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Do ALL SP2s suffer from hi CPU utilization when idle due to faulty audio drivers?

jrapdx

Member
Exactly the same happening to me! I wasn't even aware of that issue, but when I read this post, I checked the task manager and found my processor working at 20-30%. I removed the Sd card, rebooted and then it worked at 0-1%. If I add the Sd card again, nothing weird happens, but if I completely power off the computer for 15s and then start it up with the SD inserted, it idles again at 20-30%.
There are two processes making the processor work: one called System (it uses 15% of the processor) and another one called System Interruptions (using about 8% of the processor)

Another hell of an issue to add to my issues list... though this one seems to have a simple solution: just don’t use the Sd card on a 1000€ device...
Absurd to have to avoid using an mSD card in the slot designed for it! But I find it IS possible.

After cold boot and CPU at >20%, just put the SP2 in sleep state, then wake it up. Check Task Manager. CPU will be around 0%.

Try it and tell us what you find out.
 

Rvacha

Member
Its hard to call your SP2 a lemon - it is operating as designed - that is to say very poorly
Absurd to have to avoid using an mSD card in the slot designed for it
Even more absurd is how long this bug has existed without being fixed
No more absurd than a so-called "N" WiFi client that can't even support G speeds.
Certainly less absurd than crashing simply because you had the nerve to wake it up
 

jrapdx

Member
Its hard to call your SP2 a lemon - it is operating as designed - that is to say very poorly

Even more absurd is how long this bug has existed without being fixed
No more absurd than a so-called "N" WiFi client that can't even support G speeds.
Certainly less absurd than crashing simply because you had the nerve to wake it up
Hard to argue with the notion that it's not enough to have a good idea, but there must also be careful, thorough, effective embodiment of a good idea. I have no doubt the SP2 was a good idea. You express many doubts about the quality of its implementation.

Not a trivial matter to those of us who paid a premium price, anticipating we would have a superior product to use, and troubling to find it is not so. But for MS the stakes are far greater. The longer this situation lingers the more corrosive it becomes, not only to their profits, but to the reputation their future depends on.

The scariest thought is not that some developers at MS made really bad mistakes, but that they are having trouble fixing their errors, or even worse, they don't know how to fix the errors. I'd wager they want to fix it, but having bitten off more than they can chew, it's proving extremely difficult to accomplish.

It could get interesting. Who knows, next week we find out the SP2 has been sold off to Lenovo. :D
 

trippma

New Member
It still feels to me that it's some combination of the SD card and the audio driver as it only happens to me when both are in the equation. You can see the interaction as it happens - reproduce the error so that your CPU is churning away and then disable the audio via Device Manager. The CPU use will immediately drop. Re-enable audio and within +/- 30 seconds the CPU will jump right back up. No SD card = no problem. No audio = no problem.
 

jrapdx

Member
It still feels to me that it's some combination of the SD card and the audio driver as it only happens to me when both are in the equation. You can see the interaction as it happens - reproduce the error so that your CPU is churning away and then disable the audio via Device Manager. The CPU use will immediately drop. Re-enable audio and within +/- 30 seconds the CPU will jump right back up. No SD card = no problem. No audio = no problem.
OK. You got it. Here's what I did.

Computer fully shut down. mSD card in slot. Power on. Log in. Task Manager -> CPU 33%.

Open Device Manager. Sound drivers: Realtek: enabled->disabled. Task Manager -> CPU 1%.

Sound drivers: Realtek: disabled->enabled. Task Manager -> CPU 0%. BUT: After ~15 sec Task Manager -> CPU 36%.

Repeated sound driver enabled->disabled->enabled: same result, CPU 35%.

Conclusion so far: mSD in slot + Realtek driver enabled -> CPU >= 33%.

The kicker:
Enter sleep: per menu or Power button
Wake up: Task Manager -> CPU 0% !!!

Conclusion:
When condition (mSD in slot AND Realtek driver enabled) is true, <Power on> from <full shutdown> [cold boot] -> CPU revving.
Possibly, other enabled drivers or conditions are required. The number of factors is potentially large.

The sequence of: <Enter sleep, then Wake up> is a work-around for the CPU revving.
 

be77solo

Active Member
For what it's worth, my SP2 256 does this as well, have tried both a Samsung microSD card and two different SanDisk cards... cpu sits around 30%. Doesn't do it all the time but when it does I can tell because the back case is warmer than normal, quick check of task manager confirms it. Annoying, but seems software related and not hardware related.
 

chmsfor

New Member
OK. You got it. Here's what I did.

Computer fully shut down. mSD card in slot. Power on. Log in. Task Manager -> CPU 33%.

Open Device Manager. Sound drivers: Realtek: enabled->disabled. Task Manager -> CPU 1%.

Sound drivers: Realtek: disabled->enabled. Task Manager -> CPU 0%. BUT: After ~15 sec Task Manager -> CPU 36%.

Repeated sound driver enabled->disabled->enabled: same result, CPU 35%.

Conclusion so far: mSD in slot + Realtek driver enabled -> CPU >= 33%.

The kicker:
Enter sleep: per menu or Power button
Wake up: Task Manager -> CPU 0% !!!

Conclusion:
When condition (mSD in slot AND Realtek driver enabled) is true, <Power on> from <full shutdown> [cold boot] -> CPU revving.
Possibly, other enabled drivers or conditions are required. The number of factors is potentially large.

The sequence of: <Enter sleep, then Wake up> is a work-around for the CPU revving.
Or doublick a mp3 file and let it play for a few seconds, then stop.. And you are good until you shut down the computer ...you can hibernate, sleep ..
 

bluegrass

Well-Known Member
This CPU over utilization problem due to faulty audio drivers is a serious problem. I bet if a Surface editor for one of the main magazines wrote about this problem, Microsoft would jump on it and fix it. I wonder how much attention they pay to the forums.

I wonder what my doctor would tell me if I was constantly over utilizing my heart by about 30%. Do you think he might tell me "that's not cool"?
 
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jrapdx

Member
This CPU over utilization problem due to faulty audio drivers is a serious problem. I bet if a Surface editor for one of the main magazines wrote about this problem, Microsoft would jump on it and fix it. I wonder how much attention they pay to the forums.

I wonder what my doctor would tell me if I was constantly over utilizing my heart by about 30%. Do you think he might tell me "that's not cool"?
The processor over-utilization is a complex problem, showing up under certain conditions, which so far have been demonstrated to include at least all of these:

  • Booting up from full shut down state.
  • At booting up, a microSD card is inserted in the slot
  • Realtek sound driver is enabled.
It is quite possible there are additional conditions necessary for the high CPU utilization to show up, but so far these are all reported. I'm guessing the conditions just happen to line up in a way that triggers a bug in the firmware resulting in the high CPU rate. No doubt noticing the set of conditions provides clues about where the boot up code goes off track.

ATM there's no cure, but we don't have to just sit and suffer.

An interim solution: putting the SP2 in sleep state, then waking it up right away. Doing so the CPU load falls from >= 25% to 0% in a few seconds.

(And come to think of it, what happens with Sleep+Wakeup is yet another clue.)
 
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SteveBorough

Member
The processor over-utilization is a complex problem, showing up under certain conditions, which so far have been demonstrated to include at least all of these:

  • Booting up from full shut down state.
  • At booting up, a microSD card is inserted in the slot
  • Realtek sound driver is enabled.

It is quite possible there are additional conditions necessary for the high CPU utilization to show up, but so far no yet discovered. I'm guessing the conditions are coincidental, they just happen to line up in a way that triggers a bug in the firmware resulting in the high CPU rate we observe. Likely enough, the seemingly random combination is an important clue to the engineers trying to track down where the boot up code goes off track.

ATM there's no cure, but we don't have to just sit and suffer.

An interim solution: putting the SP2 in sleep state, then waking it up right away. Doing so the CPU load falls from >= 25% to 0% in a few seconds.

(And come to think of it, what happens with Sleep+Wakeup is yet another clue.)
You make it sound like this is a hard scenario to recreate, jk. Every morning or any long break one will have to deal with this. BTW, any sound played drops the CPU down momentarily.

Better Solution:disable hibernation after sleep for 60 minutes (yes we're back to this solution, even though the 1/18/2014 update fixed the other issue this was a fix for) Therefore your device never "cold boots" instead stays asleep when not in use, sleep battery drain is negligible if you will be charging at least once daily.

One last edit: Back to the original question, IS THIS UNIVERSAL TO ALL SP2s WITH SD CARDS?
 
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chmsfor

New Member
you can also double click the mp3 file either on your sdcard or on local drive to play the xbox player or whatever default player...Can you check that this works for you as well... it does for me.
 
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SteveBorough

Member
you can also double click the mp3 file either on your sdcard or on local drive to play the xbox player or whatever default player...Can you check that this works for you as well... it does for me.
This is temporary as noted in my post above yours, any sound played drops cpu back down but it will increase again.
 
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