Troubleshooting Win10 performance issue

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Sometime today, for no apparent reason, my Windows 10 laptop’s performance dropped dramatically. Task Manager doesn’t indicate anything is amiss:

CPU: 15%

Memory: 41%

Disk: 0%

Network: 0%

GPU: 50%

Any recommendations on how to troubleshoot this?

Comments (11)

11 responses to “Troubleshooting Win10 performance issue”

  1. JimP

    Sorry, I forgot to mention that I have done soft and hard reboots and that did not resolve the issue.


    I also tried rebooting in Safe Mode without Networking. It's still horribly slow. In fact, it's actually getting worse. However, it's not accepting my password. I know I'm entering it correctly. Perhaps there's a password service that's timing out?


    I am resetting my laptop. (Curiously, the blue Windows startup screen accepted my password.)

    • JimP

      In reply to JimP:


      I finished the Windows Reset keeping my files. I'm still having performance issue. I'm now running a complete virus scan.


      But I think it's hardware issue, or perhaps a driver issue.


      Did I recently install install win 10 2004? If that's the most recent version, no. The last I checked, it's not available for my laptop yet. In any case, the reset put me to version 1909.


      Oh, now that I think of it, I did do something different yesterday. My girlfriend uses a universal power adapter for her laptop and it stopped working. I plugged into my laptop to see if it worked for me. It did. Is it possible that something with the universal power cord that damaged my laptop?

      • snow.steve22

        In reply to JimP:

        Hmmm. "Universal Powercord" drew my attention... What is the parentage of this U.P. that you speak of? People have been having fits forever worrying that they have exposed their precious smartphone to malware by plugging it into those "free" battery chargers out in public. Is it so far-fetched that a power module with a USB-C connector (or for that matter, any USB connector with data lines connected) might just pass something on to your laptop? I'd be running a full scan (and maybe in safe mode or an off-line scan) with crossed fingers...

  2. peterc

    Did you recently install win 10 2004? A lot of drivers got trashed with that update.

  3. Greg Green

    Cpu and gpu usage seem high if you’re not doing anything but using task manager. Try uninstalling the gpu driver then reinstall.

  4. waethorn

    I see this a lot on 1909 when 2004 isn't being offered. Force an upgrade and do all updates and problems like that tend to disappear.


    Also, is this a Lenovo system? I saw some Lenovo laptops on 1909 recently where WMI Provider Host is the thing spiking the CPU. I figure it was something to do with Lenovo Vantage's system monitor drivers. I ended up having to wipe a bunch of systems because of the integration of that driver and diagnosing it took longer than just flattening the system. In this situation, upgrading to 2004 won't fix the problem because it won't remove the driver and software components. Wipe it first, then install 2004 cleanly and avoid Lenovo Vantage for the time being. Lenovo is pushing firmware updates through Windows Update now and most drivers are already included. To get the latest "WHQL-certified" firmware, go into Device Manager and "Check for Updates" on System Firmware. It's not necessarily the absolute latest, but if it finds a system-specific firmware entry, it will stay up-to-date with firmware in the future as Lenovo submits packages to Windows Update.


    Let us know what process is eating the bulk of the CPU usage. And check to make sure all drivers are loaded or else power management doesn't work, including throttling or burst clocks.



  5. jmwoods301

    In reply to JimP:

    I would try the following -


    1. From a Run box, enter perfmon /report
    2. Check Reliability History for issues
    3. Download and run Sysinternals Process Explorer
  6. MacLiam

    Whenever I have had slowdown problems, Event Viewer has been able to point me in the direction of issues that need attention. Open it by typing that name in the search box next to the Start icon. Click on the Windows Logs folder on the top left, and then on the System subsection. When the empty box populates, just do an eyeball scan for yellow-triangle warnings and red -ball error notices. There will always be a few, but if there are tons then they indicate something you need to deal with.


    EV is available in Pro editions of Windows 10, but I don't know if it is included in the Home Edition.


    You may not need to do this if the suggestion to look at power issues gave you a solution.

  7. Greg Green

    In reply to JimP:

    Does task a manger say what is using that much gpu or cpu?


    occasionally cpu usage will momentarily spike to 15% with some background activities, but if it’s steady at 15% that also seems like too much.

  8. csca

    I regularly find, especially if something in Windows is the culprit, that the offender will not appear in task manager (basic view) and often times doesn't seem to report the accurate performance of the stats you cited above. If I open resmon i get a better view of each of them and can see a comprehensive list of the chains and can then resolve.

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