The Windows Shell Experience Host (WSEH) is a critical system component responsible for managing various visual elements of the Windows desktop, such as background slideshows and transparency effects. However there are instances where users observe this component consuming an unusually high amount of system memory, leading to decreased computer performance. 

This article aims to shed light on the nature of the WSEH, the reasons behind its excessive memory consumption, and solutions to mitigate the issue effectively.

What is Windows Shell Experience Host?

The Windows Shell Experience Host, often seen running in the background, primarily manages several visual elements on the desktop, such as transparency effects and background slideshow. It’s an essential part of the system.

While it plays a pivotal role, sometimes, it starts using a hefty amount of RAM, which can slow down your computer. But why does this happen?

Causes for High Memory Usage

1: Background Applications

Many apps run silently in the background, using system resources, and sometimes, these can conflict with the Windows Shell Experience Host.

2: Faulty Updates or Drivers

Ever installed an update and noticed your computer acting weird? Some updates or outdated drivers can be the culprits.

3: System Malfunctions

Corrupt files or system malfunctions can lead to spikes in memory usage.

Solutions to the Problem

1: Check for Updates

Firstly, make sure that you regularly update your Operating System or OS, and drivers for Windows. Microsoft (Windows Operating System developer) frequently releases updates that solve several issues, including ones related to memory consumption. Navigate to


 ‘Update & Security’

‘Windows Update’ 

and select ‘Check for Updates’ to make sure that the system is updated to the latest versions:

2: Adjusting Visual Effects

Reducing the system’s visual effects can alleviate the strain on the Windows Shell Experience Host. To adjust: 

right-click on ‘This PC’ or ‘Computer’ on the desktop, select ‘Properties’ 

then ‘Advanced system settings’ 

Locate the ‘Performance’ section from the screen and click on the ‘Settings’ button:

Now choose ‘Adjust for best performance’ or manually deselect unnecessary effects:

3: Disabling Unnecessary Background Apps

Some background applications can conflict with WSEH or exacerbate memory usage. To disable these apps: 

go to ‘Settings’


‘Background apps’ 

From there, toggle off apps that you don’t frequently use or find non-essential:

4: Using System File Checker

Corrupt system files can sometimes cause WSEH to misbehave. To address this, use the System File Checker tool, Simply Open the Windows terminal or Command Prompt by clicking on the Run as administrator button:

Type sfc /scannow, then press enter:

This command will scan and repair any corrupt system files it detects.

Preventative Measures

1: Regular Maintenance

Just as vehicles require consistent maintenance to run efficiently, computers, too, benefit from regular check-ups. This means regularly deleting unnecessary files, defragmenting the hard drive (especially if you’re using HDD instead of SSD), and scanning for malware or viruses using trusted antivirus software.

2: Monitor Resource Consumption

Routinely monitor your system’s performance by using the built-in Task Manager. Press Ctrl + Shift + Esc or Ctrl + Alt + Del and select ‘Task Manager.’ By frequently reviewing the ‘Processes’ tab, you can identify and address any application or process that starts consuming an abnormal amount of resources.

3: Update Software and Applications

Apart from the OS, ensure that all your software and applications are updated to their latest versions. Software developers often release patches and updates to address compatibility issues or memory leaks that might cause strain on system resources.

4: Regular Backups

Always back up your data and system settings regularly to ensure that in the event of a malfunction or corruption, you can restore your system to a state before the problem starts.

5: Avoid Clutter

Limit the number of applications that start up when your computer boots. Too many startup applications not only slow down the boot process but can also put unnecessary strain on memory and CPU. Visit to the ‘Startup’ tab to manage these applications.


Windows Shell Experience Host using high memory can be a bummer. Still, with the right knowledge and measures, it’s an issue you can tackle head-on. Always remember, your PC requires your attention; after all, it’s the device that gets you through work, plays, and everything in between!