Strange problem - high cpu useage

Discussion in 'other security issues & news' started by TonyP2020, Jul 19, 2004.

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  1. TonyP2020

    TonyP2020 Registered Member

    Jul 19, 2004
    I have a funny problem that has been going on for months.
    Specs of pc.
    M848ALU Rev 2.1, Athlon Xp2600+ Barton, NVIDIA GeForce2 MX400 64 mb AGP, 2x PNY 256mb 400mhz DDR, Kobian 300w PSU, WD 40Gb, Win98se.

    Start win98se, minimum drivers as loaded by win98se, no other programs ( no anti-virus/firewall, internet connection, etc).

    Start system monitor (or System Mechanic 4 or Tclockex, both of which also have cpu load monitoring) and the cpu load just slowly, but surely, increases.
    Not in a smooth line, load going up and down but overall slowly increases to about 60/70%, sometimes higher, load.
    Occasionally the computer just shuts down very quickly. I don't know if it is a software shutdown or an overheating cpu. Rebooting the computer and checking the cpu temp shows normal (37-40 degC). Win98se starts again OK, usually without running scandisk and the problem starts over again.

    Ran 6 different virus checkers, including online ones plus spysweeper's, trojan and adaware software.

    I made a new start-up disk, made on a comp with no infection, write protected it, ran Fdisk and reformating the HDU and using a known good copy of win98se to reload the hard disk.
    I did not load any drivers not included in the windows package, e.g., graphics card, wireless network card, anti-virus, firewall, etc.

    Still doing it.

    Using software called Another Task Manager (from the high cpu usage (98%) is coming from 1 of 4 threads running under Kernel32.dll.

    Attempting to kill this thread freezes the computer, with the cpu running at full tilt .
    I cannot get any more information about this thread.

    More info on fault.
    As usual 'it' only starts a few seconds after windows has finished loading. Although 'it' seems to start a bit later if the comp is cold and quicker if warm. Something or nothing I dont know.
    When watching the problem using sytem monitor, the cpu load goes higher either by itself or when the mouse is moved.

    If I then do some work, ie start up IE and load NTL home page, the cpu load drops to say 20/30%. When the page has finished loading, the cpu load again climbs higher. You would think that system monitor is actually working backwards or upside down.

    If I move the mouse pointer slowly across the system monitor title bar minimise/maximise/exit buttons then the cpu useage dip's. It is as if 'it' is ready for me to do something so 'it' just backs off a bit.

    But if I move the mouse pointer quickly across the 3 buttons then the cpu useage decreases to about 30%, but with lots of spikes.

    After minimising this window to check system monitor the cpu useage dipped to below 10% and then rose to over 60%, then dipped again when I maximised this window to type some more.
    Using alt+tab shows a dip then it returns to over 60% cpu useage.

    Tried running Fdisk, after booting from a floppy disk, with the /mbr switch to rewrite the master Boot Record.
    It still does not return any message (good or bad), but I can hear the floppy disk being accessed and the hdu light briefly flashes so perhaps it just does rewrite the MBR but not return any message.

    After another Fdisk/Format I loaded WinME. Again no extra drivers. Still doing it.

    I tried the HDU, with win98se, in a different computer. After windows finished loading new drivers for the hardware, "it" again ran the cpu at high speed. Both cpu's are xp2600, but different motherboards and one cpu is running at 266fsb and one at 333fsb and have different brands of DDR memory.

    This is really quite spooky to watch. I might auction this HDU on ebay as having a ghost or gremlins in it. :eek:

    My knowledge is now at its limit. Can anyone help me, even with just an explanation of threads running under processes?
    Thank you in advance.
  2. Blackspear

    Blackspear Global Moderator

    Dec 2, 2002
    Gold Coast, Queensland, Australia
    Removed, as not relevant after rereading your post...

    Cheers :D
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