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Fix: Windows Search High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows 11

Windows 11 is the latest operating system by Microsoft that has been available for both the Dev Channel and Beta Channel users via the Windows Insider Program. If in case, you’re experiencing issues with the Windows Search High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows 11 for a while then you’re on the right page. Here we’ve shared all the possible solutions to fix this problem completely.

Although the same issue is also bothering existing Windows 10 OS users, the new Windows 11 users are really getting annoyed with having 100% CPU and Disk usage of Windows Search that can be found on Task Manager. Now, we should mention that a higher CPU and Disk usage can easily slow down system performance, occur multiple issues with the application launch, and more.

Fix: Windows Search High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows 11

The Windows Search function on Windows 11 can eat up a lot of system resources due to some other background running processes or even indexing or searching for files (extension files) on the whole storage that’s available on your PC. So, it may take a lot of resources, and eventually, the system can be stuck performing any task or becomes slow enough.

Additionally, insufficient RAM or storage space, issues with the hard disk, system file errors, corrupted search index, etc can cause the problem. So, without wasting any more time, let’s jump into the methods below.

1. Restart Your PC

Well, restarting your computer can also fix some temporary issues in a jiffy. Although this process may not work for everyone, you should try at least once to check for the same.

2. Run Troubleshooter

Just like Windows 10, the all-new Windows 11 OS has also a dedicated troubleshooter list to troubleshoot and fix multiple issues automatically. As the issue is related to Windows Search, here we’ll gonna perform a Windows Search troubleshooter by following the steps below:

  • Press the Windows + I keys to open Windows Settings.
  • Click on ‘Privacy & Security’ from the left pane.
  • Select ‘Searching Windows’ > Now, scroll down and click on ‘Indexer troubleshooter’.
  • Select the ‘My problem isn’t listed above’ checkbox.
  • Click on ‘Next’ > Click on ‘Next’ again.
  • Then wait for a while to complete the troubleshooting steps. If prompted, allow the administrator permission, then click on the ‘Try these repairs as an administrator’ option.
  • Once done, make sure to restart your system to change effects immediately.

3. Restart Windows Search Services

  • Press the Windows + R keys to open up the Run dialog box.
  • Type services.msc and press Enter to open ‘Services’ interface.
  • Now, locate ‘Windows Search’ and right-click on it.
  • Select ‘Restart’.

Wait for a while and then try checking the disk or CPU usage again on Task Manager whether it has been fixed or not.

Read More: How to Change Administrator in Windows 11

4. Reduce Indexed Locations

If you’re using an older hard disk on your computer then it’s most likely to have some issues with the hard disk performance that seriously impact the PC. Whereas if you have a 1TB or 2TB of the hard drive where you’ve installed Windows 11 then it may gonna eat up a lot of time and system resources for sure to cover up indexing and rebuilding the data.

  • Press the Windows + I keys to open Windows Settings.
  • Click on ‘Privacy & Security’ from the left pane > Click on ‘Searching Windows’.
  • Now, click on ‘Add an excluded folder’ > Browse to the location/folder which you want to exclude.
  • Then click on it to select and click on ‘Select folder’.
  • Next, the added folder will be excluded from the list and it will no longer be indexed by the Windows Search feature. Do the same steps again for any other folder to exclude from the list.

You can also remove already indexed locations from your system to reduce stress.

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  • Press the Windows + I keys to open Windows Settings.
  • Click on ‘Privacy & Security’ from the left pane > Click on ‘Searching Windows’.
  • Now, click on ‘Advanced indexing options’ > Click on ‘Modify’.
  • Make sure to uncheck the locations or drives boxes that have already been added to Windows Search indexing.
  • Finally, click on ‘OK’ and then ‘Close’.

This method should help you to easily fix the Windows Search High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows 11.

5. Temporarily Disable Windows Search

  • Press the Windows + R keys to open up the Run dialog box.
  • Type services.msc and press Enter to open ‘Services’ interface.
  • Now, locate ‘Windows Search’ and double-click on it to open ‘Properties’.
  • From the ‘General’ tab, you’ll have to click on ‘Stop’ under the ‘Service Status’ option. [Only if the status is ‘Running’]
  • Wait until the service is stopped > Make sure to select ‘Automatic (Delayed Start)’ or ‘Disabled’ from the ‘Startup type’ option.
  • Once done, click on ‘Apply’ then ‘OK’ to save changes.

However, if the problem is still running then make sure to follow the next method.

6. Disable Superfetch (Sysmain)

  • Press the Windows + R keys to open up the Run dialog box.
  • Type services.msc and press Enter to open ‘Services’ interface.
  • Now, locate ‘SysMain’, and double-click on it to open ‘Properties’.
  • From the ‘General’ tab, you’ll have to click on ‘Stop’ under the ‘Service Status’ option. [Only if the status is ‘Running’]
  • Wait until the service is stopped > Make sure to select ‘Disabled’ from the ‘Startup type’ option.
  • Once done, click on ‘Apply’ then ‘OK’ to save changes.

7. Tweak SATA AHCI Controller

Windows 11 isn’t capable of allowing the hard disk to use native Command Queuing. Therefore, the failure may often cause the disk drive to be stuck at 100% in some scenarios. Luckily, you can easily fix this issue by performing some Windows Registry tweaks to your SATA AHCI Controller Driver to disable ‘Native Command Queuing’.

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Please Note: Follow this method only if you’re using an older hard disk on your computer. Not come in handy for new hard disk editions or SSDs as well.

  • Press the Windows + R keys to open up a Run dialog box.
  • Next, type devmgmt.msc and hit Enter to open Device Manager. [If prompted by UAC, click on Yes to proceed]
  • From the Device Manager interface, you’ll need to scroll down the list of devices and double-click on the arrow icon of ‘IDE ATA / ATAPI controllers’ to expand it.
  • Then make sure to right-click on your standard SATA AHCI Controller Driver > Select ‘Properties’.
  • Click on the ‘Details’ tab > Change ‘Property’ to ‘Device Instance path’.
  • Next, make sure to right-click on the path under ‘Value’ and select ‘Copy’. [Paste it on a notepad]
  • Press the Windows + R keys to open up a Run dialog box.
  • Now, type regedit and hit Enter to open ‘Registry Editor’. [If prompted by UAC, click on Yes to proceed]
  • From the Registry Editor interface, copy and paste the following path on the address bar then hit Enter:

Computer\HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Enum\PCI

  • Now, click on to select ‘PCI’ and paste the path that you’ve copied previously. [Copy and paste the path from Notepad]
  • Once successfully pasted, hit Enter > Click to expand the ‘Device Parameters’ key from the left pane.
  • Then expand the ‘Interrupt Management’ key > Select the ‘MessageSignaledInterruptProperties’ key.
  • Next, head over to the right-side section of Registry Editor > Double-click on ‘MSISupported’.
  • Set the ‘Base’ of ‘MSISupported’ to ‘Hexadecimal’ > Set the ‘Value data’ to ‘0’ to disable native command queuing.
  • Finally, close Registry Editor and restart your computer to apply changes.

Now, you can open Task Manager, and check for the Windows Search High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows 11 issue again.

8. Rebuild Search Index

  • Press the Windows + I keys to open Windows Settings.
  • Click on ‘Privacy & Security’ from the left pane > Click on ‘Searching Windows’.
  • Now, click on ‘Advanced indexing options’ > Click on ‘Advanced’.
  • Select ‘Rebuild’ > Click on ‘OK’ to confirm and select ‘OK’ again.
  • Wait for the rebuilding index process for a couple of hours to ensure it fully completes.
  • Finally, restart your computer to apply changes, and the Windows Search High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows 11 issue won’t appear again.

However, if the problem still bothering you, then try following the next method.

9. Use Resource Monitor

Sometimes it may possible that you aren’t able to find out the reason behind the high disk/CPU usage on your PC. In that scenario, you should use Resource Monitor to check for all possible culprits that can basically cause such an issue. To do this:

  • Press the Windows + R keys to open the Run dialog box.
  • Now, type resmon and hit Enter to open ‘Resource Monitor’.
  • Click on the ‘Disk’ tab > Check for ‘SearchHost.exe’ and ‘SearchIndexer.exe’.
  • Additionally, make sure to check out some other processes or tasks that are using a higher amount of disk space usually.

10. Get DISM and SFC Commands

Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) is a command-line tool that can be used to mount and service Windows images before deployment. To do so:

  • Click on the Start Menu and type cmd.
  • Now, right-click on Command Prompt from the search result.
  • Select Run as administrator > If prompted, click on Yes to give admin privileges.
  • Once the command prompt window opens, type the following command and hit Enter to execute it:
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /CheckHealth
  • Then type the following command and press Enter:
DISM /Online /Cleanup-Image /RestoreHealth

  • Now, wait for the process to complete and exit the command prompt.
  • Finally, restart your computer to apply changes.

If that didn’t help you out of the issue, then you should run the system file checker scan on your Windows computer to check for any kind of possible or corrupted system files and restoring them.

  • Click on the Start Menu and type cmd.
  • Now, right-click on Command Prompt from the search result.
  • Select Run as administrator > If prompted, click on Yes to give admin privileges.
  • Once the command prompt window opens, type the following command and hit Enter to execute it:
SFC /scannow

  • Now, wait for the process to complete.
  • Make sure to restart your computer to change effects immediately.

11. Contact Microsoft Support

If none of the methods worked for you then try contacting Microsoft Support for further assistance. Sometimes a professional individual or team can only fix your specific issue with the software or any kind of conflict with the hardware. Just provide all of your issues and screenshots so that the support team can closely look at the issue and try resolving it.

Otherwise, you can also visit the nearest Windows computer repairing center for checking out the Windows Search higher CPU/Disk Usage-related issues.

That’s it, guys. We assume this guide was helpful to you. Feel free to ask in the comment below.

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