Why is my Window Vista Basic - Physical Memory always running 80%

Jaime Campos
Jaime Campos used Ask the Experts™
Hello -

I have an HP Pavilion Entertainment PC dv6000 and I have done a clean install (system restore) cause I notice that my Physical Memory is always running 80-90%. My CPU is up/down. I notice that I have 61 processes.

I noticed that TrustedInstaller.exe is running Hard Faults/min - 501-506 not sure why.

The laptop is running slow and I need to get this issue resolve, so I appreciate the help.
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Check on Task Manager which are the processes consuming the most Memory (on the list of precesses, sort by Memory) and write them down.

Did you do the system restore off original discs when windows was just installed (HP makes you burn your own images)?

You also may want to type 'msconfig' in Start->Search, navigate through the menus, go to the Startup Processes (processes to start when your laptop boots), and services list (list of services and their initial status on boot.

Take a look around, dig a bit deep and figure out what's consuming the memory from task manager, and disable it if needed from startup as well.


Task Manager

Image Name:
HPAdvisor 7860K
perfmon.exe 6968K
csrss.exe 3608K
SSDK04.exe 1184K

When I do a Resource Overview - Memory
TrustedInstaller.exe - Hard Faults/min is at 2817 - Commit (KB) 60708

I'm updating the system, but this should not cause it to run this slow.
My processor is T2060 @ 1.60GHz
Memory: 502MB

I do not want to disable anything from task and regret it later.

This is the way the system was purchased from CONN's. HP puts so much crap on thier systems.

I did a system restore off the recovery partition.

Check the checkbox that says "Show processes from all users" in the Processes tab in Task Manager and check the list of processes who are using the most memory again.
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User System svchost - 24048K WOW.

I have a bunch of svchost listed. Not sure why.

svchost are system processes. They're fine, they control the Services running on your PC.

I've never used Vista with 512MB of RAM, but as it's Vista's minimum requirement, there's a chance that behavior is 'normal'.

If a clean system restore gives that amount of RAM usage, the only thing you could do is try to tweak your PC for best performance:

Few tips:

-run msconfig like I mentioned before, check the startup applications and try to identify the programs that get started when your PC boots up. disable unnecessary ones.
-Right click MyPC, Properties, Advanced Settings, Performance. Choose the 'Select for best performance' radio button and click OK (This will change the Windows look/theme). If you wish to keep it, leave the last option on the list checked, or leave it for 'Determine whats best for my PC'.
-Uninstall Applications that you do not use that run in the background which you dont need
-Disable services you dont need (be careful with this one)
Top Expert 2013
i recommend 2 Gb ram for "comfortable " running Vista; but also your cpu is very slow.
did it come with Vista, or with XP ?
i would agree with nobus 512MB is not enough, upgrade your ram if you want to run vista properly and also then you will not be using so much physical memory.
vista  min recommended system requirements

1 GHz 32-bit (x86) or 64-bit (x64) processor

1 GB of system memory

40 GB hard drive with at least 15 GB of available space


Chances are he's running Home Basic since it's the only one that requires 512MB.

The other versions wouldn't install to begin

Hi -
I agree - 2 GB RAM minimum for Vista -- the way I like it.  
Vista Home Basic minimum system requirements call for RAM = 512 MB, but this is not realistic.   I, too, would like to know if the HP system originally came with XP.  It would explain alot.
Vista min sys req -  http://www.microsoft.com/windows/windows-vista/get/system-requirements.aspx

I believe you are suffering from nothing less than excessive paging -- your system is trying to compensate for the lack of physical RAM by using virtual memory (page file).  Physical memory is much faster than virtual memory.
I suggest that you look into a RAM upgrade before applying software fixes.
Regards. . .


The system came with Vista Basic. Not sure why it was sold this way and the system worked fine for the first month. I'll try to tweak the system for best performance. I'm nervous to upgrade ram. Does anyone have a link on how to upgrade RAM?

Top Expert 2013

it can be caused by the windows updates (sp1 ?)
you can try a system restore to a date before, and check if it helps.
if you want to keep it that way, you'll need to disable updates

Here's a list of things you need to do:


basically check your system specs for the type of RAM you need (you can write down the specs of the RAM module you already have), and get:

-Either another one just like that to double the capacity
-replace it with 1 or more ram modules of higher capacity supported by your system


Upgraded RAM and system is much better. I also tweaked for better performance. Not sure why Conn's sold this system with only 512 RAM. I appreciate everyones help sorry for the late response.
Hi -
Glad to hear of upgraded RAM.  
For info, I disabled all HP applications so they would not run at boot or logon.  They can still  be run at a later time during the session.  WIth the upgraded RAM, you may not have a reason to do this now, but if you wish to do so, I would suggest that you use SysInternals AutoRuns - available free from Microsoft TechNet.
Download it to your desktop; RIGHT-click on the autoruns.exe  icon, select "Run as Admin"; let it scan (status on lower-left of screen), then go to the logon tab.  Un-check the box next to the item you wish to prevent from start-up.
Good Luck to you.

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