Fix: WMI Provider Host (WmiPrvSE.exe) High CPU Usage

There are quite a number of processes that can hog your computer resources. One such process is the WMI Provider Host (WMIPrvSE.exe). This article is all about the Windows Management Instrumentation service, what it does and why it causes high CPU usage on your computer.

What is a WMI Provider Host?

WmiPrvSe.exe or the Windows Management Instrumentation Provider Service is a monitoring tool that is essential for the functioning of several processes. This service lets users ask for data related to the OS. Services can not run without the WMI Provider Host. So if this stops running, a lot of Windows features fail.

You may not know if this process does not run on your PC. This service has been around in the Operating system by default since Windows 2000. This service can be downloaded for previous Windows versions. 

Why does the WMI Provider Host use so much CPU?

The WMI Provider host should only use very little of your CPU, even if it is an essential service. Sometimes this can hog your CPU resources. This means that there could not be enough resources for other functions to run on your PC.

The WmiPrvSE.exe does not run all the time. It runs only when an application seeks data from it. It uses the CPU only to respond to some system information requests. But at times, this process can take up a large volume of your RAM.

This is okay for a short burst of time, but you might have a problem if this pertains. These are the possible reasons why the WMI Provider Host high CPU usage issue occurs. 

  1. The WMI could have got stuck or crashed. You don’t get notified if this happens.
  2. A service could be keeping the WMI host up for a while. 
  3. Malware could have occupied the process and run it again and again. 

Can I Disable the WMI Provider Host?

It is possible for the Windows Management Instrumentation service to be disabled. But this can cause a lot of Windows 10 functions to fail immediately. It is recommended that you do not disable this service even if it causes problems. Try and identify the source of trouble and disable, uninstall or update it. There is an elaborate disclaimer that says:

Fixing the WMI Provider Host High CPU usage issue on Windows 10

There are four known solutions that can help you fix the WMI provider host high CPU usage problem. The WMI Provider Host high CPU usage issue in Windows 10 is quite easy to fix.  These are what you can do to fix this issue.

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Ways to Fix WMI Provider Host High CPU usage on Windows 10 

F1: Running a scan for the virus

There are chances that your problem could be caused by a virus or another form of malware. If that is the case, all you need is a good antivirus software. Run a full system scan. If you have any malware on your system, it will be flushed out or quarantined, based on your choice. Remember to restart your computer after the scan is complete. 

F2: Try booting into the Safe Mode with Networking

If you have a problem with your Windows Management Instrumentation service (WMI service) that causes high CPU usage on Windows, you can try rebooting your system into safe mode. Launching safe mode is a form of troubleshooting your computer. This can help you locate the problem. 

  1. Press the Windows key + R key on your keyboard simultaneously. The Run dialog box gets launched. 
  2. In the Open field, type in msconfig and click on the Ok button.
WMI Provider Host  - type in msconfig
  1. The System Configuration window opens. Open the Boot tab.
System Configuration window
  1. Under the Boot options, check the Safe boot checkbox.
check the Safe boot checkbox
  1. Choose Network under it. This is the trigger for the system to start in safe mode with Networking.
  2. Click on Apply and then click Ok to save the adjustments you made. 
  3. Click Restart. The PC restarts and starts in Safe mode. 
  4. Once the system is booted up, press the Windows button and the X key on your keyboard. A pop-up window opens up.
  5. From the list, choose Windows PowerShell (Admin)
  6. In the Windows PowerShell window, type in the following command and press Enter:
msdt.exe -id MaintenanceDiagnostic
  1. Press enter, and the System Maintenance window opens up. Click on the Next button. It scans for unnecessary files. 
System Maintenance window
  1. In the Windows PowerShell window, type in the following command and press Enter:
msdt.exe /id PerformanceDiagnostic
  1. The Performance troubleshoot window opens. Click on Next to start the scan. It takes a few seconds. 
  2. When this process is complete, boot your computer in the Normal mode. Open the MSconfig tool and remove the check from the Safe boot checkbox in the Boot tab. 

For more information on booting up your computer in safe mode, we have an article on it.

F3: Restart WMI Provider Host (WMIPrvSE.exe)

Users can try to restart their computer services if they find that the Windows Windows Management Instrumentation service causes high CPU usage. This is how you can restart the service.

  1. Open the Run dialog box by pressing the Windows and R keys together.
  2. Type services.msc in the Open field and hit the Enter key. 
Type services.msc
  1. The Services window opens. Locate the WMI Provider host process.
Locate the WMI Provider host process
  1. Right-click on it and select restart.
  2. Next, you have to press the Windows key and the key X on the keyboard. Choose Command Prompt (Admin) from the list of options. You can also open the Command Prompt through the start menu. 
  3. The Command Prompt tool opens. You, then, have to type in the following commands:
  1. net stop iphlpsvc
  2. net stop wscsvc
  3. net stop Winmgmt
  4. net start Winmgmt
  5. net start wscsvc
  6. net start iphlpsvc
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Each command stops and starts the services that could have been causing trouble to your computer system. This is a possible fix for the increased computer RAM utilization. 

Restart your computer’s Operating System after all the processes are stopped and re-launched. 

F4: Uninstalling the malfunctioning Components and Drivers

If your computer has components and drivers that aren’t working properly, there are chances that this could affect the functioning of the WMI Provider Host and cause high CPU usage. This method of fixing the WMI provider host process and its high CPU utilization involves the use of the Event Viewer on Windows 10. 

  1. Press the Windows key and X at the same time. From the list of menus, choose Event Viewer.
choose Event Viewer.
  1. On the menu bar on the upper part of the window, click on the View menu in the Event Viewer. 
  2. From the drop-down menu, select Show Analytic and Debug Logs in the Event Viewer window. 
select Show Analytic and Debug Logs
  1. On the folders on the left pane, navigate to Applications and Service Logs > Microsoft > Windows > WMI activity > Operational log. In the list of processes, take note of all the processes and the Process ID, which shows Error next to them.
  2. Press the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys together to open the Task Manager. You can also open the Task Manager by pressing the Windows and X keys together and selecting Task Manager from the list. 
  3. In the Task Manager, open the Details tab. In the PID column, find the processes with the same Process ID as that those in the Event Viewer. These processes have to be uninstalled or disabled. 
  4. Right-click on the task and select End task to kill a process in the Task Manager. 

F5. Run an SFC and DISM scan

This fix is not known, popularly. But this is an excellent fix to the high CPU usage issue in a Windows system caused by the WMI process. A System File Checker (SFC) scan can help fix the Windows Management Instrumentation Provider host process high CPU usage problem on your computer. Here’s how you run an SFC scan on your computer. 

  1. Open the Command Prompt tool and run it as an administrator. 
  2. In the window, type in sfc /scannow. This command will initiate a file checking scan. Hit enter to execute the command.
type in sfc /scannow.
  1. It takes quite some for the scan to complete. Once it is done, check if your problem is fixed. 

If it isn’t fixed, it is further recommended that you run a DISM scan again. DISM stands for Deployment Image Servicing and Management. This is how users can run a DISM scan. 

  1. Open the Command Prompt process as the administrator. 
  2. Type in this command and run it by pressing the enter key:
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /restorehealth
  1. The operation takes a while. Do not interrupt the process. 
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F6. Run a Clean Boot for your PC

If the WMI Provider Host uses your CPU more than usual, it is a problem. This happens because of the services running on your PC. Doing a clean boot of your computer may help you locate the problem and resolve it. This is how you run a Clean Boot.

  1. Open the Run tool (Windows + R).
  2. Type in msconfig in the Open text box. Click on the Ok button. 
  3. The System Configuration window appears. Click on the Services tab to open it.
  4. Select the Hide all Microsoft services check box.
Check the Hide all Microsoft services
  1. Then, tap the Disable all button. 
  2. Open the Startup tab. Click on the Open Task Manager link.
Click on the Open Task Manager link
  1. The Task Manager opens. Disable all the applications in the list. Right-click on the application and select Disable from the pop-up menu.
select Disable from the pop-up menu
  1. Once all the applications are disabled, save the changes in the System Configuration window by clicking on Apply and then Ok

Frequently Asked Questions

Why does the WMI provider host high CPU usage on Windows 10 issues arise? Can I fix this? 

There are a lot of reasons why the WMI Provider host causes the CPU to be used more than ever. These are probably the reasons why the WMI Provider host causes high CPU usage.
WMI may be stuck or crashed. There are no chances of knowing if this intricate process malfunctions or crashes. 
A specific service could occupy the WMI host for a long time. 
The process could have been infected by malware. 

Can I end the WMI provider host?

Yes, you can disable the WMI Provider host. This is not recommended because the failure of this process can lead to the stalling of a lot of other services in the Operating System. It is an integral part of Windows and should not be stopped. Instead of ending this task, you can try to locate the source of the problem and remove/disable/update it. 

What does the WMI provider host do?

The WMI Provider Host feature lets software and code seek data about the state of the Windows computer. The WMI Providers offer the information requested by the scripts and applications. For more information about the feature and its components, check the Microsoft website. 

What is a WMI provider host in Windows?

The Windows Management Instrumentation Provider Host is a Windows feature that provides apps and program scripts with information about the computer. This is an important process. Any attempts to end this process might turn out to be deadly to your PC. 

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