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When Computer is Idle? What should be a Normal CPU Usage %


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#1 sjf99

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Posted 28 November 2016 - 07:14 AM

I have a Windows 10 Pro OS on a new computer about 3 months old.  When I have all active processes stopped, CPU shows still idling at 4% - 6%.  Is this normal?  From the research I have done it appears to be.

 

However, there is a school of thought that really the CPU should be at a resting state of 0% occasionally clicking up to 3% for services.  This is what my old CPU performed like under a Windows 7 Pro OS.

 

Would like some opinions on whether it is worth trying to dissect services/background processes to potentially stop to reduce idle % (that obviously can be tricky).

 

Thanks.

 

Scott



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#2 TsVk!

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Posted 28 November 2016 - 07:57 AM

It depends on what CPU you have, OS version and what startup services you have too. 4-6% is fine for a Win system that has anti-virus, software updaters and the other assorted stuff that happens.

 

Remember also that Win 10 doesn't sit idle. It starts calling all sorts of places and running additional background services, that never existed before, the second it starts up.



#3 sjf99

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 07:19 AM

Thanks for the reply, appreciate it.



#4 TsVk!

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Posted 30 November 2016 - 02:10 PM

You're welcome :)



#5 100055

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Posted 01 December 2016 - 08:19 AM

For typical idle Windows PCs, 0%~10% is "normal", depending on background processes and CPU power. Anything constantly above 10%, you might want to check your Task Manager.


Edited by 100055, 01 December 2016 - 08:19 AM.


#6 sjf99

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Posted 01 December 2016 - 10:41 AM

Thank you



#7 clayto

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Posted 01 December 2016 - 11:43 AM

I have never had CPU as low as 5% in any circumstance. I have CPU usually around 40%, after cleaning RAM with a couple of apps I use frequently. 100% is fairly common, especially at start, but only briefly. My understanding is that 'high' figures do not matter as long as it is a brief passing figure which soon falls. Is this correct?

 

What has concerned me is temperature. Recently on two occasions I have had popups saying temperature is too high and advising shut down. What is the relationship between CPU usage and temperature?

 

Windows 10 (Anniversary) 2-in-1 tablet PC



#8 toofarnorth

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Posted 01 December 2016 - 11:50 AM

the short explanation is: the harder the processor has to work the warmer it gets

its like an engine in a car. if you have a small engine and want to drive fast up a steep hill you will have to strain the engine hard
if you have a big engine you can just cruise up the same hill

hth!

 

tfn



#9 britechguy

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Posted 01 December 2016 - 02:28 PM

What is generating those pop-ups?  I have found that a lot of temperature monitoring programs are grossly inaccurate (and far too conservative) when it comes to processor temperatures.  I always look at http://www.cpu-world.com for the processor in question first to see what is listed as the maximum operating temperature and, very often, double check this against the processor manufacturer's own website.

 

For example, the AMD-10 has a maximum operating temperature of 90° C, though you probably wouldn't want it there on a constant basis.  I've seen some of the monitoring utilities go 20° below that, which is utterly ridiculous as a warning threshold.  The databases used by a number of these utilities (and there are scads of them) are clearly not always kept up to date or may have had inaccurate information entered into them to begin with.  You can generally tweak the values in the software to something that makes sense once you have the accurate maximum operating temperature in hand.

 

See this thread, entitled, Are My Temperature Settings Wrong?, in the Linux & Unix forum, because the topic and discussion is in no way Linux & Unix specific, but applies to how to find out what the temperature settings should be for processors in general.


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     . . . the presumption of innocence, while essential in the legal realm, does not mean the elimination of common sense outside it.  The willing suspension of disbelief has its limits, or should.

    ~ Ruth Marcus,  November 10, 2017, in Washington Post article, Bannon is right: It’s no coincidence The Post broke the Moore story


 

 

 

              

 


#10 clayto

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Posted 03 December 2016 - 05:11 AM

Thanks for the info and link. I found my processor on the sie, though I do not understand much of the detail it says operating temperature is 0 to 90 degrees C. It is GenuineIntel Intel® Atom™ x5-Z8300 CPU @ 1.44GHz.

 

I do not know what app generates the popup, it flashes on / off too quickly and anyway may not show its origin. It has only happened twice, and recently.

 

Every so often I have a look at what is happening using WhySoSlow which gives current Min,Max Average values for various processes, with a green or red tick or !. Its report has generally said temperature is OK, the main poor result is for Kernal Responsiveness. It also reports that throttling occurs at times.
 



#11 britechguy

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Posted 03 December 2016 - 11:26 AM

clayto,

 

          Well, if you read that other thread and the bit at cpuworld the first thing I'd recommend is making sure that your intake and output vents on your machine are assiduously clean.  If you're adventurous, and you happen to have a design where it would be easy to pop off the outer shell on the base of the laptop to have a look at the fan and heatsink I'd also do that and clean the fan and heatsink, too.

 

          Throttling generally only occurs in overheat conditions.

 

          I suspect dirt, coupled with heavy duty demand on the processor for something you're trying to do at the moment, are combining to create the high temperature condition.  The Atom is not a particularly muscular processor so it will be forced to use a lot more of its power to do tasks that are, for other "big boy" processors, a walk in the park.  When I see Atom I think "netbook" and those are really designed for web browsing and e-mailing as the target tasks.


Brian  AKA  Bri the Tech Guy (website in my user profile) - Windows 10 Home, 64-Bit, Version 1803, Build 17134 

     . . . the presumption of innocence, while essential in the legal realm, does not mean the elimination of common sense outside it.  The willing suspension of disbelief has its limits, or should.

    ~ Ruth Marcus,  November 10, 2017, in Washington Post article, Bannon is right: It’s no coincidence The Post broke the Moore story


 

 

 

              

 





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