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Processor Usage drops to 0

Hi there, I have noticed a really strange thing happening on the machine of a client of mine. Essentially every so often the processor usage drops down to 0% usage. It seems to happen a lot when Outlook is running. The machine is a Core2Duo 3GHz with 3.25GB of RAM on a 32bit WinXP machine.

Any ideas welcome. The processor drops to 0 then kicks in again. The only program which seems to be affected by this drop is Outlook by the looks of it because I can open other programs fine. OUtlook is on an exchange but the server is local and not hosted. Could this be a disk access issue?
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gaa00
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gaa00
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nobusCommented:
i have noticed both drop to 0 regularly on my XP PC.
if it's not active - why should it work?
do you see both cores, ? i use cachemanxp, it displays both cores in the system tray!
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hutnorCommented:
If the CPU usage is on 0% that is good providing you are doing nothing so this is where it should be. Your outlook or other program may then need to use your CPU for some task & then you see a quick spike in CPU usage again. Your CPU is fast so it does not take look to do what is required & quickly drops back down to 0%.


Do you have some error with outlook doing nothing? So your looking at CPU usage and it stays on 0% when it souldn't.
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BawerCommented:
so far this is not a problem,, if processor value get 0 and then jumps up because at that point of time processor has nothing to process.
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gaa00Author Commented:
Well basically I am archiving the guy's emails we are talking 27000 plus for the last 2 months (yeah I know insane!) and it just freezes Outlook for a period of time before it does anything then getst to the task at hand. The problem is that the whole system freezes for a bit and then it starts getting into gear.

That is true regarding 0% process = nothing to do but the computer freezing for a minute just unnerves me a little. Also he is running a mirror RAID which has had to rebuild itself a few times. We swapped out the MOBO, the HDs and the RAM so I am guessing it could be the SATA cables. Will keep you posted.

When Outlook is closed I do not think the error occurs, I will try it out and let you know as well.

Thanks

G
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hutnorCommented:
if he has that many emails it could be the hard drives trying to find the email in the pst file. Sounds like it could be a few gbs so the pc may be having a bit of a problem sorting it out.
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gaa00Author Commented:
Yeah I think it is to do with the OST synch up. Apparently it is relatively new so I think it could be to do with the disk access.
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hutnorCommented:
let it clean up over night & see how it is in the morning.
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rajkumar_pbCommented:
There is an option called Intel-Speed Step in BIOS which insense just decrease the CPU clock to 0 if there is no process. Simple turn it off and let me know whether it helps you, as it did for me.
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CallandorCommented:
Anytime the machine has to do some network access, it may hang while it waits for a response or times out.  The behavior seems perfectly normal, since it doesn't seem to happen when you're not using Outlook.  27000 emails is a bit much to handle on startup.
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johnb6767Commented:
Just for giggles......

start>run>cmd

powercfg /change "Your Scheme Name" /processor-throttle-ac NONE >NUL

Your processor should support it.....

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LMiller7Commented:
You can have performance problems even when CPU usage is zero. If a process is waiting for some external event, and there are no others ready to run, the system may appear to hang until the event occurs. This can be caused by driver or hardware issues, and in some cases, malware.
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gaa00Author Commented:
Gonna try the bios option as well as changing the SATA cables. The raid array has been playing up and it could be a disk access queue problem.
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nobusCommented:
note that when you turn off the speedstep option - you can burn the cpu if it overheats..
and in most bioses -there is simply no such option.
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gaa00Author Commented:
It was the disks which were messing up along with the network card in the end. Sorry it took so long to get back to you but basically I need to switch the guy over to some SSDs me thinks :-)
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gaa00Author Commented:
The network access coupled with the disk queue was making the whole thing a little problematic.
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