My parents have been complaining about the slowness of their computer for a long time now, and I never really payed any attention to it. They have a 2.6GHz Celeron processor, so I just assumed it was that.
But today I logged on their computer to install a new printer for them. Holy shit was it slow. I opened up Task Manager, and the CPU usage was at 100% constantly. So I went into msconfig, shut off literally everything and rebooted. Unfortunately the same thing happened. I rebooted, went into safe mode, and took a look... Same thing.
What the hell is using up 100% of the CPU, even in safe mode!? Does anyone have a clue? I'm currently trying (very slowly) to back everything up so I can wipe it and start again... But I have my doubts it's windows, because 100% in safe mode makes me worry that the computer's about to hit the bucket.
I did, and nothing was taking up much of anything. I went ahead and reinstalled windows and it's doing the same exact thing. I think the processor is just going out of control. Oh well, it's a POS. I pre-built a system through newegg, and it comes out to about $230. Ends up being 100x better than the one they were using, and what they can buy in the store.
My suspicion is that in the graph you will now see alot of red, which indicates the windows kernel is using the CPU time ... and that would explain why none of the actual running processes are responsible for the cpu usage.
The only thing that really should be showing as kernel time (apart from horrible virusy rootkity style things) are drivers ... so for me i fixed it by going into device manager, right clicking and disabling absolutely all non essential drivers, turned out to be my firewire port ... which i never used anyway, disabling it made the cpu usage drop instantly, and it has been perfect since.