What is Mrt.exe

Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool - Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool - Microsoft Corporation

File description

Mrt.exe with description Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool is a process file from company Microsoft Corporation belonging to product Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool.
The file is digitally signed from Microsoft Windows - Microsoft Time-Stamp Service
We do not recommend removing digitally signed files from Microsoft Windows

What is mrt.exe?
This is the Microsoft Malicious Software Removal Tool. It is available for most versions of Windows through Windows Update. Its purpose is to provide limited anti-virus and anti-spyware functionality for all Windows users. The following is a screenshot of the Malicious Software Removal Tool running under Windows XP:

This process is not essential to the operation of the system; however, it should not be deleted without performing a proper uninstallation. This process should be safe to kill in most cases, as it will simply terminate the Malicious Software Removal tool. Killing it while the tool is removing malicious software may result in a partial removal of malware and therefor is not recommended. The screenshot below illustrates how the Malicious Software Removal Tool should appear in the Task Manager:

Note that mrt.exe typically as the current user (in this case, Mike). A process with this name running as a different user may be indicative of a malware infection. This process should only run on demand. If you see a process with this name running upon system startup, it is likely that your system is infected with malware.

Dangers of mrt
As this is a legitimate executable that is installed on most Windows systems, it is possible for virus writers and spyware vendors to disguise their malware as the genuine one.

Some malicious files may have the same name as this process but be stored somewhere other than in %SystemRoot%\System32. Other malware may use a name that appears similar to that of the legitimate one but with slight differences in spelling or with appended digits. While there are currently no known viruses, Trojans, or adware applications that disguise themselves as this process, you should look out for the presence of this file in an incorrect location or with a slightly different name.

There is typically only one instance of mrt.exe running at a given time on a system. The presence of multiple instances may be an indicator of a malware infection. If you are not running the Malicious Software Removal Tool, the presence of this process in the Task Manager is a likely sign of a virus infection.

Common problems
  • This process uses 100% of the CPU
    • This is a problem that could have many potential causes. It is possible that you have a conflict with another anti-malware utility. Disable any other virus or spyware protection before running this tool.
    • If the problem persists, do not use the Malicious Software Removal Tool.

Automatic startup locations

001 Running Processes
002 Autorun registry entries local machine
003 Autorun registry entries Current User
005 Current user startup startmenu
008 Autorun registry entries Default user
009 Autorun registry entries SYSTEM user
010 Installed services
012 Autorun registry entries S-1-5-XX users
073 %windir%\Tasks

Digital signatures found for this file

73 Microsoft Windows - Microsoft Time-Stamp Service
45 Microsoft Corporation - Microsoft Time-Stamp Service
17 Microsoft Corporation - Microsoft Timestamping Service
1 Microsoft Corporation - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer

MD5 security rating in our database

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

User ratings for this file

File rating: Average rating of mrt.exe: by 154 files and users.

Application errors

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

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