In Windows Task Manager, under the Performance tab, Page File Usage History is shown in a continuous pane, while the CPU Usage History is split up into 8 narrow panes, which make it look like the graph is just "overlaid" with the pane separators.

Why is this? Why not show the graph in a continuous pane?

  • 2
    You can also change it back, with View => CPU History => One Graph, All CPUs. – Hello71 Jul 20 '10 at 15:16

Each for one processor core. Unless it is an Intel chip with Hyperthreading (HT), in which case there are two panes per core, one for each core and one for its HT. For example, a quad-core chip with HT will show eight panes rather than four.

  • Ah! So simple! I was sitting on remote desktop to our production server, but the thought that the server actually has 8 cores didn't occur to me - I'm so used to working on laptops that dual core is enough, and quad is cool :P – Tomas Aschan Jul 20 '10 at 13:30

You are presumably using a quad-core processor with hyperthreading, which makes it look like an 8-core processor in Task Manager. Task Manager by default shows each core as a separate graph. If you would prefer a single graph, select the View -> CPU History -> One Graph, All CPUs menu option.


Most desktop CPUs from the P4 era onwards will show at least 2 charts, whether the cores are physical (multi-core CPU like Core2 Duo), logical (hyper-threaded like in P4) or both (Core i7).

As coneslayer says, you most likely have a quad-core CPU with hyper-threading, like a Core i7.

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