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explorer.exe using up too much memory

This is a discussion on explorer.exe using up too much memory within the Windows XP Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. I have this problem where after my pc remains idle for a min or so, the performance gets really sluggish

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Old 03-28-2005, 04:05 AM   #1
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I have this problem where after my pc remains idle for a min or so, the performance gets really sluggish and on going to Task Manager I find that explorer.exe is using up almost 50% or more CPU and its Mem Usage keeps on incrementing. One time the Mem Usage was at 300,000 K!! I used Process Explorer and found that a thread within explorer.exe called somethin like ntdll.dll!RtPcToFileHeader0x352 is causing the problem by using up more and more memory. If I kill the thread the CPU performance gets better but the mem. usage remains at the high value. Is there any solution to this problem? Anything I can do to prevent this thread from running? Any help would be welcome cos I'm totally pissed off and clueless abt what to do abt the problem.
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Old 03-28-2005, 10:56 AM   #2
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Welcome to TSF.

Do you have a lot of programs running at startup or whenver this happens? If so, try disabling them from startup or close some of the programs before leaving the computer alone.

Did you also scan for spyware and viruses? If not, do them now. Just follow the instructions here.
Please do NOT PM me. Post whatever questions you may have in the forum and we will take a look at it when we get to it. If you have waited for more than 3 days, you may then and ONLY then PM me for assistance. I will take a look at it.
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Old 03-28-2005, 11:14 AM   #3
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take a read, this WILL help you, almost guaranteed & help you understand how that process works as well:

I bet I know ONE set of things that makes it "balloon up" in memory... & that's using SHELL EXTENSIONS (otherwise known as "Explorer-Addons" on many a download site).

Many (most) are done as DLL's called by GUID thru the registry & give you added rightclick abilities (like how WinZip integrates for example).

Those DLL's are loaded as "IN PROCESS" dll's meaning they run in the same memory space as Explorer.exe does... so when you have more of those (and I have a TON here)?

You balloon explorer's memory use... I'd bank on that! So...How can I make such a statement?

24mb in RAM here on the Explorer.exe process...

See, I have EASILY 50 or more of them integrated here in the way of Explorer addons, & I know pretty much how those are loaded as in-process DLL addons as well from a programmer's perspective. Explorer calls on those & loads them like you'd put on a jacket to deal with cold weather more or less, added function extending your regular set of clothes.

(Less of them you use, the lower your memory footprint for Explorer will be... but, is it worth losing the extra abilities & power you get from them? NOT for me it's not...I like having them around!)

Something that MIGHT help those that wish to keep them online, but lessen their use of RAM at ALL times & being loaded from bootup to shutdown continuously consuming RAM?

The "Always Unload DLL" registry tweak...

Set it to true/1 & I'd wager as you use said DLL addons, & unload them, the footprint will vary upon their use growing while being used, lessening upon unload. This slows them down some, having to load them each time they are used & unloading them vs. always having them loaded!


Open Regedit then go to:


Right-click in the right-hand window and create a new "value DWORD" with the
name of: AlwaysUnloadDll , and give it the value of: 1.

This change does not apply to older 16 bit DLLs. Some programs may give an
invalid page fault message, or crash the system.

To turn it off: delete the AlwaysUnloadDll entry.

Hope this will help you.
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Old 03-28-2005, 10:35 PM   #4
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greyknight17, I have used a2 to check for spyware and Norton Anti-virus to check for viruses and nothing shows up. The only 'extra' programs I have running are Folder Guard, Norton Anti-virus, Norton Internet Security, a Microsoft keyboard software, Download Acc. Plus, Yahoo and MSN messenger.

sickporsche911, ur suggestion seems like an extreme step to me, I dont wanna do that until all else fails. But thanx for ur help.
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Old 03-29-2005, 08:28 AM   #5
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Np, i try to help out many people. But i rlly dont know much. By me visiting these forums i have learned alot.
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