PC gamers adore performance, which is not limited to the games themselves. After the most recent Nvidia GPU driver update, when some of them began to observe abnormally high CPU usage, red flags were raised. After some investigation, Nvidia itself has confirmed the issue: After closing 3D games, some users experience elevated CPU usage that persists until a reboot.
The company confirmed the issue with the most recent driver update, version 531.18, which was released on February 28. VideoCardz.com discovered an updated list of open issues (including some that did not make it into the full release notes) posted to Nvidia’s support forum. Issue 4007208 states, “After exiting a game, a higher CPU usage from NVIDIA Container may be observed.” Some users are reporting CPU usage of up to 10 to 15 percent under these conditions, which is not enough to seriously hinder the performance of most gaming desktops, but more than enough to be annoying, particularly if you use your PC for other intensive tasks. Like simultaneously opening three Chrome tabs.
There is currently no simple fix, so if you are affected, the immediate solution is to roll back your driver to version 528.49 from February 8th, which is available for manual download here. Hopefully Nvidia will be able to patch the more recent driver as soon as possible. Update: In response to PCWorld’s coverage, Nvidia software product manager Sean Pelletier tweeted that the company will release a hotfix tomorrow, March 7.
Obviously, modern GPU drivers are incredibly complex software, and Nvidia is not the only company currently dealing with bugs. AMD has a rather embarrassing problem with its most recent high-end Radeon cards, which, under certain conditions, can completely destroy a Windows installation. Intel, on the other hand, appears to be steadily enhancing the software component of its Arc GPUs, which are gaining unexpected traction on the budget market.