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I have a number of phones, a few droid 3's running 2.3.4 and some samsung S2s running 4.0.4, that all at the same time started having the exact same problem last week. They just started spinning cpu. All the process monitors show android_system spinning 50% (burning up one core) and the only other evidence I can see it that it's coming from google play services, but I can't figure out what processing is causing the spinning. I'm sure the actually spinning is in system calls, but I can't figure out what process is doing the tight loop calling google play services to do a tight loop of system calls. None of my phones are rooted, although if it would help me figure it out I might do it. Where to look? How to diagnose?

It happened to 4 of my phones all on separate accounts all at the same time so I have to assume it's happening to others as well.

I have removed and added the google account, spinning comes back. I have factory reset the phone, as soon as the account restores, the spinning comes back.

I kinda need to tie my account to the phone or it's not much use.

I thought it might be the contacts sync because that was taking longer than usual, but one of the other phones is just a video server and has no contacts, so I can't see it being the contact data itself. I tried exporting and importing anyway, no help.

I'm getting desperate, the spinning kills the battery in a few hours making it kinda useless as a phone.

Anybody else see this? It can't just be me.

Help and thanks.

UPDATE:

For anybody else having this problem it definitely has something to do with syncing the account after it is added.

I factory wiped the phone again, created a new blank account and the CPU was fine. Then I added my original account back and I was unable to turn off all the syncing stuff before it started doing it and then the CPU went through the roof again.

The problem is when the phone gets an account it seems to download a new google services app which has more options to sync which by default start out as on and then it syncs them and starts the problem.

The really odd thing is that turning off all syncing and rebooting does not get it into a good state, it starts spinning the CPU on boot even though nothing syncs, which means the first sync does some damage to the data that is messing up some part of account code I guess.

Is there any way to open an actual support ticket with google about stuff like this? I fear even if I were to buy a new phone the same thing would happen.

UPDATE 2:

If I go to app->google play services->clear data, the cpu spinning goes away for a few seconds, then google contact sync runs, spinning the cpu for a bit then it's back to google play services and android system spinning the cpu.

There are no accounts on the phone when I do this, but contact sync seems to be causing the problem.

UPDATE 3:

I think I finally narrowed it down somewhat. It must have been an update to the google play services app that broke everything.

When I removed the app the cpu spinning went away, of course everything else broke and I couldn't download apps or anything, but once I knew I could remove the google play services app without completely bricking the phone at least it became an option.

So I eventually found an older version of the apk on apkmirror.com (bless them) and installed it and then things worked for a few minutes. But with all of their godly power, google mananged to install the latest version again behind my back and now its broken again.

so the problem is the google play services 9.2.56 update which came out june 27th which is around when my phone started going wonky and I'm probably hosed until they fix it or I can come up with a way to keep it from updating by itself.

  • Can you please explain what's CPU spinning? Googling didn't help me.. – Gokul NC Jul 3 '16 at 16:42
  • It's when the the CPU is at 100% utiliziation. This rarely ever happens unless there's some really cpu intensive process running or there's some program going awry, which is the problem in this case. – stu Jul 3 '16 at 18:54
  • You may have a x.yz Ghz processor in your phone or computer but it is rarely ever anywhere near 100% utilized. Only server farms at the likes of facebook and google have a need to actually use their machines to near full capacity. – stu Jul 3 '16 at 18:55
  • Oh, didn't know that name.. BTW, I remember having the same problem on my old Micromax Canvas A1. I just flashed a custom kernel & the issue never arose again.. – Gokul NC Jul 4 '16 at 11:13
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So for anybody who starts suffering from high cpu usage starting June 27th 2016, it would appear the 9.2.56 version of google play services introduced this problem.

I have an "034" series device...

http://www.apkmirror.com/apk/google-inc/google-play-services/google-play-services-9-2-56-release/ 

explains what that means.

And that would appear to be the problem and I probably can't do anything but prey they fix it.

  • This is also a problem on the droid 3 running gingerbread 2.3.4 also a 034 series machine. Please help me spread the word to anybody you know at google who can help? – stu Jul 3 '16 at 22:46
  • If that's the case, try Force Stopping the 'Google Play Services' and immediately note the CPU utilization to see if it's decreased, to ensure if that's causing the problem.. – Gokul NC Jul 4 '16 at 11:16
  • I did. If I uninstall google play services the problem goes away. If I install an older version of google play services it goes away until it auto updates itself. All I really need is a way to keep it from updating itself and I'll be fine. – stu Jul 4 '16 at 12:43
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  • ahhh, there's a whole forum about my exact problem. thanks for point me to it. – stu Jul 4 '16 at 22:26

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