In this article, we will be looking at what “Ntoskrnl.exe” is, what it does and Most importantly, the best fix for “Ntoskrnl.exe” high CPU or disk usage on windows.

What is “Ntoskrnl.exe”?

Notoskrnl.exe also known as Kernel image is tasked with handling various system services, one of which is the process and memory management. This makes it one of the most crucial parts of the Windows OS. Without it, processes on the Windows operating system cannot be carried out.

What does “Ntoskrnl.exe” Do?

Let me put this way. When you run a program on your Windows PC, the task along with the programs that will carry out the task is loaded onto the RAM(Random Access Memory). In the process of carrying out the task, it might demand certain things from the PC. Like running a game that with certain requirements like GPU, CPU, Disk space and an active internet connection.

While running the program, the need to re-write or edit the disk space might arise depending on the program request to do so. When the program is closed(i.e you quit/Close the game) then all of the data processed along with the game gets unloaded from the RAM. Thus freed of the space for another program. All these are effectively managed by the “Ntoskrnl.exe”.

Causes and Solution Of “Ntoskrnl.exe” High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows?

The two major causes of this are Bad/Outdated Drivers or Malware and Viruses. First, we’ll have a look at the drivers and fix that, if that doesn’t work then we move on to the next one.

Update Drivers To Fix “Ntoskrnl.exe” High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows

Drivers are used by your Windows to effectively communicate with other Devices as it sends and receives data. If the drivers are bad or outdated, it might continuously send data to your PC, filling up not only your RAM but also your Disk space and subsequently increasing CPU usage.

To update your drivers, Simply follow the steps below.

  • Press and Hold the Window Button on your Keyboard and Press R.
  • Type In the Following: hdwwiz.cpl and hit Ok.

  • Navigate to the Drivers Tab and Select Update Drivers.

  • Choose the Automatic option to find and Install the appropriate up-to-date drivers from the internet.

  • Reboot your PC and you are good to go.

Alternately, There is also a Software called Driver Easy you can use to update your drivers. And like the name says, it easily Updates your Drivers. All you have to do is Download and run the Software and it automatically tells you the drivers that needs Updating and Updates them.

If after updating your drivers you’re still experiencing the problem then your PC might be infected with a virus or malware.

Use Antivirus To Fix “Ntoskrnl.exe” High CPU or Disk Usage on Windows

The Ntoskrnl.exe is very protected file on the Windows PC because it is tasked with one of the most important jobs; Writing and removing data into and from your RAM respectively. However, in some rare cases, it does get corrupted by a virus and when it does, it causes it to malfunction. This might cause it to write too many data into the RAM without removing, subsequently increasing not only disk Usage but also CPU usage due to the heavy processing it is tasked with.

Thankfully, this can be fixed. All you need to do is to simply Download an antivirus software to fish out the culprit behind this. We’ve compiled a list of the very best antivirus software you can download now and use to find the virus and Delete it.


Always remember to keep your drivers and Antivirus software up-to-date in order to avoid any reoccurrence of this problem in the future. Also, Let us know in the comment section which one worked for you.

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