TASK LIST PROGRAMS — S

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The Windows startups, Windows Processes, and Windows Services below are only a subset of the massive database used by our  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  product.  Try it out — it's simpler than searching these pages.

 

 

Task List
Name

PROGRAM &
MANUFACTURER

WHAT IT IS
AND WHAT YOU CAN DO

S24evmon

S24EvMon.exe

(Intel)

Service installed on Windows 2000/XP by the drivers for the Intel wireless adapter on laptops where both the onboard network card and wireless adapter are both Intel based.  This service acts as a software “bridge” between the drivers for the network card and those for the wireless port.

Recommendation :
Essential for the proper of your wireless port.  If you do not use your wireless port then you can set the  Startup Mode  of this service to  Manual  on the  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

S3syskey S3SysKey.exe

(S3 Inc.)
Background task found on Toshiba laptops.  We have no idea as to what it does except that it is something to do with the graphics.

Recommendation :
In the absence of any information about it we can only recommend to leave it alone.

Saea

Saea.exe

See   IWAR.
 

Sagent2 SAgent2.exe

(Epson)
Startup task installed by many Epson inkjet printer drivers and which checks whether you printer port is present, and whether it is set to ECP or EPP (or bidirectional as some BIOSes have).  On completion of the checks it sets options in the Epson printer software.

Recommendation :
The functionality of this task is incorporated in most of the current versions of the programs that make up the Epson printer drivers and utilities, which makes this task unnecessary.  Additionally, on some PCs this task causes boot-up errors such as "Invalid Page Fault", "Error in module <Unknown>", and Blue screen crashes.  If you do not experience problems with SAGENT2, you could elect to leave it alone.  Otherwise disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  – if your PC, and your printing, behave normally once you have disabled it, leave it disabled.  If not, then see if Epson have more up-to-date drivers you can use.
Sahagent SAHAgent.exe

(ShopAtHome
Select.com)
Golden Retriever from ShopAtHomeSelect.com.  Software which gathers and aggregates the user’s Internet browsing behaviour and sends it to ShopAtHomeSelect servers.  An extract from ShopAtHomeSelect.com’s Privacy Policy on 2-Nov-2003 :   ".....ShopAtHomeSelect.com may also collect certain information online and offline deriving from your navigation of ShopAtHomeSelect.com and our Affiliate Merchants, including but not limited to the number and type of offers you have responded to and completed, so that we can make future relevant and personalized offers to you.  ShopAtHomeSelect.com uses cookie technology to understand general information on site traffic trends such as most frequently visited pages or Affiliate Merchants.  This information is captured on an aggregate basis, is not specific to individual users, and enables ShopAtHomeSelect.com to continually improve our Web site content and navigation.".  Golden Retriever is installed mainly by file sharing programs (for example Grokster at some point in 2003).

Recommendation :
Not only is this what we call spyware since it transmits information from your PC, but worse the Privacy Policy does not clearly enumerate everything that gets transmitted from your PC.  And that is not all :  this is badly behaved software which can be catastrophic for 56K modem users as it often completely ties up the Internet connection while at the same time generating endless disk accesses.  Remove ShopAtHomeSelect through the "Add/Remove Programs" icon in the Control Panel and then check if there are any remaining entries in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  – if there are, delete them.
Sandicon SandIcon.exe

(SanDisk Corporation)
SanDisk’s Icon.  This background task gets installed by the drivers for SanDisk ImageMate CompactFlash USB card readers.  It sits as an icon in the System Tray and its main purpose is to display the SanDisk icon next to the CompactFlash reader in Windows Explorer.  Note :   SanDisk card readers are in many cases sold under other manufacturers badges, such has Hewlett-Packard, Compaq, Fujitsu, Kodak, etc..

Recommendation :
Absolutely useless and incredibly badly written background task which can make PCs freeze, which uses too much memory for what it does, and which is simply full of bugs when you try to use the menus through the icon in the System Tray.  Disable or Delete immediately with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter :   your card reader will continue to function as normal;  all you will lose will be the SanDisk icon in Windows Explorer – it will be replaced by the standard Windows Removable Drive icon.
Sapisvr

SAPISVR 5
Sapisvr.exe

(Microsoft)
Microsoft’s Speech Application Programming Interface for Speech Recognition.  This program will appear in your Task List if you have Microsoft Office XP/2003 or Windows XP/2003 and Speech Recognition is enabled and running.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference.  Note 1 :  If you have Speech Recognition running without realising it (the default on some new PCs), and you have a Microphone connected and turned ON, then you will see whatever conversation the microphone picks up, appearing in any program that you use that is speech enabled, as if your PC has a writing mind of its own !  Note 2 :  you can run into severe memory problems if speech recognition is enabled and running, and you have less than 256Mb of RAM.  If you intend to use speech recognition on a regular basis, upgrade your memory to 256Mb at least, if not 384Mb or 512Mb.  Finally, in addition to memory, you should have, in our view, a minimum spec of 2GHz for speech recognition to work at acceptable non-frustrating speed.  To turn off Speech Recognition when you are not using it, click on the Microphone icon on the Language bar in the System Tray and make sure neither Dictation nor Voice Command is displayed.  To remove Speech Recognition entirely, double-click the Regional and Language Options in the Control Panel, then "Details \ Text Services", then "Installed Services" and remove Speech Recognition.

Savedump

SaveDump.exe

(Microsoft)

Microsoft  Windows NT4/2000 SaveDump  utility.  This program will appear on a reboot of your Windows NT4/2000 PC if the PC crashed or rebooted without warning.  As per Microsoft’s description :  On this next reboot  “SAVEDUMP  transfers the Windows crash dump from the paging file to the Memory.dmp file during the system startup. Other programs and services that are started during this process may perform poorly.  If the server is providing services to users, those services may not provide timely responses to client requests.”.   Once  SAVEDUMP  has performed this operation, it normally terminates automatically.

Recommendation :
Unless you have a support contract with Microsoft, the information saved into a dump file by SAVEDUMP will be useless to you as only Microsoft can decipher this information.  Additionally, SAVEDUMP can sometimes significantly hinder the proper booting up of a PC, specifically if that PC is a server, with some services refusing to start.  Lastly, SAVEDUMP will itself sometimes refuse to terminate automatically, thus causing significant performance degradation to the PC while it continues to run.  For all these reasons our recommendation is to disable the  “Save Dump”  feature of Windows 2000 in the following manner :
1)   Click on  “Start \ Run”.
2)
   Type   DRWTSN32.
3)
   Uncheck all options on the screen that comes up.
4)   Click  OK.
5)   Reboot your PC.

SaveNow

Save

WhenUSave
SaveNow.exe

Save.exe

(WhenU.com)
Depending on the version this will show as SAVENOW, SAVE, or WHENUSAVE in Windows 95/98/ME, and it will show as SAVENOW.EXE or SAVE.EXE in Windows NT4/2000/XP.  In theory SaveNow (also called WhenUSave in newer versions of the program – SAVE.EXE is the newer program file) is a program that brings you relevant coupons and offers and alerts you to various deals and services when you surf the web.  SaveNow is installed on your computer as a module that will have come with WhenUShop or other software that you downloaded from the Internet.  SaveNow intercepts website addresses you type in your browser’s address bar, and search words you enter on search engine sites, and uses those words to display popup advertising of deals and bargains which are related to the type of sites you are visiting, or the type of searches you have been making.  In our opinion SaveNow/WhenUSave is both spyware (what else is it sending to its central site from your PC?) and an intensely annoying parasite while you are browsing the web, and we do mean "intensely" !

Recommendation :
Remove immediately !  Go to "Start \ Settings \ Control Panel \ Add/Remove Programs", select "SaveNow" (or "WhenUSave", or just "Save"), and click "Add/Remove".  Also run either Ad-Aware or Spybot Search & Destroy.

Savscan

SAVScan.exe

(Symantec)

Auto-Protect service for Norton AntiVirus 2004/5 under Windows 2000/XP/2003.  This service scans files for viruses in the background as and when they are accessed or created.

Recommendation : 
Absolutely essential for the protection of your PC against viruses – Leave alone.  Note, however, that the early versions of this background service (October to December 2003) were occasional prone to using excessive amounts of CPU, so ensure that you sometimes do a manual  LiveUpdate  from within Norton AntiVirus 2004/5 in order to pick up the latest software updates (as distinct from the “virus definitions” updates which the automatic LiveUpdate picks up and installs silently in the background).

SBAMSvc

SBAMSvc.exe

(Sunbelt Software)

Sunbelt Anti-Malware Service.  Core Service of Sunbelt Software’s  VIPRE Antivirus + AntiSpyware  security product introduced in 2008.  This service implements the real-time protection of your PC against virustes, spyware, rootkits, and other malware.

Recommendation :
This is the core program of your Sunbelt Software VIPRE Antivirus + AntiSpyware – Leave it alone therefore.  This program normally uses between 22Mb and 46Mb of memory.

Sbhc

SBHC.exe


(Gigatech Software)

SuperBar Internet Explorer Plugin which purports to enhance your web browser (movie listings, password helper, form filler, search engine enhancement & phrase finder).  Note :  this is a different product from the SuperBar Toolbar management and configuration shareware utility of the same name.  Most users who have SuperBar, the IE Plugin, never willingly installed it, it got installed with other software, typically MP3 software.

Recommendation :
At the time of writing, March 2004, we have only seen this program on a handful of PCs, but every time we have come across it we were able to measure performance degradation directly linked to this program.  Although there is now an uninstall program on the Gigatech site, we ourselves uninstalled it by simply deleting the entry on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter, and then deleting the folder  “C:\Program Files\Superbar”.

Sbserv

ScriptBlocking
SBServ.exe

(Symantec)
Norton AntiVirus Script Blocking Service.  From Norton 2001 onward, Norton AntiVirus includes the Script Blocking feature which is turned ON by default.  This feature intercepts script based viruses (e.g. JavaScript, VB Script viruses).

Recommendation :
Essential to the proper protection of your PC against script based viruses, so leave alone.  If you absolutely need to disable it, do so by disabling Script Blocking within Norton AntiVirus.

SCAN32

SCAN32.EXE

(McAfee)

You have the   McAfee On-Demand Antivirus Scanner   currently running, either because you manually started it through the McAfee Control Center, or because it is currently in the middle of a scheduled virus scan of your PC.

Note :
   When running, the on-demand virus scan program uses between 30Mb to 83Mb of memory, so if you are experiencing sluggishness while using your PC it may be because there is a virus scan running in the background.

ScanRegistry

Scanregw
ScanRegW.exe

(Microsoft)
Microsoft’s Registry Checker.  This is not a Task List item, but rather a startup item which you can see in MSConfig or  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.  The Registry Checker, SCANREGW, loads on boot-up and checks that the Windows Registry is in good order.  If it is in good order, it backs up the Registry and then lets Windows continue booting up.  If there are minor problems, it fixes them.  If there are major problems, it prompts the user to restore from a previous good copy of the Registry.  Once SCANREGW has completed one of the above, it terminates, so it should never appear in your Task List.  By default the Registry Checker keeps 5 backup copies of the Registry in the C:\Windows\SysBckup folder – these backups are compressed into single .CAB files called RB000.CAB, RB001.CAB, and so on.

Recommendation :
Leave well alone.  Note, make sure that the name of the program file is indeed SCANREGW.exe, and not some other name like "scanregv.exe" which would indicate a virus.

ScardSvr

SCardDrv

Smart Card

Smart Card
Helper

ScardSvr.exe

(Microsoft)

Microsoft’s Smart Card & Smart Card Helper service, also called  Smart Card Resource Management Server.  This service has a dual function :  on the one hand it enables support for old non Plug & Play smart card readers, and on the other hand it also provides support for Plug & Play smart card readers.  Our Thanks to Microsoft for thoroughly confusing descriptions !!  In short :  if you have a Smart Card reader, you should have this service running whatever the age of your reader.

Recommendation :

Essential if you have a Smart Card reader, otherwise disable it by setting it to  Manual  in  “Control Panel \ Administrative Tools \ Services”.

Scardsvr32

Navpw32

Smart Card Helper

ScardSvr32.exe

Navpw32.exe

(???)

You have the   W32.Femot.Worm / W32/MoFei.worm / WORM_MOFEI.A or B   virus.

Sccenter SCCenter.exe

(Compaq & BackWeb)
Service Connection Center.  This is a re-branded version of BACKWEB (see BACKWEB) which supposedly checks for updates for the setup and software of your Compaq PC whenever your are connected to the Internet.

Recommendation :
We have rarely seen this task to work properly, in most cases it simply does not work.  There are also reports of it preventing ScanDisk and Defrag from completing. As per our comments on BACKWEB we recommend de-installing this task by de-installing "Service Connection Center" in Add/Remove Programs in the Control Panel. Alternatively, you can disable this task with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

SCKTSRVR

SCKTSRVR.EXE

(Borland)

Borland Socket Server.  Program usually run as a service and which enables programs running on client computers to communicate with a server program on the network fileserver.  Both the client programs and the server program will typically be written in Borland Delphi  (Note: sometimes both the client and server programs will be running on the same computer or server).

Recommendation :

If this program is running on your PC or server it is almost always because it was installed by software that needs it.  Thus, unless you know the full details as to why this program is running on your PC/server, leave it alone.

Scm

SCM.exe

(Microsoft)

Service Control Manager utility for Microsoft’s SQL Desktop Engine (MSDE) and which allows the user to start and stop SQL Server or the MSDE services from the command prompt or a batch file.

Recommendation :
If it appears in your Task or Services list, it is most probably by design.  Our recommendation, therefore, is to leave it alone.

Scnpanel

ScnPanel.exe

(Artec)

Artec System Tray Scan Panel application which is installed with the drivers for some of their scanners, typically the e+ 48U series.  This System Tray icon enables you to scan directly from the System Tray into a specific application, to email, or to OCR.  You can also do Direct (photo)copies from it, which effectively is scanning directly to the printer.  You can also configure the scanner and the various scanning functions through this icon.

Recommendation :  
Down to end-user preference, although we strongly recommend you never use the  Scan‑to‑email  function; it is buggy and in our experience freezes the PC in most cases !   Read on :  we have also come across many instances where  SCNPANEL  will make the entire PC freeze either when doing any type of printing, or when printing to a printer which has run out of paper.  For all these reasons we ourselves always disable this task on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  as it is too buggy for comfort.

ScriptBlocking SBServ.exe See SBSERV.
 

Scrub2k

Scrub98

Scrub9x

Scrub2k.exe

Scrub98.exe

Scrub9x.exe

(Hewlett-Packard)

“Scrubber” application included with the drivers for some HP DeskJet printers and which gets rid of specific driver files and registry entries for the HP printer that it came with, in case should you have problems installing or de-installing the printer.   This utility is normally intended to be run manually, however sometimes the installation software for a particular DeskJet will use it as a pre-installation cleanup task, and will then in error leave it to auto‑start every time you start your PC.

Recommendation :  
This task should not be in your Task List after a fresh start/restart of your PC.   If it is, delete it in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  and reboot your PC.

Scrsvr ScrSvr.exe

(???)
You have the OPASERV virus.

Scsiaccess

SCSIAccess.exe

(Photodex Corporation)

ASPI driver used by Photodex’s  CompuPic  &  ProShow  digital imaging and presentation products.  In earlier versions of the above products, SCSIACCESS was an ever present background program or service installed to enable CompuPic and ProShow to create CDs and DVDs using your CD or DVD Writer.  In 2005 this driver is only used on PCs where the underlying Windows driver is not recent enough.

Recommendation : 
When present this task is essential to the proper functioning of your CompuPic or ProShow software, so leave it alone.

SCTSvc

SCTSvc.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows Steady State Service.  Service installed by the Microsoft   Steady State  add-on software.  Microsoft’s  Steady State  enables the administrator of a family computer that is used by a number of different family members and visitors, to lock down the state of the computer without much technical knowledge.  This ensures that uses of the computer will not be able to damage or completely mess up the configuration and look (desktop) of your computer regardless of what they do or of where they go that they shouldn’t !  This service is the core background program which implements your  Steady State  security.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference.  In our experience Microsoft’s  Steady State  has such a performance hit on the PCs that it is installed on, it is our view that it is much preferable for the Administrator of the PC to learn how to create  Power Users  (as distinct from Administrator users)  or else ensure that that there is at least 2Gb of memory installed in the PC (preferably 4Gb) if you want to persevere with Steady State.  Your choice.  This background service normally uses 4Mb to 9Mb of memory.

Note :  the only way to disable  Steady State  is to uninstall it.

Scureapp.exe

Scureapp.exe

(Softex Inc)

Background task which is part of the   OmniPass   software found on laptops for authentication into your laptop using fingerprints, smartcards, or other biometric method.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user requirements.  Read about the  Softex OmniPass Service (OMNISERV.EXE)  on the  Tasks  or  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  to decide whether you want to have this startup enabled or not on the  Startups  tab of TUT.

Scvhost

Windows Service Host

SCVHOST.exe

(???)

You have the  Backdoor.Sdbot.N  virus, or one of the  Gaobot  viruses, or one of the many other viruses which drop  SCVHOST.EXE  (not to be confused with SVCHOST  further down this page).

Scw64 Scw64.exe

(Olympic Technology / A4 Tech)
System Tray driver for the 4D Mouse which enables the end-user to configure buttons 3, 4, and 5 from the System Tray.  However, this task must also be running for these buttons to operate.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference – it can be disabled with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.
Sdii Sdii.exe

(Microtek)
Scanner Detector utility installed by the drivers for the Microtek ScanMaker 4800.  SDII constantly monitors for the presence of your Microtek scanner. With SDII running you can press your scanner GO button on the front of the scanner to start scanning.

Recommendation :
There is a bug in this program which often results in the program consuming most of your memory as well as using excessive amounts of CPU under Windows XP !  SDII is only essential for the GO button; you can otherwise scan via any program which supports scanning, such as Photo Editor.  Therefore, under Windows XP, if you still experience problems with SDII even when you configure it to run in Windows 98 compatibility mode, then disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

SDMainService

SDMainService.exe

(Max Secure Software)

Core background service of the   Max Secure Spyware Detector  anti-spyware program whose role is to scan for malware and remove it.

Recommendation :
Essential for the proper protection of your PC with Spyware Detector – Leave alone therefore if you want real-time protection against anti-spyware.  This background service normally uses anything from 9Mb to 39Mb of memory.  However, note that on the occasional PC this service runs amok and can use as much as 120Mb of memory or more.  If this happens on your PC, try first manually updating  Spyware Detector  software ensuring you also update the program (and not just the spyware definitions).  If the problem remains, then inform Max Secure of the problem.

Sear1

Sear1.exe
 

See   WINSERVN.

seccenter

seccenter.exe

(BitDefender S.R.L)

You have the   BitDefender Security Center   currently open.

(Note :   this process can often remain running in the background and showing on the  Tasks  tab of TUT long after you closed the Security Center – when that is the case you can terminate it to release memory).

Secure32 Secure32.exe

(Compaq)
Although we are not 100% certain, we believe that the role of this Compaq background task is to ensure that neither the Compaq EasyAccess Buttons nor any Hot Keys that the user may have configured, are accessible when a screensaver is running.

Recommendation :
Required if you use the EasyAccess buttons or the Hot Keys facilities, otherwise you can disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.
Servicelayer ServiceLayer.exe

(Nokia)
Nokia Connectivity Library support task that is needed by NCLTRAY and by the Nokia Connection Manager for either to work properly.

Recommendation :
Whatever you do with NCLTRAY, you should do with this task.  If, for example, you decide to terminate NCLTRAY because it is causing conflicts with other communications programs, or with your laptop docking station or touchpad, as it sometimes does, then you should also terminate SERVICELAYER, and DATALAYER, to ensure that all the conflicts disappear.

Services  (1)

Services.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista.  This is the Services Control Manager which is responsible for starting, stopping, and interacting with system services.  It’s full path as shown in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  is either   C:\WINNT\System32\Services.exe  in Windows NT4/2000, or  C:\Windows\System32\Services.exe  in Windows XP/2003/Vista.  Double-click on this task to check it’s path.

Recommendation :

An integral part of the operating system, leave alone.

Services  (2)

Services.exe

(???)

If, regardless of which version of Windows you have, this task appears on the  The Ultimate Troubleshooter,  then you most definitely have a virus such as the   W32.Ahker.B@mm   virus.

If you have Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003  and  the full path to this program on the  Tasks  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  is  C:\WinNT\Services.exe 
or
C:\Windows\Services.exe 
or
C:\Windows\inetg\Services.exe 
or
C:\WinNT\inetg\Services.exe 
or
C:\Program Files\Common Files\Services.exe 
or
C:\Documents and Settings\
<anything_here>\Services.exe,

then you also most probably have a virus such as the   W32.Netsky@mm  or  W32.Neveg.B@mm  or  W32.Conycspa@mm   virus.

If you have Windows 95/98/ME  and  this task is running in the background, then you most probably have one of those viruses too.

Servics

Servicese

Servics.exe

(???)

You have the Backdoor.Xibo virus.

Sessmgr

RDSessMgr

SessMgr.exe

(Microsoft)

Remote Desktop Help Session Manager.  This service manages and controls  Remote Assistance,  a  “named‑for‑lay‑persons”  subset of Microsoft’s Remote Desktop Sharing technology.  Introduced in Windows XP and also present in Windows 2003 server, but not present, by design, in Windows XP 64-bit.  As per Microsoft :  “Remote Assistance is a technology in Windows XP which enables Windows XP users to help each other over an internal network or over the Internet.  With this tool, one user, called the "Expert," can view the desktop of another user, the "Novice.".   With the Novice's permission, the Expert can even share control of the Novice's computer to resolve issues remotely.  With Remote Assistance, a Help Desk can assist users on the network, which is known as the Offer Remote Assistance feature.”.

Recommendation :
We do not see this feature ever taking off.  The mechanics for an end-user to invite assistance from an Expert are too long-winded and involve too many steps and programs.  In this day and age of speed, speed, and speed, it is faster to drop a quick email, or pick up the phone, to the Help Desk, so we really do not see Microsoft’s Remote Assistance feature getting anywhere fast !   Irrespective of our views, unless Remote Assistance has been set up on your PC by your network manager, or you set it up, then it is 99% certain that you do not need to have this service running.  To disable this service go into  “Control Panel \ Administrative Tools \ Services”,  look for the  Remote Desktop Help Session Manager  service and set it to  Disabled.

SetPoint

SetPoint32

SetPoint.exe

SetPoint32.exe

(Logitech)

Logitech SetPoint Control Center.  System Tray Mouse and Keyboard configuration software which comes with Logitech mice and keyboard (particularly their wireless range) and which enables the user to configure his mouse and keyboard in a non Windows‑standard way with added features such as the ability to have special mouse actions perform specific tasks, or the ability to set up one‑touch keyboard function keys to again perform specific actions such as opening your email program, or starting your Internet browser, or opening your Wordprocessor, etc...

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference – if you use some of the special features of your Logitech mouse or keyboard, then you need to have this task running.  If, on the other hand, your mouse is  not  wireless and you simply do not use any of the special features of your mouse or keyboard, then you do not need this software – your Logitech mouse and keyboard will work very well without it;  you can therefore disable this task on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  (or uninstall the Logitech SetPoint software from the  Add/Remove Programs  icon in the Control Panel if you are totally confident you definitely do not use the Logitech SetPoint software).

SetpointII

SetpointII.exe

(Logitech)

Logitech SetPoint Control Center.  System Tray Mouse and Keyboard configuration software which comes with Logitech mice and keyboard (particularly their wireless range) and which enables the user to configure his mouse and keyboard in a non Windows‑standard way with added features such as the ability to have special mouse actions perform specific tasks, or the ability to set up one‑touch keyboard function keys to again perform specific actions such as opening your email program, or starting your Internet browser, or opening your Wordprocessor, etc...

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference – if you use some of the special features of your Logitech mouse or keyboard, then you need to have this task running.  If, on the other hand, your mouse is  not  wireless and you also do not use any of the special features of your mouse or keyboard, then you do not need this software – your Logitech mouse and keyboard will work very well without it;  you can therefore disable this task on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  (or uninstall the Logitech SetPoint software from the  Add/Remove Programs  icon in the Control Panel if you are totally confident you definitely do not use the Logitech SetPoint software).

This program normally uses anything from 3Mb to 15Mb of memory.

Sexy Sexy.exe

(???)
You have a virus.

Sgtbox

SGTBox.exe

(Canon)

Canon’s ScanGear Toolbox System Tray application which comes with Canon scanners.

Recommendation : 
If you no longer have a Canon scanner, de-install via the "Add/Remove Program" icon in the Control Panel.

Sgtray SGTray.exe

(Veritas)
System Tray icon and background monitoring task for Veritas Storage Guard which in most cases gets installed as part of Backup Exec Desktop or Backup Exec Desktop Pro (as well as some of the other Veritas backup products).  When running in the background, Storage Guard alerts you when you have not done a backup of your data for a while. Also, if you decide to do a backup you can do it straight from the System Tray icon.

Recommendation :
Since the regular backup of your data is something we recommend very highly, we feel it is a matter of personal preference as to whether you want to have Storage Guard in the background constantly checking on you, or whether you prefer to rely on your own manual procedures.  In any case, if you have set up regular overnight scheduled backups you definitely do not need Storage Guard in the background, in which case you can disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Shellmon

ShellMon.exe

(AOL)

Task which gets installed with AOL 8.0, AOL 8.1, and AOL 9.x.  At the time of writing, March 2005, we still do not yet know what this task does, and the response from some AOL techs is hilarious :  some of them do not even realise that this program is an AOL program and so they direct you to Microsoft for answers !!!  Stunning.

Recommendation :  
As we are not sure about what it does, we can only recommend you leave this task alone.

ShwiconXP9106

ShwiconXP9106.exe

(Alcor Micro)

Card Reader Icons & Drive Letters.  Program found on many laptops (Gateway, eMachines, etc..) whose integrated digital camera card reader is made by Alcor Micro.  It is also installed by the driver CD of USB card readers based on Alcor Micro’s technology.  This program, installed on WinXP/Vista/Win7, gives more user‑friendly icons to the drive letters assigned to your card reader as well as more user friendly names, such as MMC, SD, etc...

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference. 

Note that, if you have Windows XP/Vista/Win7, you absolutely  do not  need this software as these versions of Windows are able to use inbuilt or USB card readers without the use of any drivers whatsoever, and, in the case of Windows 7, this software is of no use whatsoever because Windows 7 actually labels very clearly whether a card you just inserted is an SD card, a MicroSD card, an xD card, etc....

To disable this background task you can uninstall the card reader drivers from the  “Add\Remove Programs”  icon in the Control Panel, or you can disable (and eventually delete at a later stage) this task on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Before you get rid of this task on WinXP, note the following :  in some versions this program adds to XP the nice Windows 7 feature of labelling your various card reader drives accordingly, e.g. “SD/SmartMedia”, “CompactFlash”, etc...  These labels will disappear when you uninstall/remove these drivers and all your card reader drives will show as  “Removable Drive”  and be undistinguishable from each other.  But fear not !   Windows XP has the extremely useful feature of allowing you to rename a drive.  Simply start Windows Explorer (or “My Computer” if that is what you are more comfortable with), insert your memory card into the card reader, work out which  “Removable Drive”  that card shows up in, remove the card, right‑click on that  Removable Drive,  and choose  Rename  -  good names are  “SD & MMC”,  “CompactFlash”,  “SmartMedia”,  “XD Card”,  “Sony Memory Stick”  or  “Sony MS”, etc...  These names will stick until you change your card reader for a new one – Hey Presto !

This task normally uses 2Mb to 7Mb of memory.

Sibc

Sibc.exe
 

See   IWAR.

Sideact

SideACT.exe

(Best Software)

SideACT! is an add-on to the well known ACT! contact manager software.  It enables you to create To-Do lists which are not tied to a contact.  By default the only way to be able to create a To-Do list, or a task, in ACT!, is to attach it to a contact in the ACT! database, which is a problem when you want to use ACT! for a to‑do task that is not contact related, such as :  Talk to the Bank Manager about a loan.  This sort of non-contact related to-do task is exactly what SideACT! was created for and allows you to have.  From ACT! 4.0 and later, SideACT! is installed at the same time as ACT! as a System Tray icon which you click on whenever you want to access your non-contact related To-Do lists.

Recommendation :  
Keep it.  Even if you disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter,  ACT! re-instates it as a startup task when you next open ACT!.

Sisswled

SiSSwLED.exe

(Silicon Integrated Systems – SiS)

System Tray utility for the SiS 900 network cards (these are usually onboard network cards).  This program displays a network usage LED in your System Tray.  This LED lights up whenever network traffic takes place, much in the same way as Windows 2000 and Windows XP provide by default.

Recommendation : 
Network traffic LEDs are quite useful, particularly when troubleshooting problems. Unless you experience problems with this program, leave it running.  If you are using Windows 2000/XP/2003, however, then disable this utility and use the native Windows network traffic LED instead.

Sistray SiSTray.exe

(Silicon Integrated Systems – SiS)
System Tray utility which gets installed by the drivers of the latter day SiS VGA cards.  The utility itself is not of much use in our opinion.

Recommendation :
First, do not confuse this task with SYSTRAY also listed later on this page. 
Delete using  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.
Sk9910dm SK9910DM.exe

(Gateway)
Background task found solely on Gateway PCs and which provides support for the Gateway multimedia keyboards so that you can configure and use the one-touch programmable keys, the volume controls, etc..

Recommendation :
If you only ever use the standard keys on your Gateway multimedia keyboard, then you may wish to disable this task with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter,  otherwise leave it running.

SkypeNames

SkypeNames.exe

(Skype)

Skype Names.  Skype Names is a browser add-on for Internet Explorer and Firefox.  This add-on detects any phone numbers or Skype Names on a web page and gives you the option to click-to-call them directly from the page, via Skype.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user requirements.

In the early days of this feature, July to September 2009, this add-on used to crash often as well as consume excessive amounts of memory and processor time.  At the time of writing, 11-Feb-2010, this add-on is much better behaved although it still occasionally uses significant amounts of memory (see below) and it still slows the rendering of web pages somewhat, which is normal given that it has to scan every single web page you access in order to see if that web page has a telephone number or Skype Name on it, and given that a majority of web pages do have telephone numbers on them (in the footer or in the top right-hand corner), then this add‑on is constantly working whenever you access the InternetHow often, on a day to day basis, do you find yourself calling a number that is on a web page you visit ?   Is it so difficult to simply write down a number you want to call on the odd occasion that you want to call a number from a web page ?

Thus, if you have a very fast Internet line (16Mb or above)  as well as  a fast PC, then you may not experience too much of a noticeable Internet performance impact.  If you have a medium to slow Internet connection, and a PC that has seen better days, or is not up to present days specifications, then you may want to consider uninstalling this add-on, which you can do from  Add/Remove Programs  in the Control Panel in Windows XP, or  Programs and Features  in Vista and Windows 7.

If you do not use either Internet Explorer or Firefox as your web browser (e.g. you use SeaMonkey, Opera, Google Chrome, etc...), then you most definitely want to uninstall this  SkypeNames  add-on.

This background add-on normally uses anything from 4Mb to 25Mb of memory.

SkypePM

SkypePM.exe

(Skype Technologies)

Skype Plugin Manager.  One of the new features introduced in Skype in February/March 2007, is the Extras Gallery.  Extras are third-party plug-ins that let users expand Skype’s functionality (You can see what extras are available at extras.skype.com).  At the time of writing, 31-May-2007, the Gallery is protected against unauthorized copying or unlicensed use by a plug-in manager software framework, this program, which was developed by a company called EasyBits Software.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user requirements.

If you have purchased some Skype Extras, then you will need to leave this program running.

If you have  NOT  purchased Skype Extras, on the other hand, then you should uninstall this program as, at the time of writing, 31-May-2007, it is responsible for a number of problems, including the inability for the PC to hibernate or go into sleep mode, crashes on some PCs, or inability to shut Windows down at the first attempt – you have to tell Windows to shut down twice (double shutdown).  To disable the Skype Plugin Manager, do as follows :

1)   Uninstall Skype.

2)   Re-install Skype.  On the initial first window you should see in the bottom left an  OPTIONS  button.

3)   Click that  OPTIONS  button and uncheck   Install Skype Extras Manager.

4)   Continue with the installation.

5)   That’s it.  You’re done !

Sllights SLLights.exe

(SmartLink?)
System Tray icon for modems based on SGS-Thomson Microelectronics’ chipsets (also called STMicroelectronics).  This chipset seems to be used mainly in AMR or USB modems.  The System Tray icon is installed during the modem driver installation.  It enables the end-user to turn ON or OFF features such as the modem speaker, and other minor settings.

Recommendation :
Some users have reported crashes and lockups (freezes) caused by this task, so you may want to disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.
Slmss SLMSS.exe

(???)
See STCLOADER below.

SlowDownCPU

SlowDownCPU.exe


(MSI Computer Corporation)

SlowDownCPU utility.  Disastrous motherboard utility found on PCs built with specific MSI motherboards.  This utility is supposed to increase the compatibility of those motherboards with Windows XP SP2.  Well, all it does is generate startup delays,  “Failure to load hardware monitor driver”  errors, random computer crashes or seizures, random shutdowns, and random reboots.  This is a terrible utility !

Recommendation :
Immediately disable this utility, SlowDownCPU, on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  and reboot.  After a week, if disabling this utility has not caused problems, delete it from the  Startups  tab.

Slpcap SLPCap.exe

(Seiko)
Part of the Smart Label software for the Seiko Smart Label Plus and EZ30 printers, and possibly other Seiko Smart Label printers.

Recommendation :
We do not at this stage know what this task actually does, so can only recommend that you leave it alone.
Slpmonx SLPMonX.exe

(Seiko)
Part of the Smart Label software for the Seiko Smart Label Plus and EZ30 printers, and possibly other Seiko Smart Label printers.

Recommendation :
We do not at this stage know what this task actually does, so can only recommend that you leave it alone.
Slpservice SLPService.exe

(Seiko)
Part of the Smart Label software for the Seiko Smart Label Plus and EZ30 printers, and possibly other Seiko Smart Label printers.

Recommendation :
We do not at this stage know what this task actually does, so can only recommend that you leave it alone.
Slserv SLServ.exe

(SmartLink)
SmartLink’s User-Level Modem Service.  This task runs on Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003 system – we are not yet sure as to what it does.

Recommendation :
As we do not know what it does, leave it alone.

Sm1bg

SM1BG.exe

(Cypress Semiconductor)

Background task installed by the drivers for USB based hard disks or other such storage devices (MP3 players, etc...).  Cypress Semiconductor is the OEM manufacturer who will have made the interface and written the driver for your USB storage device;  this will in turn have been packaged into the product that you bought (an OEM manufacturer is a manufacturer who builds products for other manufacturers to sell under their own badge – it is unlikely, therefore, that your USB storage device will bear the Cypress name).

Recommendation :
Essential for the proper operation of your USB storage device.

Sm56hlpr

SM56Hlpr.exe

(Motorola)

Tray icon which gets installed with the drivers for the Motorola SM56 range of modems.  As with most modem tray icon software, this is of little use and simply clutters the System Tray.

Recommendation : 
Disable using  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Smagent

SMAgent.exe

(Analog Devices Inc. – ADI)

SoundMAX System Tray icon which gets installed with the drivers for soundcards or onboard sound based on Analog Devices’ chipsets.   It gives you access to the SoundMAX v4 software suite from the System Tray.

Recommendation :  
Down to end-user preference.   You can disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

SmartCenter97

SmartCtr.exe

(Lotus – IBM)

Lotus SmartSuite 97 Toolbar.  As with the Microsoft Office Toolbar, this toolbar initially sits at the top of your screen and gives you access, from that toolbar, to all the programs in the SmartSuite office suite.  Again, as with the Microsoft Office Toolbar, you can customize it to include non-Lotus programs.

Recommendation : 
This is a matter of pure end-user preference.  If you need to you can disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Smath

Smath.exe

(Sun Corporation)

You have the   Open Office MATH   math notation writing program currently open.

Smc SMC.exe

(Sygate)
This is the Sygate Personal Firewall program which runs either as a Task under Win9x/ME, or as a service in WinNT4/2000/XP.

Recommendation :
Essential – if this task is terminated the firewall is not running.

SMessaging

SMessaging.exe

(SOS Online Backup)

SOS Online Backup Agent.  Background task installed by the  SOS Online Backup  online backup software.

As its name suggests, SOS Online Backup  is a web based backup solution where, provided you have a Live Internet connection, this program on your PC/laptop backs up your data out to SOS Online Backup’s backup servers.  From version 5 onward  SOS Online Backup  allows the user to backup to absolutely any local device (local hard disk, USB connected hard disk, USB flash drive, network connected drive) as well as online to SOS Online Backup’s backup servers.  This is a great combo solution which enables you to restore files ultra quickly from your local devices but, also, in the case of a disaster, you can then restore your files onto a replacement laptop/PC from the online backup servers.  You can do manual backups, you can set scheduled backups, or you can set the software to watch for changes to specific files have those changes immediately backed up to whichever location(s) you have defined.

This particular background task, SMESSAGING, takes care of the background backing up of your data or PC out to SOS Online Backup’s Internet servers.

Recommendation : 
Essential for the safeguard of your data with SOS Online Backup – Leave alone therefore.

This background task normally uses 42Mb to 50Mb of memory.

Smlogsvc

SysmonLog

SMLogSvc.exe

(Microsoft)

Performance Logs and Alerts service – Windows 2000/XP/2003.  This background service collects performance data from local or remote computers based on scheduled jobs and either writes that data to specific log files, or it triggers an alert, or it does both.  Typically this service is started by performance jobs scheduled in  Administrative Tools \ Performance, or in other Microsoft applications such as the Performance Monitor of Microsoft ISA server or of Microsoft Exchange Server.  If the service is running and is then stopped by the end-user, currently running data collections will terminate and no future scheduled collections will take place. If started, this service will stop automatically when there is no longer any performance data to collect.

Recommendation :
This service will typically be set to  Manual  and should be left as such.  As and when a job is scheduled in the Performance Monitoring section of a particular Microsoft application, that application will start this service as soon as it needs to and the service will later stop automatically when there are no performance monitoring applications that need its services.

Smreminder

Smreminder.exe

(Shockwave.com)

Another registration reminder application, this time from Shockwave’s Shockmachine software.  This background registration reminder program gets installed when you install Shockmachine.

Recommendation : 
Delete using  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Sms

KernelFaultChk

Sms.exe

(???)

You have the   W32.HLLW.Deadhat / Vesser   virus.

Smss  (1)

Smss.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista.  SMSS is the Session Manager SubSystem.  SMSS’s purpose is to start, manage, and delete user sessions (or client sessions under Terminal Services).  Under Terminal Services the management part includes dealing with the different subsystems (OS/2, Win32, POSIX) which a client session may wish to run.   The full path to the genuine Microsoft  SMSS  shows in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  as :   C:\Windows\System32\smss.exe.  If the path is different then you have a virus.  Double-click on this task to check it’s path.

Recommendation :   An integral part of the operating system, leave alone.

Smss  (2)

Services.dll

Smss.exe

(???)

If you have Windows 95/98/ME, then you have a virus.  If you have Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista and the path to this task shows in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  as anything other than   C:\Windows\System32\smss.exe, then you have a virus, such as the   W32.Sober.L@mm   virus.  Scan your PC with a good and reputable antivirus program to pick it up.  Double-click on this task to check it’s path.

Smssnt

Smssnt.exe

(???)

You have the  W32.HLLW.Gaobot.EE  virus.

SMSvcHost

NetTcpPortSharing

 

SMSvcHost.exe

(Microsoft)

.Net TCP/IP Port Sharing Service.  Because of the advanced technical nature of this service, we will just once have a description aimed at the technical user rather than the layman.

When the TCP/IP protocol was first introduced, there were only a handful of applications for it.  From the start TCP/IP used port numbers to differentiate between applications by assigning a unique 16-bit port number to each of these types of application (application protocols). For example, HTTP traffic is standardized to use TCP port 80, FTP uses TCP port 21, SMTP uses port 25, DNS uses port 53, DHCP port 67, and so on. Other applications using TCP as a transport can choose available port numbers, whether standardized or de-facto port numbers, or their own defined port numbers.

The problem, however, is that any application which uses non-standard port numbers, finds itself vulnerable to end-user installation problems as most corporate and personal firewalls block all ports except for the well known ports, and many only allow the HTTP port, port 80, by default.  For the application to then work, the publisher finds itself having to provide detailed installation notes guiding the prospective user through configuring his/her firewall for the application’s own specific ports.

This is why many applications which can work through the HTTP protocol, make use of port 80 which is normally left open by most firewalls.  This in turn is only possible because Windows has for a long time had the ability for multiple HTTP applications on the same physical PC to share HTTP ports.

This particular service, the  .Net TCP Port Sharing Service, implements TCP/IP Port sharing in the manner described above but specifically for .NET applications using the .NET TCP protocol.

Recommendation :
Leave alone unless instructed otherwise.  By default this service is installed with a  Startup Mode  set to  Disabled.  This means this service will never start automatically at Windows boot‑up unless you change its  Startup Mode.  If you find yourself one day installing a program which needs this service, then the program’s installation instructions will guide you specifically through starting this service and configuring it.

Smsx Smsx.exe

(Security Technology Solutions Co. ???)
SMSexpress. Standalone software used to send mobile text messages to mobile phones around the world.

Recommendation :
Since the beginning of July 2003 we have been receiving numerous reports of Win2000 fileservers and Win2000/XP PCs stricken down with 100% CPU usage, and massive Internet bandwidth consumption with, alas, the appropriate excess bandwidth ISP bills "in the post", all traceable to an EXE called SMSX.EXE. Further investigation shows that the users of most of those servers and PCs never intentionally installed SMSX.EXE.  Yet more investigation seems to point at SMSX.EXE probably having been dropped onto those machines by a specific virus, trojan, or worm virus; however, since SMSX is not in itself a virus, it does not get picked up by antivirus software !  In short therefore :  we are not certain that the SMSX.EXE that is causing such havoc, is the same one as that from the SMSexpress software, but we are certain that it does cause havoc and that you should get rid of it. Restart your PC/Server in Safe Mode, locate SMSX.EXE and delete it. Next, check "Services" for a service that calls SMSX.EXE, and if there is one, either delete the service or set it to manual.
Smt SMT.exe

(BC Computing)
Legitimate spy software, Win-Spy.  By "legitimate" we mean software that you buy and willingly install (as opposed to software which is installed without you knowing, while you install some other software).

Recommendation :
If this program is on your PC, and you did not know about it, then you had better investigate what it is doing on your PC, as someone may be spying on you (and this means recording passwords, credit card numbers, in addition to everything you do on your PC) !  You can get rid of Win-Spy with "Spybot – Search & Destroy" available from our Downloads page.
Smtray

Sm tray
SMTray.exe

(Analog Devices Inc. – ADI)
SoundMAX System Tray icon which gets installed with the drivers for soundcards or onboard sound based on Analog Devices’ chipsets.  It gives you access to the SoundMAX software suite from the System Tray.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference.  You can disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Sndsrvc

SNDSrvc.exe

(Symantec)

Symantec Network Driver Service which is part of the 2004/2005 version of Norton Personal Firewall and Norton Internet Security.  According to Symantec this service is only used when you have enabled the scanning of incoming POP3 emails, whether for viruses, threats, or spam.

Recommendation :  
This service will be essential for most home users as they will all most probably have the scanning of incoming emails enabled.  For corporate users, however, there are particular instances when this service could be disabled – liaise with your Network Administrator for more details.  Make sure you occasionally perform  manual  LiveUpdates  on your Norton products as there were stability problems with this service in the first half of 2004.

Snmp

SNMP.exe

(Microsoft)

SNMP Service (Simple Network Management Protocol).  This service/task listens for SNMP requests, obtains the required information and data, and passes it on to the requester.  Additionally the SNMP service can be configured to generate trap messages when specific events occur :  eg. generating an alert trap if a request for information is received from an unrecognized requester.  When configured to generate trap messages, the trap messages are sent to a specific device or computer on the network which runs SNMP management software.

Recommendation :
In general this task/service is of little use on a standalone PC or on a home network where we suggest you disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  in Windows 95/98/ME, or set this service to Disabled or Manual in Windows NT4 (Control Panel \ Services) and Windows 2000/XP/2003 (Control Panel \ Administrative Tools \ Services).  If a particular software package requires SNMP, and tells you so, simply re-activate the task/service.  If you are on a network, contact your Network Administrator before changing the startup mode of this task/service.

Snmptrap

SNMPTrap.exe

(Microsoft)

This Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003 service listens for SNMP trap messages generated either on this PC or remote PCs, and forwards them to SNMP Management software running on this computer.

Recommendation :
As with the SNMP service, this service is in general of little use on a standalone PC or on a home network where we suggest you set this service to Disabled or Manual in  “Control Panel \ Services”  in Windows NT4, and in  “Control Panel \ Administrative Tools \ Services”  in Windows 2000/XP/2003.  However, if you have and need the SNMP service running, then you only need this service running if you have configured SNMP traps.  If you are an end-user running on a network, consult your Network Administrator before changing the startup mode of this service.  If you do need to use SNMPTRAP, make absolutely sure you have at least Service Pack 4 installed if you use Windows 2000, or Service Pack 1 if you use Windows XP.  In closing, if in doubt, set this service’s startup mode to  Automatic  if you know that you also need the SNMP service running because some application has issued a message to that effect.

snmvtsvc

snmvtsvc.exe

(???)

Sound Movie Server.  At the time of writing, 24‑Jan‑2010, we have not been able to work out where this background service comes from.  Its rarity in our logs (only a dozen users have reported it amongst our hundreds of thousands of users), and the pattern of reporting, suggests that it may have been part of spyware at some point in 2008, spyware which got detected quickly by most antivirus and anti-spyware companies and where the main threat was removed but where this service was left behind.

Recommendation :
As we are not totally certain about this task, the best way to handle it is to disable it (by changing its  Startup Mode  to  Disabled  on the  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter) and then monitor the behaviour of your PC over the next month or so to see if you are missing anything, particularly when dealing with sound and movie and video programs.  If you have any music streamer, check that too.

If disabling this task causes a problem simply change its  Startup Mode  back to the default of  Manual.

Sodd

Sodd.exe
 

See   IWAR.

SoftwareUpdate

SoftwareUpdate.exe

(Apple)

Apple Software Update.  Software Update task which started appearing on PCs in October 2006 and which gets installed in most cases when a user updates  iTunes  and/or  QuickTime.  This program is scheduled to check once a week for updates to iTunes and QuickTime and, when updates are available, a big screen pops up asking you if you want to download and install the updates.

Recommendation :
At the time of writing, 26‑Nov‑2006, everything about this task is annoying.  First, both iTunes and QuickTime tell you, when you use them, that updates are available, so why also have this task which simply duplicates what iTunes and QuickTime already do !!??  Talk of overkill!  Secondly, once this task runs it stays running in the background even when updates are not available and, worse, we have never seen it use less than 16Mb of memory.  On some PCs its consumption of memory goes up to 25Mb or more !   Disable this task immediately as follows (and update iTunes and QuickTime as and when you wish through their  Help \ Check for Updates  menu options) :

1)  Open up the Control Panel.

2)  Open  Scheduled Tasks.

3)  Double-click on the  AppleSoftwareUpdate  scheduled task.

4)  Clear the  Enabled  check box.

5)  Click  OK.

6)  Alternatively, right-click on  AppleSoftwareUpdate  and choose  Delete.
 

Soundman Soundman.exe

(Realtek Avance Logic Inc)
Sound Manager System Tray utility installed by the drivers for Realtek Avance Logic based soundcards, mainly onboard soundcards, which enables the user to control the S/PDIF input and output (Sony/Philips Digital Interface – a standard which allows the transfer of an audio file from one medium to another without first converting to and from analogue format with the resulting loss of audio quality that that entails).  SOUNDMAN also allows you to change the function of the input and output ports of your soundcard from Line-In, Line-Out, and MIC to Front, Rear, and Centre speakers.

Recommendation :
Most users do not use any of the features of SOUNDMAN.  If that is your case then disable SOUNDMAN in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Sp2ctr

Sp2ctr.exe

(???)

You have the   Troj/Dluca-M   trojan virus which is picked up primarily on adult websites.  This trojan is not only responsible for numerous popup advertisements, odd behaviour of the PC, extremely slow Internet access,  it also usually downloads further viruses with the result that, on all the PCs where we’ve seen this task, the PC ends up with numerous versions of the same virus.  Typically these other files will be any of the following :   EVTHTM,  HOT_TARTS,  IVVTOWII,  SYSDXVID,  VIRGINS.  The longer the PC is left with this virus, the worst it gets.

Recommendation :
Before you start be aware that the removal of this virus sometimes results in other problems, such as your graphics card installed drivers being corrupted (deliberately by the virus), and similarly with your network card.  So, if there is something urgent you need to do, do it before you start the following removal process :

1)
   Ensure that you have a reputable antivirus program and that it has the most up-to-date antivirus definitions  (at the time of writing, 2-Apr-2005, most antivirus programs do not recognize this particular virus, but you will still need an up-to-date antivirus program to run a full virus check at the end of the removal process).

2)
   Restart your PC into Safe Mode by pressing  F8  continually after turning your PC ON till you get a menu where  “Safe Mode”  is one of the options.

3)
   Go to  Add/Remove Programs  in the Control Panel and remove any of the following if present :  SP2CTR,  EVTHTM,  HOT_TARTS,  IVVTOWII,  SYSDXVID,  VIRGINS.

4)
   Next, start  The Ultimate Troubleshooter,  switch to the  Startups  tab, and see if any of the above programs are still there.  If they are, for each of them right-click on the entry and choose  Delete from the hard disk the file that this Startup points to  if that option is available.  Once you have deleted the file, right-click again on the entry and this time choose  Delete this Startup Entry.

5)
   Once you’ve completed all deletions and removals, click the big green  APPLY  button for your changes to stick.

6)
   Close TUT.

7)
   Run a full virus scan on your PC while still in Safe Mode as this virus may have downloaded other types of viruses.

8)
   Reboot your PC into Normal Mode.


9)   Download  SpyBot  from our  Downloads  library, install it, and run it to rid your PC of any other spyware/adware that may have come with this virus.
 

Spbbcsvc

SPBBCSvc.exe

(Symantec)

Symantec Anti-Tampering Service.  Background service installed on Windows XP/Vista/Windows 7 PCs by Norton AntiVirus and Norton Internet Security and whose job is to protect the Symantec programs against tampering.  Tamper Protection provides real-time protection for Symantec applications.   It prevents Symantec processes from being attacked or affected by non-Symantec processes, such as worms, Trojans, viruses, and security risks.

Recommendation :
Essential for the security of your security software – Leave alone therefore.

Spdstart SpdStart.exe

(Symantec)

Norton SpeedStart – part of Norton Utilities and SystemWorks and intended solely for Windows 95 users (and the first version of Windows 98).  As per Symantec’s website  "Norton SpeedStart, which is enabled from Norton Optimization Wizard, tracks how applications load into memory, and optimizes the loading process.  Subsequently, many applications will load noticeably faster".

Recommendation :
If you have a 600MHz or faster PC, with 128Mb of RAM or more, then, as with Microsoft’s TASKMON, we feel that the supposed benefits of Norton SpeedStart will be negligible if not totally unnoticeable.  If that is you, then we advise you disable Norton SpeedStart either via  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  or within Norton Utilities/SystemWorks.

Speedkey

SpeedKey.exe

(Microsoft)

Background driver task for the Microsoft Internet/Natural/Internet Pro/Office keyboards.  This task is installed by the IntelliType Pro software and implements the shortcut keys and keyboard key re-configurations which you programmed within the IntelliType software.

Recommendation :
Required task if you use the IntelliType software.  If you get illegal operations or other similar problems with SPEEDKEY, download from this Microsoft website the latest version of the IntelliType software – it is likely to resolve most problems you may have with SPEEDKEY.

Spool32 Spool32.exe

(Microsoft)
Spooler Sub System Process for Windows 95/98/ME. SPOOL32 is a hidden task, a task that does not show up when you press Ctrl+Alt+Del, but which will show up in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  or any Task Process viewer, such as Task Info 2002 or WinTasks.  SPOOL32 manages the spooling of print jobs.  Spooling allows the computer's processor to quickly process a print job by temporarily storing it on the hard disk before sending it to the printer.  This allows the processor to return control to the program from which you are printing at a much faster rate than if the program were to process the entire print job and then send it directly to the printer.  Note that SPOOL32 will only spool print jobs if you configured your printer to spool print jobs.

Recommendation :
Essential – this task auto-loads at boot-up – leave it alone.  If you experience SPOOL32 errors, your problem is not with SPOOL32 but with something else on your PC, quite often the printer drivers.
Spoolsrv32

MS Security Hotfix
Spoolsrv32.exe

(???)
You have the W32.HLLW.Gaobot.AG worm virus.

Spoolsv

SpoolSV.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista.  This is the Spooler service which manages all fax and print jobs.  Spooling is the process whereby the PC first outputs a print job to a temporary file on the hard disk, a process which completes infinitely quicker than actually printing, and then printing the job thus allowing the end-user to continue with his use of the PC while the job is printing.

Recommendation :
An integral part of the operating system, leave alone.  You will not be able to print if you terminate this background service.

Spoolvse

Start extracting

Spoolvse.exe

(???)

You have a Trojan virus which you picked up probably through the use of file sharing software like KaZaA, or through downloading and installing something from a malicious web page.  At the time of writing, 16‑Jan‑2005, this Trojan is not picked up by the majority of antivirus programs.

Recommendation :  
Get rid of this immediately :

1)   Restart your PC into Safe Mode by pressing  F8  continually after turning your PC ON till you get a menu where  “Safe Mode”  is one of the options  (if you are unable to start your PC into Safe Mode, then try the following in Normal Mode).

2)   Start  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  and go to the  Services  tab if you have Windows 2000/XP/2003, otherwise continue from point (4) below.

3)   If you find a service which starts this task, right-click on it and change the  Startup Mode  to  Disabled.

4)   Go to the  Startups  tab and for each instance of this task (there are sometimes two or three entries for this malicious task) do the following :  right-click on it and choose  Delete from the hard disk the file that this Startup points to;  next, right-click on this entry again and this time choose  Delete this Startup entry.

5)   Click the big green  APPLY  button to make your changes stick.

6)   Reboot your PC into Normal Mode.

7)   Download  Ad-Aware  or  SpyBot  from our  Downloads  library and run it to eliminate all possible adware and spyware.

8)   Make sure you have an up-to-date reputable antivirus program and run a full virus scan on your PC.
 

SpySub

SpySub.exe

(InterMute)

SpySubtract anti-spyware from InterMute (now part of Trend Micro).

Recommendation :
At the time of writing, 7‑Jul‑2005, SpySubtract has now been renamed to  Trend Micro Anti‑Spyware 3.0.  Nevertheless the issue we have with the  SpySubtract  product, at the time of writing, is that it identifies the updater portion of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  as spyware.  Users have been reporting this to us for the last three to five months and each time we have encouraged them to notify InterMute of the problem and ask for a fix, to no avail.  We have emails from those customers indicating that their complaints to InterMute got nowhere, and the frequency of those emails increased recently.  So we decided to complain officially to both InterMute and Trend Micro, asking them to fix the problem – we got no response whatsoever, and we are still waiting for an answerIt is on this basis, and on this basis alone, that we recommend you do  not  use SpySubtract.  It may be a good anti‑spyware product overall, but the key to any antivirus, anti‑adware, and anti‑spyware program is that its writers must acknowledge that they will sometimes incorrectly identify software as spyware, and when that happens they must be responsive to customers or software writers’ complaints in addressing the incorrect detection of spyware (also called “false positive”).  This is the strength of companies like Symantec and McAfee where false positive problems like this get fixed before most users have even come across it !   We here are in the same boat, in fact.  If an anti‑spyware software writer does not show this commitment to putting things right quickly, then how can you trust that that program is not causing you problems without you realizing so.  For example :  for months we have been receiving complaints from users indicating that they could not update TUT and that it was causing them a certain amount of inconvenience if not distress sometimes (when a user needed the very latest version to properly address a particular problem) – on trying to update the end‑user would get an error message to the effect that the updater program was not on the hard disk.  We just could not work it out till one day a user advised us that he had worked out what that what was happening was that SpySubtract had deleted our updater program.  If this can happen with TUT, it can happen with any other program which may be an absolutely crucial and vital program to you;  a user other than you may complain to InterMute/Trend Micro about it, but, as our experience shows, it may be months, or never, before you get a fix or acknowledgementIn our view this is totally unacceptable of an Anti‑spyware company.

We suggest you uninstall SpySubtract and use instead the free and excellent  SPYBOT  which you can download from our  Downloads  library.
 

Sqlmangr SQLMangr.exe

(Microsoft)
SQL Server Service Manager.  System Tray icon which enables you to start or stop the various Microsoft SQL services directly from the System Tray, saving you the hassle of doing it via the Services panel.

Recommendation :
Extremely useful if you are running SQL Server or Personal SQL Server as it is not uncommon to need to stop SQL and restart it.

Sqlservr

SQLServr.exe

(Microsoft)

If you are running on Windows NT4/2000/2003 Server, then this is the  Microsoft SQL Server  service.  If, however, you are running on Windows 95/98/ME/2000Pro/XP, then this the  Microsoft Personal SQL  or  Microsoft SQL Desktop Engine (MSDE)  task running in the background and which enables you to run SQL based applications on a workstation.

Recommendation :
If this is a server operating system, and you do not use Microsoft SQL Server and you do not use Microsoft Exchange either, then set this service to  Disabled  on the  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.  If this is a workstation, then you can disable or enable this background task on the  Startups  tab of The Ultimate Troubleshooter as and when required.

Srvany SrvAny.exe

(Microsoft)
SRVANY is a tool included in the Microsoft Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003 Resource Kit and which enables the user to run normal Windows applications as services.

Recommendation :
SRVANY will only be found in the Task List if it was specifically installed to support normal Windows apps running as services.  You should therefore leave it running unless you are an advanced user and you know how to check whether SRVANY is needed or not.

Ssae

Ssae.exe

See   IWAR.
 

Ssdpsrv

SSDPSRV.exe

(Microsoft)

Part of Windows Millennium Edition.  This program only gets installed if you choose to install the "Universal Plug and Play" sub-component of the Communications component in "Add/Remove Programs \ Windows Setup".  SSDPSRV provides Simple Service Discovery Protocol (SSDP) and General Event Notification Architecture (GENA) services for the Universal Plug and Play functionality and is a component designed for the future generation of Plug and Play devices.

Recommendation : 
If you are using standard Plug and Play devices, you do not need this program.  You can de-install it by un-selecting "Universal Plug and Play" in "Add/Remove Programs \ Windows Setup tab \ Communications".

Ssloserv Ssloserv.exe

(Sony)
Sony Smart Label OServer task found almost exclusively on Sony Vaio laptops.  These laptops come loaded with, amongst other things, a software suite called Sony Smart Labels which enables the user to set up multimedia memos and reminders.

Recommendation :
This task keeps track of when your reminder memos should flash up.  Therefore, if you use Sony Smart Labels, you should leave it running. If you do not, disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Ssrc

Ssrc.exe

(Symantec)

Symantec Remote Assist background service.  Service installed by Symantec products such as the Norton Internet Security suite, Norton AntiVirus, Norton 360, etc..   If you call Symantec for support assistance with one of their products, and the Symantec technician is unable to solve the problem by talking you through some solutions, he/she may ask you if you will allow them to connect directly to your PC.  If you decide to allow the Symantec technician to connect to your PC, he/she will ask you to start the Remote Assist Tool which will allow them to connect to your PC.  When you do that this service will also start and will enable the Symantec technician to remotely control your PC.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.  The default  Startup Mode  of this service is set to   Manual  which means that it will not automatically start at every Windows boot-up – it will only start when you start the  Remote Assist  tool to allow a Symantec Support Technician to remotely control your PC, and it will stop as soon as the remote assistance connection is terminated.

Starteak StartEAK.exe

(Compaq)
Compaq’s Easy Access Keyboard task which implements the Compaq Easy Access features where you can program those keyboard keys to perform specific tasks (e.g. one key to start your email program, another to start your browser, etc...).  This task is seen primarily on Compaq Presario and Evo laptops, but may be present on other Compaq PCs.

Recommendation :
This is an utterly nightmarish task which can be "annoyed" by almost anything – whether it be the de-installation of software, the installation of software, the installation of a service pack, a system setting or BIOS change, or running Windows Update.  As soon as this task gets "annoyed" it gobbles up almost all your CPU resources (95% and upward) resulting in long long boot-ups, stuttering programs, impossible DVD playbacks, or a virtually unusable PC.  If this task is not causing you problems, you might as well leave it alone.  If it is causing you problems, however, and you are actually using the Easy Access features, then the only solution that seems to work is the messy full de-installation of the Easy Access software and then re-installation.  For those who do not want to run the risk of this task "getting annoyed", and who do not use the Easy Access features, disable this task with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.
Starter  (1) Starter.exe

(CodeStuff)
This is the STARTER startup tasks management program featured in our Downloads page, minimized to the System Tray.

Recommendation :
We do not advise minimizing it to the System Tray – depending on how it is configured it can consume a lot of resources.  It is best to simply use it when you need to, and then close it.
Starter  (2) Starter.exe

(Creative Labs)
Creative Labs Ensoniq Mixer Tray icon.  Double-clicking on the icon brings up a sound mixer control which is very similar to the one you get when you double-click on the System Tray sound control (yellow loudspeaker), except that it has one or two additional controls that are specific to Creative soundcards.

Recommendation :
Your choice !  However, if you change your soundcard to a non-Creative one, remember to de-install the Creative sound drivers and then delete this entry using  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  if the de-installation process did not delete it.
Statblaster StatBlaster.exe

(???)
See STCLOADER below.

StateMgr

StateMgr.exe

(Microsoft)

Microsoft’s PC State Manager Stub.  STATEMGR, present only in Windows Millennium Edition (Windows ME), is not a Task List item, it is purely a startup item which does its job at Windows boot‑up of starting  STMGR, the memory resident part of the PC State Manager, and then terminates while Windows continues booting up.  STATEMGR is part of the Windows ME’s System Restore feature and checks on boot-up how much time has elapsed since the last automatic or manual Restore Point and, if necessary, creates a new Restore Point.  Once Windows has started, its alter ego STMGR then checks whether vital Windows system files were overwritten by older files by a recent installation of 3rd party software, and restores them to their previous level when necessary.

Recommendation :  
Essential to the proper and safe running of your Windows ME PC – leave alone.

Statusclient

StatusClient.exe

(Hewlett-Packard)

Hewlett-Packard Status Client background task/service installed by the drivers for HP LaserJet 1000 series of printers.

Recommendation :
We do not yet know what the role of this task is, so can only recommend that you leave it alone.

Stc STC.exe

(2nd-Thought.com)
See STCLOADER below.
Stcloader Stcloader.exe

(2nd-thought.com)
Internet Explorer Search Toolbar from 2nd-thought.com.  The following from the 2nd-thought.com’s Terms & Conditions on 11-Dec-2003, speaks for itself :  ".......I further understand that search tool bar will be added to my web browser which will remain visible as long as the software is installed.  To insure you always have the latest version and for your convenience this software will automatically update itself from time to time once installed.   Also during these updates, other partners software can be installed which will show you ads or enhance your searching experience.  In order for us to keep this software free we will open advertisements while you surf the web that we feel will broaden your surfing experience.  Information in regards to your browsing will be sent to our servers, such as how long you surf for, and your surfing habits.  This program is free of charge and you will never have to pay for this service........".  The crucial part here is that this toolbar will download onto your PC, without you knowing, software updates or other advertising toolbars.

Recommendation :
Remove immediately by using Spybot from our Downloads page.  As part of its downloading of "other partners software", STCLOADER often downloads the following programs which will in turn appear in your Task List :  ClrSchP038, MWSVM, SLMSS, StatBlaster, STC, UpdateStats.

SteamService

SteamService.exe

(Valve Corporation)

Core service installed by Steam or all Steam games and whose role is multifaceted :  facilitating installation, downloading updates, enforcing licensing, downloading news updates, and more.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user requirements.

If you play STEAM games then leave this service alone as it is essential to the proper running of those games.  If you no longer play STEAM games you can disable this service by changing its  Startup Mode  to  Disabled  on the  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

This background service normally uses 1Mb to 10Mb of memory.

STImgBrowser

STImgBrowser.exe

(STOIK Imaging)

You have the   Samsung DigiMax Viewer   currently open, or minimized to the System Tray  (or set as a startup item).  The  Samsung DigiMax Viewer  is a rebranded version of the excellent STOIK Image Browser.  It is a picture browser/viewer bundled with Samsung digital cameras.  Digimax Viewer allows the user to download pictures from the Samsung camera, to browse them through a thumbnail/slide viewer, and to inspect each image by double-clicking it, which presents it into another window.  You can view an image’s shooting data and you can save the image into a different format than the default JPEG format.  You can also view your images in a slide show.  When the DigiMax Viewer is running in the background in the System Tray you can double-click it to open it.  Additionally, if you connect your Samsung Camera it will automatically open up from the System Tray.

Stimon

StillImageMonitor
Stimon.exe

(Microsoft)
Windows 98/ME’s Still Image Monitor.  Still Image Monitor is a tool which is installed by Windows 98/ME whenever a USB scanner is present and successfully detected.  It starts automatically through the Registry and enables the user (or software) to associate the pressing of the SCAN button on the scanner (if the scanner has one) with a specific Windows program so that, for example, when you press the SCAN button, Adobe Photoshop always gets started and scans the document presently on the scanner.  This is a feature commonly called "one-touch scanning".  Still Image Monitor is also used by the software that comes with some digital cameras so that as soon as the camera is plugged into the USB port, the appropriate software pops up to enable the end-user to download his photos.

Recommendation :
Great in theory, useless in practice when it comes to scanners.  For a start the great majority of scanners do not have a SCAN button !  Additionally, it is our view that the future trends will be for the ability to scan from within almost any application.  Additionally, we have seen STIMON conflict with certain programs, such as the Sage Accounting Software used in the UK (illegal operations and other crashes while exiting Sage).  For all these reasons, unless you do use "one-touch scanning", or you have a digital camera that uses STIMON, we recommend that you disable STIMON using  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.  (Note: we have had reports of the disabling of STIMON resulting in the scanner or digital camera "not being found" by Windows or not working even if detected or when the device is actually not USB but possibly SCSI or Parallel Port, so make sure you do not delete it in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter – simply disable it so that you can re-enable it should you need to).
Stisvc Stisvc.exe

(Microsoft)
Still Image Service.  This is the equivalent of STIMON above but for Windows 2000/XP/2003.

Recommendation :
On Windows 2000 and XP most scanners and many digital cameras will not work if you stop this service, as the drivers integrate tightly with STISVC, so leave it alone.  The foregoing notwithstanding, there are problems with many HP scanner drivers which cause STISVC to run away with 99% of CPU usage – if your PC is sluggish immediately after you have attempted a scan with your HP scanner, then try downloading the latest drivers for your scanner through our Drivers section.  If that does not solve your problem, then de-install your scanner drivers, next go into "Control Panel \ Administrative Tools \ Services" and set the Still Image Service to "Disabled", stop the service, reboot, then re-install the drivers. That may just solve your problems.

Stmgr

STMgr.exe

(Microsoft)

Microsoft’s PC State Manager.  While STATEMGR is a startup item only, this task, STMGR, is the memory resident part of the PC State Manager.  Both STATEMGR and STMGR are part of the Windows ME’s System Restore feature.  STATEMGR checks on boot-up how much time has elapsed since the last automatic or manual Restore Point and, if necessary, creates a new Restore Point.  Once Windows has started, STMGR takes over and checks whether vital Windows system files were overwritten by older files by a recent installation of 3rd party software, and restores them to their previous level when necessary.  Later during the same session, if the PC has been running for a number of days, or if a program being installed requests a Restore Point to be created prior to the installation, then STMGR is invoked and creates a Restore Point.  Finally, STMGR also monitors various other aspects of your system as you are running it.

Recommendation :  
Essential to the proper and safe running of your Windows ME PC – leave alone.

Stms Stms.exe

(Epson)
Epson Background Monitor, also called Status Monitor 2.  This is the print status monitor for some of the older Epson inkjet printers, such as the Stylus Color 600, 640, 740, 800, 1200 printers.  It shows you the progress of your print job as it is printing.

Recommendation :
Although not necessary for most print jobs, empirical evidence shows that you will have less problems if you leave it alone than if you disable it.  If you network your printer, however, this utility then becomes essential as you not only need to use some of its configuration menus, but STMS also needs to be running for the network configuration settings to be used.

STRAY

STRAY.EXE

(Royal Mail or Deutsche Post)

System Tray icon for Royal Mail’s SmartStamp (UK) or Deutsche Post’s Stampit (Germany) stamp printing software.  Whether it is SmartStamp or Stampit, it is essentially the same software tailored for either the Postal service of the UK (Royal Mail) or the Postal service of Germany (Deutsche Post).  SmartStamp / Stampit allows the user to pre-purchase postage online with a credit card and then print postal stamps directly from a PC or network, thus saving the trip to the Post Office to buy postage stamps.  This program is the icon that sits in the System Tray to enable the user to open the software directly from the System Tray.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference.  If you have the SmartStamp / Stampit program icon on your Quick Launch toolbar or on your Start Menu, then you do not need this icon in your System Tray, particularly since it does not make the SmartStamp / Stampit program open any quicker.  You can disable this icon on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.  This program normally uses between 4Mb to 8Mb of memory.

Studio Studio.exe

(Nullsoft Inc)
You have Winamp 3, the CD, Radio, and MP3 player, open or minimized to the System Tray.

Stutfix

(CPQ StutFix)

StutFix.exe

(Compaq)

This is a system patch from Compaq for some of their PCs and laptops.  It runs at start-up and fixes sound stutter on those Compaq PCs that experience the problem.

Recommendation : 
If you have it running, it is required, so leave it alone.

Suitest

SuiteSt.exe

(Lotus – IBM)

Lotus SuiteStart 97.  System Tray icons which enable you to start all programs in the Lotus SmartSuite office suite, from the System Tray.

Recommendation : 
A matter of pure user preference.  You can disable it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

SunServer

SunServer.exe

(Sunbelt Software)

This is Sunbelt Software’s   CounterSpy System Tray icon.  Right-clicking on the icon gives you a menu where you can open the main CounterSpy program, run a spyware/adware scan, or disable/enable  Active Protection  (real‑time protection against spyware and adware).  In version 1.5 onward this yellow icon turns red if you disable  Active Protection.  This process is also responsible for downloading updates if you have configured CounterSpy to download updates automatically, and, finally, it is this icon which displays threat alerts, etc....

Recommendation : 
First :  this process is absolutely essential to the proper protection of your PC with CounterSpy, so if your PC is of a good enough specifications (read on), you should leave this process running.  Onto the issues we have with CounterSpy :  at the time of writing, 30‑Oct‑2005, using version 1.5, we found three main problems with CounterSpy during extensive testing :

1)  The first issue is that the CounterSpy processes took a total of  57Mb to 68Mb  between themselves on our test Windows 2000 and Windows XP PCs  (as shown on the  Tasks  tab of our Ultimate Troubleshooter) !!!  Every single time.  This is absolutely staggering for what is only anti‑spyware/adware software – 25% of your memory space on a 256Mb PC !   Even if there weren’t other issues, this program is, in our opinion, not for PCs with only 256Mb of RAM, and not for PCs below 2GHz.

2)   The above problem is made worse by the fact that you cannot prevent some of the background processes from running – if this icon is running then the other two background processes,  SUNPROTECTIONSERVER  and  SUNTHREATENGINE  also run even if you have disabled all  real‑time protection  from within CounterSpy.  This is crazy – you can turn off features but that still does not terminate the memory hungry programs which implement those features !

3)   Unfortunately it gets worse, and the following is the part that specifically annoyed us :  having noted how much memory CounterSpy was using, and the fact that disabling  Active Protection  and all other real‑time settings had no effect on getting rid of the two unwanted CounterSpy processes, we decided to disable this process on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  because there is no option within CounterSpy to enable or disable automatic startup with Windows – we simply wanted to use CounterSpy as a spyware & adware scanner to run when we wanted to, not automatically.  We rebooted :  no SUNSERVER icon in the System Tray and no CounterSpy SUNSERVER background process.  Aim achieved.  Or so we thought.  We then checked the  Tasks  tab of TUT only to find that  SUNPROTECTIONSERVER  and  SUNTHREATENGINE  were still loaded and using 50Mb of RAM !!   This is because Sunbelt Software loads them, against all de‑facto conventions of “trusted behaviour”, through the Windows Registry Key  HKLM \ Microsoft \ Windows \ CurrentVersion \ SharedDLLs.  We were aghast – no average Windows user would be able to work this out, whether they used TUT, MSConfig, or otherwise !   But it got worse :  we then opened the main CounterSpy program, did a scan to see if it would pick up the spyware we had deliberately installed, we rebooted, and then found that the mere process of opening the main CounterSpy program, re‑inserts the System Tray icon, SUNSERVER, as a startup on the  Startups  tab of TUT.  Software behaviour where you can’t turn off the software unless you uninstall it, where the software re‑installs itself as a startup every time you use it, and where the software uses non-conventional automatic startup methods hidden from most Windows and 3rd party startup configuration programs, is the typical behaviour of some of the worst spyware and adware programs, and, at the time of writing, CounterSpy behaves just the same !

Conclusion :  CounterSpy looks great initially.  Aside from one or two clunky items, the interface is nice, both in the CounterSpy main program and in the alerts.  All of this, however, is let down by everything mentioned in this text.  We simply would not use this product unless all the above problems were corrected.  Our recommendation, therefore, is that if you have already paid the money for the product, then stay with it, but if you feel as strongly as we do about all the issues mentioned in this text, then put pressure on Sunbelt Software to put all the above right so they can turn this incredibly frustrating product into a great product (all independent reviews seem to suggest “top of the class” spyware/adware detection rates).  If, however, you are simply evaluating the product, then duplicate our tests, and if the product has still not changed its behaviour, find another product or tell Sunbelt Software how you feel.

Support

DwlClient

Support.exe

(Dell)

Background task for the Dell Support application installed on certain models of Dell PCs since October 2002.  At the time of writing, 4-Apr-2004, Dell’s definition of Dell Support is as follows :  “The Dell Support 2.0 application is designed to provide you with answers to questions about your specific systems as well as guide you through troubleshooting hardware or software problems.....  To ensure Dell Support always provides you with the best in technical support and how‑to material, the Dell Support application will send Dell Support Usage Information from your PC to Dell.  This information will let us know what technical support materials are effective in helping you and which are not.  No other information outside of Dell Support usage is sent.  Dell treats this information as strictly confidential and will not share it with anyone.”.

Recommendation :
We are against any sort of usage statistics collection  “by stealth” which is one of the things this task does (constantly generating firewall alerts about  SUPPORT.EXE  trying to access the Internet).  As Microsoft, Novell, and many others have shown, it is possible to collect usage information statistics by simply having a question in each support document asking the end-user to click  “Yes/No”  to the question  “Was this document useful ?”.  Additionally, on some systems this task is responsible for startup error messages.  Our recommendation, therefore, is to disable this task on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  irrespective of the fact that you can modify usage information settings in  “Quick Links \ User Settings”  in Dell Support.  If you need to have Dell Support running while talking to a Dell technician, simply start it through  “Start \ Programs \ Dell Applications \ Support \ Support”.

Surveyor Surveyor.exe

(Compaq)
Compaq Survey Utility service seen only on Compaq ProLiant and ProSignia servers running NT4.  The Compaq Survey Utility, also available for NetWare, is effectively a configuration reporting tool which enables the system manager or Compaq engineer to instantly obtain a LIVE and extremely comprehensive report on the hardware and operating system configuration of the server.  SURVEY.EXE is the user interface part of the utility while SURVEYOR.EXE is the service which goes and gathers the information.

Recommendation :
The use of this software may form an essential part of your Support Contract with Compaq (HP), so as we have not heard of problems with it we suggest you leave it alone.

SvcGuiHlpr

SvcGuiHlpr.exe

(IBM or Lenovo)

ThinkVantage Access Connections Service GUI Helper.  Task spawned by the Access Connections service, ACSVC, and whose role is to provide background interaction or feedback to the end-user.

Recommendation :
Leave alone – this task is required by its parent task which started it.

Svch0st

Svch0st.exe

(???)

Note :  the letter between the  “h”  and the  “s”  in the name of the file is a  zero, not the letter “o”.

You have one of the  Backdoor.Graybird  viruses, or the   W32.Mydoom.Bi@mm   virus, or one of the many other viruses which run as this filename.

Svchos1

Configuration Loading

Svchos1.exe

(???)

You have the W32.HLLW.Gaobot.DK virus.

Svchost (1)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Service Host – Generic Host Process for Win32 Services.  The full path to this file should be shown in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  as  C:\WinNT\System32\Svchost.exe   or   C:\Windows\System32\Svchost.exe  (you can double-click on this entry to view the full path).  Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista.

SVCHOST is difficult, if not impossible, to explain in layman easy-to-understand-by-everyone terms.  So this process is one of the rare processes where Plain English is simply not possible – we will have to go technical !

SVCHOST is a generic process which acts as a host for processes that run from DLLs rather than EXEs.  At startup SVCHOST checks the Services portion of the Registry to construct a list of DLL-based services that it needs to load, and then loads them.  There can be many instances of SVCHOST running, as there will be one instance of SVCHOST for every DLL-based service or grouping of services (the grouping of services is determined by the programmers who wrote the services in question).

In TUT you can find out what DLL-based services this  SVCHOST  is running by hovering the mouse over this entry in the  Task Name  column (after a little delay a popup will appear which shows you the hosted services).

If you do not have TUT, then under Windows XP Professional and Windows 2003/Vista you can find out what DLL-based services SVCHOST is running by typing  Tasklist /SVC  at a Command/MS‑DOS Prompt  (this command is not available in Windows XP Home), while under Windows 2000 you need to use the  TLIST –s  command from a Command Prompt (MS-DOS Prompt)  (depending on how Windows 2000 was installed you may need to download TLIST from the Microsoft website or install it from one of the miscellaneous folders on the Windows 2000 CD).

Recommendation :
An integral part of the operating system, leave alone – multiple instances of SVCHOST is a normal occurrence.

If you experience SVCHOST errors (extremely rare in 2008 onwards), the problem is most likely not with SVCHOST but with the DLLs it is hosting.  However, if you experience a lot of SVCHOST errors, and particularly, if the full path to  SVCHOST.EXE  is not any of the above, then you most likely have a virus.

Svchost (2)

SVCHOST.EXE

(???)

Many viruses masquerade themselves as SVCHOST to escape detection.  Some have names that are similar, such as SCCHOST, others actually drop a program file called SVCHOST in the Windows folder or a Windows sub‑folder.

Recommendation :
The first recommendation is a simple one :  always have a good antivirus product which is regularly updated (automatically preferably) and always renew your updates subscription when it expires.  To detect if you have a virus that calls itself SVCHOST, first see if its full path shows up in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  as either  C:\WinNT\System32\Svchost.exe   or   C:\Windows\System32\Svchost.exe  – if it does not, then it is almost certain you have a virus.  Secondly, if you have  SVCHOST  as an entry on the  Startups  tab of The Ultimate Troubleshooter, then you definitely have a virus.  Thirdly, if you have Windows 95/98/ME rather than Win2000/XP/2003, then it is also almost certain you have a virus.  Lastly, go to the  Services   tab of   The Ultimate Troubleshooter  and look for the following service – if you find it then you probably have a virus too :  System Important Message
service

Double-click on this task to check it’s path.

SVCHOST

(AELookupSvc service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Application Experience Lookup service.  This service, found in Windows Vista, Windows 2008, and Windows 7, is part of the application compatibility framework of Windows where, every time a program is started, Windows checks, through this service, whether the program is likely to run properly and whether it should be run under one of the compatibility modes because it was written for a previous version of Windows.  If the program does need to be run in a compatibility mode, this service adjusts everything accordingly.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.  The default  Startup Mode  of this service is Manual.  The service will start every time you start a program, will do its checking and necessary adjustments if any, and then will stop.

SVCHOST

(AudioEndpoint
Builder service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows AudioEndpointBuilder service.  This service, found in Windows Vista, Windows 2008, and Windows 7, is responsible for managing the audio devices incorporated in your PC/laptop as well as external devices connected via ports, e.g. USB microphone, speakers, etc..  It constantly monitors which audio devices are available, unplugged, plugged back in, etc... so that Windows Audio knows what it has available for outputting sound or capturing sound.

Recommendation :
Essential for the proper functioning of sound output and sound input – Leave alone therefore.

SVCHOST

(AudioSrv  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows Audio service.  Put simply, this service provides sound in Windows – it is the interface between your soundcard, Windows, and your speakers.  If you want sound in Windows, this service must be running.

Recommendation :
All end-users will want this service running so that they can have sound – after all, a user can turn sound OFF or ON through the speaker icon in the System Tray.  It is a different story as regards servers where, often, sound is never used or always turned off.  Therefore, if this is a server, e.g. Windows 2000 Server or Windows 2003 Server, and you never have the sound turned ON and you want to save memory and CPU cycles, simply set the  Startup Mode  of this service to  Disabled  or  Manual.

SVCHOST

(BFE  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Base Filtering Engine service - BFE.  Core service of Windows Vista and Windows 7’s security.  This service implements all IP and IPsec traffic filtering at Windows Firewall level, at location level (familiar with that  “Is this a Home Network, Work Network, or Public Network ?”  question ?), at Remote Access level (Remote Desktop), at routing level, at networking level, at Internet access level, at File and Printer sharing level, etc...

If this service is stopped or disabled pretty much everything to do with Windows networking will fall over, stopped working, freeze, etc...

Recommendation :
Leave this core service well alone.  What is a PC nowadays without networking/Internet access ?   Yes, you’ve got it right, a pile of garbage.  So, you have been warned – leave this service well alone.

SVCHOST

(BITS  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Background Intelligent Transfer Service.   Service used by Microsoft software to transfer files transparently in the background from the Microsoft servers to your computer – the service has the ability to resume interrupted transfers without restarting at the beginning, hence the  “Intelligent”.  In the majority of cases this service is used by Windows or a Microsoft program to update your computer :  Windows Update uses it, and so does MSN Explorer on all versions of Windows which have this service.  On Windows 2000/XP/2003 this service normally has a  Startup Mode  of  Manual  and is started only when Windows or a Microsoft program requires its services.  On Windows Vista the default  Startup Mode  is  Automatic  as the architecture of Vista is such that there are many processes within Vista which make use of this service, and it is therefore more efficient to have the service running at all times rather than have it constantly starting up and stopping.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.

SVCHOST

(Bthserv Service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Bluetooth Support Service.  As per Microsoft’s excellent description :  “The Bluetooth service supports discovery and association of remote Bluetooth devices.  Stopping or disabling this service may cause already installed Bluetooth devices to fail to operate properly and prevent new devices from being discovered or associated.”.

Recommendation :
This service is installed automatically by Windows only when it detects that your PC/laptop has Bluetooth capabilities (whether inbuilt or through a USB Bluetooth dongle).  Leave alone therefore so that your PC/laptop can communicate with Bluetooth devices (e.g. cellphone) as and when you need to.

SVCHOST

(CscService  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Offline Files Service. 

As per Microsoft’s description at the time of writing, 21‑Oct‑2010 :   “The Offline Files service performs maintenance activities on the Offline Files cache, responds to user logon and logoff events, implements the internals of the public API, and dispatches events to accounts or logs configured for receiving events related to Offline Files activities and changes in cache state.”.

The  Offline Files  feature enables the user to designate particular network folders (and their subfolders) to be available offline.  When you are connected to the network (this may be a home network or a work network ,  Offline Files  automatically synchronizes the network folders with the “offline” copy on the laptop. When the computer disconnects from the network (in other words, to go "offline"),  the  Offline Files  feature provides access to the network folder but in an  “offline”  manner, ie. the files you access are actually copies of the original network files and they are on your laptop’s hard disk.  As soon as you reconnect your laptop to the home/work network, Offline Files  automatically synchronizes any changes made offline (ie. while you were disconnected from the network) with the online version and vice-versa.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user requirements.

Offline Files  is a rarely used feature nowadays, although it is enabled by default in both Windows Vista and Windows 7.  In a world that is increasingly constantly in range of an Internet connection, the common way, nowadays, when working remotely, is to work on the actual original files by connecting to home or work through Remote Desktop, VNC, LogMeIn, VPN, or other similar remote networking products, or even The CloudOffline Files is, in 2010 and beyond, almost never a consideration when working remotely.

So, if you know you will never use  Offline Files,  disable it as follows in Windows 7 (Vista is similar) :

a)  Open  Control Panel \ Sync Center.

b)  Click  Manage Offline Files  in the left pane.

c)  Click  Disable Offline Files.

d)  OK  yourself out.

e)  Set the  Startup Mode  of this service to  Disabled  on the  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

SVCHOST

(DNSCache  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

DNS Client & DNS cache service.  The Domain Name System (DNS) client service resolves and caches domain names.  A domain name is something like  yahoo.com,  AnswersThatWork.com, CNN.com, BBC.co.uk,   etc...  Each of those domain names have a corresponding IP address.  Computers, networks, websites, servers, all converse with each other using IP addresses – they cannot talk to each other using names, they talk to each other using IP addresses, sometimes loosely called “network address”.  You can liken an IP address to a telephone number.  So when you type in  www.cnn.com  into your browser, your computer will not be able to take you to the CNN website until it knows the IP address of CNN.com as IP addresses is all it knows to use.  What happens therefore is that this service queries your ISP’s servers (or your corporate servers) saying :  “I want to access cnn.com, can you tell me its IP address”.  Once it has the IP address for CNN.com, your computer uses that IP address and talks to the CNN.com servers and says :  “I want page XYZ for my user”.   The process of equating a user-friendly domain name (BBC.CO.UK) to a computer-friendly IP address (132.185.132.21) is called  “Domain Name Resolution”.  A similar process occurs when computers talk to each other over an internal network.

As you will have guessed by now, a computer spends a lot of time resolving domain names, almost every time you click on a link on a web page or that you enter an address in your browser’s address bar.  If your PC always had to resolve these domain names via your ISP’s server every single time, Internet access would be very very slow.  This is where another feature of this service comes in.  It  “caches”  already resolved domain names, ie. it keeps in memory a table of domain names you have recently accessed and their corresponding IP addresses so that when you access further pages on a website you have already visited, or come back to that website, your PC does not spend time querying your ISP and waiting for the response, it has the answer instantly.  As times goes by, this service also ensures that its domain name resolution table is kept up to date in case a particular website has been moved to a different server or to a different webhosting company, taken out of service, etc..

There are a few other technical issues that this service is also involved in but it is already clear that this service is intrinsic to the ability of your PC to interact with other PCs and servers over a network, whether that network is an internal network, or the Internet.

Recommendation :
Crucial to the ability of your PC to work on a network or on the Internet – Leave alone.

SVCHOST

(Dot3Svc service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Dot3Svc Wired Auto-Config Service.  Background Windows XP SP3 Service which enables and manages wired network connections  (ie. connections via network cable through a network port on a PC or laptop, through a network card, or PCMCIA LAN adapters).  This service was introduced by Service Pack 3 for Windows XP (wired network connections were managed by the WZCSVC Wireless Zero Configuration Service under Windows XP SP2).  Without this service your network cards/adapters will not show in  Network Connections  and you simply won’t be able to connect to any network via network cable.

Recommendation :
If the  Startup Mode  of this service is set to  Manual  immediately set it to  Automatic  on the  SERVICES  tab of TUT.  The Microsoft Quality Control department dropped the ball on this one and introduced this service in XP SP3 with a default  Startup Mode  of  Manual.  This does not actually cause a problem on home PCs as other background services eventually start this service at Windows boot‑up with the result that the end-user does not experience any problems connecting to the network via network cable.  In corporate networks, however, running Windows 2003 or Windows 2008 servers and Group Policies, if this service is not set to  Automatic  users will often run into situations where they cannot login to the network because Group Policies are attempting to control the PC but this service has not yet started and the PC is therefore unable to connect to the domain controllers (the Windows 2003/2008 servers).  When you consider that Windows 2003 Server, Windows 2008 Server, and Windows XP are all Microsoft products and that Group Policies are the Microsoft recommended procedures for implementing Windows 2003 Server and Windows 2008 Server networks, this oversight is absolutely unbelievable !

SVCHOST

(DPS service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Diagnostic Policy Service – DPS.  The Diagnostic Policy Service enables problem detection, troubleshooting and resolution for Windows components.  This service becomes active when you encounter a Windows problem and Windows asks you if you want to troubleshoot the problem and you click Yes.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.  Even if you are an advanced user you never know when you might one day decide that you do want to click that  Troubleshoot this for me please  button rather than first try to see if you can solve it yourself the geek way.  This service uses very very little resources during the normal operation of your PC/laptop and only starts making demands on your PC when you tell Windows to troubleshoot a problem, so leaving it enabled never taxes your PC/laptop.

SVCHOST

(fdPHost  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Function Discovery Provider Host service.  Background service which provides a uniform programmatic interface for enumerating system resources, such as hardware devices, whether they are local or connected through a network. It enables 3rd party software, such as TUT for example, to discover and manage lists of devices or objects sorted by functionality or class.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.

The startup mode of this service is  Manual  which means that it starts only when needed by Windows or by a program, e.g. TUT, to build a list of the devices available on your computer or on the network.

SVCHOST

(FDResPub  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Function Discovery Resource Publication service.  As per Microsoft’s excellent description at the time of writing, 22-Oct-2010 :  “The Function Discovery Resource Publication service publishes this computer and resources attached to this computer so that they can be discovered over the network. If this service is stopped, network resources will no longer be published and they will not be discovered by other computers on the network.”.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.

Without this service other computers on the network cannot access shared printers and folders on this PC, they cannot access music you might be streaming from this computer, your computer will not be visible to other PCs on the network, etc...

If you want to prevent users accessing your printers and folders, or prevent them from seeing you on the network, etc..., it is best to still leave this service running and prevent discovery of the resources on your PC using other methods such as the Windows firewall (or your preferred 3rd party firewall), disabling File & Printer Sharing, etc...

SVCHOST

(FontCache  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows Presentation Foundation Font Cache service.  Service found by default in the Pro editions of Windows 7.  Windows Presentation Foundation, previously called WinFX, is the graphical subsystem of the .NET Framework, an essential component of Windows 7, and is the default method of rendering information and visual effects on the screen in Windows 7.  As per Microsoft’s own description, this particular service optimizes the performance of the display and graphics by caching commonly used screen fonts. Applications with special graphics requirements will start this service when needed if it is not already running. It can be disabled, though doing so will degrade the performance of your computer’s graphics.

This service preloads into memory all the fonts that are regularly used both by Windows and the programs you regularly run so that when information is being displayed, the speed of output to the screen is optimal because the fonts being used by the information being displayed, are available instantly from memory rather than from the hard disk.

Recommendation :
Leave alone to ensure optimal performance of the displaying of information.  In Windows 7 this service automatically starts up at boot up as the whole of Win7 is developed using the .NET Framework.

SVCHOST

(gpsvc service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Group Policy Client service.  As per Microsoft’s excellent description at the time of writing, 22-Oct-2010 :  “The Group Policy Client service is responsible for applying settings configured by administrators for the computer and users through the Group Policy component. If the service is stopped or disabled, the settings will not be applied and applications and components will not be manageable through Group Policy. Any components or applications that depend on the Group Policy component might not be functional if the service is stopped or disabled.”.

For the layman :  on corporate networks the network administrator usually configures certain aspects of end‑user PCs (e.g. which network drives they can see, what network printers they can print to, etc..) remotely from the fileserver using a method called  “Group Policies”.  When a user logs in to the network on a PC, this service, the Group Policy Client service, talks to the fileserver, downloads the settings set by the Network Administrator through Goup Policies, and implements them while logging in to the network.

Recommendation :

Leave alone.

First, it is not possible to disable this service as Microsoft has protected this service against being disabled by a user.  Secondly, in addition to implementing network group policies as explained above, this service also implements configuration changes made through  Administrative Tools / Local Security Policy  (Windows 7).  As such, therefore, it is an integral core module of Windows and affects everything Windows configures at boot-up, logging in, and shutdown.

SVCHOST

(Hidserv service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Human Interface Device Access Service.  The Human Interface Device Access service enables specifically the use of  USB input devices  such as USB mice, USB keyboards, USB webcams, USB joysticks, USB bar code readers, USB remote controls, etc...

Recommendation :
Leave well alone !!!

Almost all input devices are USB nowadays with the exception, perhaps, of microphones.  It follows therefore that you should leave this service running so that USB input devices you plug into your PC/laptop will work.

SVCHOST

(HomeGroupListener
service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Home Group Listerner Service.  As per Microsoft’s own description :  “This service makes local computer changes associated with configuration and maintenance of the homegroup-joined computer. If this service is stopped or disabled, your computer will not work properly in a homegroup and your homegroup might not work properly. It is recommended that you keep this service running.”.

In Windows 7 the Home Group is Microsoft’s layman friendly way of implementing networking and sharing of files and printers on a home network.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.

The default  Startup Mode  of this service is set to   Manual  which means that Windows 7 only starts this service as and when it is needed.

Interfering with this service will affect a lot more than Microsoft’s own description of the service – it will affect your Windows firewall, all networking on your PC/laptop, and so on.  So, do leave it alone !

SVCHOST

(HomeGroupProvider
service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Home Group Provider Service.  As per Microsoft’s own description :  “Performs networking tasks associated with configuration and maintenance of homegroups. If this service is stopped or disabled, your computer will be unable to detect other homegroups and your homegroup might not work properly. It is recommended that you keep this service running.”.

In Windows 7 the Home Group is Microsoft’s layman friendly way of implementing networking and sharing of files and printers on a home network.

Recommendation : 
Leave alone.

The default  Startup Mode  of this service is set to   Manual  which means that Windows 7 only starts this service as and when it is needed.

Interfering with this service will affect a lot more than Microsoft’s own description of the service – it will affect your Windows firewall, all networking on your PC/laptop, and so on.  So, do leave it alone !

SVCHOST

(IKEEXT service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

IKE and AuthIP IPsec Keying Modules Service.  As per Microsoft’s own description :  “The IKE and AuthIP IPsec Keying Modules (IKEEXT) service hosts the IKE and AuthIP keying modules. These keying modules are used for authentication and key exchange in IPsec. Stopping or disabling the IKEEXT service disables IKE and AuthIP key exchange with peer computers. IPsec is typically configured to use IKE or AuthIP; therefore, stopping or disabling the IKEEXT service might result in an IPsec failure and might compromise the security of the system. We strongly recommend that you have the IKEEXT service running.”.

In short and layman terms :  this service is responsible for implementing specific network traffic security protection, such as, for example, VPN connections.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.

In 2010 with so much interconnections between computers and remote networks (RDP, VPN, peer to peer, LogMeIn), or with mobile devices such as cellphones, iPads, or with home networking products such as NAS boxes (Network Attached Storage) and Digital Media Receivers or network enabled TVs, and, last but not least, with the impending implementation of IPv6, it is near impossible to work out with certainty the very few occasions when exactly this service might not be required.  In other words :  leave this well enough as disabling it will in all probability give you networking or connectivity problems !

SVCHOST

(iphlpsvc  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

IP Helper Service.  The IP Helper service offers Internet Protocol version 6 (IPv6) connectivity over an Internet Protocol version 4 (IPv4) network such as the Internet as it is at the time of writing, November 2010.

The current generation Internet works on the IPv4 standard which has a limitation of 4.3 billion IP addresses.  TCP/IP is the way in which computers communicate over networks, whether it be your home network, the Internet, or wirelessly – you computer has an IP address, much like a postal address, and every website, every other computer, every router, etc..., also has an IP address, and traffic between computers and to and from websites is, in the background, nothing more than traffic between different IP addresses, much like the IRS sending you a tax demand is nothing more than a traffic of letters between the IRS offices and your home postal address.  With 7.1 billion people on the planet in November 2010, all potential users of ten or more IP addresses (through network/Internet/wireless enabled devices like cellphones, Hi-Fi players, Digital Media Receivers, IP enabled TVs, house alarms, fridges, PCs, laptops, routers, iPads, etc...), the current IP addressing scheme is limited – current estimates are that it will run out of addresses between 2011 and 2024.  The next generation IP addressing scheme, IPv6, will be able to handle in excess of 1 billion billion billion billion IP addresses hence the reason why all versions of Windows are starting to be ready for the eventual move to IPv6and this IP Helper service is part of enabling that new IPv6 addressing scheme.

For the technically minded, Microsoft’s  : 
“The IP Helper service allows IPv6-enabled sites and hosts to communicate through IPv6 over an IPv4 infrastructure—for example, the Internet. This is often referred to as "6to4." IPv6 sites and hosts can use their 6to4 address prefix and the Internet to communicate. They do not need to obtain an IPv6 global address prefix from an Internet service provider (ISP) and to connect to the IPv6-enabled portion of the Internet.”.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.  IPv6 is coming and you will never know when your PC is starting to use IPv6 as it will start creeping into the networking and Internet infrastructures unnoticed.  Better to have your PC IPv6 enabled rather than not, otherwise you would be creating a situation where at some time in the future you PC/laptop suddenly is not able to do something and you don’t realise it is because you stopped this service.

For the technically minded :   “If the IP Helper service stops, the computer only has IPv6 connectivity if it is connected to a native IPv6 network.”.

SVCHOST

(LMHosts  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper service.  We cannot better Microsoft’s own description of this service :  “Provides support for NetBIOS over TCP/IP (NetBT) and NetBIOS name resolution for clients on your network thus enabling users to share files, printers, and log on to the network. The TCP/IP NetBIOS Helper service provides support for the NetBT service by performing DNS name resolution and pinging a set of IP addresses that return a list of accessible IP addresses.  If this service is stopped or disabled, NETBTs clients, including Server, Netlogon and Messenger, will stop responding. As a result, you may not be able to share files, printers and logon.”.

Recommendation :
Essential for the ability of your PC to network – Leave alone.

SVCHOST

(MMCSS  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Multimedia Class Scheduler service.  As per Microsoft’s excellent description :

“The Multimedia Class Scheduler (MMCSS) service enables relative prioritization of work based on system-wide task priorities. This is intended mainly for multimedia applications. If this service is stopped, individual tasks return to their default priority.

Users expect multimedia applications to offer a smooth playback experience. If the playback has pauses or jerky movements, the user will tend to be dissatisfied with the experience and not use that content delivery method. While early versions of media players suffered from lack of bandwidth, the issue that is encountered more commonly now is lack of CPU processing time. Demand for the CPU processing time by other concurrently running applications, like antivirus programs, content indexing, or even the mail client, can interfere with media rendering and playback.

To provide a better playback experience, Windows Vista/7 provides MMCSS to manage the CPU priorities of multimedia threads. An application registers with MMCSS and MMCSS works out how to best prioritize its use of the CPU to ensure a smooth end-user experience.”
.

Recommendation :
Leave this service well alone.  Nowadays our use of PCs and Laptops involves playing multimedia content every day of our lives, through online news clips, music, Live streaming of sport events, YouTube, etc.., etc..., so every Windows Vista and Windows 7 PC has a permanent need for this background service to be running.

SVCHOST

(MpsSvc  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows Firewall service. 

It is safe to assume that in November 2010 and beyond most users know what a firewall is – it is the software program which helps protect your computer by preventing unauthorized users from gaining access to your computer through the Internet or a network that you are connected to.

Recommendation :
Leave this service running.

While many advanced users will most times disable the Windows Firewall on wired up PCs (as distinct from wireless connected computers), and most corporate networks also have it disabled at all times, this  Windows Firewall  service should always be left running as, since Windows Vista, and most definitely in Windows 7, it is an integral part of the networking infrastructure of Windows, and disabling it could have unwelcome consequences.

If you want to disable the Windows Firewall do so through the  Windows Firewall  icon in the  Control Panel  but always leave this service in its default  Startup Mode  of  Automatic.

SVCHOST

(Netprofm  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Network List service.  As per Microsoft’s excellent description :   “The Network List Service identifies the networks to which your computer has connected, collects and stores properties for these networks, and notifies the relevant applications when these properties change. This service, along with the Network Location Awareness service, enables the display of the status of network connections in the notification area (the System Tray). The Network List service is part of the Network Diagnostics Framework in Windows Vista, Windows Server 2008, and Windows 7.

Recommendation :
Leave alone – The default  Startup Mode  of this service is  Manual  but, in effect, it gets started at every Windows boot-up because there isn’t a computer nowadays that is not connected in some way to a network, whether it be a home, corporate, or wireless network, or the Internet.

If you disable this service it will result in an inability of your computer to enumerate networks and as a result to configure any network connections (LAN, Wireless, Dial-Up), to view your network connections in any shape or form, as well as various other adverse networking consequences, some of them major.

Leave this service alone and enjoy the Internet, your friends, your partners, and everything else Life has to offer ! 
JJ

SVCHOST

(NSI  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Network Store Interface service.  As per Microsoft’s own excellent description :  “The Network Store Interface Service delivers network notifications (for example, interface addition or deletion). The service keeps track of the network interfaces available on the computer, stores routing information for each, and communicates this information with other services that require it. Stopping this service causes loss of network connectivity.”.

Recommendation :
As explained in no uncertain manner above, this service is absolutely essential for the proper operation of all connectivity and networking aspects of your Windows computer – Leave alone therefore.  The normal  Startup Mode  of this service is  Automatic.

SVCHOST

(P2PImSvc service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Peer Networking Identity Manager service.  As per Microsoft’s own description :  “The Peer Networking Identity Manager service provides identity services for Peer Networking. It allows for the creation, enumeration, and manipulation of peer identities in a peer-to-peer application.  If disabled, the Peer Name Resolution Protocol (PNRP) and Peer-to-Peer Grouping services may not function, and some applications, such as HomeGroup and Remote Assistance, may not function correctly.”.

Recommendation :
Leave alone – This service is needed by Windows for a number of tasks and is so integrated with everything to do with networking that even Advanced Users would have difficulties working out when it is never used, even more reasons not to meddle with this service.

SVCHOST

(P2PSvc service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Peer Networking Grouping service.  Background service which enables multi-party communication using Peer-to-Peer Grouping.  If disabled, some applications, such as HomeGroup, may not function.

Recommendation :
Leave alone – This service is needed by Windows for a number of tasks and is so integrated with everything to do with networking that even Advanced Users would have difficulties working out when it is never used, even more reasons not to meddle with this service.

SVCHOST

(PcaSvc service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Program Compatibility Assistant service.  The Program Compatibility Assistant service detects known compatibility issues in older programs. When you run an older program in this version of Windows, it notifies you if there is a problem and offers to fix it the next time you run the program. If the compatibility issue is serious, the Program Compatibility Assistant might warn you or block the program from running at all. If that happens, you will be presented with the option to check online for possible solutions.  When the Program Compatibility Assistant needs to make changes, the changes made are only to the way in which Windows runs your older program, such as running the program in a mode which simulates older version of Windows for which the program was originally designed.

Recommendation :
Leave alone – This service is absolutely integral to Windows’ ability to run all your software, current or old, successfully and without crashing.

SVCHOST

(PML Driver HPZ12  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

HP PML Driver Service.  Background service installed by the drivers for a variety of HP printers, ranging from the HP PSC 2100, 2200, 4100, and 6100 series of multifunction printers, to DeskJet 6600 and 6800 series, PhotoSmart series, All‑in‑One OfficeJets, etc....  This task handles non‑printing related two-way communications between the PC and the HP printer.  Typically, on DeskJet and InkJet printers it will handle status-type communications such as ink levels, paper‑empty conditions, etc..., and will feed that information back to an HP icon in the System Tray.  In the case of more advanced printers, such as All‑in‑One printers or PhotoSmart printers, it handles additional non‑printing related communications such as scanning and photocopying events, access to the card reader, etc...

Recommendation :
Because of its role as, effectively, a printer status information gathering task, this task should be left running since, without it, you will  not get useful information from the System Tray HP icon for your printer which will think the printer is disconnected.

However, some versions of this task have been more than problematic, with serious conflicts with specific software packages (Sage Accounting with some versions of this task), or with  “Unable to Start driver”  errors on boot-up.

First,  DO NOT  run this service on a network fileserver running a server operating system like Windows 2000 Server or Windows 2003 Server (or SBS2000, SBS2003).  Our experience of this task on a network fileserver is not good at all – the list of problems includes print jobs that “vanish”, gobbledygook printing, print jobs getting stuck in print queues, and miscellaneous other network printer and printing problems.

If this is not a network fileserver, and you experience problems with this service, first ensure that your firewall allows this task to communicate – if your firewall is preventing the task from talking to things external to the PC then this task will not work properly  (Note: at the time of writing, 19‑Nov‑2007, the Windows XP and Norton Firewalls allow this task to communicate by default, so you should not need to configure them).  Next, if you still have problems, see on our  Drivers  page if there are newer drivers for your printers which might correct the problem.  If problems still remain after the above then disable this task.

You can disable this service by setting its  Startup Mode  to  Disabled  on the  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

As Hewlett‑Packard themselves state :   “Most if not all printing functions will work without it, and print quality and speed are not affected by this. However, other functions of the printer driver may be disabled. If a feature is noticed to be missing, the PML driver service can be manually started as described above. Remember to disable the PML driver service again before restarting the computer”.

SVCHOST

(PNRPsvc  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Peer Name Resolution Protocol service.  There is no simple layman way of describing this background service, so, for Advanced Users :   The Peer Name Resolution Protocol (PNRP) service enables Serverless Peer Name Resolution over the Internet.  This protocol enables the naming of computers and services without reliance on a DNS server (effectively providing a way for peer-to-peer Windows Vista/Windows 7 PCs to perform name resolution despite the absence of a DNS server on the local network). This allows for flexible, ad-hoc peer-to-peer networks of same-local-network computers for collaboration, data sharing, and data storage.

Recommendation :
Leave alone – although the  Startup Mode  of this service is set to  Manual  by default, you will almost always see it running on the  Services  tab of TUT.  We do not recommend that you disable it as many networking features of Windows Vista and Windows 7 depend on this service, such as the ability to network with UPnP based broadband routers, NAS boxes, Digital Medial Receivers, etc...

SVCHOST

(Power  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Power service.  The official description of this service by Microsoft is that it manages power policy and power policy notification delivery.  Effectively this is the underlying background service which manages the power saving configuration of your PC/Laptop, such as how bright you want the display to be when plugged into the mains as opposed to when running on the laptop’s battery, whether your Windows 7 theme should change the background pictures when you are running on battery, when to turn the screen off during inactive periods, when to turn the hard disk off during periods of inactivity, when to go into hibernation, etc...

Recommendation : 
Leave alone – Not only is this background service essential to implement your various power saving settings, but, strangely, the sound will not work on your PC/laptop if you disable this service.

SVCHOST

(ProfSvc  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

User Profile service.  The User Profile Service is responsible for loading and unloading a user’s profile as the user logs in or logs out.  In a way it is one of the most important background Windows services as, if it is not running, no-one can login and no-one can logout (you have to physically turn off the PC) – you have a useless PC.

Recommendation :
Leave well well alone.  You’ve been warned !!!

SVCHOST

(RemoteRegistry Service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Remote Registry Service.  Service which is part of Windows.  As per Microsoft’s excellent explanation :  “Enables remote users to modify registry settings on your computer, provided the remote users have the required permissions. The Remote Registry service is primarily used by remote administrators and for performance counters.  If this service is stopped or disabled, modifying the registry will only be allowed on the local computer. If this service is disabled, it will not affect registry operations on your local computer. Other computers or devices will no longer be able to connect to your local computer’s registry.”.

For those who do not know, the Windows Registry is a database in which Windows stores all its settings :  details of your hard disk, graphics card and other hardware, your Windows Registration key, all the software installed, all the Windows Updates installed, how you like Microsoft Word to open (full size or a specific reduced size), users, printers, etc.., etc...  It is that database which TUT queries to give you the information on the  System Info  tab.

Recommendation :
Such a description, even though correct, can sound scary :  What!  A remote user modifying my Windows registry !!!   The truth is rather simpler :  no remote user can change your PC’s Windows Registry without first being able to connect with the right username and password and  having Administrator rights.

On a more pragmatic level this service is absolutely crucial to the ability of your PC to network to other computers on a Windows network or to connect to corporate networks, or the ability for your IT Manager to remotely change settings on your PC and, for the technically advanced, for Group Policies to work (the Domain Controller uses the Remote Registry Service to apply group policies – ditto with NetWare server policies).

Provided you have basic security on your network (all users have secure passwords, and users you would not trust your credit card with are not Administrators on the network!) then you should leave this service set to its default  Startup Mode  of  Automatic.

SVCHOST

(RPCEptMapper Service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Remote Procedure Call (RPC) Endpoint Mapper Service.  Remote Procedure Call is a secure Inter-Process Communications feature (IPC) which enables programs to exchange data and to call each other’s publicly declared procedures (programming code) without knowing each other’s internal programming structures – this can happen on the same computer or over a network.  From initially being little used under Windows 95/98/ME,  RPC has now become essential to the proper running of all current Windows operating systems and, specifically, network aware or network related tasks, processes, and services.  So much so that deleting/disabling anything to do with RPC totally disables Windows and prevents it from loading !!

This particular service tracks the sources and targets of RPC communications.

Recommendation :
Leave well alone !!!

SVCHOST

(SamSs service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Security Accounts Manager service.  The Microsoft SAM service (Security Accounts Manager) is a protected service that manages users and groups in Windows.

On a 2000/XP/Vista PC or non-domain controller Windows 2000/2003/2008 server, the users and groups account information is stored in the Windows Registry, while on Domain Controller Windows 2000/2003/2008 servers, it is stored in Active Directory.

Recommendation :
The entire security of Windows 2000/XP/2003/Vista/2008 is based on users and groups.  Everything about Windows is about which user you are logged in as, what security rights you have. which applications are configured for you, what your own user desktop is about, what your  “My Documents”  is, etc.., etc...   To repeat, therefore, everything that you do in Windows is underpinned totally by which user you are logged in as.

In other words, this particular service is the bedrock of Windows – you kill this service and you kill your PC or server stone dead.  You won’t even be able to login into Safe Mode to go back to a previous restore point.  You won’t even be able to restart this service – your PC or server will shut down or freeze instantly.  It will be the end of this PC or server as you knew it !!

So, if the above was not clear enough, then here it is again :  
LEAVE THIS SERVICE WELL WELL ALONE !!!

SVCHOST

(SENS service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

System Event Notification Service (SENS).  Microsoft service which tracks various system events and notifies programs which need to know about those events.  For instance, this service will track the disconnection of a device from a USB port and notify programs that need to know about this, Windows itself as a start, and, say, your Nokia PC Suite because, for example, you have just unplugged your Nokia cell phone.  Another example will be this service being told by your laptop’s wireless that you have just lost your wireless signal, this service in turn informs Windows of this event, and Windows pops up a warning bubble telling you you have been disconnected.

Recommendation :
Everything in Windows is about events, the event of you, the user, clicking on an icon in the Taskbar in order to switch to another program, the event of your disk becoming full, the event of a music CD having been inserted into the PC and Windows automatically starting your favourite music player, the event of your connection to the Internet becoming broken, etc..., etc...

This service is therefore an absolutely critical core service of Windows – if you terminate it you effectively break Windows.

Leave well alone therefore.

SVCHOST

(SysMain service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Superfetch service.  The Superfetch service maintains and improves the performance of Windows over time. Superfetch is a performance-enhancing feature of Vista and Windows 7 which address responsiveness issues by adjusting the operation of the Windows Page File.  To understand what the Windows Page File is, and its role in the performance of Windows, read this document :  ATW Guide to PC Performance.

Recommendation :
A core and crucially important background service of Windows – Leave alone !

SVCHOST

(TapiSrv service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Telephony API service.  Microsoft background service which handles dial-up communications, VPN communications, Remote Access connections out of your PC and into your PC, Microsoft Windows and Product Activation, Microsoft Genuine Windows Checks, and Fax services.

Recommendation :
Leave alone.  This service has a default  Startup Mode  of  Manual  and will therefore only ever run when something else in Windows needs it to run.  In practice, however, you will find that this service is almost always running as, in nowadays Internet connected world, there is almost always some feature of Windows which needs this service to be running and which consequently starts it.

SVCHOST

(TrkWks service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Distributed Link Tracking Client service (TrkWks).  Microsoft background service whose role is to aid in the tracking of links to files on Windows servers.

Distributed Link Tracking is the mechanism whereby end-users on a corporate network with one or more Windows file servers (running the Windows 2000/2003 server operating system) can create links on their desktops, or in their local filing system, which point to files and folders on network drives on the Windows server(s).  If the files or folders on the server are moved to different parts of the server, or to another server in the same Active Directory domain, the servers track where the files used to be, and where they are now, so as to ensure that links on the end-users’ PCs still resolve to those files.  The end-users do not realise that the files have moved, and the links on their desktops or filing system, still work.

Note that for this technology to work the  Distributed Link Tracking Server  service on the server(s) involved needs to be running.

Recommendation :
For a start, if you are a Home User or if your PC only links to other Windows XP or Windows Vista PCs, you do not need to read any further – there is no point for this service to be running and using valuable resources as it only ever works if your PC is connected to a Windows server (a server running the Windows 2000 Server, or Windows 2003 server, or Windows 20008 server operating system).  Disable it by setting its  Startup Mode  to  Disabled  on the  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Similarly, if your PC only ever connects to Linux or NetWare servers, then this service has no use and should be disabled.

Additionally, many non-Microsoft and non-Symantec backup programs have problems on home PCs when the Distributed Link Tracking client is running and the PC is not connected to a Windows server, and the user performs a file restore – file corruption sometimes occurs.  Disabling this TrkWks service usually solves these problems.

For all other users, in our view there are far too many negatives about the consequences of implementing this technology to even want to implement it.  It is no surprise, therefore, that the server-side equivalent of this service is disabled by default when Windows 2003 Server or Windows 2008 Server is installed from scratch (it used to be turned ON by default on Windows 2000 servers).  The main problem with the Distributed Link Tracking technology is that, on the fileserver, a significant amount of information is stored in Active Directory for every link that is being tracked.  If there are more than one server in the Active Directory domain, then Distributed Link Tracking objects are stored on each of the servers, and on all the global catalogs.  On systems with large numbers of users, and where many users have links to files and folders on the fileserver, the Distributed Link Tracking information stored in Active Directory can often grow to gigabytes, thereby reducing the performance of Active Directory.  And it gets worse :  every time a link is referenced on the end-user PC, a Distributed Link Tracking query is made even if the file or folder on the server has not moved – another server and network traffic penalty.

If the above is not enough to discourage Network System Administrators from implementing Distributed Link Tracking, the most important argument against Distributed Link Tracking is the fact that Distributed Link Tracking was effectively only implemented to support  lazy Network Administrators.  If a network administrator needs to move folders from one place on a server to another place on the server or another server, or to network attached storage, then he/she should use group policies and scripting to update network drive links, and folder and file links on the end-user PCs.  A good Network Administrator should not only always be aware of what users do with the network filing system, but he/she should also have a full picture of what the filing system is and where it is.  Distributed Link Tracking, on the other hand, blurs this knowledge and encourages ignorance of how the end-users use the network filing systems, all of this at a very high cost to Active Directory, Global Catalogs, and network traffic – it really makes no sense to implement Distributed Link Tracking.

So, if you are an end-user on a corporate network, and this TrkWks service is enabled, leave it alone and talk to your Network System Administrator – it is not your place to meddle with the status of this service.  In all other cases this TrkWks service, a relic from the days of Windows 2000 servers, should be disabled.

SVCHOST

(UxSms  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Desktop Window Manager Session Manager Service.  As per Microsoft’s description at the time of writing, 5-Feb-2011 :   “The Desktop Window Manager Session Manager service provides Desktop Window Manager startup and maintenance services. The service supports the Themes service and checks that applications are compatible with the Aero user experience in Windows Vista and Windows 7. If an application is not compatible with Aero, then this service causes it revert to a classic Windows theme that it supports.  If your computer does not support Aero graphics, you may see improved performance by disabling this service.”.

Recommendation :
Leave this service on its default  Startup Mode  of  Automatic  –  in 2011 and beyond all PCs are Aero compatible.  Your PC/laptop would have to be 8 years old or older not to be Aero compatible.

SVCHOST

(WdiServiceHost  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Diagnostic Service Host Service.   As per Microsoft’s excellent explanation at the time of writing, 5-Feb-2011 :  “The Diagnostic Service Host (WdiServiceHost) enables problem detection, troubleshooting, and resolution for Windows components. If this service is stopped, diagnostics will no longer function. The Diagnostic Service Host is part of the Network Diagnostic Framework in Windows Vista/Windows 7 that is used to troubleshoot network connectivity issues. When a user selects Diagnose and Repair from either the Network and Sharing Center or the Network Connection context menu, the Diagnostic Policy Service starts the Diagnostic Service Host. The service will continue to run until the computer is restarted.  This service startup type is by default Manual.”.

Recommendation :
Leave this service on its default  Startup Mode  of  Manual  –  Windows will only start this service when it is needed.

SVCHOST

(WLanSvc  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

WLAN AutoConfig Service.   The WLAN AutoConfig service inventories all of your computer’s wireless adapters (onboard wireless, Bluetooth, USB wireless, USB cellphone adapter, etc..) and manages wireless connections as well as the various profiles attached to those connections.

It is this service which, for example, ensures that when you take your laptop between various locations which have wireless networks that you registered your laptop onto at least once previously (e.g. your Home and Work wireless networks), then you do not have to re-enter the wireless keys and whether the network is Home/Work/Public every time that you come back to one of these known wireless networks.

Recommendation :
Leave this service well alone even if you are on a PC (as distinct from a laptop) with no wireless adaptors plugged in.  The reason is that this service is inextricably tied in with the entire networking infrastructure of Vista/Windows 7, so disabling it can have serious unwanted consequences on your networking even if you are only networking your PC via an Ethernet network cable.  This is why Microsoft has set the default  Startup Mode  of this service to  Automatic
.

SVCHOST

(Winmgmt service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows Management Instrumentation service (WINMGMT).  Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI) provides a standard Windows method of accessing system information such as hardware devices, user accounts, Windows services, running programs, networking, performance information, event monitors, and application monitors.  Thus, for instance, if you wanted to write a product which detailed which hard disks your PC has, their capacity, manufacturer, and other miscellaneous information, your program could use WMI scripting to retrieve the information from your PC.  In fact you could use WMI for something as simple as finding how much spare hard disk space you have.  WMI is used by Windows itself and all sorts of third party programs.  This service accesses the WMI repository or writes new information to it.

Recommendation :
The Windows Management Instrumentation service is crucial to the proper functioning of the majority of Windows own programs and of third party programs.  Many features of Windows itself will not work if you stop this service.  Leave alone therefore.

SVCHOST

(Wudfsvc  service)

Svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Windows Driver Foundation - User-mode Driver Framework service (UMDF).  This process, first found on Windows Vista, is part of the new device driver strategy from Microsoft for Windows Vista/7 and all future versions of Windows :  this strategy, the  Windows Driver Foundation (WDF),  first introduced with Windows XP SP2 in 2004, aims to make it significantly simpler to write drivers for today’s and tomorrow’s Windows environments which hopefully will lead to higher quality and more reliable drivers;  it also aims to ensure that, in future, buggy or badly written drivers will not have the detrimental or catastrophic effects that they have often had in the past (freezes, instability, Windows not booting up, illegal operations, etc..);  finally, the new strategy also aims to ensure that many more drivers will be installable without the PC actually needing to be logged in as “Administrator” or with  “Administrator”  privileges.  Starting with Windows XP Service Pack 2 and Windows Media Player 10, Microsoft added the WDF framework to Windows XP/2003/Vista/2008/7 to enable peripheral manufacturers to start producing WDF drivers.  In Windows Vista and Windows 7 all drivers have to be WDF drivers – period.  For technical users :  this particular host process, WUDFSvc, supports the user-mode driver framework of this new WDF driver strategy.  This framework enables developers to create drivers for network connected devices, and some USB devices such as cameras and portable music players where the drivers run in user mode rather than kernel mode but still behave as standard Plug-and-Play drivers.  This process pops us on the  Tasks  tab whenever a user-mode WDF driver is installed on the PC.

Recommendation :
This process is an essential process of Windows Vista and Windows 7 – Leave it alone therefore.

SVCHOST

(Wzcsvc  service)

svchost.exe

(Microsoft)

Wireless Zero Configuration service.  This service enables the automatic configuration of wireless adapters for wireless communications (Wi-Fi).

Your laptop/PC’s Wi-Fi adapter scans for available networks and devices and passes those to Windows . This wireless configuration service then takes care of configuring your wireless adapter with an available network or device.  In the case where there are two networks covering the same area, the user can configure a preferred network order and the machine will try each network in order until it finds an active one. It is also possible to limit association to only the configured, preferred networks.

Recommendation :
Despite its name, from Windows XP SP3 onwards (XP SP3, Vista, Win7), this service is actually needed for more than just wireless networking and is in fact needed for many types of networking.  As a result our recommendation is that you always have this service with a  Startup  mode of  Automatic  to ensure it is always started at Windows boot-up.

Svchost32 Svchost32.exe

( ???)
You have a virus.  It may be one of the following viruses :  Backdoor.IRC.Zcrew, W32.HLLW.Deborms.C, W32.Mimail.J@mm, or the W32.Paylap.@mm virus which mimics a PayPal account renewal screen.  Note that there are other lesser known, or newer (!!) viruses which also show as a program called SVCHOST32.EXE.

Svhost

Svhost Loader

Svhost.exe

(???)

You have a virus which could be any of a number of them, such as :   Backdoor.SocksbotBat.Boohoo.Worm, W32.Bolgi.Worm, and a few more.

Svrload

Svrload.exe

(???)

Trojan horse program picked up through file sharing programs such as KaZaa and which sends information from your PC and also provides unauthorised access to your PC.  The program comes primarily through pirate copies of software downloaded via file sharing programs.  On Windows 95/98/ME PCs, if you press  Ctrl+Alt+Del  to bring up the Task List, this program will show up as a task whose name is made up of strange numbers and letters, such as   A456E124F1  or   687AF68632.

Recommendation :
This program is not widely distributed and as a result is not known by most antivirus software manufacturers.  It is known to cause slow internet performance (since it is so busy sending data from your PC, or giving access to your PC) or startup and shutdown errors.  To get rid of this program first terminate it on the  Tasks  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter, then delete the program from your hard disk, and finally delete this entry from the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.   If you are unable to terminate the program, which sometimes happens, then disable it on the  Startups  tab of The Ultimate Troubleshooter, then restart your PC, go back into The Ultimate Troubleshooter, note the location of the program and delete it from your hard disk, and finally delete its entry from the  Startups  tab of The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Sweepsrv Sweepsrv.sys

(Sophos)
Sophos AntiVirus Detection System Service for Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003 :  the Sweep Service.  This service is the actual process within Sophos AntiVirus which detects viruses.

Recommendation :
Essential for the detection of viruses using Sophos AntiVirus – leave alone. Note that by default some versions of Sophos AntiVirus install themselves configured to run a full virus scan of your hard disk every time you start your PC, resulting in SWEEPSRV showing in the Task List as consuming large amounts of resources immediately after boot-up, and a slow PC !  If this causes you a problem, simply modify or disable the schedule within Sophos AntiVirus.
Switch Switch.exe

(Alphamega Software)
Switch Manager Pro.  Switch Manager Pro appears as "Switch Manager Pro" in the Task List when you have it open.  When you minimize it to the System Tray, however, it appears in the Task List as "Switch".

Recommendation :
Leave alone.
Swnetsup SWNetSup.exe

(Sophos)
Sophos AntiVirus Network Support Service for Windows NT4/2000/XP.  This service handles the network interaction of SWEEP and InterCheck.  It is not required, but without it you will not be able to deliver virus reports back to the InterCheck server, and auto-upgrades will not be possible.

Recommendation :
Leave it running if you want your Sophos AntiVirus software to be able to update itself automatically.
Swupdate SWUpdate.exe

(Sophos)
Sophos AntiVirus Auto-Update Service for Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003.  This service takes care of automatically updating your Sophos AntiVirus software over the Internet, at the specified intervals.

Recommendation :
Up-to-date antivirus protection is an absolute MUST, so leave this service alone.

Sxgdsenu

Sxgdsenu.exe

(?)

MIDI driver for sound cards based on the Yamaha XG chipset.

Recommendation : 
As the XG chipset is an old chipset, we have not had the opportunity to verify what this background task really does.  As a result the only recommendation we can make is that you leave it alone.  Or, if this task appears on your PC and you are prepared to experiment, you could try disabling it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  and see if you suffer sound problems.

Sxgtkbar Sxgtkbar.exe

(???)
See SXGDSENU above as these two tasks seem to always be present together.

Symlcsvc

Symlcsvc.exe

(Symantec)

New task which is part of the 2004/5 editions of Norton security products  (Norton AntiVirus 2004/5, Norton Internet Security 2004/5, Norton Personal Firewall 2004/5).

Recommendation : 
We do not yet know what this task does.  We can only therefore recommend that you leave it alone.

Symproxysvc SymProxySvc.exe

(Symantec)
Symantec Transparent Proxy Server.  Although we have not yet been able to obtain full details about this task, we feel from its name that this is probably the most crucial component of Norton Internet Security and Norton Personal Firewall – certainly if you stop it neither works properly, or at all. SYMPROXYSVC is a transparent task under Windows 95/98/ME, visible only through a program like  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Recommendation :
Leave alone – Essential.  Note, however, that SYMPROXYSVC, due to bugs in script blocking, has been known to consume up to 99% of CPU usage, thereby grinding the PC to a halt.  Other problems, including "Invalid Page Faults", involve access to specific or secure sites.  All of these should be resolved if you do a manual LiveUpdate in order to pick up all the latest software updates for your Norton firewall.
Symtray SymTray.exe

(Symantec)
Norton Tray Manager.  System Tray icon for Norton SystemWorks which enables you to access all the SystemWorks programs from within a single icon in the System Tray.

Recommendation :
Down to end-user preference.  However, SymTray has a history of incompatibilities in certain environments which result in "Invalid Page Faults" at boot-up or when specific applications are run.  Try a manual LiveUpdate if you have this problem. Otherwise you can disable the Norton Tray Manager by either disabling it with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter,  or, from SystemWorks 2000 onward, double-click the icon in the System Tray, choose "Options", then "Norton SystemWorks", then the "General" tab, and take the tick off Use the Norton Tray Manager;  OK your way out and reboot.

Symwsc

SymWSC.exe

(Symantec)

Symantec WMI Service  installed by Norton AntiVirus, Norton Personal Firewall, and Norton Internet Security on Windows 2000/XP PCs.  This update to these Norton security products first appeared in mid‑August 2004 and supports the Microsoft Windows Security Center introduced in Service Pack 2 for Windows XP and which is in principle also earmarked for Windows 2000.  When this service is running, the Windows Security Center is able to query your Norton AntiVirus software in order to report whether your antivirus software is up-to-date, whether your subscription has run out or is about to run out, and whether you should be downloading program updates (in addition to the virus definition updates that the software downloads itself automatically).

Recommendation :
While initially a good idea in principle, the Windows Security Center with its constant reminders has proved to be a nuisance as the major antivirus manufacturers, while providing integration with the Windows Security Center, actually prefer that you use their own Security Center software, and the majority in fact recommend that you disable the Windows Security Center so that you do not end up with warnings from both the Windows Security Center and their own Security Center, and, more importantly, so that they can provide you with more comprehensive feedback than they could through the Windows Security Center.  We agree with Symantec, and the other vendors, on this issue.  If you have this service actually running it will be primarily because you did not answer  YES  to the question which one of the Norton updates will have asked you :  “We recommend that you disable the Windows Security Center”.

Firstly, if you are on Windows 2000 Service Pack 4 or earlier, or on Windows XP Service Pack 1, this service is of no use to you and you should therefore disable it.   You can disable this service by setting its  Startup Mode  to  Disabled  on the  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

If you are on Windows XP Service Pack 2, then we recommend you disable the Windows Security Center for anything that is duplicated by your Norton software :

1)   Double-click the  Security Center  icon in the Control Panel.

2)   Click  Change the way the Security Center alerts me.

3)   If you use Norton AntiVirus, uncheck  Virus Protection.  If you also use the Norton Personal Firewall, uncheck  FirewallIf you have Norton Internet Security, uncheck both  Firewall  and  Virus Protection.

4)  Click OK to make your changes stick.

5)   Go to the  Services  tab of TUT and change the  Startup Mode  for this service to  Manual – now that you have disabled the Windows Security Center reporting in steps (1) to (4), this service no longer needs to run since the Windows Security Center will no longer be requesting feedback.
 

syncagentsrv

syncagentsrv.exe

(Acronis)

Acronis Synchronization Agent Server.  Background service installed when you install the Acronis TrueImage software.  The main purpose of this background service is to synchronize one or more folders on your PC with folders either elsewhere on the same PC, or other PCs on your network, or with an Internet FTP account, or online backup account on the Internet such as Acronis Cloud.

Recommendation :   Down to end-user requirements.

If you use any of the synchronization features of your Acronis TrueImage software, then you need to leave this background service alone as it is essential to all synchronization features.

If on the other hand you do not use any of the synchronization features mentioned above, then change the  Startup Mode  of this service to  Manual  on the  Services  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  so that this service never starts unless one day you do decide to use some of the synchronization features.  Note :  do not set this service to  Disabled  as you will get errors every time you boot your PC/laptop.

This background service normally uses 3Mb to 20Mb of memory.  Note, however, that in some older versions of Acronis TrueImage, this service can sometimes go “crazy” and use as much as 130Mb of memory and 15% of CPU resources, unbearably slowing down your PC.  If this happens you should check the Acronis website for updates for your version.

Syncclk

SyncClk.exe

(Compaq)

Synchronize Clock background task which is part of Compaq’s Digital Dashboard – this task synchronizes your PC’s clock with a time source on the Internet.  Compaq users – Compaq Digital Dashboard has two main features :  time synchronization from the Internet and turning on the mail LED when POP3 mail has been received.  Although present in many Compaq PCs, it is our experience that very few users are aware of the Compaq Digital Dashboard software (the icon is in the Control Panel); as a result we have found very few users running this particular task.

Recommendation :  
Down to end-user preference.  You can disable  SYNCCLK  by disabling time synchronization in the Digital Dashboard icon in the Control Panel.  Alternatively, you can also disable the task with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

SynToshiba

SynToshiba.exe

(Synaptics)

Synaptics Pointing Device Driver.  Synaptics TouchPad, Mouse, and Multimedia sidebar Enhancements driver for Toshiba laptops.  The TouchPad and Mouse (whether you are using an external mouse or your finger on the touchpad)  actually work perfectly well without this program.  The main purpose of this program, however, is to enable the user to configure the special features through the  Mouse  icon in the Control Panel, such as, for example, the Media Center keyboard touchbar on the Media Centre laptop keyboard on some laptops.

Recommendation :
Leave alone as you will not be able to open the  Mouse  icon in the Control Panel if this is not running (you will get an  “Unable to connect to the Synaptics Pointing Device Driver”  error), nor will you be able to configure the behaviour of the Media Centre keyboard touchbar.  This program uses between 3Mb to 4Mb of memory.

Syntpenh SynTPEnh.exe

(Synaptics)
Synaptics TouchPad Enhancements driver for laptops’ touchpads.  The Synaptics drivers are used by a majority of laptop manufacturers.  There are many problems associated with the Synaptics drivers :  excessive amounts of CPU used by the drivers, inability to install specific software packages (mostly packages which use the Wise installer), and outright freezes of the laptop where often the only solution is to remove the battery as it is impossible to turn OFF the frozen laptop.  Not all laptops exhibit these problems.

Recommendation :
If you experience any of the above, go to our drivers page and download and install the latest Synaptics drivers for your laptop (if you are not sure which one you should download, consult with us).  This solves the problem in a rather low 30% of cases.  If you still have the problem after having updated your Synaptics drivers, and you need to install software, do a Ctrl+Alt+Del and do an "End Task" on both SYNTPENH and SYNTPLPR prior to attempting to load the software you are trying to load (note, this will disable the TouchPad, so make sure you plug in an external PS/2 mouse before starting your PC and killing these two processes) – alternatively disable both SYNTPENH and SYNTPLPR in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.  If your problem is freezes, and updating the drivers does not correct the problem, then the only solution is to remove the Synaptics drivers via the "Add/Remove Program" icon in the Control Panel and then see if Windows 98SE/ME/2000/XP/2003 will be able to handle the TouchPad with their own drivers.  In most cases they do, particularly with Windows ME and XP, but you do lose the ability to use the middle mouse button if you have one.  Removing the Synaptics drivers and having the TouchPad handled by Windows always corrects the freezing problems in our experience.
Syntplpr SynTPLpr.exe

(Synaptics)
Part of Synaptics TouchPad drivers.  Works together with SYNTPENH.  See SYNTPENH above for more details.

SynTPStart

SynTPStart.exe

(Synaptics)

Synaptics Pointing Device Starter.  Synaptics TouchPad, Mouse, and Multimedia sidebar Enhancements driver for laptops.  The TouchPad and Mouse (whether you are using an external mouse or your finger on the touchpad)  actually work perfectly well without this program.  The main purpose of this program, however, is to enable the user to configure the special features through the  Mouse  icon in the Control Panel, such as, for example, the Media Center keyboard touchbar on the right-hand side of your Media Centre laptop keyboard on some laptops.

Recommendation :
Leave alone as you will not be able to open the  Mouse  icon in the Control Panel if this is not running (you will get a  “Unable to connect to the Synaptics Pointing Device Driver”  error), nor will you be able to configure the behaviour of the Media Centre keyboard touchbar.  This program uses between 4Mb to 7Mb of memory.

Syscfg

Syscfg32
Syscfg32.exe

(???)
You have the W32.Kwbot.S.Worm@mm virus.

Sysdoc32

SysDoc32.exe

(Symantec)

Norton System Doctor.  Part of Norton Utilities. Heavy on resources in our opinion.

Recommendation : 
Disable it in  The Ultimate Troubleshooter  – you can run it manually through the Norton Utilities.

Sysdown SysDown.exe

(HP / Compaq)
Task found exclusively on Compaq ProLiant servers running Windows NT4 Server.  Compaq’s own (adapted-by-us) description :  "Adds support to shut down the server before the System Management drivers load in cases when critical system fans have stopped working or were taken out".

Recommendation :
Essential – leave alone.
Sysload32 Sysload32.exe

(???)
You have the W32.Mimail.E@mm virus.

Sysmonxp

SysMonXP.exe

(???)

You have the   W32.Netsky.Q@mm   virus.

System  (1)

N/A

(Microsoft)

Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003 only.  A collective name for all operating system kernel threads.

Recommendation :
The Operating System !!   Leave alone.

System  (2)

Win_api_driver

System.exe

(???)

You have one of the   Trojan.Download.Revird / Trojan.Mitglieder.C / Backdoor.Tuxder  viruses (or some other virus).

System Idle Process

N/A

(Microsoft)

Windows NT4/2000/XP/2003 only.  This is a process which runs on each CPU in your PC/Server and whose sole purpose is to total up the amount of time when the processor is not doing anything.  In Task Manager (Task List) this process usually accounts for the majority of processor time.

Recommendation : 
An integral part of the operating system, leave alone.

Systemload32 Sysload32.exe

(???)
You have the W32.Mimail.E@mm virus.
Systimer Systimer.exe

(eAcceleration Corp)
At the time of writing, November 2002, we are not yet sure as to which programs drop SYSTIMER on end-users’ systems.  What we do know is that it is connected with eAcceleration Corp and Buttonware.net.  This we have been able to pick up from the firewall logs of the PCs we have seen running SYSTIMER as, as far as we have been able to make out, SYSTIMER connects back to eAcceleration/Buttonware.net servers to seemingly download advertisements. All of this we are yet to be 100% certain of.

Recommendation :
Get rid of it – we did and suffered no adverse effect.  Run SpyBot Search & Destroy, available from our Downloads page, which should rid you of eAcceleration software.  If not, then disable SYSTIMER with  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Systray  (1)

SysTray.exe

(Microsoft)

This program runs the Windows System Tray, which is that part of the Task Bar where the Time is displayed.  The System Tray is often used by other installed programs for their icons to be displayed in it.

Recommendation :
Leave untouched.

Systray  (2)

Systray driver

Systray.exe

(???)

You may have the   Backdoor.IRC.Mutebot   virus, or one of the many other viruses which pose as  SYSTRAY, particularly if this entry is found on the  Startups  tab of  The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

Recommendation :
Simply make sure you have daily updated reputable antivirus software – it will pick up viruses posing as SYSTRAY.

SZCompanion

SZCompanion.exe

(International Software Systems Solutions)

You have the   STOPZilla Advanced Configuration Options   window currently open.

SZOptions

SZOptions.exe

(International Software Systems Solutions)

You have the   STOPzilla Basic Configuration Options   window currently open.


All of the tasks below, and many more, although not detailed on this page, are explained in full in The Ultimate Troubleshooter.

The Ultimate Troubleshooter (TUT), has the full database in a remarkably easy and pleasing interface which makes the process of fine tuning your PC, or troubleshooting your computer's problems, a snip.  Get it here.

c2c_service.exe,  S3Hotkey.exe,  S3Tray.exe,  S3Tray2.exe,  S3Trayp.exe,  SABSVC.exe,  Sachostx.exe,  SADBLOCK.exe,  Safari.exe,  SafeWin.exe,  Sagate.exe,  SAgent4.exe,  Sagent95.exe,  SAgentNT.exe,  SamSs,  Samx.exe,  Saproxy.exe,  SAService.exe,  Saus.exe,  SAVAdminService.exe,  SavRoam.exe,  SavService.exe,  SayTime.exe,  SAYTIMEMAIN.EXE,  SBAMTray.exe,  Sbase.exe,  SBAutoUpdate.exe,  SBBServ.exe,  SBCSSvc.exe,  SBCSTray.exe,  SBDrvDet.exe,  SbPFCL.exe,  SbPFLnch.exe,  SbPFSvc.exe,  SBrowser.exe,  Sbscrexe.exe,  SBSingle.exe,  SC_Acrobat.exe,  Scalc.exe,  Scalpe91.exe,  ScannerFinder.exe,  ScanningProcess.exe,  Sched.exe,  Schedhlp.exe,  Schedm.exe,  Schedul2.exe,  Schedule Service,  Scheduler.exe,  Scheduler_Proxy.exe,  SchedulerSvc.exe,  SchTasks.exe,  Scmhlpr.vbs,  Scran.exe,  ScreenshotCaptor.exe,  Scrigz.exe,  Scrnsaver.scr,  ScrubXP.exe,  SCServer.exe,  SCService.exe,  Scvhosts.exe,  SDActiveMonitor.exe,  Sdclt.exe,  Sdhelp.exe,  Sdiapp.exe,  Sdraw.exe,  SDService.exe,  SDSetup.exe,  SDTrayApp.exe,  SDWinSec.exe,  Rundll32.exe Se.dll,  SeaMonkey.exe,  SEAMON~1.exe,  SeaPort.exe,  SearchIndexer.exe,  Searchfilterhost.exe,  SearchProtection.exe,  Searchprotocolhost.exe,  Sec5dec.exe,  SecCopy.exe,  SecLogon Service,  Sectoriate.exe,  Secure.exe,  Secure2.bat,  SecuritySuite.exe,  SENS,  Sempalong.exe,  Servce.exe,  Servcs.exe,  Service.exe,  Servicec.exe,  Servic~1.exe,  ServicePointService.exe,  Servicestub.exe,  Sesnot.exe,  SetIcon.exe,  SetPoint.exe,  Setv.exe,  SFAgent.exe, SfCtlCom.exe,  SFUS.exe,  Sgbhp.exe,  SGBXCOMS.exe,  Sgmain.exe,  SharedAccess Service,  Shareaza.exe,  Shell32.exe,  Shell32.vbs,  ShellHWDetection Service,  SHOTKEY.exe,  Shpc32.exe,  ShStat.exe,  ShuttleEngine.exe,  ShuttleHelper.exe,  SHUTZ.exe,  Shwicon.exe,  Shwicon2k.exe,  Shwicon98.exe,  ShwiconEM.exe,  Shicoxp.exe,  Sibc.exe,  Sibelius.exe,  Sidebar.exe,  Sidekick.exe,  Simpress.exe,  SiteAdv.exe,  Skdaemon.exe,  Skinker.exe,  Skinkers.exe,  Skybot.exe,  Skybotx.exe,  Skynetave.exe,  Skype.exe,  SkypeMate.exe,  SkyTel.exe,  Slchost.exe,  Slmdmsr.exe,  SLRUNDLL.exe,  SLsvc.exe,  SMax4.exe,  SmartClock.exe, SmartFaceVWatcher.exe,  SmartPOP2SMTP.exe,  SmartRAM.exe,  SmartStamp.exe,  SMax4PnP.exe,  SmcGUI.exe,  Smoc.exe,  SmoothView.exe,  SMSystemAnalyzer.exe,  SMSMessage.exe,  SMTrayNotify.exe,  Smvalid.exe,  SnagIt32.exe,  SnagitEditor.exe,  SnagPriv.exe,  Sndmon.exe,  SndVol32.exe,  SNDWarn.exe,  SnippingTool.exe,  Soffice.bin,  Soffice.exe,  Softsqueeze.exe,  Sol.exe,  SolidConverterPDFService.exe,  SolidPdfService.exe,  SolidWorksLicensing.exe,  SolidWorksLicTemp.0001,  Sonar.exe,  SonarPdr.exe,  SonudMan.exe,  SonyTray.exe,  SoundMax.exe,  Spkrmon.exe,  Sp00lsv32.pif,  SP2 Update.exe,  Sp2ctr.exe,  SPAMCFG.exe,  Spamkiller.exe,  SpamPal.exe,  SpamSub.exe,  SpamSubtract.exe,  SpClDlx.exe,  SpeedFan.exe,  SpeedTester.exe,  SpeedUpMyPC.exe,  Spider.exe,  SpiderSolitaire.exe,  Spoo1sv.exe,  Spoolcll.exe,  Spoolserv.exe,  Spoolsvu.exe,  SPPSvc.exe,  SprtCmd.exe,  SprtSvc.exe,  SPUpdSvc.exe,  Spvspool.exe,  SpybotSD.exe,  SpyderBar.exe,  SpyEraser.exe,  SpySweeper.exe,  SpySweeperUI.exe,  SpywareBlaster.exe,  SpywareDetector.exe,  Sqladhlp.exe,  Sqladhlp90.exe,  SQLAgent.exe,  SQLAGENT90.EXE,  Sqlbrowser.exe,  Sqltob.exe,  Sqlwriter.exe,  SR_GUI.exe,  SR_Service.exe,  SR_Watchdog.exe,  Sraid.exe,  Srservice Service,  SRSLabsLicenseService.exe,  Srvhandle.exe,  SrvLoad.exe,  SrvLnch.exe,  SSBkgdupdate.exe,  SSCEvtHdlr.exe,  SSCRun.exe,  SSDPSRV Service,  SSMMgr.exe,  SSPDSRV,  SSstd8.exe,  Ssttare.exe,  SSU.exe,  STacSV64.exe,  STacSV.exe,  Stagmr.exe,  Stampit.exe,  StartmyAgtTry.exe,  StartRegistryBooster.exe,  Startup.exe,  StartupCopPro.exe,  StartupMonitor.exe,  StchCtrl.exe,  STDSB.exe,  Steam.exe,  SteFanie.vbs,  Stickies.exe,  Sticky32.exe,  StikyNot.exe,  Stisvc Service,  Stllssvr.exe,  STOPzilla.exe,  Store.exe,  StorServ.exe,  STSysTra.exe,  STTray.exe,  STTTSM.EXE,  Suchost.exe,  SuiteOffices.exe,  SuiteTray.exe,  Sump.exe,  sunasDtServ.exe,  sunasServ.exe,  SunProtectionServer.exe,  SunThreatEngine.exe,  SUP_SmartRAM.exe,  SUPERAntiSpyware.exe,  SuperHybridEngine.exe,  SureType.exe,  SUService.exe,  Svc.exe,  Svcdata.exe,  Svchos.exe,  Svchosp.exe,  Svchost.exe,  Svchost.com,  Svchost.scr,  Svchosthlp.exe,  Svchosts.exe,  Svchostt.exe,  Svchsot.exe,  Svcinit.exe,  Svcmdx32.exe,  Svcntaux.exe,  Svcxnv32.exe,  Svdhost32.exe,  Svhost32.exe,  Svhst.exe,  SViewpro.exe,  Svohcst.exe,  Svshost.exe,  Svxhost.exe,  Swchost.exe,  Swdoctor.exe,  Swdsvc.exe,  Swift To-Do List.exe,  Switcher.exe,  Swriter.exe,  SWTrayV4.exe,  Swupdtmr.exe,  Sychost.exe,  Symantec32.exe,  SymAV.exe,  SymSnapServiceX64.exe,  SymSnapService.exe,  SyncServices.exe,  SynTPHelper.exe,  Sys16.exe,  Sys32.exe,  Syscon.exe,  Sysconf.exe,  Sysdoor.exe,  Sysdxvid.exe,  Sysformat.exe,  Sysinfo.exe,  Sysinit.exe,  Syslog32.exe,  Syslogin.exe,  SysMech.exe,  SysMech4.exe,  SysMech5.exe,  SysMech6.exe,  SysMech7.exe,  Sysmon.exe,  Sysmon.exe,  Sysmsvc.exe,  Syspol.exe,  Sysprep.exe,  Systacq.exe,  System.com,  System copy.exe,  System7.bat,  System.Update.exe.exe,  System32.exe,  System32.vbs,  System32Driver32.exe,  SystemBooster.exe,  SystemGuardAlerter.exe,  Systems.exe,  Systra.exe,  Sysvcs.exe,  Syswrun4x.exe,  SYSZ.exe,  SZBlkLst.exe,  Szchost.exe,  SZEventLog.exe,  SZNTSvc.exe,  SZQuarantine.exe,  SZServer.exe
 

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