We are absolutely sure that you have looked up to reading this particular article after you noticed in task manager and questioned what exactly all those rundll32.exe processes are, and why all of them are running. So let's first look into what are they.
Your company computer hosts critical system files that you might never view when you are going through files or documents like spreadsheets, expense reports and others in Windows Explorer.
One such system file, rundll32.exe, runs silently in the background which helps the programs to help you, indirectly, manage your work properly.
I know that you do not need to know everything related to the rundll32.exe file – as there is a very little chance that you’ll probably ever have a need to run it. But then, a slight insight into how it works may help you distinguish possible threats to your computing activity.
What exactly is it ?
If you have been using Windows operating system for some time, you have probably come across more than a countable number of *.dll (Dynamic Link Library) files in every application folder, which is used to collect basic bits of application logic that can be used from various applications.
There are a lot of local Windows applications and third-party programs which uses the feature which a user can find in libraries which are present in the Windows System32 file.
These Dynamic Link Libraries simply make a software developer's job easy and helps you to save some disk space. Because an application has an ability to simply execute a function which previously exists in your System32 folder, the application's developers do not need to type the code again to make that function work or add it in the installation folder that you download.
Since there’s no way to directly launch a DLL file, the rundll32.exe application is simply used to launch functionality stored in shared .dll files. This executable is a valid part of Windows, and normally shouldn’t be a threat. People who know Windows internals can also operate DLLs from the Windows Command prompt by typing "Rundll32.exe" and the name of the DLL they want to run.
Note: the validation process is normally located at \Windows\System32\rundll32.exe, but seldom spyware works with the same file name and runs from a different directory in order to change itself.
If you think you have an issue, you should always run a scan to be certain, but we can check exactly what is going on hence please keep reading on.
Encounters with rundll32.exe
If you ever manage Windows Task Manager to see the processes which are running on your computer, you might notice the rundll32 process. Some people may even question if their computers have a virus when they notice that DLL in the process list.
The official Windows Rundll32.exe is reliable and cannot harm your machine; there is no requirement to eliminate it or prevent the process from running. Rundll32.exe is a critical Windows process that launches other 32-bit DLLs that remain on your computer.
Virus creators can specify names for viruses they spread. This impoverished technique makes it feasible for them to name one "rundll32.exe."
If your machine has a false rundll32.exe process running, it will not appear in the standard Windows System32 folder where the other DLLs reside.
Viruses and other forms of malware can compromise your privacy, steal critical business information and destroy files on your hard drive. Run an antivirus scanner if you discover a process that you think is masquerading as the rundll32.exe DLL.
Look for Rundll32 in Task Manager
Windows normally have at least one copy of Rundll32 running at any given point in time. In Windows 8, examine the Details tab in the Task Manager ( you need to press Ctrl-Shift-Esc simultaneously) to view details about Rundll32.exe and another active program.
Normally, you don't have to worry about Rundll32, but just in case you can see various running copies or if Rundll32 is using a huge portion of your CPU power, monitor its location to make sure it's a valid Windows process.
Right-click every copy of Rundll32.exe and select Open File Location to get its origin.
The original Rundll32 will open in C:\Windows\System32 or C:\Windows\SysWOW64.
If another location opens instead, run a full virus scan, as the Rundll32 might be a scam.
How to Disable the Rundll32 Process (Windows 7)
Depending on which the method is, you do not want to certainly disable it, but if you still wish to, you need to type msconfig.exe into the start menu search or run box.
Once you have done that, you will be able to get it by the Command column. Now, simply untick the box to stop them from starting automatically.
At times, the method doesn’t actually hold 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 see another rundll32.exe in the list because Windows internally uses rundll32 to run that dialog.
Disabling in Windows 8 or 10
If you’re working on Windows 8 or 10, you can make use of the Startup part of Task Manager to disable it.
Using Windows 7 or Vista Task Manager
One of the great highlights in Windows 7 or Vista Task Manager is the facility to view the full command line for any application which is running. For an instance, if you notice that there are two rundll32.exe processes there on the list then you can do one thing.
If you go to View \ Select Columns, you’ll see the option for “Command Line” in the list, which you’ll need to check.
Now you can examine the entire route for the file in the menu, which you’ll see is the correct way for rundll32.exe in the System32 list, and the case is different DLL that is really what is being run.
If you scan down to find that file, you’ll usually see something it really is when you hang your mouse above the filename.
Otherwise, you can open up the Properties option and take a glance at the Details to see the file record, which regularly will show you the idea of that file.
Once we understand what it is, we can conclude out if we need to disable it or not, which we’ll recount later. If there isn’t any data at all, you should either Google it or urge somebody on a suitable forum.
If everything else doesn't work, you should post the full command path above on a suitable forum and take help from somebody else that might understand more about it.