Windows 10 100% disk usage in Task Manager [SOLVED]

Sometimes your computer could run very slow even though you have only very few programs running. When you check the Task Manager trying to find out which application or program is at fault, you see the status bar of your disk usage could be up to 100%. 

This is a rather annoying problem and your computer is running very slowly or even freeze while even though you are running out of programs to kill. 

Luckily, this is not a hard problem to solve. Follow the options provided here and see if the problem goes away. 

Option One: Disable Windows Search
Option Two: Disable Superfetch Service 
Option Three: Reset Virtual Memory

Option Four: Disable Antivirus Software and Windows Defender
Option Five: Change the settings in Google & Skype
Other Options

: It is suggested that you open the Task Manager window to see if the option can actually help you decrease the disk usage from 100% to less. To enter Task Manager, right click the task bar and choose Task Manager

Note that it may take some time since the drive is rather slow. 

Look for the Disk column in Process tab. The colored red tab and the number 100% indicate that you are having a problem with your drive. 

Option One: Disable Windows Search

1) Type cmd.exe in the search box. From the list of choice, right click Command Prompt and choose Run as administrator

Click Yes at the UAC window prompt. 

2) In the Command Prompt window, type in the following command: 

net.exe stop “Windows search”

Then hit Enter

If you would like to stop Windows search permanently, please do the following:

a) Press Windows key + R at the same time, and type in services.msc

b) Locate Windows Search option, double click it to enter its Properties window. 

c) Change the Startup type to Disabled. Then click OK to save the change. 

Check to see if the disk usage and the performance of your computer improve or not, if not, please move on. 

Option Two: Disable Superfetch Service

Superfetch service has been identified as a potential cause of disk performance issues in Windows 8 and later operating system. To stop this service, you can follow the instructions below. 

1) Type cmd.exe in the search box. From the list of choice, right click Command Prompt and choose Run as administrator

Click Yes at the UAC window prompt. 

2) Type in the following command: 

net.exe stop superfetch

and then hit Enter

Wait for a few minutes to see if changes can be seen on your computer’s performance. 

If you want, you can also run a disk check by typing the following command: 

chkdsk.exe /f /r

and hit Enter. Then type Y to confirm the disk check by the time you restart your computer. Please make sure you have closed all of your applications first. 

If disabling these two services still don’t help, please try the methods that follow. 

Option Three: Reset Virtual Memory

Virtual memory can be considered as the extension of computer’s physical memory. It is a combination of RAM and a portion of your hard drive. When the RAM is not enough, Windows will make use of the virtual memory for temporary file storage and swap them back when required. 

1) Follow the path Start > File Explorer. Right click This PC and choose Properties.

2) Click Advanced System Settings on the left panel. 

 3) Click the settings button under Advanced tab. 

4) Go to Advanced tab, and choose Change in Virtual memory category. 

5) Make sure the box before Automatically manage paging file size for all drives is off. 

6) Select your windows drive, that is where you store your Windows operating system(usually partition C), set the number accordingly. Then press Set and then OK to continue. 

Note: As a general rule, we don’t want the size of the paging file become too big, thus with the limited maximum size. The general maximum size of the paging file must be x1.5 the amount of RAM installed. For a PC running with 4 GB of RAM, the maximum size of the swap file will be 1024 x 4 x 1.5 Mb.

7) Please also remember to clear all files by doing the following procedure. Press Windows key and R at the same time, type in temp and hit Enter

8) Select all the files and delete them.

Option Four: Disable Antivirus Software and Windows Defender

1) If you have installed antivirus or anti-malware programs such as Norton, Kaspersky, AVG, or Malwarebytes, it is suggested that you turn them off or disable them temporary to see if the disk usage could be back to normal. If the antivirus or anti-malware software is at fault, it is suggested that you consult the manufacturers of the software to see if they can provide some help. 

Related post: 
How to temporarily turn off Norton Antivirus program?
How to stop AVG temporarily?
How to disable Avast temporarily? 

2) Microsoft has its own default anti-malware, Windows Defender. This program is automatically enabled even when you have an alternative antivirus application. In Windows 10, the Cloud-based protection is on automatically also, which is reported to occupy a majority of bandwidth usage and I/O. You might see the Service Host: Unistack Service Group category in Task Manager.

Luckily, you can disable Windows Defender service fast and easily.

3) Click Start button and choose Settings

4) In the search box, type in defender and choose Windows Defender settings from the list of choice. 

5) Turn off the Real-time protection and Cloud-based Protection.

You might see the notification popping out from the bottom right corner, you can ignore it. 

Option Five: Change the settings in Google Chrome & Skype

For some, this is a problem caused by the combination of Skype and Google Chrome browser. Similar issue with other programs could also cause 100% disk usage. Here is the solution provided for you to fix the problem with Google Chrome and Skype only. 

1) In Google Chrome, click the three-dot icon on the upper right corner and choose Settings from the list of choice. 

2) Scroll down to the bottom of the page and choose Show Advanced Settings…

Then go to Privacy category and un-tick the option Prefetch resources to load pages more quickly

3) Make sure that your Skype is officially off and it is not running in the task bar. 

Follow the path C:\Program Files (x86)\Skype\Phone\

4) Right click the option Skype.exe and choose Properties

5) Then go to Security tab. Choose Edit

6) Highlight ALL APPLICATION PACKAGES and tick the box in the Allow Write option. Click Apply and then OK to save the change.

Now check your disk usage in Task Manager to see the change. 

Other Options

1) It is always recommended that you keep your system device drivers updated so as to avoid any unwanted problem with your PC while keep it at its peak performance. 

To update your device drivers quickly and easily, you can have a try at Driver Easy, the updater that automatically detects, downloads and updates missing and outdated device drivers for your computer. 

If you want to update all your device drivers in just ONE click whilst enjoy tons of other features, by all means, have a try at the professional version of Driver Easy. It will not let you down. If you are not satisfied with it, just send a request within thirty days, and you are getting your money back. 

2) Note: A million thanks to our warm-hearted reader Javier for the following solution. 

This issue could also be caused by some Advanced Host Controller Interface PCI-Express (AHCI PCIe) models running with the inbox StorAHCI.sys driver due to a firmware bug. 

a) First, identify if you are running the inbox AHCI driver (StorAHCI.sys): 

Open Device Manager, then go to IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers category. Under this category, double click the AHCI controller

Then navigate to Driver tab, and click Driver Details. If you can see storahci.sys stored in a path of system32 folder, then you are running the inbox AHCI driver. 

b) Close the Driver Details window. Now go to Details tab. From the drop down menu, choose Device Instance Path. Right click the path and choose Copy

c) Type regedit in the search box of Start panel, then hit Enter to run Registry Editor. Then follow the path: 

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Enum\PCI\ <AHCI Controller>\<Random Number>\Device Parameters\Interrupt Management\MessageSignaledInterruptProperties

Double click the MSISupported key and change the value to 0

d) Restart your computer after the change. 

3) If your high disk usage is caused by WPR_initiated_DiagTrackAotLogger_WPR System, please refer to the post below for more information:

Fix High Disk Usage caused by WPR_initiated_DiagTrackAotLogger_WPR System 

4) If the high disk usage problem is caused by IAStoreDataSvc (32 bit), please refer to the post below: 

Solve Windows 10 High Disk Usage caused by IAStoreDataSvc (32 bit) 
in Technical Tips Tags: performance
  1. I’m kinda over the edge to smash my notebook into some wall… have tried everything, Everything but disk usage remains at 100%. I have to leave the notebook for half an hour whenever it freezes, till the System process releases the disk. And mostly no processes are using much of disk but still usage is 100%. Its a Sony Vaio with an i7 and 12G RAM.

    I changed security from windows defender to avast/tried disabling, ran disk checkup, disk fragmentation,disabled Windows Search, disabled superfetch service, virtual memory is high enough, changed the settings in google n skype, don’t even use skype and tried other options too like updated All the drivers that needed to be updated.

    If there are any more solutions, please share!

    1. Hi, Jim.

      There are some useful tips in comment section that have helped a lot of users. Would you please also try them and see if your problem could be resolved?

      Thanks in advance.

      Please keep us updated. Thanks again.

  2. One thing I did that seemed to make a huge difference is set the visual effects settings to best performance.

    In the file Explorer right click “this pc”
    Click “proporties”
    On the left click “advanced system settings”
    In the “advanced” tab click “settings” for the performance
    In the “visual effects” tab click the option “adjust for best performance”
    On the bottom click apply.

  3. As soon as I disabled Windows Defender my pc took a sigh of relief suddenly I went from 100% disk usage to like 10%…

  4. I’ve had 95-100% Disk usage for a while now. I happened to notice a Windows Compatibility Telemetry running on the task manager a few times and just once, after months of dealing w/this issue, I noticed it was on the top of the list for usage for a moment.

    I googled & found this website:

    Instantly I was back down to 2 to 5% disk usage…Running very intense games on high settings, multiple programs…everything. I can get it up to 7%, but no higher.

    FINALLY…It’s taken almost a year, but my computer is finally cooperating properly again.

  5. Hey I did option 2 & put the disk check to run …it’s been 2 hours since it started & it’s only been at 10% for almost all of that time. Is that normal ? How long should the disk check take ?

    1. Hi, the length of the time takes to run the disk check depends on the size of the driver and whether you have run the check before. For some, the disk check could take up to sic hours, for others, it could be one to two hours or just thirty minutes. It will take longer time if you are running Windows 7 operating system.

      If you suspect that the check is stuck somehow, please restart your computer, and then run the disk check one more time.

  6. Hi,
    My disk was 100% usage and the system blocked. I could see in the system event viewer some warnings with event id 129 about a device restart for storahci. It seems to be related to the windows disk driver. This link explains how to change the configuration for the AHCI driver and solve the problem:

    Now the problem seems to be solved for me.

  7. Mine was caused by a failing SATA cable on a secondary non-SSD drive. Pulled my hair out trying everything but when the symptoms went away after putting a replacement drive in, then reappeared on that new drive shortly afterwards, even with all the services disabled and registry entry changed, I finally thought to try a new cable. Totally solved it, reverted all settings and have been good for a few weeks now.

  8. I had this problem for weeks. By chance, I switched off AVG Software Protection and the disk usage immediately dropped to 0%. I switched it back on and in seconds it was back to 100%. Switched it off again and back to 0%. I’ve left it off. Looking for Windows 10 problems appears to have been a wild goose chase for me.

  9. Quite by accident I tried to move a dozen video files off my disk to backup. Everytime I did this my pc locked up on one remaining file. Disk at 100%, zero traffic. Then I realised I had file backup on and it was freezing everytime it tried to copy that one file. Once it was deleted everything was fine.

  10. I don’t get it–why do WE have to fuss with this or cast about the web for solutions? Why can’t those overpaid coders at Microsoft get off their techie-geek butts and stop the logjam from mucking things up in the first place?

  11. thank you for all solutions. It’s finally worked for me after i did deleted all Temp files. if anyone still experiencing 100% disk maybe you should try this one first.

  12. Okay so I have completed all of these steps and there is no change. I even tried some of the solutions in the comments such as disabling adobe flash player but that still didn’t work. I have heard about a problem to do with windows cumulative update [Cumulative Update for Windows 10 Version 1607 for x64-based Systems (KB3201845)] not installing properly. I don’t know if this has anything to do with the disk problem or not. When i go to settings/check for updates. It takes ages to find it and when it does it get’s stuck at 0%. I don’t know wether this could be a virus causing the disk issue or not. I disabled malwarebytes as said in the steps above so i haven’t done a check for any viruses yet. Do you think resetting the pc (removing all files and doing a re-install of windows) could be a solution to the disk problem and the windows updates? Thanks.

    1. Just did the scan using malwarebytes and threats were detected. The cumulative update seems to have finally installed so i’ll restart and see if that changes anything.

        1. The update installed fine. After the check and before the update my disk said 4-6% which is normal. After the update it was back at 100% again. From looking at my task manager out of what you can see, what is needed and what isn’t. This is usually much more background processes than i ever used to have. here are two images showing all of the current and background processes i have.

          1. Is the top one malicious? my friend doesn’t have it in his so it could be a fake system 32 file (a disguised virus) Is it safe to remove?


            This is a screenshot from my security task manager. The process at the top looks suspicious to me. Is it a fake system 32 file which is malicious? My friend checked his and he didn’t have it. I have a feeling this could be causing some of the high disk usage so should I remove it? Recently by the way my disk usage has gone back down to 0-4% on average and only occasionally jumps up to 99-100% when i open an app or when i go idle. Could you tell me if this is normal or not?

            1. Hi, Joseph.

              This .exe file is installed with Intel(R) Wireless Bluetooth(R) device driver. Some users report that this could be a sign of virus on your computer.

              Please use your trusted antivirus program to scan and see if you can detect any possible virus. If found any, remove them completely.

              Or you can reinstall this device driver from device manager manually. First download the intel bluetooth driver from the support website (or you can use Driver Easy to scan and download it for you), then go to device manager to uninstall this device driver. Restart your computer after this. If your PC automatically helps you detect for and download the bluetooth driver, than you are good, if not, you need to double click the downloaded file and run the installation.

              If you find this process too much, you can use Driver Easy to automatically detect and download this device driver for you.

              Please keep us updated if you find the suggestions helpful.

          3. I had my disk usage that mostly stayed between 80% to 100% and many times the pc would freeze, requiring hard-reboot. I implemented the settings yesterday. The disk usage still goes up after reboot but only for a few minutes, then comes down. So far, no freezes. I noticed in my task manager that the task which causes high disk usage is Service Host:Local Service (Network Restricted). This task periodically starts Superfetch service (the service appears as sub-task in the main task-list). During the time Superfetch is on, the disk usage becomes very high, before reverting to normal in a few minutes. Stopping Superfetch resolves this temporarily, until the next reboot, when it starts Superfetch again. I am going to observe for sometime. If I get any more freezes, I will disable Superfetch permanently by going to Services (run as Admin.. I think).

      1. Uninstalling the last windows update is the only thing that worked for me. now drive is down around 2% as usually and not 98% – 100%

    2. I had the same exact issue. I followed all instructions and nothing worked. (I even uninstalled Skype and Chrome, and disabled virtual memory entirely.)

      I tracked it down to the Windows Compatibility Telemetry process. Once I killed that, things went from 99% to like 12%. I then went and permanently disabled these two processes: “Connected User Experiences and Telemetry” and “dmwappushsvc” by right clicking on the start menu, choosing “computer management,” then expanding “services and applications” and disabling both processes.

  13. Hi!

    Nice work on doing this. Unfortunetly None of this helped me solve my problem. The disk usage still spikes 100% at random moments and stays there almost all the time. The thing that gets this spike is almost aways the System itself. I already did a defragmentation, but it only solved it temporarely (about a day), did all the steps in here before, but no good.

    I did update my drivers recently, same for the BIOS.

    It’s an Intell Core i3, 4GB RAM, 1TBHD. Win10.

  14. The Google prefetch was my problem. 100% to 9% Disc. You are a Superstar and I cannot thank you enough. I have been battling for hours. I love you!

  15. Thanks. I tried your solutions and it worked. However, when i restarted my pc, the disk usage is at 100% again, whilst all the above have been set. Kindly help 🙁

    1. Hi, if you have tried all the options above and the problem remains, please try to disable your flash display to see if it helps.

      Type “chrome://plugins” in the address bar in your Google Chrome browser, then hit Enter. You will be able to see an option named “Adobe Flash Player”, click the “Disable” button under it. Then check to see if the disk usage is still 100%.

      Please feel free to contact me if the problem persists after this.

        1. Please try the following procedure:

          1) Run Command Prompt as administrator.
          2) Type “wpr-cancel” (no quotation marks) and hit Enter.
          3) Then go to Task Manager. Go to Services bar, locate DiagTrack option (you can press key D to faster locate this option), right click it and choose Stop.

          Or you can try this permanent fix:

          1) Run Command Prompt as administrator.
          2) Type “sc stop DiagTrack” (no quotation marks) and hit Enter.
          3) Type “sc delete DiagTrack” (no quotation marks) and hit Enter.
          4) Open Task Scheduler (by typing task scheduler in start search bar), then go to Task Scheduler Library > Microsoft, delete the following items:

          Everything under “Application Experience”
          Everything under “Autochk”
          Everything under “Customer Experience Improvement Program”
          Under “Disk Diagnostic” delete only the “Microsoft-Windows-DiskDiagnosticDataCollector”

          Please let me know if it helps.

    2. I had the same problem, when I restarted Windows the problem came back but I tried disabling windows defender and the disk’s percentage of use turned into 11%. I hope it help you.

  16. The first time I did all of this it worked, I restarted my PC and the problem came back. I tried everything again, but it didn’t seem to work.I couldn’t do Skype step, since I don’t even have Skype. I’ve had this problem for a long time, but I remember that this didn’t happen when I first built this PC. My PC is not bad nor old. If someone has a solution please help me, I get stressed out no much, my PC got to the point of giving me a blue screen and after a restart telling me that i had a disk problem. PLEZ HELP…

    AMD FX 8350
    GeForce GTX 970 FTW EVGA
    Western Digital 1TB, “Black” I think
    12GB of RAM
    750 Power supply
    Windows 10

    1. Hi, David.

      In your case, it is suggested that you try to memorize the notification on the blue screen if it ever happened again, then go to our blue screen sections to see if you can find solutions accordingly:

      If you cannot find direct resolutions from these posts, please reply and inform me about the notification on your screen so I could be of further assistance.

    2. I am also having the same results. It might be something to do with the combo of AMD FX 8350 and the GTX 970 EVGA FTW, because I have both.

  17. I need help as well, as I am writing this comment, my PC disk usage is changing to 30% from 10%, and when I open windows explorer. I have tried all the tutorials available but non of them seem to work. I opened task manager and I see that “Google Chrome” and “System” has the highest MB/s. Any help on that will be HIGHLY thankful.


    1. Hi, Charlie.

      Have you updated your Windows drivers yet? Especially display drivers and network adapter drivers? If not, please do so.

      Also, if you can see an updated BIOS for your computer on your computer manufacturer, please download and update it too.

      You mentioned that Google Chrome is one of the applications that is hogging the disk usage, have you tried upgraded it as well? Or have you changed the settings as instructed?

      Please reply at your earliest convenience the update of your situation so we could provide further help.

    1. Did you try the scanning and repairing drive step? I’m curious to know how it went and if you did it roughly how long did it take

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