Windows 10: After W10 upgrade a month ago the disk is very busy when idle Solved

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  1.    12 Feb 2016 #1

    After W10 upgrade a month ago the disk is very busy when idle

    Re: Sony VAIO laptop, model VGN-NW265F, 4GB RAM. If you want any other info. please let me know.

    I wiped disk and did a clean install of Windows 7 Professional and waited over a month before upgrading to W10 in mid-January 2016. During that month prior to upgrade Win 7 performed like a brand new laptop.

    After upgrading from Win 7 Pro to Win 10 Pro in Jan. 2016 the hard disk is constantly busy when laptop is idle. I thought it just needed a few days to complete indexing and other Windows background tasks but it has been a month now and the disk is heating up from overuse though no errors or warnings so far.

    If I touch the mousepad or keyboard the disk settles down and activity light still flickers but not as much as when left idle.
    note: I also upgraded a HP desktop to Win 10 and the disk on the HP desktop does not do this whatsoever.

    I tried turning off disk indexing; Windows search service and other settings but that made no difference so I turned them back on.

    I understand the behavior appears normal in that when I use the laptop the disk settles to a much slower rate of busy but after a minute or two of being idle the disk activity speeds up again and will continue flickering at a high rate all day and evening unless I touch mouse or keyboard or put it to sleep.

    Laptop gets pretty warm from all the disk usage and due to this I am now putting it to sleep often when not using it which I have never had to do before.

    I ran PROCMON but I do not know how to read results.

    Can one of you give a hand? Procmon may be helpful IF I knew what filters to set or which other tools to set and how to read results after capture. Hopefully you can provide instructions on how to set up and use PROCMON as well as analyze results.

    Thanks in advance, Larry
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  2.    13 Feb 2016 #2

    Hi, start with the task manager.
    Please post screenshots of your task manager of each column where there is activity, organised by highest top-most (click on the tab).

    Eg here's my task manager on my old PC, CPU highest
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    You should have plenty of RAM at 6Gb, and with 3rd party AV installed you shouldn't have a problem with Windows Defender. I'm wondering if you might be having a problem with 'system and compressed memory'. We'll see.

    Also please try a clean boot, and advise if that makes a change.
    How to perform a Clean boot in Windows 10 - TechNet Articles - United States (English) - TechNet Wiki

    (You will need to reverse that manually, or set a system restore point before doing that, and use the restore point to reverse it. Note S. Restore is off by default in Win 10, which is weird).
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  3.    13 Feb 2016 #3

    Thank you for your reply. To be clear, I have 4GB RAM, not 6GB. Also I AM running Windows Defender, not a third party AV on this laptop.

    You may be correct with the System and Compressed Memory thought. When I observe Task Manager I do see System and Compressed Memory at top of list often. What keeps it so active? Is there some setting I need to tweak? Or a Registry key?

    Also, the disk once in a while spikes high but for the most part is not running more than 10% BUT it is a continuous fast flick when idle. On the other hand, when I am typing or mousing the disk activity light slows to once or twice a second.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  4.    13 Feb 2016 #4

    Hi, I read your system specs - 6GB, Avast. I see your problem is with a different machine as you described.

    Yes.. your task man. shows you've a System and Compressed Memory type problem... one of the ones I guessed at.

    These are difficult, with no one solution. Suggest you search on "System and Compressed Memory" and read up for background - and "System and Compressed Memory" "cpu use" for example to find people reporting similar issues. There have been 2 or 3 in this forum.

    Notice how Windows Defender is also active with all the activity- assuming it's not doing a scan... but your defragmenter seems active.

    I suggest you find a way of stopping the defragmentation, also try, (with internet disconnected if you prefer) and see what happens with Windows Defender disabled.

    If you still have a problem, try a clean boot, and if things are stable, progressively enable startups until the problem recurs.

    More on Sony VAIO for interest (not necessarily relevant to your case):
    CPU all the time - Microsoft Community

    However, as I said, causes can be obscure.

    Solved Is this normal? System and compressed memory process ALWAYS at 20% cpu - Windows 10 Forums
    HELP - System and compressed memory constantly at 35% CPU - Windows 10 Forums
    CPU usage when PC is idle - Windows 10 Forums

      My ComputerSystem Spec

  5.    13 Feb 2016 #5

    Thanks for your quick reply! Given I am on the west coast of the US and you appear to be in the UK I am surprised that we are both online at same time. Certainly my good fortune and thanks again.

    Ah, I see, somehow a prior post about my HP Desktop with 6GB RAM and Avast has been confused with this new post about the Sony VAIO laptop with 4GB RAM. You are correct - two separate posts and situations - the HP desktop is working fine with ClassicShell installed to overcome the Start icon disappearing.

    Back to the Sony laptop - I was just reading online about System and Compressed Memory problems. Some point to One Drive (I do not use any cloud). Secondly, this user found that PAGEFILE is not being managed properly and the result is the computer trying to compress memory to free up space even though there is already free space. If you read this link you see he tried various settings with pagefile size. He also notes that hibernation rather than sleep made a difference.

    I will continue reading but so far I am not a happy camper with this Windows 10 flaw! The laptop worked perfectly with Win 7 installed. I do have an image of prior Win 7 configuration but would rather go forward with W10 if this can be resolved.

    Cheers - thanks for any further offerings you may submit.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  6.    13 Feb 2016 #6

    Mm, it's afternoon here.. just had some coffee. Suppose it should have been tea..

    One of the posts I've quoted gives an interesting tool used to analyse what was happening in his case.. driver related. But it may not be an easy one..
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  7.    13 Feb 2016 #7

    Having morning coffee - early riser I am! Well guess what... I changed the PAGEFILE settings; it was set to allow Windows to manage and pagefile was set by windows to 3968MB. I changed it to Windows recommended size of 1387MB/1387MB and rebooted! Voila! System and compressed memory rarely makes it to top of list and disk staying below 10%!

    This may change after a while but I am loving it for now! Thanks for the dialogue for it surely led me to this point. I had suspicions but could not find anything to try until you nudged me. Check my task manager now! NORMAL for the moment and if it stays this way I could be a happy camper once again!

    Click image for larger version. 

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  8.    13 Feb 2016 #8

    DAMMIT! After several minutes of calm and elation - it is back to 100% disk with System and Compressed Memory! Certainly on the right track - PAGEFILE is involved and there has to be some resolution for this somewhere.

    Click image for larger version. 

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  9.    13 Feb 2016 #9

    Hi, doubt it will be as simple as that. Have a look at what's using your CPU time. You need to start there as I said before, and get your system 'quiet' as regards running processes. The trigger for system & c. mem. may not be related to running processes, but you need to eliminate those first. You may be lucky, or you may have a long way to go.
      My ComputerSystem Spec

  10.    13 Feb 2016 #10

    Well it is much improved and settled down dramatically. I noted that PHOTOS was eating CPU for some time but now has gone away completely. The CPU and disk are staying in reasonable usage range. Since things are changing I think I should live with this for a day and see how it goes rather than bothering you with momentary spikes.

    So have a cheery day and thank you again - time for some breakfast on this end so I will leave you alone for now with good wishes. You can see from the latest task manager that things seem to be improved...for now!

    Click image for larger version. 

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