Question Windows 10 - 14 GB RAM usage when idle - is this normal?

Jan 24, 2020
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I have noticed slight stuttering issues with my pc. Occasional "micro" freezes with the mouse etc. Also programs take a long time to open eg VLC player is easily 10 seconds to open. Which to me seems odd considering the specs. (see below)

I noticed that in task manager even after I close any browsers, skype, dropbox, antivirus etc it still uses nearly 15GB of RAM. Is this a lot and could this cause the mouse stuttering and slow program opening issues?

Is ~14GB average for windows 10? Could I solve this by adding more memory? (Im not sure what adding more memory will do to the overclock but thats another rabbit hole for later)

PC specs:
CPU: Intel i7-9700K @ 5Ghz
RAM: 16 GB @ 1500Mhz
Motherboard: Asus ROG STRIX Z390-F GAMING (according to CPU-Z)
System Disk: Samsung 970 Evo Plus NVMe M.2 250GB
GFX: Asus Geforce GT1030 2GB running 2x monitors
 
Last edited:

ern88

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Jun 8, 2009
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I have noticed slight stuttering issues with my pc. Occasional "micro" freezes with the mouse etc. Also programs take a long time to open eg VLC player is easily 10 seconds to open. Which to me seems odd considering the specs. (see below)

I noticed that in task manager even after I close any browsers, skype, dropbox, antivirus etc it still uses nearly 15GB of RAM. Is this a lot and could this cause the mouse stuttering and slow program opening issues?

Is ~14GB average for windows 10? Could I solve this by adding more memory? (Im not sure what adding more memory will do to the overclock but thats another rabbit hole for later)

PC specs:
CPU: Intel i7-9700K @ 5Ghz
RAM: 16 GB @ 1500Mhz
Motherboard: Asus ROG STRIX Z390-F GAMING (according to CPU-Z)
System Disk: Samsung 970 Evo Plus NVMe M.2 250GB
GFX: Asus Geforce GT1030 2GB running 2x monitors
System using 14 gigs of ram is not normal. Make sure you have the latest BIOS, Make sure you have all your drivers, MoBo chipset and such up to date.
 

Colif

Win 10 Master
Moderator
sounds like a driver leak to me. Motherboard website - https://www.asus.com/au/Motherboards/ROG-STRIX-Z390-F-GAMING/HelpDesk_Download/

does it release the memory if you restart PC? if its a leak, it slowly grows over time.

Open task manager/performance tab
click on Open resource monitor at bottom of page
click on memory tab
sort them by either private bytes or working set. Its likely to be private bytes as that is actual ram usage. See which have highest usage. Alas, drivers don't show here

you can use Process explorer, its just an op version of task manager -
Download Process explorer and run it as admin (it comes from Microsoft so its safe)

the default view is tree structure meaning like your task manager screen, it will show what processes are under each service, but unlike task manager, it shows the ram usage of each part so you can see what is eating your ram

Private bytes = actual ram usage
Working set = Ram + page file usage


This page shows what all the colours and headings mean, link at bottom of it shows how to use it to find problems. You can right click headers and run an av scan from within the program.

An application is a program which you interact with on the desktop. A process is an instance of a executable (.exe program file) running.

A service is a process which runs in the background and does not interact with the desktop. In Windows, services almost always run as an instance of the svchost.exe process, the windows service host process; however there are sometimes exceptions to this.

Sometimes, processes may run in the background without interacting with the desktop, but without being installed as a service. Antivirus programs usually employ a service so they can continue running even when the user is not logged in.

Processes usually exit when an application is closed, however this is not always the case. Some programs, particularly download and backup programs, may continue to run in the background without displaying any windows. Antivirus is also an example of this - in addition to using a service, many antivirus applications run a process silently in the background which only displays an application to the user when action is required

you may need to use poolmon but I am yet to find adequate instructions for it.
 
Jan 24, 2020
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sounds like a driver leak to me. Motherboard website - https://www.asus.com/au/Motherboards/ROG-STRIX-Z390-F-GAMING/HelpDesk_Download/

does it release the memory if you restart PC? if its a leak, it slowly grows over time.

Open task manager/performance tab
click on Open resource monitor at bottom of page
click on memory tab
sort them by either private bytes or working set. Its likely to be private bytes as that is actual ram usage. See which have highest usage. Alas, drivers don't show here

you can use Process explorer, its just an op version of task manager -
Download Process explorer and run it as admin (it comes from Microsoft so its safe)

the default view is tree structure meaning like your task manager screen, it will show what processes are under each service, but unlike task manager, it shows the ram usage of each part so you can see what is eating your ram

Private bytes = actual ram usage
Working set = Ram + page file usage


This page shows what all the colours and headings mean, link at bottom of it shows how to use it to find problems. You can right click headers and run an av scan from within the program.

An application is a program which you interact with on the desktop. A process is an instance of a executable (.exe program file) running.

A service is a process which runs in the background and does not interact with the desktop. In Windows, services almost always run as an instance of the svchost.exe process, the windows service host process; however there are sometimes exceptions to this.

Sometimes, processes may run in the background without interacting with the desktop, but without being installed as a service. Antivirus programs usually employ a service so they can continue running even when the user is not logged in.

Processes usually exit when an application is closed, however this is not always the case. Some programs, particularly download and backup programs, may continue to run in the background without displaying any windows. Antivirus is also an example of this - in addition to using a service, many antivirus applications run a process silently in the background which only displays an application to the user when action is required

you may need to use poolmon but I am yet to find adequate instructions for it.
I have updated motherboard drivers (Chipset, LAN, SATA & MEUpdater, Audio driver is disabled in device manager as I dont use it). I have also updated the GFX card drivers. No difference in memory usage.

Running the old process explorer shows about 200 processes but none with very high usage.
I saved the list and imported it into excel to total up the private bytes and it only comes to around 2.1GB

The memory usage for a few seconds after logon is showing around 2GB but then after about 5 seconds it jumps straight up to about 15GB



and what is using the memory?
Dont know sadly. The total memory usage for everything in processexplorer added up is only ~2.1 GB


EDIT:
I also tried disabling all startup items but that didnt help
If I use the diagnostic startup option in msconfig it boots and is only using ~2GB so I suppose its something under services but how can I find out which one it is?
 
Last edited:
Jan 24, 2020
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To further update this:

I started closing background processes one by one in task manager waiting for the memory usage to drop

When I closed the one labeled Virtual Machine Worker Process which task manager says was using 5MB of RAM. Suddenly I went from 15GB RAM usage down to 2GB.

So I think I found the culprit but I have no idea what it is or why its running!

What is strange now is if I reboot it doesnt seem to start anymore and my windows RAM usage is back to around 2GB. I didnt uninstall anything or disable any related services so not sure why its not starting anymore.
 

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