What is Ad-Aware.exe?

The genuine Ad-Aware.exe file is a software component of Lavasoft Ad-Aware SE/Ad-Aware SE Professional by Lavasoft Sweden.
Ad-Aware manages interface features for its spyware/adware scanner. The program, developed by Lavasoft allso provides a utility to remove spyware and adware.

Ad-Aware stands for Ad-Aware SE Core application

The .exe extension on a filename indicates an executable file. Executable files may, in some cases, harm your computer. Therefore, please read below to decide for yourself whether the Ad-Aware.exe on your computer is a Trojan that you should remove, or whether it is a file belonging to the Windows operating system or to a trusted application.

Click to Run a Free Scan for Ad-Aware.exe related errors

Ad-Aware.exe file information

Windows Task Manager with Ad-Aware
Ad-Aware.exe process in Windows Task Manager

The process known as Ad-Aware SE Core application belongs to software Lavasoft Ad-Aware SE or Ad-Aware SE Professional by Lavasoft Sweden (

Description: Ad-Aware.exe is not essential for the Windows OS and causes relatively few problems. Ad-Aware.exe is located in a subfolder of "C:\Program Files". Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 1,641,224 bytes (28% of all occurrences), 865,280 bytes and 4 more variants. 
Ad-Aware.exe is not a Windows core file. Ad-Aware.exe is a Verisign signed file. The Ad-Aware.exe file is certified by a trustworthy company. Ad-Aware.exe is able to monitor applications, record keyboard and mouse inputs, manipulate other programs and connect to the Internet. Therefore the technical security rating is 11% dangerous, however you should also read the user reviews.

Uninstalling this variant: In case of problems with Ad-Aware.exe, you can uninstall the associated program (Start > Control Panel > Uninstall a Program > Ad-Aware or Ad-Aware SE Professional).

Recommended: Identify Ad-Aware.exe related errors

If Ad-Aware.exe is located in a subfolder of the user's profile folder, the security rating is 0% dangerous. The file size is 824,832 bytes. Some people think it is not dangerous. The program is not visible. The file is not a Windows core file. Ad-Aware.exe is able to connect to the Internet, record keyboard and mouse inputs, monitor applications and manipulate other programs.

External information from Paul Collins:
There are different files with the same name:

Important: Some malware camouflages itself as Ad-Aware.exe, particularly when located in the C:\Windows or C:\Windows\System32 folder. Therefore, you should check the Ad-Aware.exe process on your PC to see if it is a threat. We recommend Security Task Manager for verifying your computer's security. This was one of the Top Download Picks of The Washington Post and PC World.


User Comments

Keeps the computer Ad-clean
Adaware Spyware remover
Commercial Anti-Spyware Program.
  Ben!   (further information)
downloads ad's that CANT BE deleted.
Get's rid of spyware and Ads, does not download anything harmfull !
Great program. Found problems missed by others.
Awesome programm
Ad-Aware: an exellent antispyware program 100% clean
Ad-Aware Antivirus

Rating chart

Summary: Average user rating of Ad-Aware.exe: based on 14 votes with 9 user comments. 11 users think Ad-Aware.exe is essential for Windows or an installed application. One user thinks it's neither essential nor dangerous. 2 users think Ad-Aware.exe is dangerous and recommend removing it.

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Best practices for resolving Ad-Aware issues

A clean and tidy computer is the key requirement for avoiding problems with Ad-Aware. This means running a scan for malware, cleaning your hard drive using 1cleanmgr and 2sfc /scannow, 3uninstalling programs that you no longer need, checking for Autostart programs (using 4msconfig) and enabling Windows' 5Automatic Update. Always remember to perform periodic backups, or at least to set restore points.

Should you experience an actual problem, try to recall the last thing you did, or the last thing you installed before the problem appeared for the first time. Use the 6resmon command to identify the processes that are causing your problem. Even for serious problems, rather than reinstalling Windows, you are better off repairing of your installation or, for Windows 8 and later versions, executing the 7DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth command. This allows you to repair the operating system without losing data.

To help you analyze the Ad-Aware.exe process on your computer, the following programs have proven to be helpful: ASecurity Task Manager displays all running Windows tasks, including embedded hidden processes, such as keyboard and browser monitoring or Autostart entries. A unique security risk rating indicates the likelihood of the process being potential spyware, malware or a Trojan. BMalwarebytes Anti-Malware detects and removes sleeping spyware, adware, Trojans, keyloggers, malware and trackers from your hard drive.

Other processes

Ad-Aware.exe [all]