Svchost.exe searchindexer.exe killing my HD

Tomcat - Aug 28, 2008 at 01:53 PM
 rockyr - Mar 28, 2010 at 01:37 PM
Hi, can anyone help me understand how svchost.exe works.

Basically my hard drive has been making a few weird noises and the HD led is constantly active even when all applications are closed and all none essential processes are terminated.

I installed a file activity monitor so that I could see what files where being accessed on the drive; I could not believe what I found. Within 1 minute there where over 30,000 file accesses and 80% of them where svchost.exe and the other 20% where searchindexer.exe.

I'm no computer whiz but it seemed as if my hard divers where being scanned by svchost.exe, the files that where being accessed appeared to be in alphabetical order, but with major gaps and swapping between drives?

My first thought was a virus/spyware/hacker but my firewall shows no activity and all my anti-virus/spyware scans have come up clean.

Any ideas would be helpful. Many thanks in advance.

7 responses

it's a windows process. it's debatable whether it's the process or windows itself that is really the virus.
Under which user the svchost.exe is running?

1-> Open Task Manager
2-> Go to Processes tab
3-> Sort by Process Name

You can see so many svchost.exe s. Make sure that all svchost.exe s are running under one of these users:-


if not its a virus
Hi, YES I have 5 running under SYSTEM, 4 running under LOCAL SERVICE and 3 under NETWORK SERVICE. Searchindexer.exe is also under SYSTEM.

Not long after I made that post, my hard drive finally gave up and over heated, well I assume it over heated becuase it was no longer showing, I gave it an hour to cool and restarted pc and now its back again. Im gunna backup the stuff on that drive encase it goes completely :(.
Its probably your searchindexer doing its job and indexing the files on your hard drive. Its a new service updated into windows. It indexes all the files on your hard drive to increase the search function speed.
if you wish to see what im talking about pleasee see this picture.

all that activity in 1/10th of a second. This just goes on and on none-stop.

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I'm on WinXP SP2 but having the same issues with this file.
I noticed that there's two other files that are related to it.


I checked Add/Remove and noticed Windows Search 4.0 was installed.
It probably came thru one of the updates.
I had Task Manager (Processes) opened during uninstall.
After it finished, the 3 files were gone.
After the reboot, still gone.
I haven't seen it pop up in Processes for several days now.
Hopefully that's the last that I see of this issue.

Good Luck!
Hey Guys,

I've had the same problem on my Vista installation. If you have your drive properties set to index or have it enabled in the indexing control panel, your hard drive and thus your cpu usage will spike. It drives me crazy too. You either have to ride it out like a virus scan or disable it. The advantage to the Search Indexer 4 is that it does make finding files or even information within a file lightning fast. I do find that both the indexing and system restore creation runs at the worst times and never announces itself. It is supposed to run during periods of inactivity. I have been using computer management in admin tools to use Reliability on Performance to see what process is reading and writing to te hard drive. It really helps!
Hey man ,

I've had the same problem on windows xp also , and the indexer just takes up too much memory , i've looked across the net and came up with 2 solutions : 1 is to uninstall windows search 4.0 and just remove it completely from your hard drive , the other is to go to Control Panel -administrative tools - services - look for indexing services , double click on that , under the "General Tab " look for startup type and change it to disabled , also before doing that on the dependencies tab and make sure nothing too important is depending on this service....... if you shut it off and it messes with stuff , go back in there and turn it on again , or uninstall search 4.0..... so far it has solved my problem........ hope this helps
Hi Drew,

My pc hav the same problem, and I followed what you said and uninstall the program. But after that, 3 more unknown .exe files were found in Task Manager > Processes.


unsecapp and wmi are found in C:\windows\system32\wbem, C:\windows\prefetch and C:\I386.
SmcGui is found as a PF file in windows\prefetch, and smcgui.exe, smcguires.dll are also present.

Should I be worried about this? So far the CPU usage is 0%.