Windows "system" process running at 100% disk usage

Windows 10

Asked by: nicocalafiore

I started up my computer today and all programs are running super slow. I go on task manager nd the process "System" is using 70-99% of my disk. I cant end it because a message pops up saying windows will become unusable or shut down? My anti-virus or other programs are using very little disk usage. What can I do to resolve it?

Answered by: Harkanwar Singh

Hi Nico,

Thank you for posting your query in Microsoft Community.

From your issue description I understand that the system process is showing 100% Disk usage. This issue might arise if the some process is automatically installing updates in the background resulting in continuous bandwidth and 100% Disk usage.

Method 1:

To diagnose whether this issue occurs in “Safe Mode”, let’s reboot the computer in safe mode and check if the issue appears there as well.

Safe mode is a diagnostic mode for Windows that starts your computer in a limited state. Only the basic files and drivers necessary to run Windows are started. This helps us in identifying whether the issue is due to some third party programs conflict. The word Safe mode appear in the concern of your monitor to identify which windows mode you are using.

Follow the steps given below and check if that helps.

  1. Type settings in search and click on Settings.

  2. Click Update and recovery, and then tap or click Recovery.

  3. Under Advanced startup, tap or click Restart now.

  4. Once your PC restarts, on the Choose an option screen, tap or click Troubleshoot.

  5. If you don't see the Startup Settings option, tap or click advanced options.

  6. Tap or click Startup Settings.

  7. Tap or click Restart.

  8. On the Startup Settings screen, choose the Safe Mode.

  9. Sign in to your PC with a user account that has administrator rights.

If the issue does not exist, try to clean boot the system.

Placing your system in Clean Boot state helps in identifying if any third party applications or startup items are causing the issue. You need to follow the steps from the article mentioned below to perform a Clean Boot.
How to perform a clean boot in Windows

[Steps for Windows 8.1 hold for Windows 10 systems]

Note: Refer "How to reset the computer to start normally after clean boot troubleshooting" to reset the computer to start as normal after troubleshooting.

If the issue still persists, try the next method. 

Method 2: Run a Virus Scan

I would recommend you to run a complete virus scan using the Microsoft Safety Scanner. It will scan the computer for viruses and malicious programs. To download it and know more about it, click on the link below.


Disclaimer: Any data files that are infected may only be cleaned by deleting the file entirely, which means there is a potential for data loss.

Hope this information was helpful.


Files, folders, & storage 23/09/2015 0 Comment 177 views

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