What is rundll32.exe and is it Safe or Not?

Rundll32.Exe Process Information
Rundll32.Exe Process Information

Is rundll32.exea virus? If you’ve been around Windows for any amount of time, you’ve viewed the zillions of *.dll (Dynamic Link Library) files in each application folder, which are utilized to store common pieces of application logic that can be reached from multiple applications.

Since there’s no way to launch a DLL file directly, the rundll32.exe application is used to launch functionality stored in shared .dll files. This executable is a valid part of Windows and usually shouldn’t be a threat.

Note: the valid method is usually located at \Windows\System32\rundll32.exe, but sometimes spyware uses the same filename and runs from a different directory to disguise itself. If you think you have a problem, you should always run a scan to be sure, but we can verify precisely what is going on, so keep reading.

Rundll32.Exe Process Library
Rundll32.Exe Process Library

What is rundll32 exe? 

The rundll32.exe method is liable for running DLLs and fixing its libraries in the memory. The rundll32.exe process is acknowledged as a command-line utility program, and it performs its embedded functions along with the rundll.exe file. Rundll32.exe works by invoking a function that is exported from a particular 16-bit or 32-bit DLL module. However, the only DLLs that you can call with the rundll.exe and rundll32.exe files are the ones that are only defined to be accessed by these processes.

The rundll32.exe file works by parsing the command line. The particularized DLL is then loaded by the function LoadLibrary(). Afterward, from the function, it gets the addresses through GetProcAddress(). The command line tail is crossed when it is called. Next, the DLL is unloaded upon the return. Finally, the rundll32.exe file exits.

Other instances of RUNDLL32.EXE:

1) rundll32.exe is a method registered as a backdoor vulnerability that may be installed for malicious purposes by an attacker allowing access to your computer from remote locations, stealing passwords, Internet banking, and personal data. This method is a security risk and should be removed from your system.

2) rundll32.exe could also be a process that belongs to the. This program is a non-essential process but should not be terminated except suspected to be causing problems.

Warning: Multiple cases of RUNDLL32 may be running on your pc at one time. Some of these may or may not be legal versions.

What Is Rundll32.Exe
What Is Rundll32.Exe

Using Process Explorer on Windows 10, 8, 7, and Vista

Instead of using Task Manager, we can use the freeware Process Explorer utility from Microsoft to conclude out what is going on, which benefits from working in every version of Windows and being the best option for any troubleshooting job.

Launch Process Explorer, and you’ll want to pick File\ Show Details for All Processes to ensure that you see everything.

Now when you hover over the rundll32.exe in the list, you’ll notice a tooltip with the details of what it is:

Or you can right-click, pick Properties, and then take a look at the Image tab to see the full pathname that is being launched. You can even see the Parent process, which in this case is the Windows shell (explorer.exe), indicating that it was hopeful launched from a shortcut or startup item.

You can browse down and view the information of the file just like we did in the task manager section above. In my instance, it’s a part of the NVIDIA control panel, so I’m not going to do anything about it.

How to Disable the Rundll32 Process (Windows 7)

Depending on the process, you won’t want to disable it necessarily, but you can type msconfig.exe into the start menu search or run box if you would like to. You should be ready to find it by the Command column, which should be the similarly as the Command line field we saw in Process Explorer. Uncheck the box to prevent it from beginning automatically.

Sometimes the method doesn’t have a startup item, in which case you’ll likely have to do some research to figure out where it was started from. For instance, if you open up Display Properties on XP, you’ll notice another rundll32.exe in the list because Windows internally uses rundll32 to run that dialog.

Disabling in Windows 8 or 10

If you’re using Windows 8 or 10, you can handle the Startup section of Task Manager to disable it.

Using Windows 7 or Vista Task Manager

One of the great features in Windows 7 or Vista Task Manager is seeing the full command line for any running application. For instance, you’ll know that I have two rundll32.exe methods in my list here:

If you go to View \ Select Columns, you’ll see the “Command Line” option in the list, which you’ll want to check.

Now you can inspect the full path for the file in the list, which you’ll notice is the valid path for rundll32.exe in the System32 directory, and the argument is different DLL that is actually what is being run.

If you browse down to locate that file, which in this example is nvmctray.dll, you’ll usually see what it is when you hover your mouse over the filename:

Otherwise, you can open up the Properties and take a look at the Details to view the file description, which usually will tell you the purpose for that file.

Once we know what it is, we can figure out if we need to disable it or not, which we’ll cover below. If there isn’t any information, you should either Google it or ask somebody on a helpful forum.

Should You Remove rundll32 exe?

If you are asking yourself if it is safe to remove rundll32.exe from your Windows system, it is understandable that it is causing trouble. rundll32.exe is a system process. rundll32.exe should not be disabled, required for essential applications to work correctly.

System processes are run and managed by the operating system and are essential to run the operating system. System processes manage different operating system functionality, including memory management, hard disk management, network management, display, and so on. So, it is recommended that you do not remove rundll32.exe.