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svchost.exe uses 100% cpu when an HP printer is installed

Problem Description:

Your svchost.exe process has a high cpu time as soon as you start your computer.

In addition you likely have an HP printer, that is network enabled or capable.

Downloading and running Process Explorer from Sysinternals you can verify that the particular svchost.exe process that is using all the CPU time originates from the "HP Network Devices Support" service.

This means that the HP Network Devices Support service is using all of your processing time.

This issue should not be confused with the svchost.exe 100% CPU issue/bug caused by Windows Update .

Cause of the Problem:

The HP Network Devices support service is supposed to go through and routinely check to make sure your network configured printers on your computer are updated with the latest IP address of your HP printers.

However there is a bug in this software that can cause it to get locked up and use 100% of the CPU in an attempt to find a networked printer.


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HP has yet to officially issue an update to resolve this problem.

However there are a few workarounds:

  1. Try uninstalling all HP printer driver software from your computer, and installing the latest from HP's website
  2. Oddly enough we have seen that renaming the Fax and Printer back to their original names in the Windows Printer folder sometimes fixes this issue.
  3. If you are not using the printer on a network, and only through the USB cable, you can set the HP Network Devices Support service to have a manual start.
  4. If you are using the printer on a network, you can set the printer to have a static IP address, install the HP software, and then set the HP Network Devices Support service to have a manual start.

If you do not need to use the printer on the network, then simply set the Network devices support service to manual start. However if you do need to use it on the network we recommend trying to uninstall and reinstall the HP printer driver from their website first as this is the best way to take care of them problem. In theory we believe the update was simply placed into SOME of the existing driver packages, but never offered as a standalone update.

Feel free to point HP technical support to this article if you wish to talk with them about the issue.

Related Programs and Devices:
Hewlett Packard , svchost.exe , Windows XP , Windows 2000 , HP Network Devices Support Service

Last Updated: 01/12/2009 04:01 PM

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