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Humble amd user with intel question

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MrSelfDestruct

Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2002
Location
in my chair
hey,

my friend has a sony viao with a pentium 4 (unsure of specs) and its having some problems. for some reason his cpu is always being used by something when in windows xp. the cpu never idles @ 0-1%, instead it's at around 15%. i tried using the recovery discs, and then finally just formatted the whole thing with a clean install of xp. with nothing but xp on there, it still is at like 15% usage. :eh?: i've never seen this before, and assumed it to be the processor. any ideas what the problem could be?? thanks for any help!
 

BaldHeadedDork

Member
Joined
Aug 18, 2002
I doubt if the usage is coming from the processor itself. Every OS will generate some CPU usage, along with the BIOS and any USB peripherals. Does he have any programs running in the background like an antivirus or firewall? And don't forget the program that is tracking the CPU usage will eat some clock cycles itself.

Long story short, I don't see anything to worry about. Fifteen percent is a very light load, and about what I would expect in an idle system.


BHD
 

Rasputin'sLiver

counselor of clock
Joined
Jun 1, 2002
Location
Cleveland
i wouldn't suspect the cpu, i would hit control-alt-delete once and see what programs are running. he probably has 25 unnecessary programs running at startup!
 
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MrSelfDestruct

Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2002
Location
in my chair
no i dont think there could be any programs running in the background, because i did a complete format, then a clean install of xp. and i dont think 15 percent usage would be normal for having no programs (that i can see) running in the background... and when he tries to play unreal tournament or anything, there is a 1 second pause every 5 or 6 seconds. the computer is not reading off the cd or harddrive (heavily) either. inbetween pauses the game is running very smooth. by the way i wasnt dogging intels, i just dont know much about them, and what is normal for them.....
 
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MrSelfDestruct

Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2002
Location
in my chair
sorry, i didnt mean there is absoultly nothing running in the background, i know there would be some things... but nothing i think would be taking up so much usage since there is nothing installed on the computer except xp. i mean i formatted, installed xp and looked at task mananger performace tab. if there's a service that is so active as to use 15% of the cpu constantly, then i sure have never heard of it. thats why im thinking its a hardware problem.
 

Breadfan

Inactive Moderator
Joined
Jan 4, 2001
Location
Northern VA
BaldHeadedDork said:
Long story short, I don't see anything to worry about. Fifteen percent is a very light load, and about what I would expect in an idle system.


BHD

Sorry, but I just cannot agree with this statement. Even with applications open and idling, my typical idle on my AMD 1800 is between 1 and 6%. With nothing going it is 0%-2%. That is on a Win2k machine. Even with XP's GUI enhancements I don't see much difference on XP machines.

Right now I am running 2 IE's, AIM and an away message, Winamp3, 3 instances of notepad, and My Computer, and Sun's Forte4 Java development software, plus my background apps. My memory usage is over 400mb, but CPU load is 1-6 percent.

For a modern CPU such as a P4 or AthlonXP a 15% load at idle is very substantial.

I DID see this at one time, and that was on an ASUS A7V333. I installed a hercules gamesurround muse XL and got a 15-20% CPU usage at idle. It really blew my mind, and i ended up removing the muse XL and turning the onboard audio back on. That solved the problem.

I couldn't quite explain it, but figured it had something to do iwth the muse xl and onboard audio being the same chipset... Kind of a longshot, but i didn't know.

I would check for driver updates for the hardware, and also check your IRQs...i know some modems don't like sharing irq's in ACPI, so you might want to play around with those settings in the BIOS and in the system information in windows.

If it's a desktop VIAO, I would try removing a peice of hardware at a time (the PCI's that is) and see if removing one component solves the problem. For me on the A7V333 it was a muse xl soundcard.

Once you track down the menacing hardware peice, try messing with its IRQ or using it in another PCI slot.

Mike
 

kawasaki

Registered
Joined
Jun 24, 2002
I remember reading something about Parallel Port Zip drive drivers causing this kind stuttering effect in XP. I had a similar problem with drivers for a parsllel port cdrw drive, updated drivers fixed this in my case.
Maybe disabling hardware in device manager systematically might help determine if this is a driver issue.

Just a guess, but that pause every few seconds sounded very familiar.
 
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MrSelfDestruct

Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2002
Location
in my chair
Breadfan, i agree that 15% is very high idle. i dont think he has anything other than just a stock viao, but ill check it out. Ill try taking things out one at a time like u said. and thanks for the link Tipycol, ill check it out. Thanks for the input everyone, i might look at his comp again this weekend a little more closely and see if i can figure it out. :cool:
 

deez

Member
Joined
Jul 9, 2001
Location
Louisville, KY
Did you install from a real copy of XP or was it with some type of system restore disk? If it was a system restore disk then maybe there was some other stuff installed with XP.

USB speakers, mouse, keyboard also onboard sound, LAN, video etc...will all steal CPU cycles
 

Soapy

Registered
Joined
Aug 22, 2002
Remember that XP does a lot of background optimization and application-use monitoring after the first few reboots following installation. I noticed that my idle CPU use% dropped after a week or so.

Maybe that's what you're seeing.
 

CyberFed

Member
I dunno even after a fresh install of xp on the many machines i've built recently they all idle in xp after a few reboots at 0-5% at most...something is definatly eating cpu cycles...im doubting its a software problem --you seem to have checked pretty well into that. Seems like it might be hardware based. Let us know what you discover this weekend
 

TheNEWB

Member
Joined
Oct 16, 2002
Location
Canada
ZIP crrrrap.

Hey if that VAIO comes with a ZIP drive, rip out its cables and try again, I'v had that happen to me before on a home built system. If that does not work, go into the computers BIOS and see if you can disable hardware monitoring and such. This should free up some cpu cycles.

Good Luck and let us know what happeens.

Peace,

kam
 

schaef

Registered
Joined
Mar 29, 2002
Have you tried looking at the process tab in take manager instaed of the application tab.

click on the CPU tab at the top to sort by CPU usage, then it will tell you the process that is using CPU cycles.

of course if it's under system this won't tell you squat.

could be the system trying to query a divice that is not functioning right (driver, or hardware failure).

boot into safe mod (F8) and see if it's still idling high. if it's not, it's a problem with a driver or device.
 
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MrSelfDestruct

Member
Joined
Aug 29, 2002
Location
in my chair
yeah i think it was the system process that was using it. i'll open it up this weekend and take a look at things. i'll check out the zip drive thing too. ill let u know if i find anything out.. thanks again for all the help, u guys are the best. :D