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Kudos0

Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

My Norton Security app went crazy this morning, around 6AM.  My CPU fan suddenly started screaming and Norton grabbed between 90% and 100% of my CPU resources for a solid hour.  

And it's not really calmed down.  Ever since, for the last four hours, it's been doing a seesaw act between using normal resources for about 30 seconds, then going crazy for about ten to fifteen seconds, then subsiding for about 30 seconds, then going crazy for about ten to fifteen seconds, etc. etc.

I went into the Configure menu for Background Tasks and was NOT re-assured.  There is NO record in there of any activity this morning that took an hour, none.  There are a few items in there from this morning but none that would explain what happened, and what is still happening.  A live update which lasted 7 seconds, a Community Watch which ran for a minute, a Quick Scan which lasted for 1 minute, 39 seconds, an Anti-Spam Maintenance which lasted one second, a Licensing Maintenance for one second, an Insight Maintenance for one second and a Product Maintenance for four seconds.

What's going on????

I'm on a Windows 8 computer, and my Norton product is Norton 360 version 22.21.8.62.

Replies

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

Check the Norton History for any scans around that time. It could be that you had a scheduled full system scan set up. Normally those scheduled scans will run when the system is idle. But if they have not found enough idle time, eventually the scan will run until completion. This may be what you ran into this morning.

If allowing the system to settle on its own does not help, start with a system restart. Restart, not shutdown and startup again if you have the Windws Fast Startup feature enabled. If you use Windows 8/8.1 or 10, there can be an issue with the Windows Fast Startup feature.. See more information here.

Things happen. Export/Backup your Norton Password Manager data.
Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

Just went through the whole Norton History for this morning.  Not a word about a full system scan.  There are a few references to Quick Scan results.

Years ago, I had a problem with a Norton upgrade, so I gave remote control to a Norton engineer.  He informed me that I had the Fast Startup enabled and he told me he turned it off.  Since that time, until today, I've had no problem with Norton.  I just checked the System Settings page where Fast Startup is turned on and off and my Fast Startup is NOT turned on.  So there goes that theory.

I'm in the middle of a lengthy project, so I won't be going for a restart for a while.  So, instead of turning the computer off, tomorrow night I'll do a restart as you suggest and see if that fixes the problem.

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

Well, I discovered something.  I closed my Chrome browser and the problem went away completely.  Then I re-opened the browser and Norton went crazy, went full 100% CPU for about three to four minutes, with the fan screaming like crazy.  Then it settled back to where it was before, 30 seconds normal, 15 seconds crazy, 30 seconds normal, 15 seconds crazy.  So the browser seems to be part of the problem.

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

I closed Chrome and switched to Firefox.  Same thing.

At least I now know it has something to do with browsers, -- ALL browsers.  Really annoying.

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

FWIW! The catch that I'm reading is you're running Windows 8, vice 8.1 as it was posted. Windows 8, although supported by Chrome and FF, is however, no longer supported by Microsoft with the exception of the zero-day patches being released of late. Your system is most likely missing updates that can cause browsers to act weird. What version of Chrome do you have installed? You should have Chrome 93.0.4577.82 since it fixes a ton of zero-day issues in Chrome.

SA

MS Certified Professional / Windows Server 2016 Essentials - Windows 10 Professional x 64 version 21H1 / build 19043.1237 / Linux Mint Tina 19.3 / Norton Core Security / Norton 360 Deluxe ver. 22.21.8.62 / Norton Core v.201103_319 on Android 2.29.02 / Opera LVL3 (core: 78.0.4093.214) Early Access w/Chrome Extensions
Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

Well, I just did the restart you recommended.  Not only was there no change.  I think it's actually a little worse.  Whereas before the pattern was 30 seconds clear, 15 seconds screaming, now I think the pattern is about equal, 15 clear, 15 screaming.

So what should I try next?

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

I have version  93.0.4577.82 , according to my Settings About menu.  So there goes that theory as well.

Next???

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

When you closed Chrome and opened FF, did the issue start immediately, or after you navigated to some web site(s)?

Are your home pages for both browsers the same? Can you share what home page you are using?

Things happen. Export/Backup your Norton Password Manager data.
Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

Thanks for the follow-up!

"When you closed Chrome and opened FF, did the issue start immediately, or after you navigated to some web site(s)?"

After I navigated to a web site, any web site.  In the case of Firefox, it started as soon as I navigated to this web site to post my report.

"Are your home pages for both browsers the same?"

Nope.

"Can you share what home page you are using?"

In the case of Firefox, I have nulled that function, so the browser, when first opened, loads no web site.  Instead, I see a bunch of images and headlines which, I think, is internal in Firefox.  If they are collecting the stuff from a web site, I'm afraid I don't have that URL.

In the case of Chrome, every new window I open in that browser defaults to what looks like http://www.google.com , but there is no address in the URL field, so that too may be some internal material inside the Chrome installation; I don't know.

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

When this happens, right click on the Norton icon in your system tray and you will see options to disable Smart Firewall and Auto Protect. Try disabling one feature at a time to see if it stops the issue. 

If disabling the firewall stops the issue, reset the firewall and test again. 

To reset the Norton firewall, from the main Norton Security screen click on Settings - Firewall. On the General tab, click on Reset beside Firewall Reset. Restart your computer. As you use programs that access your network/internet, the firewall rules will be created again.

If disabling the Auto Protect stops the issue, it may be time to reinstall your Norton product. Download and run the Norton Removal and Reinstall tool from   www.norton.com/nrnr .   Use the Advanced Options > Remove Only. Then restart your computer and log into your Norton Account and download a fresh copy of your 360. Be sure you Have you run LiveUpdate manually a few times, restarting as necessary, until no updates are available? Then restart again. 

Things happen. Export/Backup your Norton Password Manager data.
Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

No change.  Neither disabling Smart Firewall nor disabling Auto-Protect had any effect.  CPU still spiking, CPU fan still screaming, computer still hot.

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

Disable ALL your browser extensions and restart the machine. Re-enable them one at a time to find which extension is the culprit. If Norton 360  were causing a system resource issue it would be present all the time vice only when a browser is being used. It indeed MAY be a Norton extension causing the issue, that being said you can use Norton extensions WITHOUT Norton being installed.

SA

MS Certified Professional / Windows Server 2016 Essentials - Windows 10 Professional x 64 version 21H1 / build 19043.1237 / Linux Mint Tina 19.3 / Norton Core Security / Norton 360 Deluxe ver. 22.21.8.62 / Norton Core v.201103_319 on Android 2.29.02 / Opera LVL3 (core: 78.0.4093.214) Early Access w/Chrome Extensions
Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

Thank you for the suggestion to disable all browser extensions and then re-enable one by one to see which one is the problem.  I'll try doing that over the next two days.  What irks me is that the problem is occurring NOT when a particular browser is open but when ANY browser is open.  So it would have to be an extension all of my browsers have in common, no?  And if it was a browser extension, or extensions, would not the culprit listed in Task Manager be one of my browsers rather than Norton Security??

Just now, by the way, I turned on Norton Silent Mode to see if that would change anything; it did not.  Does that tend to support your suspicion?

But I then swung the toggle from the right, blue, to the left, grey, on all of the nine extensions listed on my Chrome Extensions page, and, assuming I'm right that that toggle turns those extensions off, that didn't make any difference either.  One peculiarity on the Extensions which may or may not be relevant is that my Norton Safe Search is ALREADY swung to the left, grey.  Doesn't that mean it's been de-activated?  I certainly do not recall de-activating it.  But I can't re-activate it; I'm getting a message that it needs to be updated if I want to re-activate it.  Could an INACTIVE extension, that's normally active, be causing the problem??

Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

My personal theory is running Windows 8, not having upgraded to 8.1 so that you can still get security and other updates is an issue. Have you considered updating the OS to Windows 8.1? That does tend to my suspicion as stated earlier. The date of your original post happens to coincide with the September patch Tuesday release as well. Maybe just another theory that needs following up on. Having already asked, to further assist, do you have kb5005627 OR a cumulative update for your OS dated 14 September on the system? According to the Microsoft catalog for September "security only" update was kb5005627 for Windows 8.1, nothing there for Win 8. That would imply there are security risks associated with Windows 8 no longer being supported by Microsoft. Just a theory and I'm only trying to help get to the cause of the issue as others also are. Thanks for the follow-up. 

SA

MS Certified Professional / Windows Server 2016 Essentials - Windows 10 Professional x 64 version 21H1 / build 19043.1237 / Linux Mint Tina 19.3 / Norton Core Security / Norton 360 Deluxe ver. 22.21.8.62 / Norton Core v.201103_319 on Android 2.29.02 / Opera LVL3 (core: 78.0.4093.214) Early Access w/Chrome Extensions
Kudos0

Re: Norton Security's Gone Crazy, Hogging CPU

I appreciate your help, thanks.

About two or three months ago, maybe more, on exactly the same day, both my Windows 7 and Windows 8 Windows Updates went into the crapper, and I was forced to turn them both off.  Every time I requested a Windows Update, both of them would sit there for hours, trying to download them and never successfully downloading any material at all.  Even their efforts to ascertain whether there were updates available always ended up with nothing.  Meanwhile my CPU would zoom to the top and my CPU fan would scream constantly while this unsuccessful effort to find out if there were any updates available was going on.  Finally, in desperation, I simply turned the whole Windows Update function off on both machines.  It was very odd and frustrating that both boxes developed the same problem within 24 hours of each other.  

Since that day, I've been unable to download or install any Windows Updates at all.

I confess, however, that I doubt this problem's related.  That happened a few months ago.  This Norton Security problem just started two days ago, on the morning of the 14th.  It's hard to believe it's related because it would have happened sooner, I think, if that was the case.