Most antivirus programs identify msi.exe as malware—for instance Kaspersky identifies it as Trojan.Win32.Scar.cfo, and TrendMicro identifies it as TROJ_Generic.DIT.
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Description: Msi.exe is not essential for Windows and will often cause problems. The file msi.exe is located in a subfolder of "C:\Program Files".
The file size on Windows 10/8/7/XP is 52,736 bytes.
The file is a file with no information about its developer. The program has no visible window. The software starts upon Windows startup (see Registry key: Run, MACHINE\RunServices, MACHINE\Run). It is not a Windows core file. Therefore the technical security rating is 64% dangerous, however you should also read the user reviews.
Recommended: Identify msi.exe related errors
If msi.exe is located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder, the security rating is 100% dangerous. The file size is 230,373 bytes. There is no description of the program. The msi.exe file is located in the Windows folder, but it is not a Windows core file. The program has no visible window. The program is loaded during the Windows boot process (see Registry key: Run, MACHINE\RunServices, MACHINE\Run). The software listens for or sends data on open ports to a LAN or the Internet. The msi.exe file is not a Windows system file. Msi.exe is able to hide itself and monitor applications.
If msi.exe is located in a subfolder of the user's profile folder, the security rating is 50% dangerous. The file size is 131,072 bytes. The program is not visible. The process is loaded during the Windows boot process (see Registry key: Run, MACHINE\RunServices, MACHINE\Run). It is not a Windows system file.
Important: You should check the msi.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.
The following programs have also been shown useful for a deeper analysis: Security Task Manager examines the active msi process on your computer and clearly tells you what it is doing. Malwarebytes' well-known anti-malware tool tells you if the msi.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 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.