What is powershell.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 powershell.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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Powershell.exe file information

The process known as Windows PowerShell belongs to software Microsoft Windows Operating System by Microsoft (

Description: The original powershell.exe is an important part of Windows and rarely causes problems. Powershell.exe is located in a subfolder of C:\Windows\System32. Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 452,608 bytes (50% of all occurrences), 431,616 bytes, 330,240 bytes, 461,312 bytes or 448,000 bytes. 
It is a Microsoft signed file. The program is not visible. Therefore the technical security rating is 6% dangerous.

Recommended: Identify powershell.exe related errors

If powershell.exe is located in a subfolder of C:\Windows, the security rating is 1% dangerous. The file size is 452,608 bytes (50% of all occurrences), 431,616 bytes or 451,072 bytes. Powershell.exe is a Windows core system file. The powershell.exe file is a Microsoft signed file. The program has no visible window.

Important: Some malware camouflages itself as powershell.exe, particularly when located in the C:\Windows or C:\Windows\System32 folder. Therefore, you should check the powershell.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.


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Best practices for resolving powershell issues

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

powershell.exe [all]