NVIDIA’s Latest Driver Causing High CPU Usage Problems
For those using computers for gaming, you’re undoubtedly familiar with the NVIDIA name and the company’s reputation for high-powered graphics cards and gaming systems:
- Servers for gaming in the cloud
- GeForce GTX Gaming Laptops
- NVIDIA DGX systems providing computing power for artificial intelligence and deep learning
- High-performance graphics cards for gaming system builders
Talk to anyone experienced in building or running sophisticated gaming machines, and the NVIDIA name will surely come up.
Gaming systems rely on powerful CPUs, plenty of RAM, and abundant storage (whether HDD or SSD). To get the most from your system, a powerful graphics card is an essential component.
TechRadar rates NVIDIA’s GeForce RTX 2080 model as the “new top dog in the graphics card world”, a testament to the company’s leadership in the graphics industry. No technology company is free from incidents, however. Microsoft also had negative feedback from gamers after a March update that generated performance issues including input lag and low frame rates.
Trouble with NVIDIA’s Latest Driver
As important as the graphics card and associated drivers are to your gaming entertainment, issues with the software controlling your system have a real impact on gaming program and overall computer performance.
When NVIDIA introduced the 430.39 WHQL driver, the company had the best of intentions:
- Improved support for the Mortal Combat 11 Game
- Support for the new GTX 1650 graphics card
- Support for Microsoft’s latest Windows 10 update
Even so, many NVIDIA users began to notice an increase in CPU usage with the new driver. The impact was noticed not only when running resource-intensive games, but also when running typical non-gaming tasks.
Gamers digging into the issue reported that NVIDIA’s display container was consuming 10-20% of CPU capacity – a significant drag on available resources – even with no programs in use.
NVIDIA soon responded with an acknowledgment of the problem and worked diligently to reproduce it and find a resolution.
Fortunately, by April 29th, NVIDIA released a “hot fix” driver version – 430.53 that addressed the issue for NVIDIA customers. This fix resolved multiple issues with the prior driver:
- Corrected the high CPU usage by the NVIDIA container caused by 430.39
- Resolves a problem with flickering when launching Benchmark in 3DMark Time Spy
- Solves incidents of crashing when the BeamNG game is launched
- Eliminates problems with freezing when Shadow of the Tomb Raider is started in SLI mode
- Fixes video flickering issue when a secondary monitor is used for playback
There Was a Workaround
Serious system users looking for a solution while waiting for an NVIDIA solution had some alternatives:
- Uninstall the updated driver to roll your system back to a prior version of the driver
- Deleting certain subfolders in the NVIDIA main folder, which resulted in the process still running, but solving the high CPU utilization issue
Of course, you may not be comfortable going into your system and deleting files, making the uninstall a more tasteful solution for you.
Fortunately, NVIDIA responded to the problem very quickly, releasing the hot fix in sort order to correct the problems.
Why Does This Happen?
Security is a prime concern for all computer users, and gamers are certainly no exception. There are many games designed to be played by multiple or many players, facilitated by cloud computing. Exposure to malware and cyber intruders should be of great concern to both players and vendors such as NVIDIA. Operating system providers such as Apple and Microsoft do an amazing job of providing updates to their systems to provide the most secure environments possible.
As operating systems are updated, technology companies such as NVIDIA work to improve their support for the updated OS as well as improving performance and adding features to their own products. New and updated games also require updates to graphics technology to meet specific game architecture requirements.
Try as they may to provide quality products, software, and drivers, the complexity of OS, graphics software, and gaming software will occasionally result in issues for consumers.
What is a Gamer to Do?
To get the most from your system, staying up-to-date is critical, for several reasons:
- Taking advantage of added features
- Applying all the latest security updates to keep your system secure from vulnerabilities
- Utilizing the latest gaming programs and peripherals
Although periodic issues from software updates are inevitable, it’s still to your advantage to keep your system current – including all drivers.
Keeping Your Gaming System Running Smoothly
For the best gaming experience, you rely on your computer equipment to run at optimal performance. This includes the best hardware and software your budget allows for. Your graphics card is one critical element to getting the most from your system.
Keeping Your Drivers Up-to-date – and Secure
Wouldn’t it be great though, if you had a safe, secure way to keep your drivers updated without the complexity of painstakingly finding the best drivers for your system?
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