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New Contributor I

BUG: dwm.exe uses memory leakage with Intel HD Graphics 630


dwm.exe (Desktop-Window Manager) uses high memory with Intel Intel HD Graphics 630. This problem has been reported before:


Here's a screenshot of my dwm ram usage after 2 hours (1.6 GB):


Please, this bug is already known for 3-4 months, and I do not want to reinstall a 2019 driver...

281 Replies

I have this issue too on my NUC8i7bek (Iris Plus 655 graphics) with fully up-to-date Windows 10 and currently the latest beta driver, though every driver version I have tried has been affected.  My system also has a 4K monitor (Dell U2720q, specifically).  The hardware is important here, because I cannot reproduce the issue on a NUC6i5syk (Iris 540) with a 1080p TV and the same driver and OS version.

I do have a method of reproducing this issue 100% of the time.  My system, for the record, has fast startup and hibernation both disabled, and I never use sleep.  It is configured to turn the monitor off (and lock the screen) after 5 minutes of inactivity.  If I press Win+L to lock the screen manually, the monitor shuts off within a minute or so.

To reproduce the issue, I reboot my system and log in.  Then I lock the screen and wait for it to shut off the monitor automatically.  Once it does, I press a key to turn the screen back on, log in again, and repeat the process.  The second time the monitor comes back on, if I perform almost any action, DWM starts leaking memory very rapidly.  This includes opening/closing windows, moving windows, scrolling within windows (browsers, both Firefox and Chrome, seem to make it leak the fastest), and watching videos within a browser all cause leakage.  Then, if I lock the screen again, wait for it to shut off, and wake it up a third time, it stops leaking RAM (though what was previously leaked is not freed).  The leakage will occur again after some number of additional monitor sleep cycles, but whenever it is leaking, a sleep cycle will temporarily stop the leak.

I have also found that if I use SysInternals RAMMap to "Empty Working Sets" followed by "Empty Modified Page List", the leaked RAM is freed.  This does not stop the leaking, however, if it was actively occurring.

New Contributor I

After one week with Windows 10 build 21292 and still the driver v29.20.100.9116 I don't saw this problem. It could be luck, but I have a little bit hope that it is fixed by Microsoft. Today I expect the next Win10 Dev build and I will keep an eye on it.


A friend had this problem, and my previous workaround didn't work for him.

After studying the problem for some time, I noticed that it only occurred when the Username shown in Task Manager > details > dwm.exe was DWM-2 or higher (I saw up to DWM-7). If the Username was DWM-1 the problem did not occur. DWM-1 is the account "Console Logon", and I eventually found a way of ensuring that dwm.exe always runs with this account. The solution was to disable Windows "Fast Startup", and multiple cold boots always resulted in DWM-1 being used. With "Fast Startup" enabled it would switch to DWM-2 etc after a couple of reboots.

When using Windows Manager accounts DWM-2 or DWM-3 etc, the memory leak started to show within minutes, but I couldn't reproduce the leak using DWM-1.

I tried searching Online for a screenshot of a Task Manager screen showing the "Details" tab with high memory usage of dwm.exe, to check the account being used, but I couldn't find one. As a result, I can't say if this will work for others?


New Contributor I

I currently use driver since the problem occurs on my computer  when updating to next public release I'm not sure whether Intel can provide intermediate versions so I can help to find out the buggy update version.

If I make a fast-startup I see that I use DWM-15 (with 8476 and no memory leak), on cold reboot it is DWM-1. I cannot tell whether having constantly DWM-1 would fix the problem since the 8476 driver doesn't seem to have this problem with other accounts than DWM-1.


I found this:

Look like the "x" in DWM-x means sessions id, so look like is intel drive doesn't handle it smoothly or something, and cause memory leak.

But I still have no idea for reproducing constantly, and is the only way for fixing it.


Disabling "Fast Startup" worked for me, but my workaround is only one of many possible alternative "solutions" out there. Many people may choose not to disable this setting as they find it improves boot & shutdown time? They may also find it doesn't fix the memory leak for them?

I see that has just been released, so perhaps that will be an improvement, and no dwm.exe memory leak workarounds will be required? 

New Contributor I

Update 2:
I still see sometimes abnormal spikes >500MB, but it seems that since Win10 build 21292 the dwm.exe process will be better flushed after I close the apps. My desktop computer with nVidia GTX 1060 never reaches over 100MB.

Currently I use Win10 build 21301 and driver and had 3 IRQL_NOT_LESS_OR_EQUAL GSOD (AV_nt!MiGetPfnPidSafe). I don't know if this has something to do with this bug. With my desktop computer I don't have these GSOD.


I had this problem in the Windows 2004 version, so I decided to do a clean installation of version 20H2, everything was going well. The Windows update was up to date and I had the latest drives from the manufacturer, I was two days using the notebook without presenting the problem, so I decided to update the NVIDIA card driver to the latest version and also install antivirus software (bitdefender free) and today right after starting the notebook I noticed that the problem had returned. I don't know if the problem returned spontaneously or because of any of my last actions, I leave this report here. my integrated card is Intel HD 620 and my dedicated is Geforce 940MX.

Bonjour à toutes et à tous

Tous d’abord bonne et heureuse année 2021 ainsi qu’une bonne santé

Excusé de mon langage je suis Français.

Je suis tombé sur cette discussion suite au même problème avec un notebook

le cpu est un celeron j4115 avec intel UHD 600 en support vidéo

j’ai le notebook depuis une semaine quand je l’ai reçu il était sous Windows 10 pro 1903

Tous allez bien, passez en 1909 avec Windows Update

Tous allez bien, passez en 20H2 avec Windows Update

Depuis même problème avec dmw.exe

En suivant les guides j’ai donc mis la version et tous va bien

j’ai désactivé la mise à jour automatique dans :

Paramètres avancés du système > Matériel > Paramètres d’installation des périphériques

Donc il y à bien un problème avec les derniers drivers Intel et Windows 20H2


PS : Mon notebook est un Kuu K2s sous Windows 10 pro


I experienced the dwm.exe memory leak problem with versions up to inclusive.

However, I tried the older version and so far have not had a problem with the dwm.exe memory leak.


Hello! I have the same bug on my Lenovo Carbon Gen8 (intel UHD 620). After hybernation my dwm.exe ate 9,8 GB. OS is Windows 10 20H2. I updated intel drivers (to  and will continue to monitor the issue to collect a report. I didn't have any issues on previous driver version until I activated hybernation (though I might just haven't noticed).

I'm quite disappointed with intel team response "we couldn't reproduce it so it's not our problem". Hope it will be resolved soon.


I'm not sure if it helps, but on (and every driver > I encountered strange bugs in some games. The most reproduceable is Rimworld color coded bars (in the schedule menu, pawn's needs menu), all bars are gray, while on all previous drivers including colors are displayed correctly (blue, red, yellow, green etc.). Official forum link: I downgraded drivers to to fix this issue, but now dwm.exe leaks memory again (up to 700 Mb in 1h after os start with fast boot, ~5-10 Mb/h after dwm.exe restart).

It seems I don't have any choice but to rollback to 7985 driver until Intel/Microsoft figure this out.


I don't know if it helps, but I encountered strange bugs in some games on with Intel UHD 620 (and on any driver >, though dwm.exe leak was minimal. For example. in Rimworld color coded bars are all displayed in gray color (in schedule menu, pawn needs menu). I downgraded to and the problem was fixed. It seems some links aren't allowed here, but you can find the topic on official Rimworld forum by searching "ludeon 53555.0" on google. On dwm.exe started to leak again (up to 700 Mb in 1h after start with fast boot, 5-10 Mb/h after dwm.exe reset).

It seems I don't have any other choice but to rollback to until Microsoft/Intel figure this out.



I was able to reproduce the dwm.exe memory leak using version on an Intel UHD 630.

Once the memory usage started to go above about 300Mb, it didn't come back down, even after all Apps were closed. I tried this workaround, and after a couple of days of regular use I haven't see it use much more than 100Mb. The memory usage also drops regularly, and returns to "normal" values when all Apps are closed. I'm using Windows 20H2 Build 19042.746 on a Desktop PC, so it may not work on a Laptop or other versions of Windows 10?

Go to "Graphics performance preference" here -

Settings -> Display -> Graphic Settings -> click on the Browse" button and select dwe.exe in the System32 folder. Click on the "Options" button and select "Let Windows Decide" (I think this option is marked "System Default" on some versions of Windows?).

I tried both the "Power saving" and "High performance" options, and they did nothing, other than possibly making it worse!

I've been using my PC with this configuration for about 7 hours today, and most of yesterday, and the current dwm.exe memory usage is 100Mb. Of course I can't guarantee that the memory problem won't come back again? I can't guarantee that it'll work for you either?


New Contributor I

I found in a thread here:


TurboTacho: We are aware that the Intel graphics driver is the last known best working set that had no such memory leak issue.


I am also kind of programming stuff, so I do know that bugs, that aren't reproducable are nearly impossible to fix, also I heard that this is a heap problem which belong to the hardest nuts...

However if it is known that is the last version without this bug, many seem to have (I hope this version is right, since I didn't test it myself), @intel can I recommend to maybe look into the protocolled changes to the next version to maybe figure out which change could have caused this bug?

I would also happily test any experimental fixes

New Contributor I


please discard/ignore above message. I systematically tested all previous drivers available at

myself and can tell you exactly the last stable version without the dwm leak:

It is

as soon I update to the next version ( the dwm leak happens on my computer... maybe you can check the change log between both versions and hopefully find something obvious that may cause this bug 🙂


Honored Contributor II


You can narrow it further with v8581 beta

Luckily i am not affected because of using an NVIDIA GSync laptop.
But out of curiousity i have attached a running instance of dwm.exe in WINDBG.
That was a bad idea, it froze the desktop and the computer started making noise like a telegraph...

New Contributor I


thanks, I tested 8581(beta) and the bug is there already,

so it happened between 8476 (latest stable) and 8581

Honored Contributor II


I checked the Microsoft update catalog for intermediate versions.
There are v8528 and v8531 for DG1 only and come with a new kernel mode layer handler.

My best guess is that an exclusive tweak for the new kernel driver stranded in the old one 🤔

New Contributor I

Hmm. I think it depends on Intel, I happily test more versions if this helps. Like if they can provide 8520 and this bugs I continue with 8495, if bugfree I can test 8545 or so. This way we could easily find the culprit update.


Possible workaround: I was trying to solve slow performance on an MSI GS66 laptop (same RTX2060 and Intel integrated graphics setup as others with this issue have described.) On a parallel issue, I uninstalled Xbox Game Bar and all other xbox services using O&O AppBuster, since it was hogging system resources. Since uninstalling and restarting the machine, dwm.exe hasn't taken up more than 100MB memory at any point, and typically sits between 30-50 (previously hit 300MB as soon as I opened any app and continued to climb to around 1GB - though admittedly I didn't have the issue with it holding on to used memory as bad as others have reported, and it would often drop after apps closed.)

Haven't rolled back Windows or anything else to older versions, haven't turned down display or desktop appearance settings. Full list of changes made before the restart that showed results:

  • Uninstalled Xbox Store app and everything else Xbox that the system allowed me to.
  • In System Configuration, deselected all xbox services running at startup. Restarted.
  • In Task Manager, note that 2 Gaming Services are running with xbox icon. These services cannot be disabled in System Config.
  • Installed O&O AppBuster, and uninstalled (again) all programs beginning with Xbox (I think 4 of them) and Gaming Services (2).
    • The uninstaller alerted that the programs were in use by a couple of services, which needed to be ended from TM to allow uninstall to go ahead. Slight time factor since these both restart themselves after a while.
      • GamingServices (ended from Processes tab)
      • an svchost.exe service with a specific PID given by the uninstaller (I think it was 9162 but unsure that it would be consistent across systems) (ended from Details tab)
  • Checked in System Config that the GamingServices services were no longer in the list.
  • Restarted, and saw reduced dwm.exe memory usage and no climbing.

Obviously not ideal if you use Xbox, and may not work for everyone, but it's much better than it was. I'm NOT experienced; any experts please feel free to point out any unsafe steps I took, & I'll edit post to reflect.