What is Cisvc.exe

Indexing Service - Microsoft® Windows® Operating System - Microsoft Corporation

File description

Cisvc.exe with description Indexing Service is a process file from company Microsoft Corporation belonging to product Microsoft® Windows® Operating System.
The file is digitally signed from Microsoft Windows Component Publisher - Microsoft Timestamping Service
We do not recommend removing digitally signed files from Microsoft Windows Component Publisher

What is cisvc.exe?
Cisvc.exe, or the Content Indexing Service, is responsible for scanning your system for documents and media files and to index them so that searches on your system can occur more quickly.

This process is not essential to the operation of the system and can safely be disabled via services.msc. Note that by disabling the Content Indexing Service, searching for files on your computer may take some time. The following screenshot illustrates how this process should appear in the Task Manager:



As you can see in the above screenshot, cisvc.exe typically runs as SYSTEM. If this process is running as another user, it may be indicative of a malware infection.

Dangers of cisvc
As cisvc.exe is an executable that is included with Windows that runs on any machine with the content indexer enabled, it is common for virus writers and spyware vendors to disguise their malware as the genuine process

Some malicious files may have the same name as the Content Indexing Service but be stored somewhere other than in %SystemRoot%\System32. Other malware may use a name that appears similar to that of the real process but with slight differences in spelling or with appended digits. The following malware is known to disguise itself as the genuine cisvc.exe:
  • Family Key Logger (%ProgramFiles%\familykeylogger)
    • This is a readily available keylogger that is normally stored in the Program Files directory; however, other pieces of malware use it and place it in other locations.
  • W32/Rado-A (%SystemRoot%)
    • This is a worm that attempts to disable security products such as anti-virus utilities, firewalls, and spyware removers.
There is typically only one instance of this process running at a given time on a system. The presence of multiple instances of this process may be an indicator of a malware infection.

Common problems
  • Cisvc.exe uses 100% CPU time
    • This is a common problem with the Indexing Service. The recommended solution is to disable the Indexing Service in services.msc.

Automatic startup locations

001 Running Processes
002 Autorun registry entries local machine
010 Installed services
139 Windows\load
166 HKCU Policies\Explorer\Run
167 HKLM Policies\Explorer\Run

Digital signatures found for this file

    Certificate 
55 Microsoft Windows Component Publisher - Microsoft Timestamping Service
37 Microsoft Windows Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
10 Microsoft Windows 2000 Publisher (Europe) - VeriSign Time Stamping Service CA SW1
10 Microsoft Windows XP Publisher (Europe) - VeriSign Time Stamping Service
10 Microsoft Windows XP Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Service
7 Microsoft Windows Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Service
6 Microsoft Windows - Microsoft Time-Stamp Service
3 Microsoft Windows 2000 Publisher - NO LIABILITY ACCEPTED, (c)97 VeriSign, Inc.
2 Microsoft Windows 2000 Publisher (Europe) - NO LIABILITY ACCEPTED, (c)97 VeriSign, Inc.
2 Microsoft Windows Component Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
2 Microsoft Windows - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
1 Microsoft Windows XP Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
1 Microsoft Windows 2000 Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Service CA SW1
1 Microsoft Windows - Microsoft Timestamping Service

MD5 security rating in our database

95 files (Not yet rated and not signed)
2 files (Not yet rated and digitally signed)
1 files (Safe and not signed)
171 files (Safe and digitally signed)
Some versions of this filename have not yet been checked for safety.
Warning: Some malware might rename itself to cisvc.exe. Always make sure that your file is from a verified publisher.

User ratings for this file

File rating: Average rating of cisvc.exe: by 269 files and users.

Application errors

Fix cisvc.exe application error:  Run a FREE registry scan

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