System Interrupts High CPU Error

System Interrupts High CPU Error


Martha Davis
August 23, 2021

‘System Interrupts’ is a Windows process that acts as a communication channel between the hardware components of your PC and the various software processes. If you want to find this process, you must access the task manager by pressing Ctrl + Shift + Esc.

Here, you can find ‘System Interrupts’ under the ‘Processes’ tab.

The process monitors the hardware components when they communicate with a program or Windows.

For example, when you type something, you need a process to monitor what you type, how it appears on the screen, and if it appears on the screen in the first place.

So, adding some hardware to the motherboard allows Windows to monitor such tasks rather than go through the process.

What Causes ‘System Interrupts’ High CPU Usage?

System Interrupt

Under normal circumstances, the ‘System Interrupts’ process should only use 10% of the CPU.

However, when you open the Task Manager, you might have noticed that the process uses more than 20%. From this, you can understand that something is wrong with your hardware or the drivers associated with them.

It means that one of your hardware components or the drivers related to it is malfunctioning.

How to Fix System Interrupts High CPU Error?

You should be concerned only if ‘System Interrupts’ uses more than 10% of your CPU. There are several ways to fix this issue, some of which you can find in the following sections.

1. Try Rebooting Your PC

Restating PC

One of the simplest fixes for ‘System Interrupts’ hogging memory would be to restart your computer.

Rebooting should do the job as long as all the hardware components are intact.

However, if you see that the process is still consuming more memory than usual, there is indeed something wrong with one of your hardware components or drivers. 

2. Disable All the External Devices

USB Root Hubs

So, now that you know the problem is with one of your hardware components, logically, the next step would be to disable parts connected externally.

But, first, you must unplug or disable all the USB devices attached to your PC. To disable an external USB device:

a.  Access ‘Device Manager’ by clicking on ‘Start’ and typing ‘Device Manager’ into the search field.

b.  Here, you should find the ‘Universal Serial Bus controllers option. Click to expand it.

c.   Once expanded, find all the USB devices connected to your system by locating their respective ‘USB Root Hub’ entries.

d.  Now, right-click on each entry, and select ‘Disable.’

When you select ‘Disable,’ all the USB devices connected to your system should be disabled, and you can proceed with removing them. 

3. Check All the Hardware Drivers and Update Them if Required

Hardware Drivers Update

One of the other reasons the ‘System Interrupts’ process uses more memory than usual could be an error with your drivers or you that you haven’t updated them. If you haven’t already updated your drivers, you can do so by following these steps.

a.  Click ‘Start’ and access ‘Settings.’

b.  In the ‘Settings’ menu, find and click on ‘Update and Security.

c.   Here, locate the ‘Windows Update’ section, and check if there are any updates for your drivers by clicking on ‘Check for updates.’

d.  If Windows finds any updates, you can download and install them by selecting ‘Next.’

The method works for all the drivers installed on your computer. However, if you want to update specific drivers, you need to follow a different set of steps outlined below.

a.  Access ‘Device Manager’ by clicking on the ‘Start menu and typing ‘Device Manager’ into the search field.

b.  Here, search for the driver you want to update and select ‘Update driver’ by right-clicking on it.

c.   When you select ‘Update driver,’ you will get two options: ‘Search automatically for updated driver software and ‘Browse my computer for driver software.’

d.  Select the first option, ‘Search automatically for updated driver software, and Windows should automatically search for and download and install the latest drivers.

e.  After the process completes, restart your PC.

When you restart your computer, the ‘System Interrupts’ high CPU usage problem should be resolved. If not, you can try another method and see if it works.

4. Disable Internal Devices

Wake on Magic Packets

You shouldn’t update your drivers at random.

So, what you can do instead to solve the ‘System Interrupts’ error is to disable internal devices such as sound devices, network adapters, and modems.

You can disable network adapters by following these steps.

a.  Right-click on ‘Start’ and select ‘Device Manager.’

b.  In the ‘Device Manager,’ find and expand ‘Network Adapters.’

c.   Right-click on a network adapter and select ‘Properties.’

d.  On the ‘Advanced’ tab, you should see an option called ‘Wake on Magic Packet’ under the header, ‘Property.’

e.  Choose this option, and to your right, you should see another option called ‘Value.’

f.        Set the ‘value’ to ‘Disabled’ by clicking on the drop-down menu.

Doing this should resolve the ‘System Interrupts’ problem. However, if it doesn’t, you can try the following method: disabling sound effects and audio enhancements.

5. Disable Sound Effects and Audio Enhancements

Disable all sound effects

‘System Interrupts’ tends to use a lot of memory when you play sounds or open audio or video files.

Suppose you want to run an audio or video file. In that case, you can always do it by disabling the sound effects or audio enhancements as they increase memory consumption by ‘System Interrupts.’

You can disable sound effects or audio enhancements by following this method.

a.  Locate the speaker icon. It is usually present at the bottom right of your taskbar.

b.  Right-click on it and select the option that says, ‘Open Sound Settings.’

c.   Click on the ‘Enhancements’ tab, and select the checkbox that says, ‘Disable all sound effects.’

d.  Click on ‘OK to save the changes you made.

Disabling sound effects should stop ‘System Interrupts’ from eating away memory and help your PC run smoothly and efficiently.

However, another way to stop ‘System Interrupts’ high CPU usage would be to update the BIOS.

6. Update the BIOS

Update the BIOS

If the ‘System Interrupts’ high memory usage is not a hardware problem, you probably need to check your BIOS and update it.

However, you also need to check the BIOS version installed on your system before you do this.

If you want to know what BIOS version you are running:

a.  Click on ‘Start’ and type ‘Cmd.’

b.  Open or run the ‘Command Prompt’ and type the following commands one after another by pressing enter.

Systeminfo | findstr / I / c: bios

wmic bios get manufacturer, smbiosbiosversion

Once you type all these commands, you should see the BIOS version installed on your computer.

After noting it, visit the manufacturer’s website, and download a new version.

Be careful when updating the BIOS, as a tiny mistake can screw up the entire process and your PC.

However, if you don’t want to update the BIOS, there is yet another way to fix the problem.

7. Try Disabling Fast Startup

Disabling Fast Startup on Windows 10

If you want ‘System Interrupts’ to stop consuming memory, you can try disabling the ‘Fast Startup’ feature commonly found on computers running the Windows 10 operating system.

When this feature is enabled, your PC doesn’t completely shut down but, instead, goes into a state between ‘Hibernation’ and ‘Shutdown.’

You can disable this feature by:

a.  Click on ‘Start’ and type ‘power’ into the search field.

b.  In the power options, select ‘Choose a power plan.’

c.   Then, select ‘Choose what power buttons do’ in the side pane that you can find in the power options window.

d.  Finally, click on ‘Change settings that are currently unavailable’ and then deselect ‘Turn on fast startup.’

Disabling the fast startup feature could reduce the CPU usage by ‘System Interrupts’ without disturbing the other processes.

However, if you face the problem, you can re-enable it using the same method described above.

8. Check the Disks for Errors


You could also run the CHKDSK command to check for any errors in the disks and see if it resolves the problem. You can do this by:

a.  Click on the ‘Start menu and type ‘cmd’ into the search field.

b.  Right-click on ‘Command Prompt’ and select ‘Run as Administrator’ to open an elevated window.

c.   Then, typing, CHKDSK C: / f. Alternatively, you could also type CHKDSK C: / f /r. Both the commands hold good.

When you type this command, the utility runs scans on your drives and repairs any errors or problems with them.

The CHKDSK command should find and fix all the errors in your PC, including the memory-hogging caused by the ‘System Interrupts’ process.


So, in this way, you should fix the ‘System Interrupts’ high CPU usage error by using some commands and features.

Of course, you could try using all or any of these methods, including disabling internal and external devices, checking the disks for errors, finding errors in the BIOS and the drivers, or even updating them.

Ideally, these methods should fix the problem.

However, if the problem persists, you can always research more ways to improve it by searching for them on the Internet.

Martha Davis

Martha Davis is a computer hardware specialist who works extensively in designing and manufacturing hardware devices, researching advanced computer technology. She built as a platform to share her insight on computers and PC assembly with the web. Currently, she is carrying out her research on Robotics and Computer Vision and working privately to deliver services. Martha makes sure that readers of master the basics of setting up computer components like motherboard, CPUs, and GPUs through the informative articles that she writes.