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I have observed that most of the time when I watch some video, my computer becomes unresponsive for some time.

I have read that Adobe Flash Player might be the cause - in my case that seems so because when I force close Flash through task manager, performance returns to normal.

But when I check RAM and CPU usage of Flash Player, it is not very high. Many times its cpu use is in the low single digits, and RAM is less than what is used by e.g. the Dropbox utility.

Then how is Flash Player affecting the performance?
I have also observed increase in fan speed while Flash Player is running.

I do not know much about the internal working of computers so any pointer will be useful.
I am not looking for solutions (although that would be great) but just want to know what is it doing which is making my laptop unresponsive.

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By default, Adobe Flash Player uses GPU acceleration (the use of your video card to speed up rendering of graphics). GPU acceleration involves fairly low-level access to the hardware, up to nearly full control of the video subsystem depending on the application. A malfunction in a GPU-accelerated program, including Flash Player, can cause the system to stop responding as the rest of the system may have limited control of the video subsystem while the application is using it for GPU acceleration.

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