How to solve 100% Disk Usage in Windows 10 Task Manager


Suddenly if your Windows 10 computer become unresponsive or become very slow then issue could be of the 100% disk usage.  To make sure that it is due to the 100% disk usage issue navigate the Task manager by pressing Ctrl + Alt + Del and check if it is showing the disk usage 100% as like in the below screenshot. Actually you are not utilizing the 100% space. If disk utilization is showing normal then there must be some other reason for your slow computer.

100% Disk usage problem in Windows 10 Task Manager

100% disk usage in task manager is a temporary issue and most of the time just restarting your computer can solve this issue. If it occurred repeatedly then follow the guide given in this article.

Who are the culprits?

There is not any specific reason for this issue. Below can be culprits.

  • Sometimes, Windows System Process or different applications like chrome, skype or Microsoft Office can force Windows 10 to utilize most of the hard drive.
  • Windows Search get stuck in the loop. or It can be cause by the Superfetch service.
  • A windows update process running in the background can also slows down your system and show a 100% disk utilization issue.
  • A disk defragmentation running on a SSD can also create this issue.

It is not easy to determine which process is the culprit, even you can’t find the exact information in task manager.

How to fix 100% disk usage issue?

If you are getting this issue occasionally it is normal and it easy to fix. To quickly overcome this issue try below steps.

  1. Close the running apps using task bar manager.
  2. Temporarily turnoff the Windows search and Superfetch services.
  3. Disable disk defragmentation.
  4. Switch to high performance power plan.
  5. Check for system file errors using DISM and SFC commands.

Please check if Windows 10 is not downloading any update or not running any windows update process. If it so then let the windows finish first.

1. Close the running apps using task manager

First of all wait for a while to let the system finish its processing. If disk usage not go down then try to close the running processes or applications. You can do this from the task manager. Open up task manager by pressing Ctrl + Alt + Del and then right click on a process and click End task.

End task to free up disk utilization

2. Temporarily turn off the Windows Search & Superfetch services

Open up the command prompt as an administrator and type the following commands to stop these services temporarily. Some times Windows search service stuck in the loop, so to escape from this situation you need to stop these services. Then start these services again.

net stop "windows search"
net stop prefetch
net start "windows search"
net start prefetch


start stop windows search and prefetch services

Note: We do not recommend to stop these services permanently to fix this issue.

3. Disable Disk defragmentation

Sometimes disk defrag can also cause the 100% disk usage error. Specially when you are using a SSD and in task scheduler a defrag task is scheduled. So disable the Disk defragmentation task by turning it off.

  • Search for defrag and open the application Defragment and Optimize Drives.
  • Select the drive for which you want to turn off the defrag task and click on the Turn off.

.Disable disk Fragmentation in Windows 10

As per the feedback by the Microsoft community it mostly happened due to the conflict between two software.  Mostly it was caused by the Chrome and Skype.

Also Read: SSD vs HDD

If none of the above work and still facing the issue of 100% disk usage utilization then here are last 2 steps which are worth to try.  Otherwise there could be some hardware issue and may be you require to reinstall the Windows or need to replace the disk.

4. Switch to High Performance Power Plan

Switching to a high performance power plan can speed up the process which windows is doing by utilizing the disk space. So it can also solve the issue.

  1. Go to the Settings -> System -> Power & Sleep -> Additional power settings. Or alternatively open the control panel and follow the path given in the screenshot.
  2. Click on the Create new power plan.
  3. Select high performance option give it a name and save the new power plan.

Switch Power Plan

5. Run System File Checker Command

Sometimes a corrupted system file can be the issue. Chances are less but it is worth to give it a try. Run the SFC command by running DISM command first. Read : How to run DISM Command.

Simply if still you are unable to fix the Windows 100% disk usage issue then the problem is in your hardware and either your disk is really Full or its time to replace the disk.

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