How to allocate CPU usage

Written by gregory hamel
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A CPU (Central Processing Unit) is a computer chip that performs the calculations needed for a computer to run processes. The CPU is one of the primary determinants of how fast various processes run on a computer. A more powerful CPU will be able to perform calculations faster and carry out more calculations at the same time, allowing for greater multitasking and smoother computer performance. Users can, however, allocate CPU usage to favour either currently running programs or background programs, and cancel processes that may be wasting CPU power.

Skill level:
Moderately Easy


  1. 1

    Click "Start," type "sysdm.cpl" into the search box and press "Enter." You can also click "Start," "Run," type "sysdm.cpl" into the text box and press "Enter."

  2. 2

    Click the "Advanced" tab.

  3. 3

    Click "Settings" under "Performance."

  4. 4

    Click the box called "Adjust for best performance" and click "Apply."

  5. 5

    Click the "Advanced" tab and, under "Processor Scheduling," find the text "Adjust for best performance of" and check the box next to "Programs" or "Background services" to set your system to favour allocating CPU usage to one or the other.

  6. 6

    Click "Apply" and then "OK."

    Cancel Processes to Reduce CPU Usage

  1. 1

    Hold the "Control," "Alt" and "Delete" keys at the same time to call up the task manager.

  2. 2

    Click the "Processes" tab.

  3. 3

    Click on a process and click "End Process" to force the process to quit. A field called "CPU" will indicate how much of your CPU's power is going toward maintenance each process.

Tips and warnings

  • Some system resources must be used to keep background processes running, even if you set your computer to favour allocating resources to programs. Cancelling processes can help free up resources so that they can be allocated to other activities. Do not cancel a process if you do not know what it is.

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