svchost.exe Causing CPU to Run at 100%

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ZeeOSix

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Noticed last night that my computer was slow, so I looked at the CPU usage and it was running at 100%, even after I closed all running applications. I rebooted and purposely didn't open any applications, and after the reboot I noticed one of the svchost.exe programs (there are about 6~7 running) in Task Manager went from 0% to 98~99% CPU usage. This is a pretty old desktop with Windows XP and it's always ran pretty good in the past. Also last night before I noticed svchost.exe running the CPU so high, my computer had a black screen with just an hour glass running for about 2 min before everything came back. I think that happened when I was closing a tab in Firefox ... not sure what caused that black scree, but think the svchost.exe issue is probably related. Fist thing I did is scan for a virus ... no detections from 3 different scanners. Searched the 'net and found this svchost.exe "fix". http://www.windowsanswers.net/articles/fix-svchost-exe Went through the fix procedure and everything seemed fine; ie, svchost.exe didn't go into CPU hog mode right away like before after a reboot. I then tried to execute Windows Update and it looked like it was going normal until about 3~4 min in to the process, then the CPU usage went to 100% again and I saw svchost.exe was the cause again. Windows Update never finished after svchost.exe went into CPU hog mode, it looked like it was trying to update but no real progress was happening after the CPU usage went to 100% usage. Any ideas or suggestions on this?
 
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svchost is a windows service, try googling how to determine which service is using the cpu and go from there Also run a chkdsk on your hard drive and see if it can find anything bad that might be causing the lockup
 
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This is a common issue that pops up when you use Windows Update, or upgrade to Win XP SP3. IIRC, svchost has a memory leak after a certain update, and there is an update to fix this problem. Look around online for a fix_svchost.bat, as well as the KB927891 update from Microsoft. The update does not work for me when I have this problem, so I only use SP2. Hope this helps.
 

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The initial CPU hog you saw was probably Windows Update doing automatic updates, I had this happen on a virtualized XP SP3 box a few weeks ago. I used Process Explorer to find out what the underlying service was (Windows Update) and then simply turned off Automatic Updates, as they can be run manually on this box. Windows Update consuming copious amounts of CPU while it checks for updates is somewhat normal (not to be confused with it consuming obscene amounts of memory, which isn't). But it should stop once the update check is complete. I would run it manually again and just see if you can get it to finish. You may have to "repair" Windows Update now that you've done that "fix" for svchost, but IIRC, Microsoft has a "Fix it" for that issue that you'll be able to find on Google.
 

ZeeOSix

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Originally Posted By: izualangel
This is a common issue that pops up when you use Windows Update, or upgrade to Win XP SP3. IIRC, svchost has a memory leak after a certain update, and there is an update to fix this problem. Look around online for a fix_svchost.bat, as well as the KB927891 update from Microsoft. The update does not work for me when I have this problem, so I only use SP2. Hope this helps.
Found this article ... will probably try this fix, which sounds related to what you suggested above. Has some links to Microsoft patch/fix for this issue. http://www.windows-help-central.com/svchost-exe-100-percent.html
 

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Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
I would run it manually again and just see if you can get it to finish. You may have to "repair" Windows Update now that you've done that "fix" for svchost, but IIRC, Microsoft has a "Fix it" for that issue that you'll be able to find on Google.
After I tried the fix I linked to in my first post, I did try a manual Windows Update and it looked like it started out just fine, but about 3~4 min into the process svchost.exe was again showing 99% in Task Manager and the update would never finish. I'll try the fix I found in the post above ... might do the trick. I have noticed my automatic Windows Update function doesn't seem to work like it use to ... way before this issue popped up. It would try to do automatic update with a notice (I have it set to just notify) ... but when I said to proceed it never really finishes. I'd always have to go in and lauch the update manually. Now manual launch doesn't even work to completion. Thanks to all for the help so far.
 

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Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
Yes, I always make it a habit to leverage Microsoft's solutions first as they seem to be the safest.
Just noticed that the link you showed is a fix just to address Windows Update not working right. Seems I might have already fixed the svchost.exe issue since svchost.exe doesn't make the CPU go into 100% usage now if I just boot-up the computer like it use too. Will try the Windows Update fix from Microsoft and see what happens thumbsup
 

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Originally Posted By: Quest
sounds like you have an infection. Get a freebie malwarebytes and perform a scan. Q.
First thing I did was scan for a virus, used 3 different programs - Malwarebytes, Hitman Pro and MS Security Essentials. Nothing was found. I think the patches for the 100% CPU usage in this link, http://www.windows-help-central.com/svchost-exe-100-percent.html Plus the Window's Update bug fix that OVERKILL suggested: http://support.microsoft.com/mats/windows_update/ ... might be the right fix combo. That's my plan to try anyway.
 
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svchost.exe at 100% could literally be anything. one time I had it spike was because of a failing hard drive. Another was an ACPI issue that needed a BIOS update to resolve. It's a huge headache to track this down, but it's usually hardware related.
 

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Ran the Fixit tool in the link you provided. Here is the result. Issues Found Service registration is missing or corrupt: Not fixed Reset service registration: Succeeded Check for missing or corrupt files: Fixed Repair missing or corrupt files: Succeeded Windows Update error 0x8007000D(2013-11-13-T-08_06_01P): Fixed Resetting Windows Update data store: Succeeded Problems installing recent updates: Fixed Repair Windows Update: Succeeded Problems installing recent updates: Fixed Repair Windows Update: Succeeded Issues Checked Windows Update environment variables are incorrect: Checked Some security settings are missing or have been changed: Checked Windows Update services are not running: Checked Cryptographic service components are not registered: Checked Also, I get this message when Microsoft Security Essentials tries to update virus definitions. Still can't get Windows Updates to work even when launching manually ... so all update functionality is still broken.
 

ZeeOSix

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Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
OK, what happens when you try and run Windows Update now?
It acts the same as it did last night before I tried these fixes. That is, it seems to start off normal and scvhost.exe is all mellow, but a couple minutes into the Windows Update process and one of the scvhost.exe that's running goes to 99% and the CPU is saturated and Window's Update never completes, just hangs forever.
 

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Originally Posted By: ZeeOSix
Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
OK, what happens when you try and run Windows Update now?
It acts the same as it did last night before I tried these fixes. That is, it seems to start off normal and scvhost.exe is all mellow, but a couple minutes into the Windows Update process and one of the scvhost.exe that's running goes to 99% and the CPU is saturated and Window's Update never completes, just hangs forever.
When you say "forever" how long are you leaving it for? 30+ minutes? BTW, there are a boatload of "fixit" things for Windows Update (confidence inspiring I know, LOL!!!) Here's another: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/971058
 

ZeeOSix

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Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
When you say "forever" how long are you leaving it for? 30+ minutes?
Once svchost.exe goes into CPU hog mode at 99% seems to be pretty much over - I let it run about 15 min after that an give up. I don't think it would ever complete once svchost.exe goes into the 99% usage mode.
Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
BTW, there are a boatload of "fixit" things for Windows Update (confidence inspiring I know, LOL!!!) Here's another: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/971058
I'll have to try that one later ... I'm about ready to call it a day. Sure appreciate the help and tips Overkill.
 

OVERKILL

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Originally Posted By: ZeeOSix
Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
When you say "forever" how long are you leaving it for? 30+ minutes?
Once svchost.exe goes into CPU hog mode at 99% seems to be pretty much over - I let it run about 15 min after that an give up. I don't think it would ever complete once svchost.exe goes into the 99% usage mode.
Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
BTW, there are a boatload of "fixit" things for Windows Update (confidence inspiring I know, LOL!!!) Here's another: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/971058
I'll have to try that one later ... I'm about ready to call it a day. Sure appreciate the help and tips Overkill.
No problem. BTW, I've seen Windows Update (with this "bug" so to speak) hog the CPU for 30+ minutes but it DOES eventually complete. The process hasn't hung, it is just consuming massive amounts of CPU time, which it shouldn't be doing. But yeah, run that other fix and then don't be afraid to just walk away from it and give it an hour to complete if it still exhibits these symptoms. BTW, process Explorer (free from Microsoft) will allow you to confirm that it is in fact the Windows Update service that is running under svchost and consuming your CPU time. If you haven't done that already. Also, interesting fact (if you didn't know): Security Essentials leverages Windows Update for its definitions updates and I've seen IT do this too, LOL!!!
 

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Originally Posted By: OVERKILL
BTW, there are a boatload of "fixit" things for Windows Update (confidence inspiring I know, LOL!!!) Here's another: http://support.microsoft.com/kb/971058
I did just run the "auto fix" option in the link above. The tool looked exactly the same as the one you previously suggested. Tried a manual launch to update MS Security Essentials and it still bombs out like before. I did know that MS Security Essentials updates were through Windows Updates because they all show up in the Windows Updates history log too. Here's the results of this running of Windows Update Fixit: Issues Found Service registration is missing or corrupt: Not fixed Reset service registration: Succeeded Problems installing recent updates: Not fixed Repair Windows Update: Succeeded Problems installing recent updates: Not fixed Repair Windows Update: Succeeded Check for missing or corrupt files: Fixed Repair missing or corrupt files: Succeeded Windows Update error 0x8007000D(2013-11-13-T-11_39_49P): Fixed Resetting Windows Update data store: Succeeded Issues Checked Windows Update environment variables are incorrect: Checked Some security settings are missing or have been changed: Checked Windows Update services are not running: Checked Cryptographic service components are not registered: Checked
 
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