ehrecvr.exe cpu usage solved

My Windows XP Media Center 2005 desktop (an HP Pavillion a1355c) was suffering for months now with a problem I’ve never seen adequately documented and/or fixed: ehrecvr.exe harrasses my CPU.

Right after booting up (and logging in) the process ehrecvr.exe would consume about 50% of my CPU cycles. And since this computer is a dual core setup, I’m guessing that it would be 100% on computers with a single CPU. It would continue for about 10 minutes and then mysteriously stop.

During that 10-ish minutes, Media Center would report “Tuner Not Installed” if I tried to watch live tv.

In the last couple days I had installed some new games and they installed a new DirectX version (9.0c?) and suddenly Media Center quit displaying video when watching live tv or recorded shows. Audio still worked fine. So I suspected the new DirectX had tweaked some necessary codecs and I needed to re-assert Media Center’s dominance in the codec pecking order (Codecs are the decoders computers use to interpret various kinds of files to play them in your audio/video applications).

I took a chance and googled for Media Center, ehrecvr.exe and codecs. Lots of the usual results appeared, but a few that I hadn’t visited before so I checked them out. One of them mentioned problems with Cyberlink codecs. Another mentioned Nero.

How about that? I have Cyberlink and Nero software here… pretty sure I tried it out while trying to author dvds of my recorded tv programs. Didn’t like it, but never removed it.

I uninstalled every Cyberlink and a Nero program and rebooted… Voila! No more ehrecvr.exe problem. I started up Media Center right away after logging in (right after reboot) and it worked! Except for the video issue… that still didn’t work. Audio was fine, but no video. Obviously the ehrecvr.exe and the video display are separate issues.

Now I knew I was just missing needed codecs (or the correct choices from already-installed codecs). I tried doing a search for Media Center codecs, but you won’t find anything useful there. I tried GSpot to analyze the dvr-ms files on my computer, but that didn’t really tell me which codec I was missng. Eventually, I ended up at I downloaded the “Advanced” codec pack. Rebooted. Video now works fine.

I’m documenting this whole process here because I’ve run into this ehrecvr.exe thing in the past… and various things made it better but never made it go away. I doubt I’ve seen the last of it. These notes might help me again in the future.

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  1. i’m having ehrecvr.exe problems as well. i have media center edition on a toshiba laptop. i never use the media center and am going to look into removing it. it has never given me a problem before. this is a new issue over the past couple of weeks. thanks for the comments. usually the top loading results give no useful info. maybe this is a widespread problem! it’s eating up my dual processors, but not just when i boot up!

  2. the path for it is C/WINDOWS/ehome/ehrecvr.exe all you have to do is open task manager and move it to the side of your screen right click the file so it says do you want to delete then end the process and quickly delete the file. fixed my problem right away

  3. I did the advanced Codecpack download and it worked great for 3 days and then the problems started again. I then went to start, run, typed in services.msc went to MediaCenter Receiver, right clicked on that, clicked on properties and selected manual startup, then reboot. It stopped my CPU from lagging but doesn’t solve the ehrecvr.exe issue which apparently is a common problem with Media Center 2005 edition due to one of the Windows updates which interferes with the Media Center receiver and gives a Tuner Hardware missing error. I still haven’t found a permanent solution without losing Media Center other than to restore the computer to a time when Media Center worked and discontinue all automatic Windows updates. There are negatives to that but it seems at this time to be the only solution.

  4. @Marie: you’ve got the actual solution for long-term. Set Windows Update to Download BUT NOT INSTALL AUTOMATICALLY! Then when the little shield appears, click on it, select CUSTOM, record the KB numbers of the updates M$ wants to do, then cancel out. Investigate each KB (maybe waiting a week or two) to make sure they aren’t screwing up something before going back to install them. I’m reminded of the well-known M$ Update KB982670 (a .NET Framework 4 Client Profile update) that doesn’t like ehrec.exe in certain installations of Media Center 2005, or 2002 SP3.
    That’s the problem with “spaghetti code”, too many cooks in the kitchen. LoL

  5. Got this off the microsoft website, might help resolve the issue (it did for some users):

    Please follow the steps mentioned below to re-register some of the necessary files within Windows Media Center.

    a. Click Start, select Run
    b. Type cmd and press Enter.

    Once the command prompt is open, type the following commands one line at a time, pressing Enter after each line.

    regsvr32.exe atl.dll
    C:\WINDOWS\eHome\ehSched /unregServer
    C:\WINDOWS\eHome\ehSched /service
    C:\WINDOWS\eHome\ehRecvr /unregServer
    C:\WINDOWS\eHome\ehRecvr /service
    C:\WINDOWS\eHome\ehRec.exe /unregServer
    C:\WINDOWS\eHome\ehRec.exe /regserver
    C:\WINDOWS\eHome\ehmsas.exe /unregServer
    C:\WINDOWS\eHome\ehmsas.exe /regserver

    Restart your computer and test.

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