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Unwanted (and unfindable) processor usage

by lsippell / July 21, 2006 2:06 AM PDT

I have a problem I have never run into before. After a fresh cold boot, or a reboot, in a time span of from as little as 10 minutes to maybe 3 or more hours, my processor usage jumps way up (to 70 to 100%) according to the graph window in task manager. And when it's at 100% or close to that, all I can do is power down the computer with the main power button. If the % is somewhat less I can switch to the processes window and it shows that the only thing going on is the system idle process, which is generally about 98%, which is where it should be if nothing else is going on and nothing else is according the process list.

I've swapped my hard drive with on out of another machine thinking that might be the problem but it wasn't.
The system runs great, right up to the time it does this. I've been running the past few days with the task manager open in a corner of one of my monitors to see if something I was running was causing this, but it will happen even if I do a cold boot and just let it set. No matter what I do, or don't do, it will still happen.

I have run all different kinds of anti spy ware and anti virus software. I even went as far as reformatting the hard drive (using a different computer) and then reinstalling windows xp pro (doing another format).

The system consists of an asus p4pe motherboard, p4 2.53 processor, IBM-DTLA-307045 [master](46.12 GB), WDC WD800JB-00CRA1 [slave](80.03 GB), NEC DVD_RW ND-3550A, LG CD-ROM CRD-8360B, NVIDIA GeForce FX 5200 [Display adapter] and two monitors, I'm running windows xp pro sp1

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