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Can CPU usage be monitored in Event Viewer? I don't want to use a third-party software. Can I set a rule so that Event Viewer can show me if the CPU usage gets higher than a set value?

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up vote 7 down vote accepted

In Event Viewer? No, that only shows events. You can however use the Performance MMC snap-in. Run perfmon.msc then you can view the CPU usage as well as a bevy of other performance counters.

You can also configure it to log an event to the Application system log by adding and configuring an alert.

Figure 1: Adding a performance alert in XP (a little less direct, but similar in 7)

enter image description here

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Task manger as well... – soandos Feb 12 '12 at 5:57
Yes, but Task Manager does not let you set thresholds or log events. – Synetech Feb 12 '12 at 6:13

1) You can explore the possibilities of the command line eventcreate.exe in system32...

2) Follow the advice of Synetech

Here's a short How To from MSDN Blog: How To: Use Perfmon in Windows 7

The files for your Performances collector for the CPU will be save in C:\PerfLogs

But this is not a complete answer to your question since, as far as I know, the perfmon use built-in performances counters and not a user created counters such as a «CPU usage gets higher than a set value» (This must be verified!)

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