What is wuauserv? How to fix wuauserv high CPU usage in Windows 10

In this post, we will learn a bit about the wuauserv process in the Windows operating system and see how to fix wuauserv high CPU or Memory usage problems in Windows 10/8/7. The name of this service is Windows Update Service, and we will see how you can stop or restart the Windows Service easily.

What is wuauserv

The wuauserv process or Windows Update Service enables the detection, download, and installation of updates for Windows and other programs. If this service is disabled, users of this computer will not be able to use Windows Update or its automatic updating feature, and programs will not be able to use the Windows Update Agent (WUA) API.

The path to its executable is C:\WINDOWS\system32\svchost.exe -k netsvcs. It typically consumes the most CPU resources & memory in svchost.exe, which by itself is normal, but when at times it is known to consume resources abnormally. In such cases, here is what you can try.

wuauserv high CPU usage

1] Run System Maintenance Troubleshooter. To run the System Maintenance Troubleshooter. Open Run, type the following and hit Enter:

msdt.exe -id MaintenanceDiagnostic

Does it help?

2] Next, run the System Performance Troubleshooter. To do so, open an elevated Command Prompt, type the following and hit Enter to run the Performance Troubleshooter.

msdt.exe /id PerformanceDiagnostic

This troubleshooter helps the user adjust settings to improve operating system speed and performance.

3] Run Windows Update Troubleshooter. Windows 10 users can access all TRoubleshooters via the Troubleshooters Page in Settings.

4] Run services.msc to open the Windows Services Manager.

wuauserv high CPU usage

Double-click on Windows Update service to open its Properties box. Click on Start. Wait a minute and then click on Start. Click OK and exit. This will restart the Windows Update Service. Check if it solves the problem.

5] Clear the contents of the SoftwareDistribution folder and the Catroot2 folder.

6] Boot the system in Safe Mode with networking. If the system works fine in Safe Mode, then you may need to perform Clean Boot. You have to follow a different procedure to start Windows 10 in Safe Mode. Once there, select the option to start the system in ‘Safe mode with Networking’. So boot into Clean Boot State and then try and troubleshoot, identify and isolate the offending process manually. Once your work is done, set the system to start normally.

7] Ideally, these steps should fix the issue of high CPU usage. However, in case the issue remains unresolved, to identify the offending process, you can also use the Event Viewer, then use it to identify errors.

Hope our suggestions help you fix the issue.

Posts about processes using high resources:

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Anand Khanse is the Admin of TheWindowsClub.com, a 10-year Microsoft MVP Awardee in Windows (2006-16) & a Windows Insider MVP. Please read the entire post & the comments first, create a System Restore Point before making any changes to your system & be careful about any 3rd-party offers while installing freeware.