troubleshooting Question

Problem with Microsoft Windows Update software (100% processor consumed by svchost) (ntdll.dll!RtlAllocateHeap+0x18c)

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HKComputerFlag for United States of America asked on
Windows XP
6 Comments1 Solution766 ViewsLast Modified:
Dell Dimension L800r with fresh Windows XP SP2 Upgrade install.

After installing Windows, I installed a Linksys wireless network card,
connected to the network and then attempted to download the Windows Updates
using IE6 on Windows' Updates site.  Here I was asked to install the latest
ActiveX control.  After installing it, my system became unstable and I had to
reboot.  Now within about two minutes after rebooting, my processor is
consumed 75% to 95% by svchost.exe.  I realize this sounds like a virus, but
this computer is behind an NAT modem and an NAT router and there is little
chance of a virus.

If I visit the windows update website, (whether Automatic Updates is enabled
or not) the green bar just loops forever.  I even tried disabeling the
Automatic Update service and then went back to the update site, but the same
thing occurs.

I did a Windows XP repair and then visited the update site.  This time I was
allowed to reinstall the ActiveX control and then my processor consumation
problem started all over again.

Here is some information I wrote to another user (who's having a similar
problem) on how I have been troubleshooting this issue:

In order to get back my processor, I visited the management console and
disabled the Automatic  Updates service.  My Computer > Right Click > Manage
> Services and Applications > Services > Right Clicked on Automatic Updates >

Properties > Select "Startup Type" Disabled > Then clicked on "Stop" to stop
the service from running.

Next, I downloaded Process Explorer from SysInternals.  I started Process
Explorer, restarted the automatic update service and then I visited Windows
Update website again.  At this point I noticed that my processor is consumed
by svchost again, 70% to 95%.  Next, in Process Explorer, I double clicked
svchost to see which thread is consuming my processor.  It is one called
ntdll.dll!RtlAllocateHeap+0x18c.  Here is where the problem lies, but I
haven't been able to find anyone that can help me with it yet.  I can kill
that thread, but I'm still unable to download Windows Updates.  The green bar
just goes forever.

Another thing I did in troubleshooting this was I booted into safe mode and
deleted the new windows update files that got downloaded when I installed
that ActiveX control.  (I assume that's what I'm deleting here.)  This got me
back to original, or nearly so.  I did a file search for wu*.dll and deleted
all results in Windows\System32.  I also deleted wuauclt.exe.  Now I was able
to restart the Automatic Update service without the negative processor
problems.  I was also able to visit the Windows update website and download
the same buggy files all over again.

Does anyone have any suggestions on how to make this machine functional with
Microsoft's Update software?

I also posted this on the usenet group for Windows Update.  I see lots of others are having the same issue.

And just so this comes up correctly in the search engines: ntdll.dll RtlAllocateHeap +0x18c
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