What is Powershell.exe? Should I remove it?

by Olivia Morelli - -
Powershell.exe

Powershell.exe is the executable file that belongs to Microsoft Windows and does not pose any danger to the device

Powershell.exe is the software component and task automation framework from Microsoft. The executable is associated with PowerShell that is a Microsoft configuration management feature which consists of a command-line shell and a scripting language. This is cross-platform and open-source application. Administrators can perform administrative tasks remotely and on the local Windows system thanks to this software. This file is an important part of Windows, so incorrect Powershell.exe removal can cause problems and issues on the machine. You may encounter the process running in the background or even in Windows Task Manager, but this file shouldn't cause issues if legitimate and safe.

Name Powershell.exe
Type Software component
Related Windows operating system
Purpose Configuration management
Safe? The executable related to OS and shouldn't be compared to any threat, but can be misused due to a familiar name by malicious hackers
Possible check Install Reimage and run a system scan to make sure that Powershell.exe is safe

Powershell.exe can be found on the system but should be located in a legitimate, common, system file folder, for example, C:\Windows\System32\WindowsPowerShell\v1.0. The size of this file, when safe, shouldn't also raise any questions because it differs around 450, 608 bytes. 

This is a trustworthy Microsoft file, although the program is not visible, the process may run in the background. However, people still think that this is a Powershell.exe virus due to a suspicious appearance in Task Manager or even high usage of resources like CPU.

Powershell.exe is associated with other processes and files that you may find running on the machine:

  • timountermonitor.exe;
  • wsxservice.exe;
  • flcomserv.exe; 
  • fubtool.exe;
  • dacore.exe;
  • tppaldr.exe;
  • gmouseservice.exe;
  • safeguard32.dll;
  • pctsgui.exe. 

There is a possible issue that Powershell.exe gets misused by malicious actors and camouflaged as a common executable file but delivers malware. This is why you should check the process on the Task Manager and the location on the system because when the file is placed in another folder than the system it can be a threat. 

Executables like Powershell.exe are useful because these files contain step-by-step instructions that computer need to follow to carry out a specific function. Once the data is launched this executable send the guide to the software and runs the wanted program.

Every software or application on your PC has such executables linked with each and one of them, so Powershell.exe removal can cause issues with the Power Shell or even more crucial part of the operating system. Avoid deleting files in such format when you don't know the purpose or relation.

Unfortunately, people want to remove Powershell.exe when they find the process running in the background out of nowhere or even encounters the following errors:

  • Powershell.exe Application error;
  • Powershell.exe is not valid Win32 application;
  • Powershell.exe not found;
  • Powershell.exe failed;
  • Error starting program: Powershell.exe;
  • Cannot find Powershell.exe;
  • Powershell.exe is not running.

However, run the system scan with Reimage before reacting to any of these symptoms and Powershell.exe-regarding issues. The anti-malware or system optimization program from any other source should do the same – check the purpose of this executable. 

If Powershell.exe ends up indicated as malicious you should also encounter other malware infection symptoms like the slowness of the machine, system crashes or questionable redirects, content delivered to your screen like pop-ups, banners, commercial material. Also, when shady tools or programs appear on the system that you didn't install yourself, it may indicate some cyber threat issue.

Some malware camouflages itself using EXE file names 

When the operating system is installed on the machine, and other programs get added on the device, various files and application get downloaded on the computer or mobile device automatically. In most cases, such data is crucial for the smooth performance of the machine.

However, there are many common types of data that can be found added on the system, so it makes malicious actors more eager to create malware posing as those common files. Infections like trojans, worms, and malware come as these executables or DLLs via spam email attachments and malicious links included on legitimate-looking notifications.

You should always avoid visiting questionable pages, installing anything suspicious from promotional ads, or free download domains. When it comes to email boxes, clean those more often, and delete any email received without expectations or sent from an unfamiliar sender.

You need to check the purpose and location of the file before eliminating any part of the program or the Powershell.exe itself

Although the term Powershell.exe virus is used by various users online, this file is a safe software-related executable that is needed for certain Windows functions and cannot be recklessly deleted without paying the proper attention. You can cause severe damage to the machine if you remove the program or the file without checking. 

Before you decide to remove Powershell.exe, you should check the folder this file is placed in and look for a while if the process causes abnormal usage of resources like CPU. When the data is not causing any issues on the computer, you should leave it alone without any manual interference. 

However, automatic Powershell.exe removal and system checking are advisable more, especially when it is possible with anti-malware tools like Reimage, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner, Malwarebytes. You should rely on such appliances and run a system check on the device that raises questions. When files, applications, or any system issues get indicated, you can terminate them automatically and quickly with such a program.

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What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is a recommended tool to scan your system for possible threats and crappy software. The trial version of the product will find harmful applications in your system.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Combo Cleaner.

About the author

Olivia Morelli
Olivia Morelli - Ransomware analyst

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