waste of time.

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