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CPU usage spikes to 100 percent, why?

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July 20, 2007 3:03:28 PM

I have an Intel Core 2 Duo E6600, and CPU usage will sometimes spike to 100 percent on one or both cores for a second or so, and then drop down to normal. The spikes usually happen when my wireless card will attempt to reconnect after losing connection, when I'll resume the internet after walking away from the PC for a while and lastly when I'll be typing something on the internet. I'll hit the keys but nothing will appear onscreen, and about two seconds later the word will appear-and the spike is over. My wireless card is a Linksys Wireless-G PCI Adapter, WMP54G.

Why would this be? Could there be something wrong with the CPU? I just installed it last week. Thanks

Here's my system: GIGABYTE GA-P35C-DS3R LGA 775 Intel P35 ATX, Intel Core 2 Duo E6600, ATI Radeon x1900XT 512, 3 Gb DDR2 400mhz, 250 Gb SATA HDD. (I have installed all of the drivers for my system, and I use Nod32 as my AV and Spysweeper for my Spy Removal program)
July 20, 2007 3:08:05 PM

dont use wireless lol :p 
July 20, 2007 3:14:07 PM

So this is normal? Does wireless always do this?
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July 20, 2007 6:24:46 PM

It could be anything. The best thing you can do to find out what it is is to recreate the situation where it spikes. At the same time, run Task Manager and see what process is eating up the CPU cycles. Google the name of the process.
If its only for a second, then... It probably isn't a concern. Its probably your virus scanner doing something or firewall or spyware maybe, or anything! Maybe some drivers are installed incorrectly.
Did you format after installing the cpu?
July 20, 2007 7:03:42 PM

nobly has a good point,

definately open task manager and look for tasks using alot of memory, or multiple instances of tasks.

if its everytime you reconnect to the internet it could be a virus problem, something running in the background trying to connect to the net.

i dont think its a problem with your cpu, but definately a program or task causing this problem. scan for viruses and scan with spybot, its pretty good about cleaning out thses sorts of problems, and also enable the Tea Timer within spybot. you should be good after that.
July 20, 2007 8:42:31 PM

I had the spiking problem and it was MSN Messenger.

I didn't even realize what the problem was until I installed a desktop theme that had a CPU and RAM usage monitor. For some reason my CPU usage was spiking to 100% and my PC was slow as a slug.

Messenger was not listed in the task manager. I figured out I that I had to reopen it and end it in task manager to make my CPU return to normal.

What a pain in the .....
July 20, 2007 9:44:32 PM

Ya, I formatted after I installed the cpu and mobo, I had to use my old hdd. I use Spysweeper for spyware and Nod32 for viruses, I'll run another Spysweep and see how it goes. But I just checked for viruses yesterday and there were none. I'll also check what tasks are being used the most do a print screen and posts the images later.

I heard of problems with Linksys products spiking cpu usage to 100 percent, I think my wireless card might be bad. When my spike occurs, the page will try to load, and then the internet will freeze for about 1-2 seconds. During that, the spike occurs, and then once the freeze is over and the page is loaded, cpu usage will go almost all the way back down. It'll also happen like I said, when I type things in, and then they'll appear seconds later. It's like the router is constantly trying to keep a good connection or readjusting itself or something. And plus, during all of this, the signal strength is either very good or excellent. I have all the current drivers installed, I checked yesterday. What's a good brand for Wireless cards other than Linksys? I was thinking Netgear, but don't know if they're good.

So it's definately not my cpu? Here I was thinking I got a faulty core 2 duo or something.
a c 110 à CPUs
July 20, 2007 10:46:23 PM

On my laptop if i turn on wireless after a while of not running it music will sometimes skip. maybe try with no wireless for a bit to see if it goes away.

Its rare for most software to spike both cores to 100% as allot of it is still made for one cpu only. Games....well thats another story.

Also try with and with out your antivirus. It may have to initialize its network protection every time it see's the network go and come back.
July 21, 2007 4:35:30 AM

So do I have a faulty cpu if that's not normal?
July 21, 2007 5:31:49 AM

No I think you might have a faulty Windows. Oh wait...we all do :) 
Hmmm. How many processes and which ones are you running? Have you gone through services.msc and disabled the ones you don't need? Is your System Restore service on? Disable it. If you're using the Linksys wireless monitor, turn it off and enable your WZC service. Get it down to like 12 if you're anal like me :) 
July 21, 2007 6:12:29 AM

Was thinking ya' might run the aftermarket SysInteral Process Explorer. Shows a more in-depth view of the current processes and DLL libraries currently running. Could also run a packet sniffer application and see if something is requesting lots of information through the network connection. (i.e. Windows notorious automatic update sending packets to M$ server)
July 21, 2007 6:35:29 AM

When are high cpu spikes to almost 100 percent and then back down after a few seconds normal? If ever...

I'll check the processes, and Spysweeper found nothing.
July 21, 2007 9:36:59 AM

Could be Firefox. It is currently taking over my first core. I'm still looking into this problem.
July 21, 2007 1:17:41 PM

I use Netscape, but they are pretty close, so ya-that could be it.

I was thinking it was my wireless card alone, but now I think it could be the internet overall. Stupid internet....who needs it? lol
July 21, 2007 3:08:00 PM

It could be a driver issue, when I had problems with drivers for my sound card my cpu usage was always at 50% and it was that way for a month until I opened device manager and saw a question mark over sound and video game controllers, I installed the drivers ( or was it updated don't really remember). but wen I checked the cpu usage in task manager it went down to 2%. So try re-installing(updating) your drivers for your wireless card.
July 21, 2009 5:55:14 AM

If you are using Vista...Make sure that your power settings are set to Performance. I was getting huge spikes on power saving mode but once i set it to high performance my spikes where reduced drastically!
a b à CPUs
July 21, 2009 7:51:54 AM

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