How to fix Runtime Broker high CPU usage in Windows 10?

Issue: I found that Runtimebroker.exe process uses about 30-40% of computer’s CPU. I don’t think that’s normal. Is there a way to fix this problem?

Solved Answer

Runtimebroker.exe process belongs to Runtime Broker[1] application that is a part of Window OS. It is responsible for managing permission on the computer for Windows Store apps. However, high CPU usage[2] is not normal activity.

Typically, Runtime Broker uses only a few megabytes of memory. However, some users report that this process is up to 1 gigabyte of the RAM.[3] According to Microsoft, if it uses more than 15% of CPU, it’s not normal. Usually, it’s a problem related to a particular app installed on your PC; often it's a Windows Photo app.

There’s no doubt that you should fix Runtime Broker high CPU usage problem immediately. When your computer runs in such conditions, it might negatively affect your processor’s performance and shorten its lifespan. Thus, you should not let your PC to overheat and try the methods below to fix the problem.

Fix Runtime Broker high CPU usage in Windows 10

6 ways to fix Runtime Broker high CPU usage in Windows 10

There are a couple of methods that can help to fix Runtimebroker.exe using lots of computer resources. We have listed them by difficulty, so start from the easiest ones.

Option 1. Run Windows Troubleshooter

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  1. Access Control Panel.
  2. Choose Troubleshooting.
  3. Click View all in the left pane.
  4. Choose System Maintenance and run the Troubleshooter.

Windows should detect the problem and offer ways to fix it. However, if this method does not help, try the second option.

Option 2. Stop Runtime Broker

  1. Open Task Manager.
  2. In the list find Runtime Broker.
  3. Right-click it and choose End task.
    Stop Runtime Broker in Task Manager
  4. Restart your computer.

Option 3. Alter Windows registry

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Important: Before you start this procedure, you should backup Windows Registry.[4] It will protect from damage in case something goes wrong. The registry includes important system information, so corruption might lead to irreparable damage. In this case, backups help a lot.

  1. Type regedit in the Windows search box and click Enter.
  2. Navigate to this key: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINESYSTEMCurrentControlSetServicesTimeBroker
    Modify Windows Registry
  3. Here you have to change Start=dword:00000003 to dword:00000004.
Note: this action affects Cortana. Thus, you might not be able to use Cortana’s reminders normally.

Option 4. Turn off background apps

  1. Access Windows Settings.
  2. Navigate to Privacy.
  3. Choose Background apps in the left pane.
    Disable background apps
  4. Turn-off all apps that are running in the background.

Option 5. Disable tips about Windows

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To repair damaged system, you have to purchase the licensed version of Fortect.
  1. Go to Settings.
  2. Choose System.
  3. Click Notifications & actions in the left pane.
  4. Under Notification settings turn off Show me tips about Windows option.
    Turn off Show me tips about Windows option
  5. Restart the computer.

Option 6. Uninstall apps that use Runtime broker

Usually, the Runtime broker high CPU usage issue appears on the computer that has lots of pictures stored in it. Photo app in Windows 10 seems to be troublesome and causing the problem. Hence, you should try to uninstall the app:

  1. Type PowerShell in Windows search box.
  2. Once it appears in the search results, right-click it and choose Run as Administrator.
  3. In the PowerShell enter Get-AppxPackage *photos* | Remove-AppxPackage to uninstall Windows Photo app from the computer.
  4. Restart the computer and check if Runtime broker no longer drains your computer.

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About the author
Ugnius Kiguolis
Ugnius Kiguolis - The problem solver

Ugnius Kiguolis is the founder and editor-in-chief of UGetFix. He is a professional security specialist and malware analyst who has been working in IT industry for over 20 years.

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