How to remove the AdVantage virus

Most antivirus programs identify AdVantage.exe as malware—for instance TrendMicro identifies it as ADW_ADVANTAGE or TROJ_GEN.R21C8D2, and Kaspersky identifies it as not-a-virus:WebToolbar.Win32.WhenU.t or HEUR:Trojan.Win32.Generic.

The free file information forum can help you find out how to remove it. If you have additional information about this file, please leave a comment or a suggestion for other users.

Click to Run a Free Virus Scan for the AdVantage.exe malware

AdVantage.exe file information

Windows Task Manager with AdVantage
AdVantage.exe process in Windows Task Manager

The process known as AdVantage belongs to software AdVantage or Network Security Services by AdVantage ( or Mozilla Foundation (

Description: AdVantage.exe is not essential for Windows and will often cause problems. AdVantage.exe is located in a subfolder of "C:\Program Files". Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 884,176 bytes (87% of all occurrences) or 134,656 bytes. 
There is an icon for this program on the taskbar next to the clock. The program has a visible window. The file has a digital signature. AdVantage.exe is not a Windows core file. The application uses ports to connect to or from a LAN or the Internet. AdVantage.exe is able to monitor applications. Therefore the technical security rating is 18% dangerous.

Uninstalling this variant: If you want to remove the program completely, go to Control Panel ⇒ Software ⇒ AdVantage.

Recommended: Identify AdVantage.exe related errors

If AdVantage.exe is located in a subfolder of the user's profile folder, the security rating is 35% dangerous. The file size is 131,072 bytes (14% of all occurrences), 127,488 bytes and 5 more variants. The program has a visible window. The process starts upon Windows startup (see Registry key: Run, RunOnce). The AdVantage.exe file is not a Windows core file. There is no description of the program.

Important: You should check the AdVantage.exe process on your PC to see if it is a threat. If AdVantage has changed your browser's search engine and start page, you can recover your browser's default settings as follows:

Reset default browser settings for Internet-Explorer ▾
  1. In Internet Explorer, press the key combination Alt + X to open the Tools menu.
  2. Click Internet options.
  3. Click the Advanced tab.
  4. Click the Reset... button.
  5. Enable the Delete personal settings option.
This will reset your Internet Explorer to its default settings. Your browser will start with the familiar start page and search engine—without popups, ads, cookies, but all browser add-ons are deleted too [1]. Make cleaning up your browser and your computer simpler and safer with Security Task Manager.


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Best practices for resolving AdVantage issues

The following programs have also been shown useful for a deeper analysis: ASecurity Task Manager examines the active AdVantage process on your computer and clearly tells you what it is doing. Malwarebytes' well-known Banti-malware tool tells you if the AdVantage.exe on your computer displays annoying ads, slowing it down. This type of unwanted adware program is not considered by some antivirus software to be a virus and is therefore not marked for cleanup.

A clean and tidy computer is the key requirement for avoiding PC trouble. 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.

Other processes

AdVantage.exe [all]