What is Taskmgr.exe

Windows TaskManager - Microsoft® Windows® Operating System - Microsoft Corporation

File description

Taskmgr.exe with description Windows TaskManager 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 taskmgr.exe?
This is the Windows Task Manager. It allows you to see which programs are currently running, kill processes, and view resource usage. The following is a screenshot of the Task Manager running under Windows XP:

The existence of this program is essential to the operation of the system; however, killing it will simply result in the Task Manager closing. Do not, however, make any attempt to permanently remove the Task Manager. The following screenshot illustrates how this process should appear in the Task Manager:

Notice that taskmgr.exe typically runs as the current user (in this case, Mike). A process with this name running as a user other than the current user may indicate a malware infection.

Dangers of taskmgr
As this is a program that exists on all Windows systems, and always shows up when you are looking at the list of processes running, it is common for virus writers and spyware vendors to disguise their malware as the genuine one.

Some malicious files may have the same name as this 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. The following malware is known to disguise itself as taskmgr.exe:
  • Troj/Banker-EJU (%SystemRoot%)
    • This is a banking Trojan that will try to steal passwords to various online banking websites.
  • W32/Sayonara-A (%SystemRoot%\System)
    • This is a Trojan that will make periodic attempts to connect to a remote URL.
  • W32/Tigs-C (%SystemRoot%)
    • This is a worm that modifies the HOSTS file to prevent access to a variety of security-related websites.
There will typically be only one instance of this process running at a given time on a system, as it is uncommon to run more than one copy of the Task Manager at once. The presence of multiple instances may be an indicator of a malware infection.

Common problems
  • This process uses 100% CPU time
    • This problem is known to occur as a result of a Windows update. Be sure you have all of the latest updates for your system.
    • This problem is also known to occur as a result of some old versions of the nForce chipset drivers. Be sure that they are up-to-date.
    • If you have an ATI graphics card, be sure your drivers are up-to-date.

Automatic startup locations

001 Running Processes
002 Autorun registry entries local machine
003 Autorun registry entries Current User
004 All users startup startmenu
005 Current user startup startmenu
006 Start Menu\Programs\Startup
007 Roaming Start Menu\Programs\Startup
008 Autorun registry entries Default user
009 Autorun registry entries SYSTEM user
010 Installed services
033 Winlogon Userinit
034 Winlogon Shell
035 Active Setup Installed Components
038 Winlogon Taskman
063 BootExecute
065 Image File Execution Options (debugger)
073 %windir%\Tasks
166 HKCU Policies\Explorer\Run
167 HKLM Policies\Explorer\Run
171 Screensaver

Digital signatures found for this file

48 Microsoft Windows Component Publisher - Microsoft Timestamping Service
30 Microsoft Windows Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
16 Microsoft Windows - Microsoft Time-Stamp Service
10 Microsoft Windows XP Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Service
7 Microsoft Windows 2000 Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Service
6 Microsoft Windows XP Publisher (Europe) - VeriSign Time Stamping Service
3 Microsoft Windows Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Service
3 Microsoft Windows - Microsoft Timestamping Service
1 Microsoft Windows Component Publisher - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
1 Microsoft Windows - VeriSign Time Stamping Services Signer
1 Microsoft Windows 2000 Publisher - NO LIABILITY ACCEPTED, (c)97 VeriSign, Inc.

MD5 security rating in our database

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

User ratings for this file

File rating: Average rating of taskmgr.exe: by 571 files and users.

Application errors

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