A lot of the users around the social network and Windows outlets have expressed their experience related to how memory leaks are associated with ntoskrnl.exe.

Several users have revealed that this system file is causing extensive RAM and CPU usage. There have been reports of memory dumps causing Blue Screen of Death in those with extreme cases.


What Is Ntoskrnl.exe?

Ever wondered about Windows 10 being such a large operating network and how they manage their memory operation so adequately? Well, the credit can be given to the ntoskrnl.exe memory handler, also known as kernel image.


Windows NT kernel application files provide the kernel and executive layers of the operating system as well as many other system features, such as hardware virtualisation, process management, and memory management, which makes it an integral part of Windows NT.

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A cache manager is part of this system as well as the executive, the kernel, the security reference monitor, the memory manager, and the scheduler. It is because of this security feature that Ntoskrnl.exe is such a protected system file.

The security features ensure that it will not get lost or damaged easily. This is how memory management works. A task is loaded to the memory (RAM) along with the program that will perform this task.

Decoding occurs in the CPU, which subsequently performs the task and records the outcomes to memory, which could later be written to disk by the loaded program.

Implementation parts use a variety of devices comprising GPUs, CPUs, disks (ROM, HDD, SSD, etc. ), networking equipment, and many others trusting on their purpose. As soon as a program has been closed, the data is processed is deleted from RAM, freeing up the memory for other jobs to process.


Ntoskrnl.exe is supposed to manage memory, but why does it consume so much memory and CPU? There are several justifications for this, including hardware or malware-related memory leaks.

New Compressed Memory On Windows 10

Well, you might be wondering what makes Windows 7 so fast and the answer to that is ntoskrnl.exe which is a new feature. Microsoft explained how they had to create excessive memory consumption in Windows 10 which is different from other operating systems.

When Windows 10 was launched, Microsoft revealed that they have added a new concept which is an in-memory collection of compressed pages that can be found in the Memory Manager’s compression store.

Additionally, the compression store exists in the working set of the System process. Since the system protocol holds the storage in memory, the working set accumulates as the memory comes to be usable.

There is an increase in memory consumption in the System process when viewed in Task Manager. Window 10 has been built in a way that it can use large memory which sometimes seems like a Memory leak, though Windows 10 compensates memory in trade for speed.

This means that rather than writing pages to the HDD, Windows 10 condenses the data on your RAM, which makes Windows 10 considerably faster than forenamed versions. Reading condensed data from your RAM is faster than examining it from your HDD and loading it into the RAM.

Linux was using this way before Windows acquired it. Increasing your number of open applications will result in more memory being utilized, causing the CPU to work harder.

Bad Or Outdated Device Drivers

When talking with and from devices including as network cards, keyboards, and graphics cards, ntoskrnl.exe uses device drivers to send and receive data. The received data is subsequently written to RAM and is ready to be executed.

In the case of malfunctioning device drivers, data may be sent incessantly to the ntoskrnl.exe memory handler, resulting in a memory leak. The malfunctioning driver could also be writing data into ntoskrnl.exe’s memory space.

This data is continuously written into the memory, causing the RAM to fill up. To handle all of this data, additional CPU time is required. Because ntoskrnl.exe used disc space for pages in previous versions of Windows, your disc space would quickly fill up.

Users who have upgraded their operating system from Windows 7 or 8.1 to Windows 10 frequently experience this problem. Because the drivers may not be compatible with Windows 10, memory leaks may occur. Memory leaks have been detected on Windows 10 due to obsolete “Killer Network Drivers.”

Malware And Viruses

Be wary of shareware and freeware delivered through the internet. They may actively insert themselves in the ntoskrnl.exe system file or hijack its function, resulting in memory leaks. It may also modify the executable’s registry.

This implies that ntoskrnl.exe will no longer function as planned. Because malware is designed to harm your computer, it will enable data to stream into RAM but not out. The infection may also be actively writing to the memory region occupied by ntoskrnl.exe.

This consumes your memory and consumes a lot of CPU power. Pages saved to the HDD may use all of your storage space. When ntoskrnl.exe recognises that there is too much memory and no more could be added, “it panics.”

In an attempt to save the situation, it dumps the RAM as well as any other Windows files. As an outcome, the computer displays a Blue Screen of Death (BSOD). When it detects that anything is constantly breaching its memory space, the very same thing occurs.

A sudden system shutdown may also occur as a result of CPU overheating caused by excessive activity. To help stop the CPU from overheating, the computer shuts down to allow it to cool.

Corrupt Ntoskrnl.exe System File

There’s no chance that Ntoskrnl.exe will get damaged or infected, as it’s a highly protected system file. If the file does become corrupted, ntoskrnl.exe will malfunction and will not know what to write into the RAM or when to free up memory.

The CPU may have to work extra hard to manage the piling-up of data and memory pages. This can also cause the HDD to fill up.

How To Fix Excess Memory Usage?

You could be infected with malware or a virus if suddenly memory problems begin to occur. Having memory leaks after a Windows update or after installing a new device could indicate that old or incompatible drivers are causing the issue.

This is some advice about fixing the memory space issue with ntoskrnl.exe.

Repair Corrupt System Files

Install Restoro and run it to scan and recover corrupt and missing files from. Once you have carried out that, comply with the commands below. Before moving forward with the solutions below, we recommend that you verify that all system files have not been corrupted.

Method 1: Update Your Drivers

In addition, graphics and network drivers could be the first suspect for causing a memory leak after updating to Windows 10. Using “Killer Network Drivers” commonly causes this problem. To fix it:

Step 1: By holding down the Windows key and pressing R, enter “hdwwiz.cpl” and click “OK”.

Step 2: Click on “Update Drivers” under the Drivers tab.

Step 3: Choose “Install driver updates automatically” in the dialog box provided.

Step 4: Restart your computer.

Method 2: Run Antimalware and Antispyware Applications

Scanners for malware on your PC are a good idea. You can try this one.

Step 1: Click here if you want to install Spybot or here if you want to install Malwarebytes.

Step 2: Run a scan after installing the software.

Step 3: Resolve all issues that arise.

Step 4: Now “Restart” your computer.

Method 3: Disable Runtime Broker

There is strong evidence on Reddit that Runtime Broker is one system procedure that depletes a vast fraction of CPU cycles, through impoverished memory optimization. This leads to high CPU paces and memory leaks.

Disabling Runtime Broker can be done by:

Step 1: Open “Start Menu” and go to “Settings”.

Step 2: In “System” go to “Notification and Actions”.

Step 3: Now unselect “Show me tips about Windows”. Restart your computer.

Or another way is:

Step 1: Go to “Notepad”.

Step 2: Go ahead and copy and paste the commands below in the notepad.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Services\TimeBroker] “Start”=dword:00000003

[HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Services\SysMain] “DisplayName”=”Superfetch” “Start”=dword:00000003

Step 3: Now “Save” it in the files.

Step 4: Save it under “whichever_name_you_choose.reg”.

Step 5: Make sure the registry changes are accepted and confirmed by running the file as an administrator.

Step 6: Now “Restart” your computer.

Method 4: Changing Registry Settings

There are some specific settings withinside the registry which may be edited to offer higher accomplishment. To alter the registry configurations:

Step 1: Press “Windows” and “R” key both together at the same time.

Step 2: In the search bar write “regedit”, then click “enter”.

Step 3: Go to the address below:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE>SYSTEM>CurrentControlSet>Control>Session Manager>Memory Management

Step 4: In the right panel and double click on the “Clear Page File Shutdown”. Now type “1” in the bar under “Value Data” and choose “OK”.

Step 5: Lastly “Restart” your computer and check again if the problem still remains.

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In the above article we have tried to explain the issue as well as how can you resolve it. Always maintain your antimalware and antispyware as much as date. Search for tool drivers updates regularly.

The tool manufacturers constantly replace their driving force definitions to clear up troubles and enhance functionality. If not one of the above works for then you it would be well worth attempting the cautioned steps at the device and compressed memory.