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Old 03-18-2016, 08:25 PM   #1
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Unhappy CPU heat rises 10 degrees when moving the mouse


My laptop is:
Intel i7 2.2GHz Quadcore
Geforce 840M 2gb
4gb RAM
Windows 10

I play e.g. World of Warcraft at high settings at 1080p, and it is usually no problem. It's running about 35 fps, and my processor never gets above 72 degrees (6-14% CPU load).

I have purchased a Startech docking station (USB3SDOCKHDV). When I plug my monitor into the DVI- or HDMI-socket of the docking station, then plug the docking station into the laptop, and set the display to be "Only on 2" which is the secondary screen, it runs fine, at about the same temperature (72 degrees)...until I move my mouse. Then it instantly spikes to 95 degrees (28-35% CPU load), making my cooler go crazy, and fight to keep it around 86-88 degrees. When I stop moving the mouse, it plummets to 72-74 degrees in about 2 seconds. This means, that randomly it can get above 90 degrees for a few seconds in a row, at which point my laptop freezes, demanding me to push the power-button to restart it. It doesn't matter if the mouse is connected to the docking station or the laptop. It doesn't make a difference whether the laptop lid is open or closed.

If I instead plug the screen directly into the computer, and have all the rest of the hardware plugged into the docking station, there are no problems.

The laptop is completely clean, so it isn't a normal heating issue. What's going on?

Last edited by Ultroman; 03-18-2016 at 09:50 PM.
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Old 03-21-2016, 02:51 PM   #2
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Location: Cambridge, UK
Posts: 1,678


I have issues understanding how it physically possible to gain 20C instantly even with 100% CPU. Thermodynamics taught me that there is a certain inertia in all systems.
Is any software going to 28% making your computer go that hot? You can try a benchmark test to see the result. Is that load on a single core? 28% of one core on a quad-core system is 6% of the total CPU load.

Would you please be able to give the Zip of your log files for analysis? I pasted in my forum signature how to create it.
Also, could you take a screenshot of the task manager when the issue occurs so I can see which part is higher?

Plugging an external monitor through USB doesn't exercise the same part of the computer as the graphics card, so the difference is normal. The video has to be compressed and then sent through the USB, this takes computation.
The higher the rate of display changes, the more data to ship, the higher the effort. Our algorithm is adaptative, so it changes based on bandwidth available.

Kind regards,
Alban Rampon
Senior product manager, universal docking stations and accessories
"DisplayLink is proud to be a Synaptics brand."

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Old 03-21-2016, 08:25 PM   #3
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Thanks for your speedy reply! I really do appreciate it

OK, a few answers right away:

Each of the percentages I've mentioned, were an average over all cores. So 28% means that all cores were at 28%.

When I said the temperature rose instantly, I meant after about 2-3 seconds. My temperature measuring program (SpeedFan) has an update rate of about 2-3 seconds. When it hits 95 degrees, the fan speeds up over a few seconds, until it is at peak speed.

I think the fast temperature increase may come from the fact, that on most laptops the GPU and CPU share a heatsink and fan. So the small fan already has a lot on its plate. But since it has just been cleaned, and it's only about 6 months old, and we've never seen it shut down from temperature-related problems before, I doubt it's the laptops fault.

I understand that the video-stream has to be compressed for transfer, which I can see eats about 1-2% of the CPU (which I completely understand; I can see the change between having the monitor in the docking station and having it directly in the laptop), but I did not expect it to spike 20% when I move the mouse. I mean, the picture is constantly changing when playing the game, or if I'm in Windows using the keyboard, but it doesn't care about that. No no; moving the mouse is what makes it "turn up to 11". And as I said, if I put the screen cable directly into the computer, then the mouse does not make it go crazy. The mouse is a Logitech with the newest drivers.

Btw, I am using the newest DisplayLink driver 7.9M5.

I will create some logs tomorrow, and post them here. I think I'll record a video on my phone (so I won't use the CPU for it), to show you SpeedFan's measurings. I'll put it on my private Youtube-channel and send you a link.
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cpu, heat, mouse

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