How to Fix COM Surrogate High CPU Usage Windows 10/11?

Is your Task Manager showing COM Surrogate using high CPU usage on Windows? COM Surrogate (dllhost.exe), short for Component Object Model, is considered a legitimate Windows process responsible for handling processing images, videos & other multimedia files to generate thumbnails. However, it can potentially be disguised as malware. Microsoft developed the genuine version of the COM Surrogate in 1993 that allows developers to create COM objects using multiple programming languages.

They are mainly used to execute the software extensions required by other programs. If the extensions fail, the associated surrogate processes are impacted, not the programs running them. As the COM Surrogate process hosts.dll files, cyber attackers frequently exploit the well-known process name to distribute malicious applications.

In this article, we will explain everything about the process and what you should do if it starts causing high CPU usage on Windows 11/10 PC.

You might want to read:

What is the COM Surrogate Process?

In layman’s terms, Component Object Model (COM) is a communication mechanism that allows two processes and even apps to communicate. It enables developers to construct objects, also known as COM objects (which handle processing photos, videos, and other data to generate thumbnails), that further allow users to hook into and expand other programs.

The problem is when a single COM object crashes, resulting in the entire Windows process stopping responding altogether.

Issues & Errors Due To COM Surrogate Process

  • COM Surrogate High CPU Usage And Disk Utilization

One of the biggest concerns with the process is that COM Surrogate objects take up a lot of storage and CPU space. This certainly makes it difficult for other programs to execute properly.

  • Freezing Issues

Several users have reported that COM Surrogate often stops responding or freezes completely, resulting in COM Surrogate high CPU usage error on Windows 11/10.

  • Often Referred To As A Virus

Since malware takes up a significant amount of storage space on primary memory/disc and makes your PC behave sluggishly, people often misinterpret the COM Surrogate process as malware or an illegitimate process running in the background.

  • Always On The Execution Mode

The COM Surrogate process constantly runs in the background, which may conflict with other active processes, making your computer function slowly & abruptly.

  • COM Surrogate Has Ceased Operations.

The COM Surrogate process can occasionally stop operating altogether. Sometimes the process crashes and reopens on its own. This becomes quite aggravating!

The Sources of The Error: COM Surrogate Windows 10 High CPU Usage

This root cause of the error related to the COM Surrogate Process might be caused due to several factors; some of the common ones are listed right below.

1. Running Outdated Software: When the installed programs on your PC are not regularly updated, it might generate incorrect COM objects that are not verified on the system, resulting in a high CPU usage error due to COM Surrogate Process.

2. Outdated Codecs: There’s a high probability that Explorer could not load the extension thumbnails on the computer owing to outdated codecs.

3. Malware: Infected system/app files are one of the critical causes of numerous PC issues, including the COM Surrogate High CPU Usage problem on Windows 11/10.

Must-Read: How to Schedule Automatic Updates of Apps in Windows 10 PC

How To Fix COM Surrogate High CPU Usage Issue (2022)

Let’s check out the main methods to solve the issue of COM Surrogate Windows 10 high CPU usage.

Run A Malware Scan Using Trustworthy Antivirus Software

Although the popup appears relatively general, the fact that it repeatedly requests login information might be concerning because you never know what might get tracked.

So, consider performing a comprehensive scan on your PC to avert any malware infections that might hamper your PC and overall functioning. Windows Defender is a good option to find and eliminate potential viruses and common threats.

To learn how it works, follow the instructions below:

  • To launch Windows Settings, press the Windows + I shortcut keys.
  • Scroll down and select Update & Security module.
  • Open the Windows Security module and navigate to Virus & Threat Protection. Further, you need to click on Manage Settings.

Virus & Threat Protection

  • Now, toggle on the Real-Time Protection from here.

Though Windows Defender is relatively a good choice to detect common viruses, it is not efficient enough to detect and eliminate sophisticated malware infections, trojan horses, worms, and other vulnerabilities. Hence, we recommend our users choose the right Antivirus Software for Windows 11/10/8/7 PC.

Our recommendation for the category is T9 Antivirus, designed and developed by Tweaking Technologies. The application is a leading security solution to provide strong malware, exploit, real-time and firewall protection. These advanced protection modules are enabled by default so that your PC is always safeguarded from existing and new threats. To know about the tool, read here – T9 Antivirus 2022: Is It A Good Antivirus? (Full Review)  

Run SFC scan

Windows OS comes with an effective utility command, known as System File Checker (SFC) that checks your System Files for damaged, missing & corrupted files and replaces them with a fresh copy. To learn how to run SFC Scan on your computer and resolve COM Surrogate Windows 10 high CPU usage issue, here’s what you need to do:

  • Type CMD into the search box, and as soon as a result appears, right-click on the Command Prompt and choose the option Run as administrator.
  • Type sfc /scannow on the CMD window and press Enter button. Now, wait patiently and let it verify the integrity of every operating system file on your PC.

hal_initialization_failed on Windows

  • Restart your PC to implement the changes!

Hopefully, this resolves the annoying COM Surrogate High CPU Usage problem on your Windows 11/10 PC.

Must-Read: How To Repair Windows 7 With SF /Scannow

Execute DISM Deployment

The Deployment Image Servicing and Management (DISM) utility is a Windows built-in application that allows users to repair typical problems with your computer’s hidden recovery image. You may also use it to scan for and resolve potential errors with the Windows’ .wim store that may impact your system files.

To use it, all you have to do is

  • Launch Command Prompt as administrator.
  • Copy and paste the below command and hit the Enter button.

DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth

  • On completing these steps, restart your computer.

Probably, you’ll not encounter the annoying error “COM Surrogate High CPU Usage” problem on your Windows PC.

Perform a Clean Boot

When you start experiencing unknown issues at a computer startup, consider debugging in a Clean Boot State. It is intended to pinpoint performance issues and solve complex Windows issues.

  • Start by launching the Run dialogue box and pressing Win + R shortcut keys for the same.
  • Type msconfig in the text box and press Enter to open System Configuration.
    file system error (-2147219196)
  • On the next window, navigate to the General tab and uncheck the option Load startup items.
    system configuration
  • On the Services tab, check to Hide all Microsoft services and then click Disable all > Apply > OK buttons.

startup services Windows 10

If none of these works to solve the COM Surrogate Windows 10 high CPU usage issue, get professional assistance or get in touch with a computer expert.

WRITER’S TIP – Enhance your system performance with Advanced System Optimizer

The most typical reason for excessive CPU consumption is the accumulation of junk files, unneeded files, programs, caches, and other redundant data on your computer and browser.

Over time, all the partially downloaded files, cookies, temporary data, language files, and other irrelevant items are left behind and forgotten. This may quickly clutter up your storage space and harm the overall performance of your computer. To prevent this, consider cleaning and optimizing your system regularly with a professional utility like Advanced System Optimizer.

When you run Advanced System Optimizer, it will perform a Smart PC Care scan, which will thoroughly clean your disk space, find security concerns, and check system driver health, and Registry issues.

But that’s only the tip of the iceberg regarding what this software can achieve. Advanced System Optimizer is a multi-purpose solution designed to identify and eliminate duplicate files, uninstall unwanted applications, clean junk files, and backup important data. Moreover, it optimizes games for best performance and troubleshoots typical Windows-related issues,


FAQs | Find Out More About COM Surrogate High CPU Usage Issue

Q1. Does COM Surrogate use a lot of CPU?

COM Surrogate high CPU utilization is one of the most typical issues faced by the users, but you should be able to resolve it using one of our methods. According to users, COM Surrogate might sometimes stop responding or fully freeze on your PC.

Q2. Can COM Surrogate cause high CPU (100% disk) on Windows 10?

Yes, it does! This is one of the significant drawbacks of COM surrogate, which the developers are trying to improve.

Q3. What are the common issues related to COM Surrogate?

According to several users, COM Surrogate might occasionally stop responding or freeze on your PC. However, you should be able to resolve that problem using one of our solutions. One of the primary problems is that the COM Surrogate object consumes a lot of disk and CPU space. This may make it difficult for other programs to execute. The COM Surrogate procedure might tax your memory. However, you should be able to correct this by using one of our solutions.


Readers, we hope the article gives you a brief idea of the COM Surrogate process. It is a beneficial procedure for our system, but the legitimate processes can be disguised as malware by bad guys. All the aforementioned solutions will undoubtedly help you eliminate the associated errors in the COM Surrogate process. Aside from that, it would be beneficial if you focused on keeping your computer clean and optimized for better speed and performance.

You may use Advanced System Optimizer for the purpose. The results will be seen immediately. If you know any other effective methods to help resolve COM Surrogate Windows 10 high CPU usage, please share them with us in the comments section below!


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