My normally stable mbp 2017 has started slowing down with kernel_thread dominating the CPU in recent weeks. This condition persists across reboots. My primary concern is that the machine is overheating (please see troubleshooting to date).
Any ideas? The wildest idea I have at the moment is that Firefox had some sort of deep JS hack; Zoom has rolled out crappier code in 5.X series (nothing to do with heat); and the thermal throttling is normal.
Are there any alternative troubleshooting steps I can take short of returning my mac for service? I don’t have a backup and really can’t be without a computer for 5+ days for work. I’ve also thought about buying a new machine but Apple pricing is just spectacular.
Things I’ve tried:
- Restarting the machine
- Restarting / running diags (nothing found)
- Re-installing key apps
- Air-blowing out the exhaust ports
- Until I re-installed Firefox (user profiles preserved) – connecting MBP to the internet would result in immediate spike in kernel_threads
- Zoom meetings also trigger the
Data I’ve been using:
- iStats Menu for detailed graphs
- pmset -g thermal
- No observable memory pressure
- Temperatures on thunderbolt port, cpu etc seem nominal but pmset is showing thermal throttling
This has triggered a conversation about refreshing to a MBP 2016 or macmini, but its an awfully expensive “fix” if there are other ways to root cause the behaviour.