Stan's Chrome-Plated Tech Tips

Friday, October 1, 2010


Tech Tip of the Day: Windows Vista High CPU Utilization Fix

I know what you’re thinking. Vista? Yes, Microsoft’s wounded beast that should've been put out of its misery long ago is still out there in full swing on plenty of systems, and it’s got, to put it mildly, issues. Of the systems we repair and service here at our West Hollywood shop, Windows Vista makes up a large portion of them, so I’m going to help you out with an issue we regularly see. So if you haven’t stuck with good old reliable XP or moved on to the rock-solid new kid on the block Windows 7, you’re going to have to put up with these Windows Vista issues.

What most people don’t realize is that Vista is a total re-architecting of the Windows operating system. It was a valiant effort, but it just wasn’t ready. Microsoft’s business people said it was. So it was released. They figured they could fix it later, and they did - with Windows 7. Still, a clean installation of Vista integrated with Service Pack 2 can actually run very well. But even still, you can find your system’s CPU Utilization spike through the roof for no apparent reason.

The CPU spike is caused by Windows trying to show a thumbnail image of a large video file. Now changing this setting is not as simple as it should be as you’ll have to make changes to your system’s registry. If you’re not familiar with editing the registry, I’m sure there are plenty of tutorials online available, but doing so incorrectly can cause some serious damage to your system. Please proceed with caution. If you’re comfortable editing the registry, there’s just one key you’ll have remove. It is:


Delete the InProcServer32 key, reboot and your CPU Utilization should drop back down to a more manageable level.

Or at least as manageable as Vista CPU Utilization may be. Did I mention how much I like Windows 7?

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