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I recently installed Windows 7 on my MacBook Pro and everything runs fine, however at all times there is a svchost.exe process that stays at 50% CPU usage. I have installed all updates and tried clearing logs. I don't feel like that is normal because I've used Windows before and when doing nothing the CPU has been idle.

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I had this problem, too, last week. I realized that this is a pretty common problem with Windows Updates.

This HowTo from wintips.org helped me. More precisely, solution 4 step 1: delete SoftwareDistribution folder.

Microsoft seems to have a fix for this problem in this KB article, too.

Ok, after some months of trying different howtos, I managed to solve the problem permanently with the help of this website (it's in German, in case someone is interested). I am sharing this, because nothing else has helped me, not even highly-rated howtos on this site.

Follow the steps below and pay attention to choose the proper KB with 32/64 bits, as you need it, and the correct language for your installation. Because of this combinatory explosion, I don't offer direct links here.

  1. Disable automatic Windows update.
  2. Download and install KB3078601.
  3. Download and install KB3205394.
  4. Download and install KB3020369 (not sure, if you can skip this one).
  5. Download and install KB3172605.
  6. Enable automatic Windows update.
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  • That solved the issue, however I don't know if it would be a permanent solution, because sometimes the same process appears with high CPU usage. I'll write back in a few days to see if the problem has gone away. – Krasimir Sep 11 '16 at 11:46
  • Before I solved it, I killed the svchost.exe process exactly two times for each time I started Windows. It stopped to appear after I deleted this folder. As I said, I don't know, either, if this is a permanent solution, since it's been just a few days. Maybe when Windows finishes to download the updates that were in this directory, the problem appears again. But in the HowTo above there are more tips how to repair the problem and Microsoft knows the problem, too (I'll add the link above). – Martin Sugioarto Sep 11 '16 at 13:49
  • Do you have any rationale? As in, what was causing the CPU usage and how these specific updates address it? – Violet Giraffe Mar 24 '17 at 20:36
  • As far as I understood, it is a bug in the memory management in the windows update service. It seems that it cannot be fixed automatically for fresh Windows 7 installations and you get stuck at this point. The KB patches help you to fix just enough, so the Windows update process can continue regularly. I also read that this affects everyone who installed a fresh copy of Windows 7. People who managed to update Windows during its lifetime, don't encounter this problem. – Martin Sugioarto Mar 24 '17 at 20:44

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