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svchost (netsvcs) and constant CPU/memory usage

Last response: in Windows 8
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March 11, 2013 4:11:45 PM

Hello all. I'm running Windows 8 on a laptop with an i7 Quad Core 3630QM CPU and 8 gb of ram.

I recently noticed that my CPU is running at a constant 18-20% even when idle, as it used to run 0-3%, and the memory has gone from around 17% idle to anywhere from 20-30%. The top memory process is svchost (netsvcs), registering at about 220,000 kb. The CPU processes shown don't reflect the overall usage %, and it definitely running about 10-15 degrees higher than it used to.

I know netsvcs is Windows Services. What's going on here? I have considered doing a system restore.

If anyone has some pointers I would greatly appreciate it.
March 12, 2013 1:08:56 AM

If the memory usage on the process list and the meter in task manager don't add up, then there may be something wrong with Windows. basically, there are several possibilities. What browser are you using? The process you mentioned runs on my computer when I use firefox, which takes up about 175 MB (175,000 KB) of my 8 Gigs of ram. Also, is this the program the culprit for your cpu usage as well? If it is, this could be a bug in a program you have that uses the process you mentioned, or it could be malware. The first thing I would do is run a virus scan. If that yields no results, reinstall any applications that depend on the process that you mentioned. If that still doesn't solve your problem, it would be wise to contact microsoft about the issue or use their forums. If worst comes to worse, you can do a system restore or use the windows 8 refresh feature. Good Luck!
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March 12, 2013 5:20:34 AM

jmarcus789 said:
If the memory usage on the process list and the meter in task manager don't add up, then there may be something wrong with Windows. basically, there are several possibilities. What browser are you using? The process you mentioned runs on my computer when I use firefox, which takes up about 175 MB (175,000 KB) of my 8 Gigs of ram. Also, is this the program the culprit for your cpu usage as well? If it is, this could be a bug in a program you have that uses the process you mentioned, or it could be malware. The first thing I would do is run a virus scan. If that yields no results, reinstall any applications that depend on the process that you mentioned. If that still doesn't solve your problem, it would be wise to contact microsoft about the issue or use their forums. If worst comes to worse, you can do a system restore or use the windows 8 refresh feature. Good Luck!


Thanks for the response.

I'm keeping my resource monitor open to keep an eye on what changes when the CPU starts running away. I could be wrong - svchost(netsvcs) very well may not be the culprit. It just happened to be the top process at that time.

I have been using IE 10 mostly, but I did install Chrome recently and use it sparingly. I also ran full system scans with Norton Internet Security and Malwarebytes. Neither detected anything. I do avoid shady sites and uncertain attachments.

Right now, the CPU is acting normal, only using 0-3%. My thinking is that when the computer goes idle (not sure how long after), it begins. I have plenty of power with the i7 and 8gb of ram, so with no performance changes, it kind of snuck up on me and hogged CPU and memory.

I wasn't aware that I could "refresh" Win 8. I did initiate a system restore to the earliest point (Feb 28) last night, as I have changed little since then, but that point was "missing or corrupt." Not sure there.

Maybe a bloatware issue? I'm going to keep an eye on it, so I have more info to go by. Sorry if it was overly vague. I'll try the "refresh" if I can't pin it down. What exactly does that do?

Thanks again.

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March 12, 2013 10:48:02 PM

McDougal66 said:
jmarcus789 said:
If the memory usage on the process list and the meter in task manager don't add up, then there may be something wrong with Windows. basically, there are several possibilities. What browser are you using? The process you mentioned runs on my computer when I use firefox, which takes up about 175 MB (175,000 KB) of my 8 Gigs of ram. Also, is this the program the culprit for your cpu usage as well? If it is, this could be a bug in a program you have that uses the process you mentioned, or it could be malware. The first thing I would do is run a virus scan. If that yields no results, reinstall any applications that depend on the process that you mentioned. If that still doesn't solve your problem, it would be wise to contact microsoft about the issue or use their forums. If worst comes to worse, you can do a system restore or use the windows 8 refresh feature. Good Luck!


Thanks for the response.

I'm keeping my resource monitor open to keep an eye on what changes when the CPU starts running away. I could be wrong - svchost(netsvcs) very well may not be the culprit. It just happened to be the top process at that time.

I have been using IE 10 mostly, but I did install Chrome recently and use it sparingly. I also ran full system scans with Norton Internet Security and Malwarebytes. Neither detected anything. I do avoid shady sites and uncertain attachments.

Right now, the CPU is acting normal, only using 0-3%. My thinking is that when the computer goes idle (not sure how long after), it begins. I have plenty of power with the i7 and 8gb of ram, so with no performance changes, it kind of snuck up on me and hogged CPU and memory.

I wasn't aware that I could "refresh" Win 8. I did initiate a system restore to the earliest point (Feb 28) last night, as I have changed little since then, but that point was "missing or corrupt." Not sure there.

Maybe a bloatware issue? I'm going to keep an eye on it, so I have more info to go by. Sorry if it was overly vague. I'll try the "refresh" if I can't pin it down. What exactly does that do?

Thanks again.


The refresh feature should be located on your Windows 8 install media. Refresh allows you to keep all of your personal files (documents, video, music, ect.), but it replaces all corrupt or damaged system files in the process and removes installed applications. The main reason why this may be a better option, is because the software causing this issue may still be installed on your restore points. However, if you don't want to go through the hassle of re-installing your programs, (even though this can possibly help any issues you are having) then it is certainly in your best interest to try a restore first and see if that does the trick. If the problem persists, then at the very worst, you spend a little time re-installing applications. I must admit this is an interesting issue. My i5 with 8 gigs of ram barely gets used on idle, it's crazy that it would even come close to 30% of an i7 at idle. Anyway, hope this was of help!


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March 12, 2013 11:33:57 PM

jmarcus789 said:
The refresh feature should be located on your Windows 8 install media. Refresh allows you to keep all of your personal files (documents, video, music, ect.), but it replaces all corrupt or damaged system files in the process and removes installed applications. The main reason why this may be a better option, is because the software causing this issue may still be installed on your restore points. However, if you don't want to go through the hassle of re-installing your programs, (even though this can possibly help any issues you are having) then it is certainly in your best interest to try a restore first and see if that does the trick. If the problem persists, then at the very worst, you spend a little time re-installing applications. I must admit this is an interesting issue. My i5 with 8 gigs of ram barely gets used on idle, it's crazy that it would even come close to 30% of an i7 at idle. Anyway, hope this was of help!


Thanks for the clarification.

Yeah, I have found that the computer has to be on idle for about 15 minutes, then the CPU runs away. As long as I'm working at the computer, it never kicks in. I think I'll go ahead and do a system refresh.

Thanks so much for the tips. Take care.

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March 13, 2013 11:12:11 AM

McDougal66 said:
jmarcus789 said:
The refresh feature should be located on your Windows 8 install media. Refresh allows you to keep all of your personal files (documents, video, music, ect.), but it replaces all corrupt or damaged system files in the process and removes installed applications. The main reason why this may be a better option, is because the software causing this issue may still be installed on your restore points. However, if you don't want to go through the hassle of re-installing your programs, (even though this can possibly help any issues you are having) then it is certainly in your best interest to try a restore first and see if that does the trick. If the problem persists, then at the very worst, you spend a little time re-installing applications. I must admit this is an interesting issue. My i5 with 8 gigs of ram barely gets used on idle, it's crazy that it would even come close to 30% of an i7 at idle. Anyway, hope this was of help!


Thanks for the clarification.

Yeah, I have found that the computer has to be on idle for about 15 minutes, then the CPU runs away. As long as I'm working at the computer, it never kicks in. I think I'll go ahead and do a system refresh.

Thanks so much for the tips. Take care.



Glad I could help! Good luck!

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March 25, 2013 8:25:28 AM

UPDATE: After the described CPU runaway began happening, Windows 8 became unstable, beginning with IE 10 repeatedly crashing, then with basic Windows functions crashing Windows 8 altogether.

Did a system refresh as suggested, and everything seems fine - i7 processor never working above 5% when idle, and memory at about 14% usage while idle with no applications running. Thanks!
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