How do I find which process is using all my CPU?


If you are a regular PC user, then you have most likely run into one of those situations when your PC suddenly freezes up and stops responding to your commands. This is often due to some running computer process which has crashed. In these cases, the PC will often resume behaving normally once the malfunctioning process has been shut down.

So, how can you find the malfunctioning process, which is hogging all of your CPU resources and slowing your PC down to a crawl?

Do the following:

  1. Right click on Taskbar.
  2. From the pop up menu, select Task Manager.
  3. In the Task Manager window, click on the tab named Processes.
  4. In the list shown, you will find a column named CPU.
  5. Scroll down the column CPU till you find a process that is showing a value close to 100%. This is the malfunctioning process, which you have to shut down.
  6. Right click on the process name and choose the option “End Process Tree” from the pop up menu that appears.
  7. A pop up box with the name “Task Manager Warning” will pop up asking whether you surely want to terminate the process.
  8. Click on “Yes” to terminate the process. If it has any open files, you may lose any unsaved any unsaved data in that file, but it is necessary to restore stability to your system.
  9. Your system should start behaving normally soon.

The above is the general scenario. However, in some cases, one of the core processes of Windows operating system may crash due to internal problems. In that case, terminating the process will often shut down Windows as well, forcing you to reboot. Do not worry. A reboot should cause the problem to go away and allow your PC to function properly again.

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Posted in Computer Processes

One Response

  1. David

    Very interesting article! Microsoft’s take on enhancing CPU… http://www.microsoft.com/atwork/maintenance/speed.aspx

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