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Besides seeing constantly high CPU usage and growing memory usage in Task Manager, and without relying on a determination based on actual interaction with the program (e.g., sluggish interface), is there another way to determine if a process is malfunctioning (and/or out of control) with Process Explorer?

For example, I'm looking at the Threads box of a particular process in Process Explorer. I see about 20-30 "stagnant" threads of MSVCR100.dll!endthreadex. Is there a way to roughly estimate if a process is malfunctioning by looking at the Threads and Call Stacks?

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Is there a way to roughly estimate if a process is malfunctioning by looking at the Threads and Call Stacks?

It really depends on the process - the more familiar you are with the program and its "normal" resource allocations, the more easily you'll be able to identify when it is malfunctioning. I say it depends on the process because what is "normal" for one application might be horribly wrong for another.

In your example, the '20-30 stagnant threads' might be indicative of a problem, or not - it depends on whether this is intentional or not.

Something that should also come into play is whether the application's performance / resource usage is up to your standards as a user. If you're looking at the process information and see these stagnant threads often, and it's impacting you as a user, you may decide to remove / replace the app with a better performing one.

Usually, we tend to rely on the more memory usage and cpu time as indications something is wrong, as these resources more directly impact performance of other applications.

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Thanks. The main reason I ask about it is because sometimes I wonder (worry) if a program is actually "malfunctioning", but it's not apparent to me because my machine's resources can handle it. Now one might say, "Well, in that case, that's not really a problem." It stems from a slight worry of a program pageing things to disk. I have a bit of OCD where I wonder if my SSD is getting "shredded". (I'm aware that an SSD getting written to "death" is mostly a non-issue, and wouldn't happen until years after the SSD has served its purpose) – Coldblackice Dec 18 '12 at 10:25
So anyway, I guess it's a long way of saying that it's mostly a matter of wanting to solve problems and make sure things are functioning correctly, as well as a pinch of raging OCD :) – Coldblackice Dec 18 '12 at 10:26

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