Most antivirus programs identify explorer.dll as malware—for instance F-Secure identifies it as Trojan.Generic.9432742, and Microsoft identifies it as Adware:Win32/Clickspring.C or Trojan:Win32/Vundo.
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Description: Explorer.dll is not essential for Windows and will often cause problems. Explorer.dll is located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder.
Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 81,920 bytes (33% of all occurrences), 15,360 bytes and 4 more variants.
A .dll file (Dynamic Link Library) is a special type of Windows program containing functions that other programs can call. This .dll file can be injected to all running processes and can change or manipulate their behavior. The file is a file with no information about its developer. The program is not visible. The service has no detailed description. The file is not a Windows core file. Explorer.dll is able to record keyboard and mouse inputs. Therefore the technical security rating is 96% dangerous, however you should also read the user reviews.
Recommended: Identify explorer.dll related errors
If explorer.dll is located in the C:\Windows folder, the security rating is 64% dangerous. The file size is 13,312 bytes (66% of all occurrences) or 13,824 bytes. There is no file information. The program has no visible window. The file is located in the Windows folder, but it is not a Windows core file. It is able to monitor web browsers. The file is not a Windows core file. explorer.dll appears to be a compressed file.
If explorer.dll is located in the user's "Documents" folder, the security rating is 94% dangerous. The file size is 69,632 bytes. There is no file information. It can change the behavior of other programs or manipulate other programs. The program has no visible window. The service has no detailed description. The application starts when Windows starts (see Registry key: AppInit_DLLs). The file is not a Windows core file.
Important: You should check the explorer.dll process on your PC to see if it is a threat. If Explorer Module 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 ▾
The following programs have also been shown useful for a deeper analysis: Security Task Manager examines the active explorer process on your computer and clearly tells you what it is doing. Malwarebytes' well-known anti-malware tool tells you if the explorer.dll 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 cleanmgr and sfc /scannow, uninstalling programs that you no longer need, checking for Autostart programs (using msconfig) and enabling Windows' Automatic 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 resmon 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 DISM.exe /Online /Cleanup-image /Restorehealth command. This allows you to repair the operating system without losing data.