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  • Placing Blame Correctly

    Posted on March 26th, 2009 Andy Parkes 1 comment

    Can’t believe how long it’s been since my last blog post! I’ve really no idea where the days are going at the moment

    I’ve had a few problems with my work PC recently. It becomes very unresponsive and gets progressively worse during the day

    I fired up the trusty task manger and the CPU was at 100% usage

    I switched to the Processes tab and sorted the list so i could see which process was causing the problem

    At the top of the list were various Trend services (We use Worry Free Business Security – I’m not a fan of the product name to be honest!)

    When i stopped the Trend client the CPU usage went down and back up when i started it again

    I trawled various online resources to see if could get to the bottom of it with very little luck

    I was planning on submitting a support case with Trend but decided to have one last go myself

    This time i looked a bit closer at the process list a saw multiple entries for TASKENG.EXE

    The total process count was at 2675 – that couldn’t be right

    I knew that TASKENG is the Vista task scheduler so had a look in there

    Turns out this is a pretty common problem and it’s simple to fix (it’s in various different blog posts and forums)

    • Go to the start menu.

    • Type task scheduler and press enter.

    • Press continue on the UAC prompt.

    • In the left pane of task scheduler, right-click on Task Scheduler Library.

    • In the view submenu, make sure the Show Hidden Tasks option is selected.

    • The hidden task that is likely at fault has a name that starts with User_Feed_Synchronization.

    • Select the scheduled task

    • To verify that this task is creating all the taskeng.exe processes, select the History tab in the middle pane near the middle of the screen.  If you expand out the Level and Date and Time Columns, you should see errors and that are about 5 minutes apart.  If that’s the case, then this task is the problem.

    • Right click the task and select Disable.

    image

    Obviously this will stop your RSS feeds from updating (the Windows list – this has nothing to do with Outlook 2007)

    If you do want to use your RSS feed list you can also try deleting the task and then from an elevated command prompt enter

    msfeedssync enable

    This will re-create the task for you if the problem with causing by the task being corrupt

    Once I’d deleted the task i used

    TASKKILL /IM TASKENG.EXE /F

    This killed off all the extra processes that had been created. I know i could have just rebooted the PC but it was a nice feeling watching them all disappear

    My process count went down to 67 and the system suddenly got a lot more responsive

    A did eventually reboot and Trend started up happily without taking too many of my system resources

    My guess is that Trend became overwhelmed with trying to monitor so many processes which why it was the one that initially seemed to be the cause of the problem

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    Andy Parkes is Technical Director at Coventry based IT support company IBIT Solutions. He is also Microsoft Partner Area Lead for 2012-2013 and coordinates AMITPRO which is a peer group for IT Professionals in the Midlands area. He also isn't a fan of describing himself in the third person.

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    One Response to “Placing Blame Correctly”

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