Having trouble trying to fix svchost.exe high CPU usage?
The svchost.exe is a background process that runs all the time, yet you probably don’t know what it is or what it does. Why does this eat so much of your CPU’s processing power and cause so much lag on your computer?
One of the most common ways to view the svchost through an analogy is by thinking of it as an errand boy. DLL files are full of code, that cannot run by themselves and require outside instructions to function. The svchost is responsible for this and, as an errand boy, snoops around all your programs to run their DLL files.
A common misconception is that the svchost program is what’s causing the lag on your computer. While this is technically true, in reality, the cause of the lag is the program that’s utilizing the svchost poorly. Here are 6 ways that you can fix svchost.exe high CPU usage.
Let’s get started!
- 1. Initiate A Full System Scan.
- 2. Uninstall Any Recent Applications.
- 3. Empty The Event Viewer Log.
- 4. Update Your Windows Operating System.
- 5. Do An SFC And DISM Scan
- 6. Reformat Your Computer.
1. Initiate A Full System Scan.
First and foremost, having a high-CPU svchost program is usually associated with having a virus. Some viruses and malicious programs deliberately try and use up your computer’s memory/RAM. A virus could very well be what’s causing svchost.exe to demand such a high amount of CPU power.
Before you fiddle around with your settings, running a full scan on your computer might be in your best interest. We’ll be doing this with the Windows Defender, or you can do so with any third-party antivirus application of your choice.
Do take note that a full system scan can take minutes to hours, depending on the size of your files and the speed of your SSD or HDD.
Here’s how you can initiate a full system scan with Windows Defender:
- First, open up the Start menu and search for ‘defender’ and click on the Windows Security program.
- Now, select Virus & threat protection, this is indicated by the shield icon.
- Before initiating a scan, go to Scan options and change the scan type to Full scan.
- After that, scroll down and select Scan now to start the full system scan.
Once your scan is complete, see how many threats were found. Restart your computer afterward for good measure.
2. Uninstall Any Recent Applications.
Have you noticed the svchost program consuming high amounts of CPU processing power only recently? If so, this might be due to any recently installed application on your computer.
This method will require a bit of your personal judgment since you would know your computer’s programs better than us. Try to go over any applications you’ve installed recently, and uninstall these applications one by one until svchost no longer consumes high amounts of CPU.
Here’s how you can uninstall your programs:
- Go ahead and open up the Start menu then type in ‘Add or remove programs’. Click on the first result that’s returned from your search.
- A list of all programs currently installed on your computer should be displayed on your screen. Look for Apps & Features, and there should be a filter underneath.
- Change the default Sort by: Name to sort by Install date. Your applications should now be arranged from the newest to the oldest installed dates.
- Finally, click on the program that you think is causing the high CPU usage and then select Uninstall.
Confirm through all the prompts to completely uninstall the program. Repeat this step multiple times until you think that all suspicious applications have been deleted. Feel free to reinstall these applications later, as a fresh installation may run those applications properly this time, without all the lag.
3. Empty The Event Viewer Log.
In this method, we’ll be deleting log files that may be causing all this lag. Over the years of using your computer, the Event Viewer may have saved a ton of log files. These files can unnecessarily utilize the svchost which causes your computer to lag.
The Event Viewer is a program on Windows that manages any events, be this opening an application, or your computer shutting down unexpectedly. To be able to monitor and store such excessive amounts of data, the Event Viewer stores this in compressed log files.
Here’s how you can empty the Event Viewer log:
- First, open up the Run dialog box by pressing Windows Key + R keys. Additionally, you can also open up the Start menu and search for ‘Run’ then open it up from there.
- Now, type in ‘eventvwr’ in the Run dialog text-field and press Enter.
- That should open up the Event Viewer. From there, expand Windows Logs.
- Next, right-click on Application and select Clear Log. You’ll be asked to confirm your decision, just click on Save and clear.
- Lastly, repeat the same process and clear the Security, Setup, and System logs.
Once that’s done, go ahead and restart your computer. When your desktop or laptop boots up, bring out the Task Manager to see if the svchost is still taking in high CPU usage.
4. Update Your Windows Operating System.
Your computer might be running on an outdated Windows version, which can cause problems. Though Windows has been out for a while, like all software programs, this still requires an update from time to time.
Updating your operating system regularly can be healthy for your computer since this usually includes bug fixes and new features. Although this should update automatically by default, perhaps the settings were configured to manually update or to not update at all.
Regardless, here’s how you can update your Windows operating system:
- Open up the Start menu by either clicking on the Windows icon or pressing the Windows key on your keyboard.
- Next, type in ‘Check for updates’ and click on the first result that’s returned from your search.
- If an update is available, there should be a clear indication on your screen. Simply click on Download to begin downloading and installing a newer version of Windows on your computer.
Once you’re done with all these steps, you should now have the latest authentic version of Windows installed on your computer. Restart your PC or laptop and use your computer normally to see if the problem still persists.
5. Do An SFC And DISM Scan
A computer full of corrupted files, which can include Windows Defender, may not perform optimally. Thankfully, Microsoft developed a couple of scanning tools to restore any corrupted Windows files.
More conveniently, we’ll be able to access and utilize these tools through the Command Prompt. Your computer basically stores two copies of its operating system, one is used to run your computer, and the other remains untouched as maintenance for these scans.
Here’s how you can initiate an SFC scan:
- Start by opening your Start menu.
- Next, type in ‘cmd’ and right-click the first app that is returned from your search query. In the list of options that appear after the right-click, select Run as administrator.
- The command prompt should open. In here, type in ‘sfc /scannow’ and press Enter.
This entire process might take a couple of minutes, depending on the performance of your computer. When the scan is finished, hopefully, all the corrupted files in your operating system has been cleaned and replaced.
Alternatively, here’s how you can use the DISM tool to fix your problem:
- Bring up the Start menu by pressing the Windows key.
- Now, type in ‘cmd’ and right-click the app then select Run as administrator.
- After that, type or copy-paste in ‘DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth’ and press Enter.
Leave the scan to finish. If you notice that the DISM is stuck at a certain percentage, don’t worry as this is perfectly normal. Once the scan is complete, go ahead and restart your computer. Hopefully, that should fix svchost.exe high CPU usage problem.
6. Reformat Your Computer.
Lastly, if you’re at the end of the line, you can always try reformatting your computer. This used to be such a hard task to do, but in Windows 10 it’s easier than ever. Reformatting your computer will reinstall the latest Windows operating system on your PC.
This way, any problems or viruses that have penetrated far into your system is completely deleted and replaced. Here’s how you can reformat your computer.
That wraps up this article! We hope to have helped you fix svchost.exe high CPU usage. If you have any clarifications or questions you’d like to ask, feel free to leave them in the comments down below.
If this guide helped you, please share it. 🙂