AppleMobileDeviceService.exe stays at high CPU – reason is LSPs

[UPDATE 11/21/2011] Apple has a very good page explaining how to work around this problem, albeit while not acknowledging that it is their problem.

Here is the original post:

My Intel Core2Duo Windows 7 64-bit computer started having this problem with the AppleMobileDeviceService.exe taking 50% of the CPU usage continuously, whether iTunes was open or not. Some may see 100% of the CPU in use.

Apple’s support recommended a painful “uninstall everything in this exact order and reinstall everything.” I generally hate that approach because they just aren’t trying to figure out what’s wrong, plus many users were saying it just came back immediately or a week later.

This sounded like a more reasonable solution (downgrading the Apple Application Support from 2.0.1 to 1.5.2), but it made me nervous that it might affect functionality with the iPhone 4S or iPad2. I assume that when Apple included this update is when the problem started for me.

Then, I found this blog that recommended a “netsh winsock reset” which sounds like a true fix to me. I did that and my Bsecure/Bsafe CloudCare (internet filtering software) popped up a notice that it had repaired itself. After restarting, the problem still persisted. I then uninstalled Bsecure CloudCare and the problem was gone! [Clarification: I do not recommend the "netsh winsock reset" because of the risk to messing up the computer!]

On that blog the author says, “Apparently the Windows TCP/IP stack can get corrupted and this will reset the Winsock Catalog to its default state – i.e. one that works properly.” I think he is correct, except for the “corrupted” part. According to Wikipedia, “a Layered Service Provider is a DLL that uses Winsock APIs to insert itself into the TCP/IP protocol stack.” Bsecure CloudCare and other webfiltering solutions use LSPs to do the filtering. Some malware/adware in the past insert LSPs, as well. I bet that there are a heck of a lot of computer users out there with a non-standard TCP/IP protocol stack that are suffering badly from this software bug of Apple’s making.

I’m not 100% certain on this, but with my own experience and seeing how doing the “netsh winsock reset” fixes the problem, it makes sense.

If you are thinking of trying the “netsh winsock reset,” be aware that it could be fixing a problem, or creating a worse problem than Apple’s bug.

[UPDATE 10/17/11] Based on Matt McLaughlin’s comment, I’m feeling more confident about my theory. He looked at his “Winsock Providers” tab in Sysinternals’s Autoruns. Check it out to see if there is anything there if you have this problem. I will not recommend what to do about it.

[UPDATE 11/21/11] SO, it looks like Apple has endorsed my conclusion about what it causing this problem (link to Apple’s support document about this very problem). And their solution to this problem: REMOVE ANY SOFTWARE THAT USES LSPs. Yep, these vendors use LSPs for 10 years or more and Apple’s software has a bug that causes our computers to malfunction and we must remove the other vendors’ software, not get an update from Apple to fix the bug…

[UPDATE 12/18/11] Here is a list of software that is rendered unusable and needs to be removed because of this problem:

  • Bsecure CloudCare/Bsafe
  • CA Antivirus Suite (Computer Associates, free with Time Warner cable)
  • PC Tools Antivirus (not the newest version)
  • Alienware’s Xeno Power Suite
  • Kaseya – remote management
  • Integard from Race River – filtering
  • SafeEyes – filtering
  • Filternet – filtering
  • Apple’s list:
    • Bigfoot Networks
    • ByteMobile, Inc.
    • Covenant Eyes
    • SpeedBit Video Accelerator
    • VMWare

[UPDATE 1/21/2012] Bsecure has somehow released a “fix” that allows CloudCare and iTunes to both work fine together. Here are their instructions:

  1. In order to run the iTunes fix we will need to determine if you are on a 32 bit or 64 bit system.  You can do this here:
    http://windows.microsoft.com/en-US/windows7/find-out-32-or-64-bit
  2. Now click on the link for your system
    32 bit computers – CLICK HERE
    64 bit computers – CLICK HERE
  3. Run itunesfix32.exe OR itunesfix64.exe
  4. If you are using Mozilla Firefox, it is possible that you may have to ‘download’ the file first, and then double click on it in the downloads list.
    Note:
    Internet explorer may require you to click keep, and then run.
  5. You will know the fix has finished when you see a black box appear on your screen for a moment, and then disappears.
  6. After this happens, reboot your computer one last time.

iTunes store should now work properly & the mobile device service will no longer conflict.

 

 

88 replies
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  1. Brian says:

    Safeeyes has the same issues as BSecure – winsock reset “solves” the problem (because it deactivates the Safeeyes LSP, then on rebooting Safeeyes notices that its LSP needs to be reactiviated, confirms that you wish to do so, and the problem returns.

    So we now have to have one PC for iTunes that the children cannot use!

  2. brmorris says:

    Brian,

    That’s so sad that iTunes has made it impossible to use the most popular web filtering software anymore…

  3. BrianH says:

    I can confirm Safe Eyes is a victim of this issue and what fixes iTunes breaks Safe Eyes.

    What I don’t hear anyone asking is this: why does iTunes suddenly break what has until now primarily been the domain of content filtering software?? What do they need access to that they didn’t need before now?

  4. RickM says:

    netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt
    reboot

    worked for me on Vista 32-bit

    Thank you guys so much for this thread!

  5. Bryan says:

    God bless you all.

    netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt
    reboot

    worked for me on Windows 7 32 bit on a Dell Latitude E4300. 50% CPU to basically nothing. Perfect!

  6. david panak says:

    removing besecure cloudcare seems to have fixed the problem with the apple service – its CPU usage has dropped from 99% to 0%, and iTunes will start now.

    I use whole house filtering with the DNS set on my router to point to BeSecure – I had intended to not use CloudCare at all, but discovered from BeSecure that at least one computer on my network must have CloudCare installed for responding to periodic license verification requests.

    So CloudCare will go back in, once iTunes is finished with my iPad.

    david

  7. StevenA says:

    Thanks for the fix, it did the trick for me!!

    netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt
    reboot

    The fix worked for me today on a Windows XP machine that was fine until the latest itunes was installed on it so I could perform my iOS update. Everything is great now after the fix. Thanks.

  8. brmorris says:

    David,

    I do the DNS filtering, too, but there are some things that DNS can’t filter that Bsecure does filter, so this is a big deal, as you show in your situation.

  9. Gerard H. says:

    Hi Steve,

    I just wanted to thank you for posting your message about the netsh commands:
    netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt

    It helped solving my issue with applemobiledeviceservice.exe hogging my cpu and iTunes store only displaying a blank page. I’m on Windows XP SP3 using iTunes 10.5.2.11.

    Kind regards,

    Gerard

  10. Alonbray says:

    Steve,

    Thank you very much!

    Windows XP…….”at a cmd prompt…

    netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt

    and then reboot”

    Worked like a charm!!

    My iTunes is now ready for my new iPhone due tomorrow

    Alon

  11. Brian says:

    Just got this note from Safe Eyes tech support; have updated Safe Eyes and can confirm that the old issues are resolved:

    ###

    There is a new version of Safe Eyes available to download directly from our website. This update fixes the recent issue with Safe Eyes and iTunes. Once you download and install the update, you will be able to sync your apple devices and connect to the iTunes Store. Click on the link below to download:

    http://download.internetsafety.com/safeeyes/safeeyes-6.0.244-20111223.exe

  12. Brian says:

    Just came on here to notify you about the SafeEyes update and see that you already know! I have just installed it and it seems to be OK.

    10/10 to them for working around iTunes’ bug, and 0/10 to Apple for being so unconcerned about the problems they’ve caused and providing no explanation as to why iTunes has started to create such problems and even why it needs to be digging around at such a low level.

  13. Chuck Strohm says:

    Bsecure and iTunes CPU at 100%

    Just upgraded Bsecure and ran itunesfix.exe as Justin explained above. The problem is solved – thank you.

    Keep in mind that APSDaemon.exe may still cause your CPU to run at 100% but this is OK. It will release the processor as needed when other apps run. I set mine to run at low priority and wifi syncing ran just fine. Bsecure is a great filter which meant that I chose to give up itunes rather than allow our computers to be unfiltered. Glad that I can run both again.

    Chuck

  14. krt says:

    Thanks Steve for the post below. I cant Thank you enough. This not only saved my CPU being floored by this Nasty applemobiledevices.exe, it also solved my IOS 5 upgrade issue. I have a 3GS which just refused to complete the first step of backup before the upgrade. It will stuck in there for hours and hours. With the below fix, I could upgrade my 3GS to IOS 5 with no issues. Thank you, thank you, thank you!!

    “I have checked numerous forums for a solution to this problem and stumbled across something. I saw a couple of recommendations to disable your firewall and one to reset your winsock catalog, so I diag’d my TCP/IP stack and once I reset it, i could connect to the itunes store (i was getting system hang at “accessing itunes store”) and my cpu utilization for applemobiledevice was restored to normal. do these two commands at a cmd prompt. (you’ll need to “run as admin” in vista and win7)

    netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt

    and then reboot

    this won’t change any of your IP settings and should fix your problem. i had this issue on two separate dell inspiron 6400′s and it fixed them. good luck

    By Steve on Oct 21, 2011

  15. Me says:

    Thanks to Brian for the SafeEyes! It fixed my problem that I was having! My laptop quit lagging and I was able to sync with my Itunes. AppleMobileDeviceService.exe was making my laptop run at 100% but now it’s running like normal. Thanks so much again! You rock!

  16. John Mavor says:

    I struggled with the same on my Dell ATG D630 after installing itunes everything slowwwwed to a crawl. Based on above advice I clicked the mouse on the start icon, then in the start menu clicked on the run and get the “command prompt” then entered.

    netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt

    and then reboot”

    WORKED!!!

    Wow. I was so frustrated and as you can tell, I am no computer pro. My new iphone now has music loaded and my computer is playing music from itunes and cpu usage is minimal. No excuse for apple to not fix this problem!~Bad Apple!

  17. Nel says:

    Covenant Eyes is 1000x more important to me than iTunes. If I have to uninstall iTunes and re-install every time I need to update my iPod 5.5 gen, so be it (not that often, but still). I’ll thank Apple for giving me more reason to love android and Amazon MP3.

    Fix your software Apple!

  18. greg says:

    when i do the: netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt
    it says requires elevation.
    now what? not sure what that means

  19. Joe says:

    all,
    I have been having this problem ever since I got my Iphone 4s. I didn’t have the problem with my Ipad 2 or my Itouch. I then upgraded all and from then on I could not use Itunes at all on my PC (Win XP). I am behind a firewall and have web filtering on. I ran the
    netsh winsock reset
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt
    rebooted my computer and low and behold everything is back to normal. Itunes just sucessfully synced to my Iphone for the first time in months. Have had no other problems with my computer. Looks like this was a winner for me!

  20. carla says:

    I tried the two commands above and restarted. my Cpu is still maxing out when it begins the backing up in itunes. I have a win 7 netbook and an iphone 4 and have not been able to update from version 4.3.3. I don’t have bsecure or Pc tools. Is there other software that is causing the spike? This is such a huge waste of time. Appreciate the help.

  21. steve says:

    The winsock reset worked great for me too. Thank you all for your help. I will bookmark Brian’s website in case I run into other issues down the road.

    sms…

  22. M Henry says:

    I ran the  winsock reset and
    netsh int ip reset c:\logfile.txt commands & it crashed my machine!
    Windows would not start.
    Was able to run numerous check disks & recovery attempts & was eventually able to restore system to a previous point.
    What happened?
    (HP Pavilion dv6, Windows 7, 64 bit)

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