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NT Kernel & System 100% CPU

This is a discussion on NT Kernel & System 100% CPU within the Windows 7 Support, Windows Vista Support forums, part of the Tech Support Forum category. Hi, Every so often my PC becomes unresponsive immediately after startup. Task Manager shows NT Kernel & System using up


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Old 08-17-2011, 06:28 PM   #1
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Hi,

Every so often my PC becomes unresponsive immediately after startup. Task Manager shows NT Kernel & System using up to 100% of the CPU. If I Restart the PC all is well, nothing untoward in Device Manager and no abnormal download usage.

Google is inconclusive about the cause, some instances I have read about happen every time the subject PC is started but mine doesn't.

Is NT Kernel and System a valid entity in Windows 7 64Bit?

Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Rob.

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Old 08-17-2011, 11:38 PM   #2
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Hi Crossy,

If you're referring to the ntoskrnl.exe process, that is indeed a system core process. This process is previously known for causing issues with bootup, if it's corrupt for instance your machine will not boot. Therefore I would suspect that there is something wrogn with the ntoskrnl process.

1st:
See if you can restore to a previously known working restore point.
Start > Search > type "rstrui" > hit ENTER.

2nd:
Go to Start > Search > type "cmd" > Run as administrator.
Run the "sfc /scannow" command.
If any faults appear, choose to repair them

3rd:
Try a system repair with the installation DVD.
Insert the DVD and proceed to installation, choose System Repair instead of Install Windows Now.

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Old 08-18-2011, 12:38 AM   #3
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Hi aciid, thanks for replying.

What I'm referring to is as shown in the attachment, last line, as from Task Manager. This situation only occurs from time to time, not at every boot up.

I'm not too keen on doing a System Restore because as it's only happening sometimes it may take quite a while before I know if it has been effective.

I'll try the sfc/scannow command and see what happens.

I have an OEM disc so Repair Installation is not an option.

What puzzles me is that it is so infrequent. If it was a corrupt file, wouldn't the problem occur at each bootup?

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 01:03 AM   #4
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sfc /scannow complete (see attachment) and no faults found.

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 01:15 AM   #5
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If it would be corrupt it would most likely be caused every time, correct. There might however be some other application calling the process, and when that specific part of the process is called it might cause it to freeze.

For instance, of you have automatic updates set to run every Wednesday, that will obviously cause your logon time to be longer, and since that calls for the system process aswell, that might be affected.

I would recommend you to see over any automatic updates / other applications set to run updates on specific days, and see if they're somehow connected. If there are any confusions you might want to check the eventlog (Start > Search > eventvwr.msc), and check those days that it has happened, if any errors are occuring.
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Old 08-18-2011, 02:06 AM   #6
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Thanks, will check for Auto Updates etc.

Is there any chance that this could be related to Audio Drivers?

I ask because I have noted (see attachment) in DXDIAG that I have 8 audio drivers, and many of them (5 I think) are the same. Also shows up in Device Manager.

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 02:25 AM   #7
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Well considering it's a core process it will probably in some way communicate with this process. You might want to try uninstalling all the non-needed drivers aswell. I'm not completely sure that it has something to do with it, but it's worth a shot.
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Old 08-18-2011, 03:10 AM   #8
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Thanks, deleted 4 of the 5 instances from Device Manager, lets see if it helps.

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 03:32 AM   #9
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Alright, get back to us with the results! :)
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Old 08-18-2011, 05:43 AM   #10
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Shall do, thanks for your help.

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 06:23 AM   #11
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Hi,

While wandering around in Device Manager I clicked on 'Show Hidden Devices' and to my surprise I found over 30 instances of Generic Volume Shadow Copy (see attached).

Is this normal? Could it be related to the problem?

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 07:06 AM   #12
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No that shouldn't be related to this issue, I aswell have alot of them.
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Old 08-18-2011, 02:14 PM   #13
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Thanks
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Old 08-18-2011, 02:55 PM   #14
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Hi,

Well, it wasn't caused by the multiple Audio driver instances because they are now gone but 'IT' happened again this morning about 10 minutes after I started the PC.

I have attached a snip of the Task Manager and Resource Monitor taken at the time, and I have also noticed that there is no HDD activity while it happens. I let it run for about 30 minutes and when it showed no signs of abating I simply restarted the PC which is now running normally.

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 03:30 PM   #15
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Disconnect each hardware piece you have one by one starting with usbs.

See if the process goes down.

If not, turn off the pc disconnect pci cards etc reboot and see if it still reads 100% highly doubt it will unless its virus related.

If its sorted with most of the hardware removed, then proceed 1 at a time to re-add each piece until you find out whats causing it.

Note: may take a while
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Old 08-18-2011, 03:51 PM   #16
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Thanks for the reply.

Only problem is that 'IT' disappears when I restart the PC.

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 04:01 PM   #17
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Something causes it to appear so try removing usbs and such while pcs turned on.

Turn off and you can only really have about 2 pci cards ethernet and graphics card are the norm.

Browse for a while and see if the process comes up at all, or do whatever you normally do that causes it to cause a problem.
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Old 08-18-2011, 04:10 PM   #18
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I have a Graphics card as well as a Firewire card.

The problem only happens about 10 minutes after first start of the day, and once it is cleared by restarting the pc runs normally. Next time it happens I'll start progressively unplugging USB items.

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 07:31 PM   #19
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Had a look in Task Scheduler. There are many things scheduled to run at different times, one of which was 'Extractor Definitions Update Task' scheduled at startup and also ay 1842 each day. I deleted the 'At Startup' entry.

I also noticed that several tasks were configured for Vista (never had Vista on any machine) so I changed them to read Windows 7.

It's difficult to determine what some of the Scheduled Tasks actually do, and therefore do I need them to happen. I was thinking of moving all scheduled tasks away from Startup and placing them at different times just in case it is this which is causing the problem.

Which Tasks NEED to be scheduled for startup? Is there a reference I can read to determine if I actually want or need there tasks?

Rob.
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Old 08-18-2011, 08:01 PM   #20
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Many tasks are scheduled to run in the wee small hours with the proviso that if they miss out they should be run at the next startup. Is it possible that on days where many things are scheduled to run (but can't at the set time because the PC is off) that they may then all start when I start the PC? (thus causing the observed issue)

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