High CPU/disk usage after taking from sleep


Well-Known Member
It's a simple problem, but it makes it nearly impossible to take notes in class on my laptop.

Every time I open my laptop and it wakes from sleep mode, there are a few processes that will spend the first 3-5 minutes hogging the CPU and disk like crazy, making everything from Chrome to Word slow and unresponsive. Sometimes even keyboard input is delayed, it's so slow.

The main culprits are "System" (which is usually using 100% of the disk), "Windows Modules Installer Worker", and "Antimalware Service Executable".


Fantastic Member
Premium Supporter
We can help you better if you provide the Make/Model of your Laptop, and the EXACT version of Windows that this is occurring on.

Also, what Security or Anti-Virus software are you running (Norton, McAfee) etc. that could be responsible for the Antimalware Service Exectable??

I would suggest that you first backup all your Personal Data to external media before proceeding if you haven't done so.

Have you tried running SYSTEM RESTORE to rollback your Windows to a time prior to a time when this high CPU usage problem began occurring? If not, you should do it. Unless, it's done it since the day you opened up your laptop box broke the seals, and plugged it in? Was this the case or not?

More information is definitely needed here to make a cognizant assessment of your situation.

Best of luck, :andwhat:


Well-Known Member
Laptop is a Lenovo B50 running Windows 8.1 Pro with all the most recent updates.
Antivirus is Windows Defender, nothing special. Antimalware Service Executable appears to be a system process because the system will apparently crash if I end it.
This has been happening since I bought it, so a system restore would have no effect.


Fantastic Member
Premium Supporter
Thanks very much for promptly posting back your Specs and Windows version. Lenovo's have gotten really quirky I must say, since they got sold to China--they used to be an IBM subsidiary here in the US.

Not many folks buy Lenovo where I live, I'm in a rural area, so people here still associate Lenovo with IBM and a 25%-35% higher price tag, so they buy other brands; e.g.: Dell, HP, Acer, Asus, Toshiba.

Well here are a few things you can try to resolve your issue:

1.) Using MSCONFIG.EXE, (run from the Start Menu), you can go to the 2nd tab; "BOOT TAB", and on the bottom half of that screen, find the "BOOT OPTIONS" section. Under that, you'll see the "SAFE BOOT" radio button. Check this button, and then you'll see 4 smaller radio buttons for options underneath that; click the "NETWORK" radio button. This combination will let you reboot your laptop into SAFE MODE with NETWORKING, as most Win8.1 laptops will no longer do this using Control/Function keystroke combos. This will disable all SERVICES and STARTUP programs, including your ANTIMALWARE SERVICE EXECUTABLE. Retest with Windows Task Manager-->Perfomance Monitor to see if the CPU usage drops significantly below 100%. If it does, then it's possible to fix it. If it does not, you know your Culprit is either 1 or more faulty services, or a Startup program. Go to Step #2 to narrow down the exact cause.

2.) If Step #1 failed to reduce your CPU usage, you'll have to test your hardware for failures. Go to Step #6.

3.) If Step #1 REDUCED your CPU usage, you'll now have to narrow down which service or program is causing the high CPU usage. To do this, restart the MSCONFIG.EXE file, and as in Step #1, uncheck the "SAFE BOOT" and "NETWORK" radio button options. Then go to the 3rd tab called SERVICES. Find the "DISABLE ALL" checkbox, and click it. Then proceed to the 4th tab called STARTUP, and find the "DISABLE ALL" checkbox, and click it. Then click the "OK" button on the very bottom of the SYSTEM CONFIGURATION window; you'll also see the "CANCEL" button to the right of the "OK" button there. The MSCONFIG program will then ask to restart your computer; say "YES" to this and reboot your laptop. These actions will UNDO your SAFE MODE with NETWORKING boot, return you to Diagnostic Mode boot, and restart your laptop without any but the barest of services running for Windows and NO Startup programs or schedulers. If your CPU usage drops below 100% again, you are closing in on the problem.

4.) In Step #3, you've discovered that your problem service or startup program lies either in your SERVICES or your STARTUP programs. From here, restart MSCONFIG yet again, and re-enable ALL your STARTUP programs, using the "ENABLE ALL" button. MSCONFIG will ask you to restart your computer; do so and recheck your Task Manager Performance Monitor for CPU usage. There are 2 possibilities here, but to keep this from getting too difficult to follow, let's assume for a moment that the CPU usage does drop after disabling all of your Startup programs. This means that one or more of your STARTUP programs is causing the unusual CPU usage issue. What you'll need to do now, is tedious and time consuming, but it will get you to the problem eventually. You'll have to restart MSCONFIG again, go back to the STARTUP tab and RE-CHECK the programs ONE-AT-A-TIME, and reboot, and recheck the CPU usage again. You will have to continue doing this process recursively, until the CPU usage check shows 100% usage once more. When it does, you'll know immediately, the last Startup progam you re-enabled (re-checked) was the culprit causing the high CPU USAGE!!! I told you this wasn't going to be easy, but it's foolproof assuming you have no internal hardware failure in your laptop such as a RAM or Hard Drive failure. We'll get to that one later. When you do isolate the culprit Startup program, you will have to REMOVE or UNINSTALL that program from your laptop and it can never be used again!
This will permanently fix the problem. However, if you go through all the Startup programs and re-enabling each of them individually, and CPU usage never goes up. go to Step #5.

5.) If Step #4 didn't isolate the culprit program, that means it's a SERVICE that's corrupted or could even be launched by a virus that's causing your issue. Now, you'll have to go back into MSCONFIG again, and go to the SERVICES tab, and "ENABLE" each SERVICE that was stopped by manuall "STARTING" or "ENABLING" it again. After each SERVICE item is re-enabled, hit "OK" and let MSCONFIG restart your laptop. You'll have to keep repeating this over and over again, until you either get the CPU usage pegged back up to 100% again, or you go through re-enabling all the SERVICES again. When you find the culprit service, you'll have to lookup or google the name of the service to find out what program is associated with that service, and then permanently uninstall that program which uses that service. Be aware that many programs like video drivers (especially ATI Catalyst) use several services, so you will have to uninstall ALL of them. This could leave you without video on your laptop.:waah: This is a real problem as you could imagine, because now you can only use your laptop with an external monitor.:( You can also breakdown this process in services by using the checkbox, "HIDE ALL MICROSOFT SERVICES" to remove all Microsoft embedded services, so you only get the services associated with non-Microsoft or 3rd party programs. I would recommend you do this first and see if you can isolate the culprit service or servics first. Then if you don't, you'll have to go through all the Microsoft system services one at a time, to find which one it is. If it's not in the 3rd party services, and you find an actual Microsoft service causing the issue; most likely Windows is corrupted at the Registry level and you'll be required to do a complete Windows Reset or Windows Recovery to fix it. This requires completely wiping your hard drive of all information; hence my warning earlier about backing up all your data before trying these procedures! If you're found the bad service or services, and removed/uninstalled the offending program/service, your problem is now solved!!:ahaha: If it is not, proceed to Step #6.

6.) From Step #5, the issue is still not fixed, and that represents 2-3 days of nonstop troubleshooting usually, you have arrived at the conclusion that it's a faulty hardware problem and not a software problem. So, now you have to test your hardware; specifically, your RAM and your Hard Drive, and you have to do it in a very specific manner using very specific tools. Deviation from this will give you inconclusive results! o_O Let's start with the Hard Drive first; proceed to Step #7.

7.) You need to test your hard drive for failure and Windows for possible corruption. It's always best to test your hard drive first, as it's the #1 cause of failure in laptops 2 years old and older which yours is. Download the free SEATOOLS drive diagnostic from Seagate.com and create a boot disc. They have instructions on how to do it. You will need to burn a DVD disc using the free IMGburn program to run this test. You will of course need at least 1 blank DVD disc. You can google IMGburn to find it; it is available all over the Internet. Run BOTH short and long tests with SEATOOLS. If SEATOOLS returns any errors, or the program fails to run; your hard drive has failed and must be replaced. Go to Step #8.

8.) Test RAM memory. If you are running Windows8.1, your computer is 2-4 yrs. old and is very likely to have 1 or more hardware failures to aging/usage. Download free MEMTEST from link in my signature and test each RAM stick individually a minimum of 8 passes. If MEMTEST returns any errors, that RAM stick has failed and must be replaced.
Repeat MEMTEST on each stick until all sticks pass. Then reinsert all sticks into your computer and run MEMTEST again for the 8 passes. Any failures reported by MEMTEST must be corrected by replacing RAM with matched-pairs or all sticks with new until MEMTEST RETURNS NO ERRORS.
Once done, your RAM has passed move onto Step #9.

9.) Once you've tested your hardware (RAM, #7; HDD, #8), and replaced either faulty RAM sticks or Hard Drive or both or neither, but all tests pass ok; you've ruled out any further hardware failure. Proceed to Step #10.

10.) You'll need to perform a WINDOWS RESET or WINDOWS RECOVERY from legit factory media (Lenovo). If your hard drive passed SEATOOLS, you should be able to initiate a WINDOWS RECOVERY from the hidden recovery partition on your hard drive. This will wipe your hard drive of all information, Windows, programs, files (documents, photos, music, games, e-mail, etc.) and reintall the Windows8.1 version that came from the factory when you originally opened the notebook from it's factory box. If you got discs *which doesn't happen often anymore*, you can also run those. This puts back your Win8.1 and all programs and drivers that came with your notebook when you first got it from the store, sans your personal data. After the Reset or Recovery has completed, your notebook witll reboot. DO NOT INSTALL ANY OTHER PROGRAMS, NOT EVEN ANTI-VIRUS OR ANTI-SPYWARE SOFTWARE--NO WEB UPDATES; NO ADOBE; NO JAVA; NO MS OFFICE!!! Then retest your CPU usage once more. If it now works; you had some Windows corruption or a faulty hard drive or a faulty RAM stick(s). You can then restore or recopy all of your backed up data onto the newly reinstalled Win8.1 hdd.

Notice that Steps #3 through #5 are going to take a LOT of time. Like 30+ hours, maybe more depending on whether you get interrupted frequently or not, or just get tired or bored. So, you may wish to hire a professional Licensed and Certified Technician to do this for you. Expect to pay from $45-$180 US to get this type of problem fixed. up to 3 times that outside the US. :eek:

Resolving this type of problem is really the purvue of Expert licensed Computer Technicians who have many years of experience (15 years or more); so it you don't figure it out, or get frustrated and quit and just want to chuck the laptop onto the freeway, I understand.:noise: But, if you have some patience and a positive attitude in most cases you can fix it yourself.:up:

Post back your results and any other questions if you get stuck.

Best of luck to you, :thumbs_up:
<<<BIGBEARJEDI>>>:shades: :usa:

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