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Windows 7: Service host intermittently hogging my CPU

13 Feb 2016   #1

Windows 7 Home Premium - always up to date
Service host intermittently hogging my CPU

Lately I've been noticing something using a lot of the CPU in my desktop computer, while I would expect the system to be idle. One of the service hosts seems to be responsible, as can be seen in the picture below. I tried restarting it with Process Explorer, but it will not allow it, and I don't know how to take control of it. It will eventually stop, but it happens fairly often, maybe once a day, and it's a bit of a nuisance.

I have run Malwarebytes in addition to my current version of Norton Security, and it always comes up clean. I took a screenshot with this host's associated services displayed. I wonder if someone can look at it and tell me what might be going on. Or at least how to take administrative control so I can try restarting it.

Attached Thumbnails
Service host intermittently hogging my CPU-proc-explorer.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2016   #2
Microsoft MVP

Vista, Windows7, Mint Mate, Zorin, Windows 8

This is a tough one because there are so many services to choose from. Maybe you can explore this PID 1472 when there is no problem so that we can narrow down the service that is the culprit.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
13 Feb 2016   #3

Windows 7 Home Premium - always up to date

Thanks for the reply.
Here's PID 1472 while it's not using up the CPU.

Attached Thumbnails
Service host intermittently hogging my CPU-svchost-1472.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec

13 Feb 2016   #4

W7 Pro SP1 64bit

It is probably the Windows Update process that is eating up the CPU and probably more RAM than it should.

It is easy to tell - when you notice the high CPU, temporarily stop the Windows Update service.

Have you applied all Windows Updates? Or are you skipping some for fear of W10 and telemetry?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2016   #5

Windows 7 Home Premium 64bit 6.1 Build 7601 (SP1)

I'd bet with UI--there have been updates to WU, and I see some here have had the problems cited in the updates (delays, slowness if not CPU activity) and it's been tricky to sort the WUs that fix problems with W10 vs just wuauserv itself.

Most recently for example KB3135445 was about Windows Update Client but afaict had nothing to do with W10 specifically so it's installed on my PCs.

But these svchost issues are the most troublesome for sure given how it's so hard to find which among the >dozen services is actually responsible.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2016   #6

Windows 7 Home Premium - always up to date

Old #1472 is hard at work as I write this... making Pandora skip whenever I save and refresh.
I'll double check on the updates, I don't recall getting any on Tuesdays lately, but I usually install them after checking to make sure there's not something obvious that I want to avoid.
Thanks for the replies, I'll keep you posted.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
14 Feb 2016   #7

W7 home premium 32bit/W7HP 64bit/w10 tp insider ring

as a quick check turn off the bits service and see if it drops.

My System SpecsSystem Spec
16 Feb 2016   #8

Windows 7 Home Premium - always up to date

I just checked my update history and there were 3 or 4 that dated back to late 2015, plus one from 2013 that had not been installed. I don't know how or why they were omitted, but I'll see how she runs after they are installed. I will have time to look more closely this weekend, so I'll report back with anything I figure out.

Meanwhile, Roy, in Process Explorer I selected Svchost #1472 and clicked Properties, and selected BITS in the list. I tried clicking on Permissions, Stop and Restart, but am denied access on all of those.

I also opened Autoruns and found nothing there that resembled what I'm looking for. Then I switched to Windows Task Manager and it doesn't list any Svchost under the "Services" or any other tab.

Can you tell me how to assign admin privileges to this service?

Please keep in mind that I'm not a windows expert, so don't assume I know or understand a lot of details. I just try and do what you helpful folks suggest without asking too many goofy questions.


EDIT: Eureka! I think I found it. Does this look right? I set it to Startup type=Disabled.
I'll turn it back on and leave it running normally until the problem recurs, and then disable it to see what happens. Then we can proceed from there.

Attached Thumbnails
Service host intermittently hogging my CPU-computer-management.jpg  
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Feb 2016   #9

Windows 7 Home Premium - always up to date

It has not happened again, ever since I disabled and re-enabled the BITS startup type in Task Manager.
I'll mark this as Solved until it happens again.
Thanks for everyone's help.
My System SpecsSystem Spec

 Service host intermittently hogging my CPU

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