What is csrss.exe?

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 csrss.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.

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Csrss.exe file information

Windows Task Manager with csrss
Csrss.exe process in Windows Task Manager

The process known as Client Server Runtime Process or SFX Cabinet Self-Extractor or setup or Client-Server-Laufzeitprozess or Csrss Helper File or Proceso en tiempo de ejecución del cliente-servidor or Stub sin nod or Game-Bandit CSS (version 1.5)

belongs to software Microsoft Windows Operating System or update or SFX Cabinet Self-Extractor or Project1 or ServerApp or Csrss Helper File or Betriebssystem Microsoft Windows or Sistema operativo Microsoft Windows

by Microsoft ( or SFX Cabinet Self-Extractor or mod or Game-Bandit or KowalewskiAgamemnonStSt. Sprague Arden KyotoPackard Actaeon or It or UpdateFull or TODO: lQøST.

Description: The original csrss.exe from Microsoft is an important part of Windows, but often causes problems. Csrss.exe is located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder. Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 6,144 bytes (94% of all occurrences), 7,680 bytes and 4 more variants. 
The csrss.exe file is a Windows core system file. The program is not visible. Csrss.exe is a trustworthy file from Microsoft. Therefore the technical security rating is 4% dangerous, however you should also read the user reviews.

Recommended: Identify csrss.exe related errors

Viruses with the same file name

Is csrss.exe a virus? No, it is not. The true csrss.exe file is a safe Microsoft Windows system process, called "Client Server Runtime Process". However, writers of malware programs, such as viruses, worms, and Trojans deliberately give their processes the same file name to escape detection. Viruses with the same file name are such as Ransom:Win32/Troldesh.A (detected by Microsoft), and not-a-virus:RiskTool.Win64.BitCoinMiner.aac or not-a-virus:RiskTool.Win64.BitCoinMiner.ql (detected by Kaspersky).
To ensure that no rogue csrss.exe is running on your PC, click here to run a Free Malware Scan.

How to recognize suspicious variants?

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

Important: Some malware disguises itself as csrss.exe, particularly when not located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder. Therefore, you should check the csrss.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

please use malwarebytes to avoid those viruses on your computer
geekscare called me and tried to tell me this file is a Trojan and sell me software, naturally I declined . I did a full system scan and no problems were found using Norton 360 careful with geekscare , they will try to pressure you into buying their software
Spookey. In one explorer window it is 17kb but when i open another and want to upload it to online virus check that window repport the file csrss.exe 0kb

  pinijsteyro   (further information)
This is a safe program; just be careful on what you download from the Internet. Get a free antivirus if you haven't gotten one yet.
Guys! Theres a virus that makes a copy of the the name, normaly the process shoud not be shut down. -CS
i also have 1 on task manager
in my task manager there is a csrss.exe running but there's no description for it and when I saw NCB's message I went to c://windows/system i didn't find anything in that folder.
More comments can be found here:
    (further information)

Rating chart

Summary: Average user rating of csrss.exe: based on 506 votes with 9 reviews. 162 users think csrss.exe is essential for Windows or an installed application. 30 users think it's probably harmless. 112 users think it's neither essential nor dangerous. 79 users suspect danger. 123 users think csrss.exe is dangerous and recommend removing it. 45 users don't grade csrss.exe ("not sure about it").

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Best practices for resolving csrss issues

A clean and tidy computer is the key requirement for avoiding problems with csrss. 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 csrss.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

csrss.exe [all]