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What Is rundll32.exe And How Safe Is It For Your System

If you are a Windows user you must have come across the rundll32.exe process several times. You might have seen it in the Task Manager and wondered what its purpose was. You must have assumed that it was some sort of a virus or an unwanted spyware application. 

Unfortunately, some companies often use ‘rundll32’ while naming various malicious processes that they manufacture. This leads many users to remain suspicious about running rundll32.exe processes. However, this specific executable file is quite genuine and safe for your PC.

A Brief Insight Into rundll32.exe 

You must have come across numerous DLL files in your Windows Task Manager. These files act as a storage place for various application logic entities. The applications installed on your system require these entities to function smoothly. Many such applications will fail to function in the absence of those DLL files. 

Rundll32.exe is an authentic file that runs in the background of every Windows-based system. You can find this process located at the “Windows\System32” folder. It is a crucial part of your Operating System, which enables the necessary task of dynamic link library distribution in the memory. 

Note: Dynamic link libraries store various crucial data about applications running on your system. Without this, the DLL files simply won’t launch. 

Is rundll32.exe a Virus?

Since many users do not have much knowledge about it, they often consider rundll32.exe a malicious file. The .exe extension on a filename signifies that it is specifically an executable file. However, in some cases, an executable file can also turn out to be malware. 

Malware often tends to take the name of various legitimate files. So, the rundll32.exe process that you see in your system can be either a legitimate file or malware. Hence, you need to make sure whether a particular rundll.exe process is a virus or not.

How to Check the Authenticity of a rundll32.exe Process?

To verify whether a rundll.exe process is authentic, use the Windows search feature. You can locate the file using this feature as well. 

If you find this process in the folders named WinSxS, System32, or SysWOW64, then it is a legitimate Microsoft process. Alternately, you can also click on the “Properties” option to verify its authenticity. 

In case, the properties indicate that it is a Windows Operating System file, then you need not worry about the process. 

In other words, rundl32.exe is not a typical virus. But, this does not mean that the rundll32.exe process that you find in the Task Manager is always genuine and authentic. As mentioned earlier, many viruses or malware use rundll32.exe in their names to hide their information. 

So, it is always necessary to check the properties of a rundll32.exe file. If you suspect any process, you must immediately run an anti-virus scan. 

Can You Turn off this rundll32.exe Process?

The rundll32.exe Windows host process (rundll32) is an extremely crucial process for your system. Many applications depend on its functionality. You can remove this process from your system using the Task Manager window. However, that might make your system highly unstable. Due to this file, various applications may fail to function as well. 

So, it is best not to remove this vital process from your Windows system. However, if the rundll32.exe file is a virus or malware, then you must immediately remove it. 

Steps to Remove rundll32.exe

In case your system gets affected by a virus disguised as a rundll32.exe process, it can lead to high CPU usage. Moreover, various important applications can stop functioning due to this file. Gradually your device might slow down and you’ll face frequent system crashes and screen blackouts. 

Here’s how you can get rid of the rundll32.exe virus:

Step 1

Press the ‘Windows’ key and the ‘R’ key to launch the Run dialog box. Type ‘regedit’ in the box and press the Enter button. Now, open the Registry Editor.

Step 2

Once you are in the Registry Editor, you should navigate to this key and remove it: HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\MICROSOFT\WINDOWS\CURRENTVERSION\RUN\XTray.exe

Step 3

Thereafter, look for all the files related to this rundll32.exe process. Find them, then locate and delete it accordingly. 

Note: Make sure to exempt the file located in the “C:\Windows\System32\” folder. This is the genuine rundll32.exe Windows host process (rundll32).

Finally, run a powerful antivirus tool to scan and find any remnant files related to the rundll32.exe virus. 

In this way, you can manually get rid of the virus disguised as the rundll32.exe process.

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