Every once in a while (like maybe once a week) I'll start getting
excessive hardware interrupts. I used process explorer (a tool from
sysinternals.com) to determine that the hardware interrupts were
indeed what was causing the CPU spike.
I'm running a Dell 1520 Inspiron Laptop, Vista Ultimate, and the PC is
about 2 months old. I used a cool program called KrView (http://
) to see if I could
determine what was causing the interrupts and here is the output:
Results for Kernel Mode:
OutputResults: KernelModuleCount = 163
Percentage in the following table is based on the Total Hits for the
Time 3826 hits, 25000 events per hit --------
Module Hits msec %Total Events/Sec
ntkrnlpa 2758 4847 72 %
bcmwl6 825 4847 21 %
hal 211 4847 5 %
ndis 8 4847 0 %
atapi 8 4847 0 %
nvlddmkm 5 4847 0 %
win32k 3 4847 0 %
dxgkrnl 3 4847 0 %
ataport 3 4847 0 %
tcpip 1 4847 0 %
NETIO 1 4847 0 %
================================= END OF RUN
============================== NORMAL END OF RUN
As you can see from above, the bcmwl6 one appears to be excessively
eating up CPU cycles (the other one with a high percentage is the
kernel, but I'd expect that). I did some googling and found out that
this is the broadcom driver, I think. So I disabled my wireless
connection (I was on a wired connection when this happens) and guess
what? The CPU spike dropped! I have done this numerous times, and
every time I disable the wireless the CPU spikes go away and hardware
interrupts drops back to normal. So I feel pretty confident that it's
something with the wireless, but I downloaded the latest broadcom
"drivers" but the problem continues to happen. I have "drivers" in
quotes because even though I installed the software, when I go into
device manager the driver date for the broadcom 44x 10/100 Integrated
Controller didn't change.
Anyway, I'm kind of at the end of my abilities here, and I'm hoping
some of you folks might have some suggestions.
The computer is under warranty, so I went to Dell support online chat
yesterday and they are coming out to install a new wireless card. But
I'm not sure if that is going to fix it. I mean, how do I know if the
card is bad or if it's just bad drivers?
I'm really stressed out about this. Anybody experienced it?
If you need more info, just ask.
Thanks in advance.