How to Fix Windows 10 100% Disk Usage Issue

Man typing on a LapTop.
A Windows 10 issue known as “100% Disk Usage” leaves computers failing to respond to normal commands. Here are some steps to solve this issue.

If your computer runs on Windows 10, you may have have encountered situations where the system abruptly stops responding—though your mouse is moving on the screen, it won’t be able to open any program or document on the computer.

This could be due to a “100% Disk Usage” issue.

Several user reports have indicated that this is a common issue in Windows 10-run devices. Luckily, there are several ways to fix it.

Confirm If It Is 100% Disk Usage Issue

There is a simple way to check if the situation you are confronting is indeed the one being discussed here.

Head to the Task Manager and take a look at the Process Tag.

On the Disk column it will display 100%. This means the system has used up the total space in the hard disk and unless some space is released, you cannot continue working on your computer.

Technically, the physical drives getting overheated for an inexplicable reason is being touted as the cause of this deficiency.

This appears to be a software malfunctioning with Windows 10 and there are ways to solve this.

Here are some of the solutions to the 100% Disk Usage issue:

  1. Check StorAHCI.sys Driver

AHCI here stands for Advanced Host Controller Interface and within the Windows 10 environment, there appears to be a firmware error that is causing the malfunctioning of the corresponding driver.

If the Message Signaled Interrupt (or MSI) mode has been selected in the computer for any reason, then it prevents the routine input/output functions and you have the 100% Disk Usage situation.

Typing hands on a Pc.
If your computer runs on Windows 10, you may have have encountered situations where the system abruptly stops responding—though your mouse is moving on the screen, it won’t be able to open any program or document on the computer.

The steps to be taken to rectify this are:

  1. Press the Windows + R keys together.
  2. The Run Window will open.
  3. Type devmgmt.msc and press the “Enter” key.
  4. You will find a long list of options; go to “IDE ATA/ATAPI Controllers.”
  5. If you find “Standard SATA AHCI Controller,” right-click on it.
  6. From the drop-down menu, select “Properties.”
  7. The “Properties” dialogue box will contain a few tabs; select “Driver.”
  8. On this tab, a few lines down from the top you can see “Driver details.” Click on it.
  9. It will show you the driver; if it is “storahci.sys,” it is the inbox driver.
  10. Now go back to the tabs and click the tab next to the Driver that says “Details.”
  11. Under property, it will show “Driver instance path” and a certain value will appear in the box below. This will be a long line which starts with PCI\VEN…..
  12. Next, get back the Run box you had opened and type “Regedit” and enter.
  13. You will be taken to the Registry Editor; once there, click on “HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\System\CurrentControlSet\Enum\PCI\<AHCI Controller>\Device Parameters\Interrupt Management\MessageSignaledInterruptProperties” in that order.
  14. In the next dialogue box that appears, you will find two entries: “MSI Supported” followed by “Value.” In the Value column, change 1 to 0.
  15. Click “Ok.”

You should now get out of all these windows one-by-one by clicking the respective “Ok” buttons. Finally, restart the computer and you may find the 100% Disk Usage issue resolved.

  1. Through Disabling Windows Search

A fews Personal Computers on a working desk.
Several user reports have indicated that this is a common issue in Windows 10-run devices.

In some cases, Windows Search is found to have caused the disruption.

If you are not sure if this is the case, you can try to disable the Windows Search feature temporarily first. After that, if you find Windows 10 behaving properly, you can go back and disable it forever.

Here are the steps recommended:

  1. First press the Widows key and the letter X together.
  2. From the list that pops up, choose “Command Prompt” and click.
  3. The system will want to ask you again if you wish to make changes to the device; click on “yes.”
  4. When the “Command Prompt” window (black background) opens, you have to type “net.exe stop ‘Windows search’” in it.
  5. And then click “Enter.”

You may now go back to working on the system to check if this change has brought about any improvement in its functioning. If it did, you may choose to go to the next step.

  1. To Permanently Disable “Windows Search”

    1. You have to first open the “Run” function by clicking the Windows button and the letter “R” together.
    2. Then type “services.msc” and click “Ok.”
    3. On the window that opens, go down some 10 odd entries to locate “Windows Search” and double-click on it.
    4. You would reach the “Properties” section of “Windows Search”; here under the head “Startup type,” choose “Disabled”
    5. Then click on “Apply” and “Ok.”

This should have resolved the 100% Disk Usage issue completely.

To check if the steps you have initiated worked or not, go back to the Task Manager and if you find the Disk column showing 0% against 100% earlier, you are good to go.

Man working on his Windows Computer.
Technically, the physical drives getting overheated for an inexplicable reason is being touted as the cause of this deficiency.

These are some of the best ways to get over the issue under discussion and have been found to work.

If, in your case, the issue still persists, there are some more ways this can be approached.

Some of them include conducting a disk check for which you will have to go back to the “Command Prompt” and type “chkdsk.exe /f /r” and hit enter.

It is a process that may take a long duration to complete. You can again check on the Task Manager to see if it solved the issue.

Some experts recommend resetting your device’s virtual memory.

You can learn how it is done if any of the above described solutions did not yield the desired results.

In other cases, uninstalling the antivirus software from your system may even do the trick.

This is worth a try, since it doesn’t take much time to do and you can reboot the system to know if it worked.

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