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Fifteen ways to fix 100% disk usage in Windows 10.

You are getting 100% disk usage in Windows 10, leaving your computer hanging and freezing. However, it is a new Windows 10...

Written by Geek-Monk · 7 min read >

You are getting 100% disk usage in Windows 10, leaving your computer hanging and freezing. However, it is a new Windows 10 device. So what’s the issue?

Finally, you find out your system drive is running at a maximum of 100%. The newest versions of Windows 10 have an issue with drives being strained that slow-down the OS. This concerns both solid-state drives (SSD) and hard disk drives (HDD).
A handful of fixes are available; on the other hand, the problem needs to be traced.

Notice slow Performance on your PC. Run Disk Check.

Did you attempt to utilize Windows Search to look for a folder, software, or anything else that compels the drive to do some work? That is where Performance matters.

To determine whether this issue is affecting your PC, the next time your PC slows down, toggle CTRL+ALT+DEL and select Task Manager.

(Another way of triggering Task-Manager is to right-click and select Task-Manager. Bear in mind; it will take time to open with as the drive is already being overwork).

On the first tab named Processes, look for the disk column. Assuming you got issues with your drive performance, usage at the disk column would be at 100% with a red shade.

Doubtful sectors on your HDD may cause disk usage to rock to 100% in Windows 10. Windows built-in disk-check can help you fix it.

Open Windows Explorer, choose THIS PC, and find your hard drive. Right-Click on (c:), select Properties. Identify the Tools tab and under Error Checking, click on Check.

In the following Window, click on Scan drive. The system will begin scanning the drive, where a reboot may be required for a full drive repair that may fix the error.

It is recommended to verify if your PC has not been infected with any Malware. Any free or paid security software can deal with it.

The minimum tools like Malwarebytes, AntiMalware should be able to scan your drives and find out any issues though it may take a while as the drive is already under heavy load.

If threats are identified, eradicate them using the security software recommendation and finally reboot. Verify your drive performance. Hopefully, you solved the issue, if not read on.

Disable Windows Search for better disk performance.

Verify whether the disk usage bug has anything to do with Windows Search. A bug in Windows 10 leads to a “ Search loop” that drives an increased load on the system drive.

To put an end to the loop and restrict it from happening, open Windows Powershell (Admin), which can be accessed by right-clicking Windows 10 start menu.


net.exe stop “Windows search.”

To permanently put an end to Windows 10 Search or Indexing, toggle Win+R enter services.msc and press enter. In the resulting Window, find Windows Search entry, double click to open Windows Search Properties window.

After deactivating Windows Search, Windows 10 performance should improve. If that’s not the case, read along.

Turnoff Sysmain Service to fix 100% Disk Usage.

Another potential cause of 100% disk usage in Windows 10 is the Superfetch service. After Windows 10 1809 update, it has been renamed to “Sysmain.”

To disable this service to cause disk usage problem, Open Windows Powershell (Admin) and


net.exe stop sysmain

Wait for a few minutes to verify whether it had any effect on your computer performance. You should also run Check Disk;

chkdsk.exe /f /r

You will be notified to reboot your PC for Check Disk to complete.

Is Flash triggering Windows 10 Disk Usage Bug?

Flash stays one of the most exposed features of modern computing and should be disabled. In 2020, Adobe has planned to kill the plug-in.

Flash is also one of the most common reasons causing 100 % disk usage in Windows 10 if you are using Google chrome browser.

In Google Chrome, open Menu>Settings>Privacy and Security and identify and click the section Site Settings. Identify Flash and Press the toggle to Block sites from running Flash, and click Back.

Restart the browser and check your drive performance.

Disk Usage still stuck at 100%? Change your browser.

It might not be Flash that affecting your browser performance after all.

An additional cause could be the browser itself, especially if you are using Google Chrome.

Your best option is to choose an alternate web browser. Windows 10 already has two incorporated browsers, Internet Explorer or Microsoft Edge, or you may want to use other browsers found on the Internet.

Is skype consuming Disk resources?

Skype is another commonly used application that could be the origin of 100% disk usage.

Then toggle Win+R and paste the following address:

C:\Program Files (x86)\Skype\Phone\

Select OK to search Skype.exe, right-click on Properties. Head over to the security tab and select Edit and select All APPLICATION PACKAGE.

Put a tick to the Write and Allow column and finish by click, OK. Head back to Task Manager to see its effect.

Another way to prevent the issue from using an alternative to Skype.

No result yet? Keep going!

Some drivers do not perform quite well under Windows 10. StorAHCI.sys driver is one among them that impacts and causes 100% disk usage. The latter meant for storage devices that are linked to the PC or laptop motherboards through AHCI PCI Express.

This could be the issue if you have been here with no success.

Step 1 is to open Device Manager [Right-click This PC then Properties>Device Manager] and list IDE ATA/ATAPI controllers. If any AHCI controller entry is listed, at that point, double click on the Driver tab and select driver details.

If the driver identified as C:\Windows\system32\DRIVERS\storahci.sys, then it is influenced by the bug.

There itself switch to Driver details box. Choose Device Instance Path from the drop-down menu. Where the Value is listed, right-click, and Copy. Open a text-editor and Paste the contents.

Afterward, Press Win +R and type Regedit and press OK. Head over to the following address; HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Enum\PCI\ and use the pasted contents to Open the correct AHCI controller followed by random figures.

Do you enjoy playing video games and have Steam installed on your computer? There is a good chance that the Steam client is maxing out your HDD.

This is happening due to Update Delivery that causes the background downloader to get into a loop.

To fix this issue, exit Steam, which can cause your computer to hang when try to quit as it is most likely to be the cause of 100% disk usage. If that the case, go to Task Manager and close the application from there.

The following step is open WIN+R and press enter.


Run the command, and you will see a dialogue box notifying that all content will be deleted. Select OK to proceed. There is no risk of you losing your downloaded games and saves.

Disable diagnostic tracking in Windows 10.

Diagnostic tracking in Windows 10 is a function that may have disabled for privacy reasons and is among the culprits for 100% disk usage.

If you want to reduce your HDD usage, a quick and straightforward way is to disable DiagTrack Service.

To disable the DiagTrack service, access Command Prompt in Administrator mode.

Input these commands to disable and stop DiagTrack

sc config “DiagTrack” start= disabled

sc stop, “DiagTrack.”

Head to Settings>System > Notification & actions and turn off Get tips, tricks, and suggestions as you use Windows. This has said to improve things.

Windows 10 Update can also be among the culprits triggering 100% disk usage. This usually occurs while Windows Update has an issue where a file is refusing to download.

One way is to let your PC alone. Close all your open applications and wait. Finally, the files will download. However relying on how Windows update is lined up on your PC, it may require a reboot.

The second way is to shut down your computer. As soon as it’s done, wait for Windows Update to solve the issue after the update has been completed. Run the update as soon as possible.

Virtual Memory is the combo of RAM and hard disk space and can be held as a culprit for overworked HDD. Assuming there is not adequate RAM for performing a task, the HDD storage is utilized for the supplement of the RAM. Data is allocated to the HDD and is returned to RAM when required.

If you have reached this far and have not been able to solve the 100% disk usage issue, then it could be beneficial to reset your Virtual Memory.

To start resetting your virtual Memory, begin by opening the system screen(Windows+Break/Pause) then select Advance System Setting found on the left. In the resulting box, select the Advanced tab, head to Performance, and select Setting.

Another Advance tab will appear, which has a section named Virtual Memory. Select Change and clear the checkbox for Automatically manage paging file size for all drives.

On the same screen, choose your Windows drive (C:) and then Custom Size. Insert an Initial Size and a Maximum Size. However, both are measured in MB rather than GB.

So with the first Value depend on the recommendation option. For the maximum amount, aim for a figure no more than 1.5 times your system RAM.

Once the values are inputted, Click on Set and then OK to continue. Previous virtual memory allocation files need to be deleted.

Press Win+R to open the Run box, then type” temp.” Once the “temp” directory is open, select all files (Ctrl+A) and press delete on your keyboard.

Another fix is to change Windows’ power settings. The normal mode is more likely to be prone to a 100% disk usage bug and swapping to the High-performance way.

However, the drawback is that your computer will be utilizing more power. But due to the modern processor, it will not be a significant issue. But laptops and notebook may take a hit on battery life.

If it is not displayed, you can create your custom power plan. Create a new power plan then select High Performance. Name the idea and customize as per your settings and select it to use. In a few moments, disk usage will drop down to about 10%.

If SATA drivers are not up to date, disk usage can rock up to 100%. Update to the latest SATA drivers.

Open power menu (Win+X) and select Device Manager. Expand Storage Controllers and choose the correct controller for the SATA devices.

To update, right-click, and click on update.

Rebooting your PC might be mandatory to take effect. If the fix doesn’t work, verify the manufacturer’s website for a new driver.

There is a possibility that your PSU can be that hardware component that is causing the HDD usage to peak at 100%.

Presuming that disk usage issues are related to excessive disk activities, and then it follows that there might be power-related issues.

Disk usage issues have also been identified in Windows 10 laptop when on battery. Once the power adapter has been plugged in, the problem is said to be resolved. For desktop computers changing your PSU may fix the issue.

Uncommonly disk usage should be 100%.

There is a little reason for disk usage to be close to 100%. A lagging computer is another problem. In addition to disabling a browser plugin, stopping services, or running your antivirus software, then it might be a hardware issue.

Maybe your hard drive has been worn out, faulty, or the cables may need replacing.

On the other hand, there is a possibility that the issue is related to the Windows defrag tool. If you are trying to defragment your drive, but instead, your HDD is an SSD, then serious problems may crop up. Fix it by opening the Task Scheduler ( WIN+Q, enter “task scheduler”) and disable any scheduled disk defrag tasks.

Attempt these fixes the next time your Windows computer slows down. Make sure to verify your Windows Experience Index regularly to distinguish performance problems in need of immediate resolution.

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