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Windows 7: Random CPU Spikes in Skyrim

02 Jan 2012   #11

Windows 7 Ultimate 64-bit

Alright, so I decided to try once more to get this game to work. After disabling every unneeded windows service (antivirus, printer, network, audio, themes), killing every application and process not necessary for Windows and Skyrim to work, and setting the graphics to the lowest possible settings, the problem still persists. I even attempted setting the CPU priority to Realtime. While the priority gave me an FPS boost on Ultra settings, consistent CPU spikes still occurred in the most optimal setting I could create. I'm not sure what else to do. I'm almost certain it has to be either my processor or some firmware causing this problem, but I've run out of ideas on how to isolate this. If anyone knows anything, please help! Thanks.

For anyone keeping track or having the same issue as myself, I've found the source of the problem. The GPU appears to be overheating. After installing the latest beta drivers for my GeForce 550 Ti, I installed the OC/fan controller utility that it came with from Zotac. I noticed that whenever the temperature reached 50 degrees and higher, the game would freeze up. I opened the case and pumped up the fan to 100%. This gives me a little more time before it reaches 50, but inevitably it still happens. I'm going to the store today to pick up a few fans to fill empty slots, and I did notice that my rear 120mm has stopped spinning. This should give me at total of 3 more 120mm fans near the PCI slots and CPU.

I am still confused on a couple things though:
Is 50 degrees Celcius really that high for a GPU? I figured it would be good until at least 70. Also, does anyone know why this would cause my CPU usage to spike in task manager for Skyrim? I don't know a whole lot about how the firmware works, but it really threw me off because I had been trying to troubleshoot my CPU this whole time. Is it possible that the extra heat from the GPU is causing the processor to overheat as well? Is there a good way for me to determine this?

Thanks very much to everyone for the input. I'm getting very close on fixing this VERY FRUSTRATING issue, haha.

Update #2:
Installed three new 120mm fans on the case and cranked the GPU fan to 100% with the OC utility. Seems to have solved the problem. Womp!

My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Random CPU Spikes in Skyrim

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