What is sc.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 sc.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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Sc.exe file information

Windows Task Manager with sc
Sc.exe process in Windows Task Manager

The process known as Service Control Manager Configuration Tool belongs to software Microsoft Windows Operating System or Sound Control or Betriebssystem Microsoft Windows by Microsoft ( or SAGA Software (

Description: Sc.exe is not essential for Windows and will often cause problems. The sc.exe file is located in the C:\Windows folder. Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 360,960 bytes (50% of all occurrences), 385,024 bytes or 26,624 bytes. 
There is an icon for this program on the taskbar next to the clock. There is no file information. It is not a Windows system file. The sc.exe file is located in the Windows folder, but it is not a Windows core file. Sc.exe is able to record keyboard and mouse inputs and monitor applications. Therefore the technical security rating is 48% dangerous, however you should also read the user reviews.

Recommended: Identify sc.exe related errors

External information from Paul Collins:

Important: Some malware camouflages itself as sc.exe, for example Trojan Horse (detected by Symantec), and Program:Win32/ProtectionSystem (detected by Microsoft). Therefore, you should check the sc.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

Tool zum Verwalten von Windows Diensten (*S*ervice *C*ontrol)
  Dennis R.   (further information)
sc.exe liegt in c:\%windir%\system32, ist ein Windows eigenes Tool zur Dienstesteuerung und kann Dienste erstellen, löschen,starten,stoppen und verwalten
  C.Voß   (further information)
sc.exe is Microsoft utility that helps develop services for Windows
  Mike   (further information)
Didn't get the sc.exe pop up until after my Garmin express was set up.
  Diane   (further information)
Wird ab WIN XP standardmäßig mit installiert und wird zur Dienstesteuerung verwendet.Programme, die in einer abgesicherten virtuellen Laufzeitumgebung laufen wie z.B. Sandboxie greifen darauf zurück
  Willi Graas   (further information)
sc.exe on my Windows Vista is blocked by Panda Security program. Panda also indicates that the sc.exe file is not a problem. I have a problem with Panda continuously flagging the file on my screen. Since Panda prevents sc.exe execution I assume no reason it cannot be deleted.
  John jemilet  
SC.exe is a Microsoft provided command line utility for developers. See the Microsoft TechNet article linked below. It is not required for normal operation, but is used for development activities.
  Shane Kenyon   (further information)
Agree with Shane. This is from MS. If you want to turn off some services like virus magnet "SMBv1", MS instructions designate sc.exe as means.
  DMC   (further information)

Rating chart

Summary: Average user rating of sc.exe: based on 8 votes with 8 user comments. One user thinks sc.exe is essential for Windows or an installed application. 3 users think it's probably harmless. 3 users think it's neither essential nor dangerous. One user thinks sc.exe is dangerous and recommends removing it. One user is not sure about it.

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Best practices for resolving sc issues

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

sc.exe [all]