AVG Signal Blog Performance Cleaning How to Fix Windows Modules Installer Worker — High CPU Usage

Written by Sandro Villinger
Published on May 20, 2021

What is Windows Modules Installer?

Windows Modules Installer (also known as Windows Modules Installer Worker, WMIW, or TiWorker.exe) is a core Windows component that automatically checks for and installs updates for Windows and other Microsoft products. For this reason, Windows Modules Installer is essential for keeping your system running smoothly.

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    Every time your PC installs a new update or new version of Windows 10 (like 21H2 or 21H1), Windows Module Installer updates all your Windows files and backs up old data. It’s a massive operation that requires a considerable amount of processing power and space.

    Why is Windows Module Installer Worker or TiWorker.exe using so much CPU or HDD space?

    Updating Windows and its related apps is an intensive process, so it’s natural to see Windows Module Installer causing high disk usage in Windows 10 or high CPU use. While updates are happening, you’ll usually see CPU and disk usage spikes in the Task Manager:

    The Windows 10 Task Manager showing Windows Module Installer Worker using 57.3 MB/s of the hard diskA major update resulting in 10% CPU use and 57 MB/s hard disk usage for WMIW.

    If you’re seeing TiWorker.exe or Windows Modules Installer Worker causing high disk usage in Windows 10, or high CPU usage, it’s completely normal. Your computer should calm down after Windows Modules Installer finishes the update.

    But if you’re experiencing 100% CPU usage and high disk usage for an hour or more — long after the updates are done — you might have a problem. Prolonged high CPU use is normal when stress-testing your CPU, but highly abnormal in most other circumstances. The harder your CPU works, the higher your CPU temperatures will get, which can cause slowdowns, freezes, and even shutdowns.

    How can I fix 100% usage of Windows Modules Installer?

    If you’re suffering from nonstop high CPU or disk usage from Windows Modules Installer Worker or TiWorker.exe, then it’s time you looked closer. Here’s how to stop Windows Modules Installer Updates from burning through your CPU and disk capacity.

    1. Review the steps in our guide to fixing 100% CPU usage in Windows and try them out on your PC. If you’ve overclocked your CPU, you may notice high temperatures more frequently.

    2. If you just updated your system, give the update a bit more time, especially if you have an older PC. Try rebooting your computer and seeing how the update progresses. Is Windows Update showing that it’s installing updates? Is the update progress bar increasing, even gradually? If so, wait until the update completes.

    3. If the update isn’t progressing, it might be stuck — you might even experience the dreaded Windows black screen. Reboot your computer and run the Windows Update troubleshooter. After your computer restarts, click Start > Settings > System and Security > Troubleshoot > Additional Troubleshooters > Windows Update:

      Using Windows Update Troubleshooter to fix high CPU usage.The Windows Update Troubleshooter may help fix high CPU or disk usage with Windows Module Installer Worker and TiWorker.exe.

    4. If the above steps didn’t help, download Microsoft’s hidden Windows Update repair utility from Github. Choose Code, then click Download ZIP:

      Downloading the Windows Update Script Reset too from Github

      After the download completes, extract (click) the ZIP file, right-click on ResetWUEng.cmd, and select Run As Administrator.

      Running the Windows Update repair utility to fix Windows Modules Installer's high CPU usage.
    5. Press Y and then start with steps 2 and 3. Wait for the steps to finish and then reboot your system. You’ve now repaired Windows Update and deleted a lot of unnecessary temporary files.

    6. Are TiWorker.exe and Windows Modules Installer still causing high disk usage in Windows 10? Go back to the Windows Update repair tool and perform steps 5 through 13 in the tool, one after the next.

      This will take a while to complete, and you’ll need to reboot your system after every step. But this will repair all critical Windows files associated with updates.

    7. Try physically cleaning your computer to get rid of dust that may be clogging your fans. Carefully cleaning inside your PC can improve its overall speed and performance (and fix loud computer fans, too).

    8. Download and install AVG TuneUp and deactivate all background apps with our patented Sleep Mode. Sleep mode prevents apps from using valuable CPU or disk resources, ensuring that there’s plenty of power for your update. Then, use the built-in Disk Cleaning feature to run a final system sweep.

    After using AVG TuneUp to speed up and clean up your PC, reboot your system one final time and re-run Windows Update. It should now work flawlessly and install the updates you need — and you won’t have to deal with Windows Modules Installer’s high CPU usage or disk usage anymore.

    Can I turn off Windows Modules Installer?

    Do not turn off Windows Modules Installer. WMIW lets your computer automatically install critical security updates, so it should always be turned on. There’s lots of bad advice about killing the process or disabling the service, but doing so means your computer won’t get important software updates.

    It’s easy to think that turning off WMIW will prevent issues with Windows Modules Installer Worker causing high disk usage in Windows 10, or with TiWorker.exe and high CPU usage, but these tools are essential for keeping your computer working properly.

    Not updating your software can leave you vulnerable to security exploits. Some of the most damaging cyberattacks in history, like Wannacry ransomware, were able to spread because of Windows users who had neglected to keep their systems updated.

    Instead, you’ll need to help Windows Modules Installer do its job as efficiently as possible. This includes speeding up your computer and improving boot times with AVG TuneUp, or speeding up your internet connection so your computer can download update files faster.

    You can also look for other programs that may be competing with Windows Modules Installer Worker or TiWorker.exe for your computer’s valuable resources. For example, svchost.exe is also known to cause high CPU usage — resolve it, and you’ll give TiWorker.exe more power to work with.

    If you’re building your own PC, consider CPU and disk use when deciding how powerful a computer you need. If you use resource-intensive programs like multimedia editing software, factor this into your decision and budget.

    Is Windows Module Installer or TiWorker.exe a virus?

    Definitely not! As mentioned above, Windows Module Installer and TiWorker.exe are core Windows tools — not harmful or malicious software, and certainly not computer viruses. Windows includes several preventative measures to ensure that a virus can’t easily pretend to be an existing Windows service.

    But many types of malware will cause high CPU and disk usage. If you’re having trouble figuring out where issues are originating in your system, scan your computer with AVG AntiVirus FREE. Our world-class antivirus solution will detect any traces of malware on your computer and remove them before they can cause additional complications.

    Reduce CPU and disk usage with AVG TuneUp

    A lagging computer will easily reach 100% CPU or disk usage — and this counts double if it’s full of unnecessary programs. AVG TuneUp streamlines your PC on multiple fronts to ensure that you have enough CPU power and disk space to run the apps you need.

    Scanning your computer with AVG TuneUp to make sure you have enough CPU power and disk space for Windows Modules Installer Worker to run properly.

    Our PC optimization suite automatically scans your computer to detect and get rid of unneeded apps and junk files. Easily zap bloatware and remove additional junk in a single click to free up disk space. Then use our patented Sleep Mode to prevent apps from hogging CPU resources with unwanted background activity. 

    A streamlined and efficient PC can handle automatic updates without that troublesome high CPU and disk usage. Try AVG TuneUp today with a free trial and discover just how fast your computer can be.

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    Sandro Villinger