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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...

241 Replies
New Contributor II

@mafroin Still no memory leak today for me, it seems to be fixed on my side with the option off. Have no idea why it doesnt work for you though. Maybe there are multiple things which can cause this to happen, and on my system this was one of them.

I can with 99% chance say that the option triggered it for me. I had a blown up dwm.exe (several GB) every day over the past months. And I know I had enabled the option mostly since when it started to happen around December or November of 2020. And now with it off, the past 3 days all is fine again.

Maybe look with regedit what the dword32 "HwSchMode" says for you under:


1 = disabled

2 = enabled

I could maybe enable it again on my side and see if I get another memory leak again, then I know for sure it is the option. But so far it totally looks like it on my side at least.

Do you also use ?


@HKlum I have downgraded my driver to 8476 and issue has gone, but I updated and tried your suggestion.I guess I will wait for the new driver. I wonder that how much memory are used after you fixed this issue.

New Contributor II

@mafroin so you did NOT use 9316 + gpu scheduling off. also are you sure you used 9316 by checking via device manager. you need to set windows 10 to stop using drivers via windows updates via gpedit rule, or windows 10 would auto downgrade intel drivers to oem drivers automatically.

how did you test it that quickly and how much ram was your dwm.exe using? 200-300mb are still normal depending on the work load and also if you have a 4k display for example.

My memory leak is totally fixed with 9316 and gpu scheduling off. dwm.exe uses between 60-250mb so far depending on how many windows video ect I have open, I also have a 4k display. closing everything and letting laptop rest and memory usage goes back to really low values of <100mb.

I doubt there will be a new driver, if Intel does not bother to look into this issue. I mostly see a bug with their drivers in combination of gpu scheduling.


Hi all,

I'm not super computer savvy but I just wanted to input here that I think I'm also running into this issue. I was wondering if what I'm experiencing is normal activity or indeed a memory leak of some kind, not sure if this information would be helpful to y'all or not but I wanted to present it:

  • I've seen dwm.exe spike to 300-500 mb, upon using programs like Zoom or upon watching a Twitch Livestream
    • At other times doing these exact same activities it's between 30-70 mb
  • When I start up my computer it seems any sort of activity seems to spike it to 100-150mb, if I sign out and back in it lands somewhere between 20-70

What should be the normal range of memory usage from it?  Would it only be considered a leak if it's hogging gb's of memory or would this activity indicate it?

I'm on a Dell G3 15


NIVIDIA GeForce GTX 1060 With Max Q Design version

Intel UHS Graphics 630 version

I did a clean install of my drivers back in October (trying to fix a separate issue) so unfortunately it doesn't give me an option to rollback. Also, just checked, do not have Hardware-accelerated GPU scheduling turned on. 

Thanks so much in advance. 



New Contributor II

@amgara from what you described, no, you dont have this issue. memory leaks means the task will become bigger and bigger over time, linear bigger doing the same task work or on its own in some cases if its stuck in some sort of loop. memory leaks means the memory cant be requested back from the OS. so if your dwm.exe task gets smaller in memory usage after some time of idle, that shows there is no memory leak and working as intended. Use the laptop for a few days without shutting down and see how it behaves after a few days of usage. that the option is missing is also indicator that this issue cant be triggered for you, because I am mostly sure, the issue is connected to it. I still have no memory leak anymore now after 4 days with the option turned off.


HKLum Said:

if your dwm.exe task gets smaller in memory usage after some time of idle, that shows there is no memory leak

To add clarity to this, with a memory leak the processes memory can get smaller (as parts other than the leak could be allocated and freed), but the general trend is a process that gets bigger over time and never goes back to it's usual size once things are done.

Imagine the difference between writing on a post-it-note and then erasing/overwriting your words contrasted with a stack of post-it notes where when you fill one, and just keep filling it, never marking the memory as unused so it can be re-claiming back to the operating system.  For short-running processes, the virtual address space disappears and freeing it doesn't really matter.  For long-running processes, not freeing it builds the memory use over time.


Thank you both for the response and teaching on the matter! When I've seen it 300-500mb it seems to just keep on creeping until I restart, but maybe I didn't leave it idle for long enough. Hoping then the case is that I don't have the problem. Crossing my fingers they implement a fix for you all soon.


edit: figured out it was a bug due to fast startup enabled. disabled fast startup and havent seen the issue since. thought i'd let yall know tis helped me in case the problems are related somehow.

 Thought I'd post once more and get your opinions on the activity I noticed this morning.

Started up my computer, opened chrome, and turned on a twitch livestream for about 5 minutes, noticed dwm continue to spike starting from about 30mb on startup to 300mb (and climbing, did not stop growing in the 5 minutes I watched). I closed chrome and let pc sit for 10 minutes (included images), dwm remained at 300mb and did not budge. Signed out of my pc user and signed back in, dwm at 20mb pulled up twitch again, and it remained at about a steady 30mb even after 5 minutes of use.

I decided to fully shut down pc and try to replicate it and this time record with videos. Everything happened the second time as it did the first time. 

@PhYrE @HKlum I'm sorry to bother you both again but could you take a look at these when you get the chance and give your opinion? Thanks again so much for your help. (pc start up straight into twitch) (sign out sign back in straight into twitch) 

New Contributor II

@amgara What exactly is the meaning of your posts and what you're doing? What are you intending to do or show with what you're doing? I said... DONT shut down the laptop for a FEW DAYS, DONT LOG OUT, DONT RESTART WINDOWS. In between, when you dont use the laptop, for example while sleeping, just let it sleep or put it to hibernate, the next day, resume normal work case, repeat. WITHOUT SHUTTDING DOWN, WITHOUT RESTARTING, WITHOUT LOGGING OUT. Then after a few days, if your dwm process is over, lets say 700-1000 MB or even bigger, yes that's the issue.

Bad news sadly: While I am typing this post, my laptop is leaking memory again of dwm.exe process while I just have 2 video streams open and the memory is leaking around 2mb/s linear growing. I had woke up the laptop from hibernate today, which is the first time I had used hibernate since the weekend and the change of the gpu schedule option. So the issue sadly is not connected with the gpu schedule option it seems, but rather using hibernate maybe. I had a auto hibernate timer of around 10h set, so when I would wake up the laptop quicker, it wouldnt trigger hibernate. Someone maybe can confirm, who had the issue also used hibernate in between? Thats also maybe the reason why Intel couldnt reproduce it, because they never thought of using hibernate for the testing.


ok ... I was the one who said I have no problems since I installed the new driver ... and really I didn't

But TODAY (right now) the issue is back. It takes "only" 1 GB of RAM but ... it shouldn't even take that.

I am booting this machine every day. So it's up every day about the same amount of hours.

WHAT I WONDER: on that "windows" I had crashes ... without bluescreen ... without any crash dump. Just ... BOOP ... reboot. I even bought a new computer (I wanted a faster one anyway) and moved over the SSD with the same installation. And it has the same Intel graphics card. And after some days, it also started to crash. It's not the SSD, not the Memory ... 

So are the crashes connected with the memory bug of this desktop window manager?

New Contributor II

@HajoBerlin yes dwm.exe will eventually crash if it gets too big in memory (running out of memory), but that shouldnt cause a pc reboot, the screen should go black for 1 second and come back restarting dwm.exe.

just open windows reliability monitor and see if it shows any information on the reboots:

also if you are using "fast startup" that basically means it will use a "mini hibernate" (mini hibernate of kernel + drivers + system related stuff) each restart of windows, so if hibernate is indeed a root cause of this issue, it might trigger it too with "fast startup" activated.

I just saw the edit of @amgara if that is true, it is another hint of my theory. using "fast startup" or using hibernate triggering this issue.

you can deactivate hibernate, which then automatically turns off "fast startup" by opening a cmd.exe as administrator and type in: powercfg -h off

New Contributor II

My dwm.exe exploded again today to 1.2GB after using my laptop after using it for some hours. I didnt use hibernate in between but modern standby... just amazing Intel. Really amazing. This is not acceptable! 


@HKlum it is too bad, so only way to solve this issue can be rolling back to 8476 for now.


Having this issue on my new laptop: up to 7GB RAM usage while browsing + zoom call

i7-10875, iGPU UHD graphics (driver, dGPU rtx 3080 (driver

Seems like this issue has been know for a while now... Has a proper fix been found yet?



There is no solution as Intel cannot get this memory leak on the test devices.
Disable Fast System Start and hibernation ... helps.


That's unfortunate... will try that, thank you!

Here's to hoping this eventually can get resolved


Is there anyone who have tried new driver to fix this ? what is the result?

New Contributor II

@mafroin Very funny. Intel is not working on this issue so far. I wouldnt expect a fix for this before 2022 or even 2023 to be honest, knowing how Intel is never interested in fixing issues like this (with high priority), especially driver bugs. Knowing Intel's non interest in fixing driver bugs in the past, it can take a very long time, a very frustrating time. Your best bet so far is to revert back to <= it seems. I'm on since a few days, and so far, no memory leak.

What makes this even worse is how the HD graphics line is kind of "end of line", and they went to their new Xe line, which uses a totally new/different driver. I suspect Intel cut the driver team for the "old" HD graphics, and there is literally no one at this point working anymore on the HD graphics drivers but maybe one person or so.


I updated to yesterday (newest driver at the time) to no avail - same issue.

I've started just doing "End task" in task manager when it goes above 2Gb (every 2-3 hours on average), screen goes black for about 5 seconds and comes back, with the process now using 40Mb. Doing that triggers a warning that it might crash the system but hasn't yet, seems to be something restarting the driver immediately. Memory usage always comes back though so in no way is this a fix.

Does really solve it? Is it complicated to go back to an old driver version? I'm pretty techno-nooby but all I could find online were downloads to the newest version (the one I just downloaded)

Honored Contributor II

Heads-up from Microsoft:

Releasing Windows 10 Build 19042.962 (20H2) to Release Preview Channel


  • We fixed an issue with race conditions that cause high CPU usage. As a result, the system stops working and deadlocks occur.
  • We fixed an issue that causes DWM.exe to stop working in some cases.




New Contributor II

@Stefan3D that has nothing to do with this issue. The "lock up" I had the other day too on my desktop, that the PC became just slower and slower and freezing eventually. MS is just incompetent.

No memory leaks anymore btw with