Lagos, Nigeria

FIX: CPU at 100% when nothing is running

Why is my CPU usage so high with nothing running? That’s precisely what you have in mind when apparently no program is open, but you can hear the CPU running. 

We’ve prepared a list of applicable solutions that should help you address this issue. In case there’s no viable CPU-hogging service insight but your CPU isn’t throttling down, make sure to check them out.

How do I fix high CPU usage when nothing is running?

1. Scan your computer

best antivirus with offline updates

The worst scenario for a high CPU usage when nothing pops-up in Task manager is a virus infection or malicious software that runs in the background.

To stay safe from any ransomware or other type of viruses that can lead to computer damage, we recommend you to use Vipre, one of the best antivirus tools.

It is easy to install and it takes only a few minutes for the entire installation process. Moreover, it comes with predefined settings so you don’t have to lose time wondering how to configure it.

Why is my CPU at 100 when nothing is running? Well, a virus infection can be the answer to this question. Use Vipre to solve and protect your PC from these internet threats.



Keep your PC safe with Vipre. Scan and remove malicious software and viruses that can lead to high CPU usage.

2. Disable background programs

  1. Right-click on the Taskbar and open Task Manager.
  2. Select the Startup tab.high cpu but nothing in task manager
  3. Select every program that you don’t need to start alongside Windows and individually disable them.
  4. Close Task Manager.
  5. In the Windows Search bar, type msconfig and open System Configuration.
  6. Select the Services tab and check the Hide all Microsoft services box.high cpu but nothing in task manager
  1. Disable all but essential third-party services (GPU and sound drivers) and confirm changes.
  2. Restart your PC.

Note: Even though the absence of any feedback in Task Manager makes this scenario rather peculiar, the application’s background activity is still likely the main cause of the abysmal CPU activity.

3. Scan with Windows Defender

  1. Open Settings by pressing Windows + I hotkey.
  2. Choose Update & Security.
  3. From the left pane, select Windows Security.
  4. Select Virus & threat protection from Protection Areas.
  5. Click on Scan Options.
  6. Highlight Windows Defender Offline Scan and click the Scan now button.
  7. Your PC will restart and the scanning procedure will commence.

Run a System Scan to discover potential errors

Restoro Scan

Click Start Scan to find Windows issues.

Restoro Fix

Click Repair All to fix issues with Patented Technologies.

Run a PC Scan with Restoro Repair Tool to find errors causing security problems and slowdowns. After the scan is complete, the repair process will replace damaged files with fresh Windows files and components.

Note: Windows Defender is a great built-in security solution from Windows. You can use it alongside the recommended Vipre antivirus for more online protection and a virus-free computer.

4. Restart Windows Management Instrumentation

  1. Type services in the search bar and open Services.
  2. Navigate to the Windows Management Instrumentation service.
  3. Right-click on it and choose Restart from the contextual menu.

Note: The Windows Management Instrumentation service is the service that frequently misbehaves and can inflict CPU spikes. Its main use is to manage the execution of various background systems in a network.

5. Check Advanced Power Settings

  1. Right-click on the battery icon in the Taskbar’s Notification area and open Power Options.
  2. Select your default power plan and click on the Change plan settings link.
  3. Choose ”Change advanced power settings”.
  4. Expand Processor power management and then do the same with Minimum processor state.
  5. Set both On battery and Plugged in options to 5% and confirm changes.high cpu but nothing in task manager
  6. Restart your PC.

Note: Some CPU-related Power settings might affect the system readings and thus trick you into thinking your processor is all the time at 100%.

This post was written by Aleksandar Ognjanovic and was first posted to WindowsReport

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