Why is my CPU running at 100% after upgrading to Windows Vista?

John Paul Wohlschied September 5, 2012
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I upgraded by PC from XP to Vista, Now the CPU is running at 100%. Why? Here are some stats that may help.

CPU – Intel Core 2 Duo E6600

RAM – 8.00 GB Dual-Channel DDR2

Motherboard – ASUSTeK Computer INC. P5E-VM DO

  1. Harish Jonnalagadda
    September 17, 2012 at 4:58 am

    If you do have to stick with using Vista, I suggest downloading SysInternals and using that to monitor what tasks are utilizing the system. http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/sysinternals/bb795533

  2. Patrick Jackson
    September 10, 2012 at 11:59 am

    Believe me, switch to Windows 8 or 7! It does works!

  3. Usman Mubashir
    September 6, 2012 at 2:15 pm

    Sidebar does not shows correct usage. check from the task manager. I strongly suggest you to upgrade to 7 or 8. In my experience, it would be better even if you downgrade to Xp.

  4. Amit Sinha
    September 6, 2012 at 8:52 am

    consuming 100% of resources is crucial as sometimes you won't be able to do some big task which requires more cpu resources. First check your computer for virus, malware and spyware and clean your temporary files if your resource isn't free enough try reinstalling os preferably clean install.

  5. Eike H
    September 5, 2012 at 7:31 pm

    Dont want to be mean, but vista was a failed experiement, just upgrade to 7, or go back to xp. Its to much effort to try and fix vista, even MS gave up/

  6. GrrGrrr
    September 5, 2012 at 7:06 pm

    1. Does it happen the same if u boot into Safe mode
    2. Did u try to scan the complete system recently
    3. What happens to CPU usage if u disconnect from the internet and then boot it. Does it still consumes 100% CPU.

    Recommendation: Install Process Lasso for process balance.

  7. Kannon Y
    September 5, 2012 at 5:42 pm

    On a dual core system, immediately following an upgrade or fresh installation, you may find your computer running extremely hot and slow - this is because it's downloading and updating various bug-fixes, service packs (particularly these) and driver updates. If you also updated Office to the latest version, this will compound the problem, as it may also need to patch security vulnerabilities and add bug-fixes.

    With Vista, you have at least two service packs that need to finish downloading and installing, after an upgrade (if you upgraded from a disc). This is a huge amount of data and on slower systems, it can take quite some time.

    I would suggest letting it run overnight with internet connected - and then installing whatever updates you find in the morning. I've experienced the same issue with Windows XP after a fresh install. Most Windows products, late in their development cycle, have these sorts of slow downs. Hopefully this solution works for you! Good luck!

  8. Adjei Kofi
    September 5, 2012 at 4:06 pm

    You should try what Bruce suggested. Most background programs consume more CPU. You could also install Tuneup Utilities. It has an option to disable start up programs and unnecessary programs as well, which tend to suck more CPU.

  9. Muhammad Ahmad
    September 5, 2012 at 3:49 pm

    I think you should start your pc in safe mode. if it works fine in safe mode than please go to Start menu type run and open it.Than type MSCONFIG and un check all the options in selective start up.. If this solve the than good luck. Otherwise you should update your Graphic card also. and check for compatibility options.

  10. ha14
    September 5, 2012 at 11:50 am
  11. Oron
    September 5, 2012 at 11:28 am

    Agree with everything said below, and in particular with Erlis (upgrade to Win 7)! Even though Vista is a resource hog and, well, not a good system, there's no essential reason why it won't run reasonably on your PC.
    I think your main task should be to identify the process or processes which are using most of the CPU cycles. Bring up the task manager ([Ctrl]+[Shift]+[Escape]), click on the /Processes\ tab and click [Show processes from all users]. Now sort them by CPU utilisation by clicking on the "CPU" column heading. Scroll to the end of the list and see which processes are using up your PC's power. Anything over 10% is worth investigating further. It may well be that there is a faulty driver or other component which is using up all your PC's power.

  12. Vipul Pandey
    September 5, 2012 at 10:50 am

    Vista has a bad reputation. It is a memory hog.

  13. Erlis Dhima
    September 5, 2012 at 10:14 am

    I would recommend that you clean install win 7!
    Of course, if you feel good with win vista, then try to fix it with some of the ways the others said to you...

  14. Joel Alar
    September 5, 2012 at 9:08 am

    Hi John, I would like to ask if you upgraded your pc from xp to vista directly or you installed your winvista from scratch? if you upgrade your pc from winxp directly then you need to reformat your harddrive first then install the winvista from scratch. or if the issue still occured after you installed the winvista, please try to check the process that uses a huge amount of memory from the task manager then try to kill the process. usually the process having a large consumption of pc resources is the Antivirus.

  15. Darren Reynolds
    September 5, 2012 at 8:25 am

    Vista is one of the worse O/S released... Buggy, Slow, and painful. I upgraded to vista but within a month went back to XP. Now using Win 7 and so far so good....

  16. Dalsan
    September 5, 2012 at 7:05 am

    Vista is more resource hungry than XP and 7, but should not be by that much. After doing what Bruce said to do, I would go into msconfig.msc and disable unnecessary or unwanted programs from starting with Windows, then go into services.msc to disable unnecessary and unwanted services from staying automatically, though this has to be done with a lot of caution. Instead, use Tweaking.com Simple Performance Boost or Advanced System Tweaker to safely adjust the services and Windows features to your liking for better performance by reducing the impact of your resources (CPU and memory). Report back with the results do we can try to help you further.

    • Dalsan
      September 5, 2012 at 7:07 am

      *services from starting automatically.

  17. Bruce Epper
    September 5, 2012 at 6:44 am

    Open the Task Manager, go to the Processes tab, click the button to 'Show processes from all users' and sort the results on the CPU column. What process(es) are burning the most CPU cycles? You may wish to disable the Sidebar. In my experience, it tends to suck around 25% of the CPU cycles from most systems even if there are no gadgets in it and MS has released information that gadgets may be easily exploitable.

    • John Paul Wohlschied
      September 7, 2012 at 10:37 am

      According to Task Manager, no process is running over 10 to 20% and only one or two doing that. This computer is jumping to 100% without any programs running. Why?

      • Bruce Epper
        September 9, 2012 at 8:34 am

        If the CPU usage is jumping to 100% and you are viewing all processes sorted by CPU usage, you will see what process is doing it. The process that makes the jump to the top of the list is what you are after.

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