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Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

Windows XP Pro SP3 all updates AMD Athlon 64x2 4GB RAM. NIS 2014. About 3 weeks ago both Firefox 32 and IE 8 started to use a whole cpu core on startup never succeeded in rendering a page and became unresponsive.
This did not happen when booted in safe mode - no networking.
Did a System Restore to a date 1 week earlier - problem solved so I thought. Went on holiday for a week - 2 days later problem returned.
Used msconfig.exe to set Win only load minimum but problem still there. In desperation uninstalled NIS. Both browsers now worked fine. Took opportunity to instal Chrome. Reinstalled NIS - Firefox and IE no longer work but Chrome does.
My conclusion - problem caused by NIS. How to solve it?

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

Windows XP Pro SP3 all updates AMD Athlon 64x2 4GB RAM. NIS 2014. About 3 weeks ago both Firefox 32 and IE 8 started to use a whole cpu core on startup never succeeded in rendering a page and became unresponsive...

Did a System Restore to a date 1 week earlier - problem solved so I thought. Went on holiday for a week - 2 days later problem returned.

Hi Adagio:

Did you disable Norton Product Tamper Protection before running your system restore as noted in the support article here?  If not, you might have corrupted your NIS installation, and a standard uninstall from the Control Panel could potentially leave behind a corrupted user file that is still present on your system and causing problems.

Rather than try a refresh of your installation with the Norton Remove and Reinstall (NRnR) tool, I'd go straight to a clean reinstall of the latest NIS v. 21.5.0.19 as instructed here. It's important to follow Step # 5 and choose Please remove all user data during the uninstall from the Control Panel (see the screenshot here) to ensure a clean reinstall.

Just FYI, I've been seeing intermittent issues with Firefox saturating a full core on my dual-core CPU (see here) since upgrading to FF32 and haven't isolated the cause yet.

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MS Windows 32-bit Vista Home Premium SP2 * Firefox 32.0.1 * IE 9.0 * NIS 2013 v. 20.5.0.28
HP Pavilion dv6835ca, Intel Core2Duo CPU T5550 @ 1.83 GHz, 3.0 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

About 3 weeks ago both Firefox 32 and IE 8 started to use a whole cpu core on startup never succeeded in rendering a page and became unresponsive.
This did not happen when booted in safe mode - no networking.
Did a System Restore to a date 1 week earlier - problem solved so I thought. Went on holiday for a week - 2 days later problem returned.
In desperation uninstalled NIS. Both browsers now worked fine. Took opportunity to instal Chrome. Reinstalled NIS - Firefox and IE no longer work but Chrome does.
My conclusion - problem caused by NIS. How to solve it?

This is a known issue caused by running live update from around Aug. 27 through Saturday or Sunday Labor Day weekend.

Norton antivirus update interferes with Internet Explorer 8 on window XP (new issue?)

Currently, since today's site redesign, the thread with the link above is incomplete and in the wrong chronological order on some pages.

Some people had the issue resolved by running a recent LU, and lots of people are still waiting for their corrupted OS to be fixed.

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

Windows XP Pro SP3 all updates AMD Athlon 64x2 4GB RAM. NIS 2014. About 3 weeks ago both Firefox 32 and IE 8 started to use a whole cpu core on startup never succeeded in rendering a page and became unresponsive...

Did a System Restore to a date 1 week earlier - problem solved so I thought. Went on holiday for a week - 2 days later problem returned.

This is a known issue if live update was run between about Aug. 27 through Labor Day Saturday or Sunday.

Some people have reported that a recent LU has fixed the issue, but many of us are still waiting for a fix for our altered OS.

Search for this thread, although it is incomplete right now because of the site redesign.

I would post the link, but any post with a link gets queued and never appears in the thread.

Norton antivirus update interferes with Internet Explorer 8 on window XP

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

Tainted wrote:

This is a known issue caused by running live update from around Aug. 27 through Saturday or Sunday Labor Day weekend.

Norton antivirus update interferes with Internet Explorer 8 on window XP (new issue?)

Some people had the issue resolved by running a recent LU, and lots of people are still waiting for their corrupted OS to be fixed.

Hi Adagio:

I noticed that RibEye posted here this morning in PinguJohn's thread Latest LiveUpdate Has Crashed My XP Computer Again that the problem with Norton products crashing on machines with older CPUs has apparently returned on some machines.

That being said, the issue caused by the 27-Aug-2014 IP engine update (see Symantec employee miket's post here) appears to be most common on machines with older CPUs that only support the SSE instruction set and do not support the newer SSE2 instruction set.  I checked the wiki article here and your AMD Athlon 64 CPU should be able to support the newer SSE2 instructions set (you can confirm running a diagnostic with Speccy as instructed here) so I'm not sure the saturation of your entire CPU core by your IE8 and Firefox browsers is in fact related to this SSE/SSE2 issue.

As I noted here, I'm seeing similar problems with the saturation of one of my CPU cores by firefox.exe and as far as I know my machine was not affected by the 27-Aug-2014 update.  I still suspect that NIS is involved somehow but the exact cause of my high CPU consumption is proving difficult to isolate since it this core saturation only happens intermittently on my machine (which has a CPU that supports both SSE and SSE2 instructions) when I'm browsing with Firefox 32.0.x.

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MS Windows 32-bit Vista Home Premium SP2 * Firefox 32.0.1 * IE 9.0 * NIS 2013 v. 20.5.0.28
HP Pavilion dv6835ca, Intel Core2Duo CPU T5550 @1.83 GHz, 3 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

Thank you both for your responses. Tried Imacri's suggestion of 'clean install' to no avail  Please note problem not limited to Firefox, IE 8 exhibits similar symptoms.

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

 

As I noted here, I'm seeing similar problems with the saturation of one of my CPU cores by firefox.exe and as far as I know my machine was not affected by the 27-Aug-2014 update.  I still suspect that NIS is involved somehow but the exact cause of my high CPU consumption is proving difficult to isolate since it this core saturation only happens intermittently on my machine (which has a CPU that supports both SSE and SSE2 instructions) when I'm browsing with Firefox 32.0.x.

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MS Windows 32-bit Vista Home Premium SP2 * Firefox 32.0.1 * IE 9.0 * NIS 2013 v. 20.5.0.28
HP Pavilion dv6835ca, Intel Core2Duo CPU T5550 @1.83 GHz, 3 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS

Firefox has inherent high CPU usage on websites that use Adobe Flash for advertising. Try Flashblock extension available through Mozilla add-ons.

It has a white list for sites where you do not want to block Flash.

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

Hi Adagio:
 

Here's what I've observed with Firefox 32.0.x when one of my CPU cores is saturated by firefox.exe.  I rarely use IE9 so I don't know  if I'd see the same thing with Internet Explorer.

CPU occasionally jumps to 50% +/- 10% (i.e. saturation of one core of my dual-core CPU) while I am browsing and stays there for long periods of time as shown below.

When this happens, firefox.exe usually doesn't termination properly when I close my browser and I must kill the firefox.exe process from Task Manager or Sysinternals' Process Explorer. If I check the threads running under firefox.exe in Process Explorer before killing the process (i.e., after I've closed my Firefox browser), MSVCR100.dll accounts for the entire CPU consumption.

The IPSLdr32.dll and IPSEng32.dll highlighted in blue are associated with the Intrusion Prevention engine update of 27-Aug-2014 but I didn't start to see problems with Firefox until Symantec released the 04-Sep-2014 IPS definition update that was supposed to fix Norton crashes and browser problems on older machines with CPUs that do not support the SSE2 instruction set.  I'm beginning to suspect that it was this 04-Sep-2014 patch that actually started the high CPU problem on my 32-bit Vista machine.  FYI, I uninstalled Adobe Flash v. 14.0.0.176 on 09-Sep-2014 and still haven't upgraded to v. 15.0.0.152 yet (i.e., there is no Flash add-on in either of my browsers) so I don't think that Adobe Flash is directly responsible for the problem.  I've also created a new Firefox user profile using the Firefox Profile Manager and that hasn't solved the problem either.

Just out of curiosity, if you go to the Advanced tab of your Norton GUI and temporarily disable both Intrusion Prevention and Browser Protection, does your CPU consumption by your browser drop back to "normal"?  It's hard for me to tell if this workaround might work on my system because this high CPU consumption by firefox.exe is intermittent and I can go for an entire day or two without seeing it occur.

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MS Windows 32-bit Vista Home Premium SP2 * Firefox 32.0.1 * IE 9.0 * NIS 2013 v. 20.5.0.28
HP Pavilion dv6835ca, Intel Core2Duo CPU T5550 @1.83 GHz, 3 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

 

Just out of curiosity, if you go to the Advanced tab of your Norton GUI and temporarily disable both Intrusion Prevention and Browser Protection, does your CPU consumption by your browser drop back to "normal"?  It's hard for me to tell if this workaround might work on my system because this high CPU consumption by firefox.exe is intermittent and I can go for an entire day or two without seeing it occur.

Thanks for your input and suggestion. I tried the above but to no avail. Since the problem applies both to IE 8 and Firefox 32 and uninstalling NIS fixes it quite reproducibly I do not believe it to be a problem with Firefox but rather with NIS. I had naively hoped that a Symantec guy might respond to the thread with an admission and promise of timescale for a fix. Sadly it would appear not.  

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

Adagio wrote:

Since the problem applies both to IE 8 and Firefox 32 and uninstalling NIS fixes it quite reproducibly I do not believe it to be a problem with Firefox but rather with NIS. I had naively hoped that a Symantec guy might respond to the thread with an admission and promise of timescale for a fix. Sadly it would appear not.  

Hi Adagio:

Have you tried clearing your browsing history in both your Firefox (History | Clear Recent History | Everything) and IE (Tools | Delete Browsing History), including your Internet cache and cookies?  Have you run consecutive manual LiveUpdates in NIS until it reports that no further updates are available since your clean reinstall?  It can sometimes take several rounds of consecutive LiveUpdates and re-boots before your NIS is fully patched after one of these reinstalls.


If those suggestions don't work, you might want to contact Norton Customer Support via Live Chat at www.norton.com/chat.  Most, but not all, users have reported that problems caused by the 27-Aug-2014 Intrusion Prevention engine update that affected IE and Firefox (but not Chrome) have now been fixed since they refreshed their Norton installation with the Norton Remove and Reinstall Tool or performed a clean reinstall, which doesn't seem to have worked for you.  If the issue you are seeing is actually related to this IP engine update and the new plugin-less browser protection, it could be a problem that is very specific to your AMD Athlon 64 X2 CPU.  I should warn you, though, that I tried a Live Chat on 07-Sep-2014 and Norton Customer Support would not (or could not) reveal any details about the issue, except to say that they were aware of problems running Norton on machines with "older Central Processing Units".  They refused to say if this was related to SSE vs SSE2 instruction set compatibility of the CPU and simply told me to keep running daily LiveUpdates until the problem disappeared.

FYI, my high CPU activity caused by firefox.exe shown here hasn't occurred again since 17-Sep-2014.  I have no idea if one of the recent updates for the IPS definitions fixed the problem or if this high CPU activity by firefox.exe is completely unrelated to the IP engine update and might return in the future, but I'm still using FF v. 32.0.1 so it has nothing to do with the recent FF v. 32.0.2 update.
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MS Windows 32-bit Vista Home Premium SP2 * Firefox 32.0.1 * IE 9.0 * NIS 2013 v. 20.5.0.28
HP Pavilion dv6835ca, Intel Core2Duo T5550 @ 1.83 GHz, 3 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

 Most, but not all, users have reported that problems caused by the 27-Aug-2014 Intrusion Prevention engine update that affected IE and Firefox (but not Chrome) have now been fixed since they refreshed their Norton installation with the Norton Remove and Reinstall Tool or performed a clean reinstall, which doesn't seem to have worked for you.

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MS Windows 32-bit Vista Home Premium SP2 * Firefox 32.0.1 * IE 9.0 * NIS 2013 v. 20.5.0.28
HP Pavilion dv6835ca, Intel Core2Duo T5550 @ 1.83 GHz, 3 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS

I didn't see very many posts that claimed that the disabled browser issue was fixed by a removal and reinstall, or Live Update. "Most" has a potentially large number affected PCs.

Mine certainly wasn't fixed after countless hours with Symantec support. I have had no further contact from support after they were unsuccessful, and stated they would escalate it.

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Re: Firefox & IE using 100% cpu core

Hi Adagio:

I just wanted to mention that Symantec released a product update today for NIS - see the blog Product Update - 21.6 of Norton Internet Security, Norton AntiVirus and Norton 360.

The list of fixes for v. 21.6.0.32 in that announcement don't mention anything about IE and Firefox, but it would be interesting to see if this update helps to reduce the % CPU consumed by your browsers.  You can check your NIS version number at Support | About - if it still says v. 21.5.0.19 please note that this product update is being released in a phased manner and might take a few days to be delivered in your region.
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MS Windows 32-bit Vista Home Premium SP2 * Firefox 32.0.1 * IE 9.0 * NIS 2013 v. 20.5.0.28
HP Pavilion dv6835ca, Intel Core2Duo T5550 @ 1.83 GHz, 3 GB RAM, NVIDIA GeForce 8400M GS

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