System Idle Process

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lasermouse
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Yesterday my windows xp sp3 computer was acting very slow so I ran some malware scans and found nothing.  I also defragmented and that didn't help either.  I opened up the task manager and it said the system idle process was very high and erratic.  Also, my virtual memory was low.  I apparently fixed it all by running a stress test program called Heavyload. 

Has anyone else had this type of problem? 

God Entity: "When you do things right, people won't be sure you've done anything at all." ("Futurama" Godfellas (2002) )

Il Metallurgico
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the system idle process has the percentage of the idle processor.. if you are using the 40% of your CPU, the idle process will be 60%

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lasermouse
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What about when it reduces your computer's speed down to a snail's pace?  I'm asking because my computer had 98% for system idle process while I was running Internet Explorer 8 and it took me longer than normal to load a web page.  Did my CPU not no when to leave the idle process?

dustyschaffner
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might be a temp thing, my processor doesnt like doing small tasks at certain temperatures