Why would web browsers cause CPU usage to skyrocket?

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nerev4r

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I've been having this problem for a while, and now I'm starting to get fed up..

So basically, my CPU usage when using web browsers is insanely high. On average it will take up to 20-30% and it will spike as high as 90%! I do not know what would be causing this. It gets so high that my entire computer will begin to slow down, audio will become choppy or even distorted, pretty much everything slows down. (Keep in mind, this is a PC that can run games like BF4 and Crysis 3 with no problems!)

My CPU is an Intel core i7 3820 clocked at 3.6 GHz. Hyper threading is enabled. I've used multiple different web browsers (FireFox, Chrome, IE, Opera, Maxthon) and they all yield the same results. I'm not sure if this is an issue with flash player, or if my CPU is going bad or what. If my CPU was going bad though, I would think that my games would be very much impacted by my CPU usage spiking (when gaming my CPU runs normally and the game performs like a charm.) This problem has been plagueing me for months and after no fixes found, I've decided to come here in hopes that somebody can try to shed some light on the subject. I've done malware scans, virus scans, cache clearing, registry repairs, updating drivers and software, pretty much everything I can think of.

Has anyone ever heard of this issue before? If so, is there a way to fix it or do I just have to live with it?
 

James Mason

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hmm, so it just uses up 20-30% even when you're idling on a webpage?

Cause it shouldn't I've got a couple of firefox browsers open and my i5-4670k is only at about 3-7%.

Can you list your full system specs and your OS?
Also try the first thing listed here: http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/fix-high-cpu-usage-windows/

You may have something wrong with your windows, is doing a full reformat and reinstall of windows an option for you?
 

nerev4r

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The amount of CPU usage it takes generally depends on the site and how "intense" it is, so most of the time yes its around 20-30. Some days its more manageable than others. I feel like it happens more often if I use something like Spotify or iTunes, however this may just be because of the audio distortion that I'm hearing due to listening to music which makes it appear that its more frequent.

As for doing a full reformat, I don't believe so. I got a couple of DVDs with Windows recovery discs that came with my comp but they're buried somewhere, plus I'm not sure if those would reinstall the entire OS due to it being a manufacturer disc and not an actual copy of the OS (it's 1 AM here, apologies if I appear confused because I probably am lol.)

I was thinking about upgrading my OS anyway, was going to wait for W10 but I'm not too sure if going right into 10 at its launch would be the best of ideas, so I'm considering either going with W8.1 or just sticking with 7 until 10 proves to be decent.

I tried stopping the wmiprvse.exe process as the link you provided instructed (as its something that I've seen pop up a few times on Resource Monitor as well) however my CPU usage is still going up to 60%.

Computer specs:

Windows 7 Home Premium (x64) Service Pack 1
3.60 gigahertz Intel Core i7-3820 (64-bit ready, multi-core (4 total), hyper-threaded (8 total))
Board: Alienware 07JNH0 A02 (Yeah, made the mistake of buying an Alienware lol. Don't think this is the cause of my problem though.. maybe. :lol:)
2985.92 Gigabytes Usable Hard Drive Capacity
1183.29 Gigabytes Hard Drive Free Space
NVIDIA GeForce GTX 660 Ti (EVGA SuperClocked edition)
8146 Megabytes Usable Installed Memory



 

nerev4r

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Two days later, still haven't found a solution yet. This time though, I've got some pictures of what Resource Monitor shows for FireFox. During this test I had a YouTube video playing and 2 other tabs browsing various web sites.





I definitely do not think it is normal for web browsers to use that much CPU.. (keep in mind, this happens with all browsers, not just FireFox.) It gets even worse than what the pictures show.

Does a Windows reinstallation sound like the best solution for my problem? If so, I'll unfortunately probably have to wait a bit before I can actually do it.
 

nerev4r

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I do not believe I am. Where would I go to modify this setting? I would assume its the Nvidia Control Panel.
 

nerev4r

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I found it, but it was already enabled. I tried disabling it and it helped slightly, but only slightly. Not really enough to make a noticeable difference (it went down by around 5-10%, but when the CPU is still spiking into the 70s it doesn't seem like a big improvement.)

Not sure if I mentioned this in my original post, but I also tried disabling core parking and hyper threading, neither of them really changed much. Also noticed RAM usage seems to be fairly higher than usual, FireFox being the main culprit and anti-virus being second. Pic:



Don't really know if it's related, but I guess its worth a mention. RAM usage generally isn't getting much higher than that so I assume that its normal.
 

mdocod

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Your CPU usage seems maybe a bit higher than one might anticipate, but here are somethings to consider:

1. The web comes to you compressed and uncompiled. Everything that happens in your web browser is by nature compute intensive and badly optimized for your specific hardware. This is the nature of interpreted software languages.

2. Every tab you have open at any given time, can have continuous compute requirements for things like animation, or automatic interval reloading/refreshing. These add up when you have lots of tabs open.

3. Some websites are just really messy with stuff... Some web forums will have like 50 animated gif emote icons all dancing around there just tearing into a CPU core like you'd never imagine. (man those things are badly optimized!!!!)

4. Tin foil hat theory: kickbacks from hardware developers to remove hardware optimized code for previous generation CPU's in software. -possible-
 

nerev4r

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1. Most netbooks probably have an easier time browsing the web than my $1700 gaming rig does, so I'm not entirely sure how its the fault of my hardware.

2. This happens even with one tab open. I can have one tab or 50, it doesn't change performance.

3. The most intense site I'd say I visit is Tumblr. The site itself doesn't even have to be intense, it can happen on any website.

This entire situation is very weird. Lately I've even noticed my MacBook doing this as well so perhaps you are onto something with the optimization. (Oddly enough, it also uses an i7.)
 
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