Here's the current performance of my computer: enter image description here Recently, I've found a problem with my computer during idle: "Windows Defender Firewall" consumes 15 % of CPU While "Internet Connection Sharing" consumes 10% of CPU

I've run sfc scannow but the result is still the same

I have also checked that the Ethernet's connection sharing is off

enter image description here

In another article: https://social.technet.microsoft.com/Forums/windows/en-US/a8d7ba9e-13aa-4410-9b3e-5c859e6ec93b/high-cpu-usage-windows-firewall?forum=w7itproperf

Someone said he has the same issue due to excessive of firewall rules being set as a bug of a 3rd party firewall (I'm now using Avast firewall to replace the windows default one). So I checked my computer to see if it's the same issue as him but seems it isn't the cause of the issue:

I've exported the firewall rule list in the default windows firewall to count the number of rules running: enter image description here enter image description here

Here's the avast firewall rules setting:

enter image description here

Is there anything that I've missed? Why is the CPU usage that high?

  • analyze the CPU usage with WPRUI/WPA.exe expand the stacks of the svchost.exe and based on the function names you should see what the service does. Sep 12, 2017 at 14:12
  • @magicandre1981 I found a workaround for me, I've tried using WPA to analyze, however, I found something abnormal: In the stack, I found a process "n/a?", I'm not sure whether it's a bug from microsoft or not. Sep 14, 2017 at 6:32
  • please share the ETL file (compress it as 7z to reduce the size) Sep 14, 2017 at 13:36

4 Answers 4


I had the same issue on Windows 10, Firewall + ICS service constantly taking up 10% of CPU time.

I don't have Windows Defender enabled so couldn't follow the top answer's instructions. Instead:

Click Start and type wf.msc

enter image description here

Click Restore Default Policy

enter image description here

I'm sure it has the same effect as the other answer

  • Any Idea why windows uses more cpu when the firewall is off?
    – tuskiomi
    Apr 4, 2018 at 20:43
  • Thank you for this! Was having these same issues the past weeks with no AV aside of Windows Defender. I had task manager open when I clicked "Restore Default Policy" and the CPU usage dropped immediately. Now my PC runs on a nice 20% CPU during normal use instead of constantly sitting at around 45%. I didn't really check the rules before clicking "Restore Default Policy", any idea on what usually/often adds these unnecessary rules?
    – s1h4d0w
    Apr 18, 2018 at 15:10
  • Usually Windows will prompt you to allow access for some application to access the internet. Games in particular often trigger it.
    – Ciaran
    Apr 18, 2018 at 22:01

I was having the same issue but I do use Windows Defender's firewall. Resetting the firewall defaults worked for me.

I found the fix at https://answers.microsoft.com/en-us/windows/forum/windows_10-other_settings/since-windows-10-fall-creators-update-1709/d03167cc-92e7-4d13-94ce-84fda7b0f94f

Reset Windows Defender Firewall:

Settings -> Update and Security -> Windows Defender -> Open Windows Defender Security Center -> Firewall and Network Protection -> Restore Firewall default settings > Click the button to restore the defaults


Use the Windows Firewall repair tool:



In Services Manager, change the Startup Type of the Internet Connection Sharing (ICS) service from "Automatic" to "Manual". In Task Manager, kill the ICS SVCHOST instance that hogs 10% CPU. This will disable ICS but it will stop the CPU waste.

In previous answers I tried to "provide details" (as per this website guidelines) but the moderators did not agree that those details were constructive, so they deleted them. If you're interested, write to me in private, I guess.


Uh...I found a workaround for this (But it does not solve the problem thoroughly) In run, type msconfig enter image description here

Then find "Windows defender firewall" and "Internet connection sharing" and uncheck the checkbox. Then the usage becomes normal.

I did this because I'm sure I do not use both service (i.e. firewall since I have avast and ICS since I don't share my connection with other users or computers)


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