What is svchost.exe and is It Safe or is it a Virus?

While working on your computer, have you ever opened the task manager and found svchost.exe processes running in the background? You may have also noticed that there are various other svchost.exe also running and not just one. Then what is it? You may have also wondered that you never launched such an application and neither set any such thing to off then why is it there? And why are there so many of them? Is it a virus or malware which is infecting your computer and you were not aware of it?

Should you panic? Or ignore it? All these questions may seem too much at once but the answer is, it depends. Yes, you cannot mark all the svchost processes as virus or malicious software but at the same time you should not ignore it. Though a lot of svchost processes are common system ones and they work with DLL to make sure that everything runs smoothly but if you have viruses or other malware installed in your system that masks as this process then it can be a big issue as it can get past your monitoring and you won’t even know it. Don’t worry in this article I am going to discuss how you can solve this problem. Have a look:

What is svchost.exe?

Service Host is the full form of scvhost.exe file which is a part of Windows system files. So it is not a threat exactly and is quite crucial for the normal functioning of the processes and the system. Microsoft designed a lot of DLL files to hold information and they are quite feasible from the aspect of programming. These files can help perform functions like automatically updating operating system without the need of a browser, connecting to a site for getting specific information, etc.

It can be used to manage a process, a group of processes, and even multiple svchost.exe processes. Earlier versions of Windows operating systems didn’ have them but with new developments and advancements in the market, Microsoft started getting more reliable on internal programs. These DLL programs are easily reusable and more efficient but they are not designed to be able to launch on their own. And hence svchost.exe was born.

Are they harmful to your computer?

No, if your computer is running genuine svchost files from Windows then there is no issue but the story doesn’t end here. Not all service host files are innocent as they look. After seeing the versatility of it, hackers and malicious programmers started hiding harmful malware and viruses in files that had similar or in many cases, exact same names. So how would you know if you have a malware infestation or not?


The best way to find out if you have a virus hiding itself among system processes is to get an antivirus software. Such software are especially useful and dedicatedly designed to help with detecting and taking care of the issues. An antivirus software is supported by mugshot database which has all the data on computer viruses circulating around the world. Now there are hundreds of such applications floating in the market and many of them also promise to provide the service free of cost. So I would suggest you to get a paid and reputable one. The companies that provide free antivirus usually sell user’s information to third parties organizations to generate their revenues. I am sure that no one would want their information to be sold out without their permission. So don’t fall for them and try to get a top class antivirus for your system.

If you want to protect your computer and not depend solely on antivirus software for the security then I would recommend you to actively take preventive measures like:

Avoid pirated files

Pirated files such as games, utility apps, expensive apps, media such as photos, documents, movies, videos, music, etc. are very alluring to get but they have a hidden price of their own. The pirated files are available for free or at a surprisingly low cost by people who are not the original creators of them. These files usually contain malware or virus programs hidden behind the main processes. So by avoiding such data you can avoid all such programs altogether.

Avoid unknown email attachments

Scammers, frauds, spammers, etc. are known to send a lot of mails. Most of the time the inbuilt filter system by the hosting companies filter spam mails out but there are times when these mail reach your inbox. Such mails can contain attachments with viruses in them. Though opening mails won’t hurt your computer but installing or downloading any such attachment file/files can potentially spread viruses in your system.

Update regularly

Updating operating systems from time to time not only introduces new features into the computer but also brings bug fixes, security patches and firewall enhancements. Check if you have any pending updates on your OS and if you have them then download them as soon as possible. After updating your system should start working faster and with more efficiency. If you still feel that your system is taking too much time processing then check svchost high CPU usage for more information on how you can resolve it.

So these were some of the ways in which you can take care of your system and keep the virus away. There is no sure way to stay safe as the hackers find new ways to invade privacy everyday. But we can still lower the chances by taking appropriate measures.

Hope it helps. Thanks for reading!

Also Read: How DevOps helps in Digital Transformation?


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