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I'm using Windows 7 Ultimate. I get a problem with two processes: explorer.exe and sometimes dwm.exe.

The two processes tend to have a CPU usage between 20-30%. It only occurs when I play games on my PC - the PC works perfectly otherwise.

The processes consume no CPU as such, only really consuming CPU time when I try to refresh my desktop. When I right click on the desktop it takes a noticeable number of seconds to refresh.

I have no virus problems.

I've tried the following things:

  • Killed explorer.exe and relaunched from Task Manager: problem still persists
  • Killed dwm.exe, it relaunched again: problem still persists
  • Logged off and logged back on: problem still persists
  • Restarted the machine: problem solved, but need an alternative

Can anyone kindly suggest some quick fixes to this problem?

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2 Answers 2

up vote 4 down vote accepted

The explorer problem sounds like a misbehaving shell extension.
Shell extensions are Windows Explorer addons that add additional functionality. CD burners, compression utilities, some backup systems, and other programs will add shell extensions to integrate with Windows Explorer.

However, a poorly-written shell extension can slow down your machine. Since they are explorer addons, they would show up as CPU usage in Explorer.exe.

Use this utility to disable every non-Microsoft extension that you don't actually use.


You can also run Process Explorer and look at the call stacks of the misbehaving processes to get a general idea of what they're doing.

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Yes, my problem is solved now.Thank You. –  Nitinzz Mar 8 '11 at 10:15
1  
@Nitinzz: What was it? –  SLaks Mar 8 '11 at 13:04
    
Well even after i play games, refresh doesn't become slow now. But recently It took some seconds for refresh after i play game and it continued until i restart my PC. –  Nitinzz Mar 10 '11 at 13:00
3  
If it was a shell extension, what was the name of it? Inquiring minds want to know. –  TuxRug Apr 29 '11 at 19:12
3  
@Nitinzz what shell extension was it? –  Flak DiNenno Aug 28 '13 at 20:57

The DWM process is the 'Desktop Window Manager' process.

I would say that as you notice the problem when gaming then first thing to check is that you have the latest graphics drivers?

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yes, i have updated all my drivers.Also I have windows update on in my PC. But still the problem is there. –  Nitinzz Mar 7 '11 at 14:51

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