Pulsating Hour Glass and mouse pointer



Hi - A very recent and vexing prob with XP. My computer just started to
pulsate (every 1 second) with the hourglass icon and the mouse pointer. I
also show an 85-90% CPU utilization rate although there is nothing running.
I've done the boot, re-boot, disconnection of all other programs, ran all
the system checks like defrag, virus and spyware detector and a Registry fix
with software I recently bought and installed.

Can anyone tell me what causes this, or better how to fix it?
Many thanks


Well a registry tool is probably the last thing you want to play with.
Running processes should show what is utilising cpu

Mark L. Ferguson

The processes tab of task manager should be telling you the name of the
process doing all this activity. If its svchost I would suspect some backdoor


Hi Mark - Thanks for your reply.

I looked at Task Mgr. I have at least 30 processes listed and I see the list
pulsating with the "thump" "thump" "thump" of the computer itself which
coincides with the pulsating hourglass & mouse pointer icon on the screen. I
don't know why I have so many processes listed, I know I can delete quite a
few if that might help.

The list seems to rise and fall one notch (system) every 3rd pulse and
returns to it's original location on the 4th pulse. Meanwhile system names on
the top of the list bump up & down in synch with the hourglass & mouse
pointer icon.

The software I used for the Registry is a "Repair Registry" software named
"RegCure". Been on this computer for more than 6 months, I've used it before
a couple of times and have not noted any problems.

I'm confused. Can't really describe the problem any differently.


If you click on the cpu header, in Task Manager, running Processes, will
resort the items, so you should be able to then see what is consuming cpu
30 processes listed, if you are looking at running processes is a very low
Deleting/stopping processes, unless you know *exactly* what they are could
render your PC unuseable

You mentioned in your first post that it was fully updated, you havent
installed any device drivers from winupdate have you?
Running winupdate from IE & reviewing update history will tell you


DL - Many thanks for your reply. I don't think I understand the cpu header in
TM running processes. When I open TM I don't see a CPU header. If I click on
Processes all I can do is delete (...no other choices). CPU is still running
pulsating icons, etc., I can use CPU as normal (browsing, etc) but no luck in
stopping the pulsating hourglass/mouse pointer icon. CPU shows 100% of use.
I've closed everything I could, to include all the desktop icons.
Not the fastest oar in the boat, but I don't know what else to do. Any added


My error, In task Manager, processes tab, click on CPU this will refresh the
output and show it in usage level
Likewise clicking Image name will reorgonise it alphabetically

And did you check your winudate history?


Went back into TM after sending my last. The processes are moving constantly
(changing places). I managed to put a short list (highest CPU usage) together.
As of 01/10/08, from Task Manager:

Highest use (CPU)

ScanningProcess 36,268K
Svchost.exe 30,308K
Svchost.exe 30,120K
vsmon.exe 26,468K
Explorer.exe 24,200K
LinkSysAgent.exe 12,900K
EasyShare.exe 12,048K
zlclient.exe 5,752K
iTuneshelper.exe 5,400K
wusb54GP.exe 5,076K
svchost.exe Local Svc 4,784K
svchost.exe System 2,560K
svchost.Network Svc 1,640K

All other processes shown running are using less than last item above.

I tried to get the winupdate to see about poss of installing any devise
drivers. For some reason, I couldn't get winupdate to show me the field I
needed to click on to see my updates.

Mark's earlier response said if I found svchost using the highest CPU #, he
would suspect a backdoor virus. As if I don't have enough trouble.


DL - Somehow, in some mysterious way, the problem I've been having for last
several days has appeared to have disappeared. Everything seems to be back
to normal.
Wanted to say thanks to you and to Mark for the help you provided. Happy I
found this site and will be "hanging around" from here on in.

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