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I have recently downloaded Catalina on my Macbook pro and every now and again my fan goes into overdrive, even when I'm hardly using any programs.

I opened my Activity Monitor and there is a process called "ItYoingm" using over 90% CPU and over 106GB memory. The user is "root" user and the process group is "launchd(1)" and then parent process "kernel_task (0)"

Does anybody know what "ItYoingm" is and why it's using so much CPU? I can't find anything on google.

As it's a root user process I feel nervous about quitting the process. Can anyone advise?

I'm not very tech savvy so I would appreciate answers in layman terms please!

Screenshot of Activity Monitor

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    Suspect malware - grab Malwarebytes for starters. – Tetsujin Mar 7 at 16:23
  • Click on 'ItYoingm' and then click on the 'i' icon (top left on toolbar, in the middle of the other two icons) to see what files/folders it is using. Google turned up zero instances of that process name, so I second @Tetsujin's suggestion to grab Malwarebytes and suspect it might be malware. – TJ Luoma Mar 7 at 16:44
  • @TJLuoma The files open can be hard to parse as opposed to knowing where the binary is on the filesystem. I've put up a proper answer to get things started - we're all guessing, though unless we happen to have installed the same app. – bmike Mar 7 at 16:51
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    We've been seeing a lot of this in the past couple of years - used to be latin names of plants or animals, but seems to have moved more towards randomly-generated names recently. Next boot it might even have a different name. – Tetsujin Mar 7 at 16:53
  • Fair point. I was mostly expecting that the files might show the path, but the sample might be a better tool to figure that out. – TJ Luoma Mar 7 at 16:54
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Select the process and select the gear icon in Activity Monitor and sample it. You will need to enter your password to allow Activity Monitor to look as root.

The first few lines will establish what this really is...

Analysis of sampling whatever (pid 133) every 1 millisecond
Process:         whatever [133]
Path:            /Library/Application Support/ThisThing/whatever.app/Contents/MacOS/TheDaemon.app/Contents/MacOS/whatever
Load Address:    0x104743000
Identifier:      whatever
Version:         ???
Code Type:       X86-64
Parent Process:  launchd [1]

Date/Time:       2020-03-07 10:44:35.131 -0600
Launch Time:     2020-02-24 10:14:17.221 -0600
OS Version:      Mac OS X 10.15.3 (19D76)
Report Version:  7
Analysis Tool:   /usr/bin/sample

Now to fix it, if you don’t recognize the program you may need help uninstalling it or use a tool like MalwareBytes to scan for known malware.

You can kill just about any root process - worst case it shuts down the system and you need to reinstall macos which doesn’t erase your programs or data, just makes a new operating system.

I would shut down the mac and disconnect from network and power on while you look, it’s likely something you installed, but without details on what you’ve installed we have to make some assumptions.

While you’re disconnected, making a Time Machine backup or just copying the most important files off your mac to an external drive would be very prudent if you lost control of the system and what’s running as root. Then disconnect that backup until you’re sure you don’t have malware running. (or don't connect your good backup if you know you have one and are already covered - some malware will encrypt files and damage trivial backups that don't make the files read only once backed up in a strong manner)


This last part is pure speculation - since the PID is 176 it started very soon after boot, so it's a persistent program that will likely start each time your Mac is restarted - so you will need to diagnose and fix the launcher or get help if this is all too technical or you want to be sure you've got someone experienced helping.

Good tools:

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    Yup. My guess is some sort of malware/nagware that has gotten itself into launchd. I'd use KnockKnock to help look at what's installed, and LaunchControl to manage launchd programs. – TJ Luoma Mar 7 at 16:52
  • I love both of these - well worth anyone interested to try them - even if you think you're non-technical, the above apps @TJLuoma describes are legit and awesome. – bmike Mar 7 at 17:02
  • Thanks guys! It was an app and so I've deleted it and emptied the trash and restarted my computer and it looks to have gone. When I deleted it Avast then found it and quarantined it. I'll download the apps you've recommended though. Thanks again! – Lizzie S Mar 8 at 11:43

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