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dwm.exe seems to be working a lot, when there is nothing to do, any ideas how to stop it ?


Deaf Cat

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Hello, I wondered if you may be able to help.

 

I have an old Pentium D that is on windows 8, it is headless, keyboardless, mouseless, and is only used for music.

To log on, start programs, etc. I use remote desktop.

 

This dwm.exe seems to run and use rather too much cpu for my liking, sometimes 100% of one of the cores. When nothing else on the network is on, and the pc is sat idle, this dwm is churning away doing who knows what, using all my cpu power and for what?

 

I have come to realise the less the pc is doing the better it sounds.

 

So this pain of a file (graphics based I believe) is on the list to go!

 

But from what I have read it is not the easiest of things to banish, or even just keep quiet.

 

Any Ideas?

Much appreciate any thoughts or experiences,

Many thanks

DC

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dwm.exe is the Desktop Window Manager

Obviously something is misbehaving if it's causing the DWM to run the CPU at 100% but it might be difficult to find out what.

 

The first thing I would do is close down everything that is running on the PC and see if it's still at 100%.

 

If it is, do you have a monitor you can hook up to the PC at all?

You may even find that it's your remote desktop client which is causing the CPU usage to be so high.

 

 

I'd also reboot the machine while a display is connected to it, and see if the problems persist if you remote into it with the display connected.

While it sounds like this is an older machine where this may not be a problem, it's the sort of thing that can happen when you boot the system without a display connected and the graphics card doesn't get initialized.

If this is the cause, a display emulator adapter should be a cheap solution.

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dwm.exe is the Desktop Window Manager

Obviously something is misbehaving if it's causing the DWM to run the CPU at 100% but it might be difficult to find out what.

 

The first thing I would do is close down everything that is running on the PC and see if it's still at 100%.

 

If it is, do you have a monitor you can hook up to the PC at all?

You may even find that it's your remote desktop client which is causing the CPU usage to be so high.

 

 

I'd also reboot the machine while a display is connected to it, and see if the problems persist if you remote into it with the display connected.

While it sounds like this is an older machine where this may not be a problem, it's the sort of thing that can happen when you boot the system without a display connected and the graphics card doesn't get initialized.

If this is the cause, a display emulator adapter should be a cheap solution.

 

My thinking, as well - possibly the graphics driver misbehaving without the display connected, potentially when whatever screensaver is selected kicks in?

 

You could try selecting "None" for the screensaver to rule out that possibility. Also try connecting a monitor (temporarily) to see if the same issue occurs.

John Walker - IT Executive

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This sounds like a faulty hardware driver or malware.

 

If it is, do you have a monitor you can hook up to the PC at all? ... I'd also reboot the machine while a display is connected to it.

 

My thinking, as well - possibly the graphics driver misbehaving without the display connected, potentially when whatever screensaver is selected kicks in? ... Also try connecting a monitor (temporarily) to see if the same issue occurs.

 

A headless windows 8 system doesn't use any graphics driver, other than it's builtin stub coined "in-box Microsoft Basic Display Driver", so the graphics subsystem shouldn't cause any problems. Connecting a display for troubleshooting changes this behaviour, so that's is not an option.

 

MS advises users to use sysprep for an automated unattended installation for these kind of (headless) setups. Of course, I don't know how you've installed your system, but having a proper unattended answer file from which you create a clean installation image not only leads to predictable and repeatable results, but can save you many hours of troubleshooting and uncertainty as well.

 

If you do want to troubleshoot, my general advice would be to first uninstall all third party device drivers (see a notorious example of how non-MS drivers might cause the symptom you described), uninstall all non-MS programs, and disable non-MS services which run on boot. When your system isn't infected by malware, this explains and solves the problem in most cases. If it doesn't, you might use the excellent Windows sysinternals information and tools.

 

Good luck,

Ronald

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Wonderful, thank you for the great comments that I had no clue about, I will try all of the above and see what occurs.

 

A bit more background, the machine was XP, first I formatted the drive with all zeros, installed XP then I upgraded to win8.

I had terrible trouble with graphics, the switch on screen was half blurred, the metro screen kept crashing, as soon a logged in, once I managed to get on desktop all seemed well..

After a re-install the problems vanished :-D however, I seem to still have driver issues? maybe? as when I last checked about a year ago, there was no driver for my on board graphics that supported windows8.

I shall check to see if that has changed.

 

It is a Lenovo, the only non original / added item is an ethernet card, everything else has the drivers from the Lenovo web site, even though some do not list windows 8 compatibility..

 

MS says "This is accomplished by using a stub display output if no display devices are found. "

Do you know of any way this can be checked, just to make sure my machine has given a positive result to No VGA connection?

 

Many thanks :-)

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  • 2 months later...
Do you know of any way this can be checked, just to make sure my machine has given a positive result to No VGA connection?

Many thanks :-)

 

(Sorry, mist your update until now)

 

Though it's sounds like checking if the lamp switches of when you close the door of your fridge, it actually is rather easy:

 

driverquery [/s <System> [/u [<Domain>\]<Username> [/p <Password>]]] [/fo {table | list | csv}] [/nh] [/v | /si]

 

For example, when the ip address of the host you want to check is 192.168.1.2 which has a computername of MYPC, with an administrator password of 'S3cr3t', open a command window (cmd.exe) and execute:

 

driverquery /s 192.168.1.2 /u MYPC\Administrator /p S3cr3t /fo table

 

(source: MS Technet - Driverquery)

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  • 2 weeks later...

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