What is sihost.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 sihost.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.

Click to Run a Free Scan for sihost.exe related errors

Sihost.exe file information

The process known as Shell Infrastructure Host belongs to software Microsoft Windows Operating System or MSXML by Microsoft ( or InfoSecSolution.

Description: The original sihost.exe from Microsoft is an important part of Windows, but often causes problems. Sihost.exe is located in the C:\Windows\System32 folder. Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 66,048 bytes (53% of all occurrences), 57,856 bytes, 58,368 bytes or 43,520 bytes. 
The file is a Windows core system file. Sihost.exe is a trustworthy file from Microsoft. The program has no visible window. Therefore the technical security rating is 1% dangerous, however you should also read the user reviews.

Recommended: Identify sihost.exe related errors

Viruses with the same file name

Is sihost.exe a virus? No, it is not. The true sihost.exe file is a safe Microsoft Windows system process, called "Shell Infrastructure Host". 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 for instance Artemis!EECC9ED9F684 (detected by McAfee), and Gen:Variant.Barys.52756 (detected by BitDefender).
To ensure that no rogue sihost.exe is running on your PC, click here to run a Free Malware Scan.

How to recognize suspicious variants?

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

If you stop the process sihost.exe from running you get the error banner ((Critical Error – Start menu and Cortana aren’t working. We’ll try to fix it the next time you sign in.)) This is an error that Microsoft has no solution for yet.
If it is a critical process, why doesn't SYSTEM own it instead of the user-account?
  Anony Mous  
There may be a few errors in the description... On my Windows 10 Home 64-bit system, which I had upgraded from Windows 7, sihost.exe is located in "C:\Windows\System32" (with size 72,704 bytes). Apparently, it did not exist in Windows 7 - there's no version in the Windows.old directory. Security Task Manager rates it as harmless.
  Eugenio   (further information)
Sihost.exe damaged my Dell laptop chromosome security was on paranoid mode and detected it my screen went black nothing worked everything was frozen except my antiviral
If you kill the process "sihost.exe" on windows 10 anniversary update, the process "explorer.exe" will restart. All windows 10 apps like microsoft edge, windows store, settings,etc will glitch out close.
Peut etre responsable de la cration d'une fenetre invisible sur le bureau de windows 10 Ce qui fait que quand vous choisissez d'afficher les fenetres cote cote, il y a une fenetre invisible en plus des fentres ouvertes.

Summary: Average user rating of sihost.exe: based on 5 votes with 6 user comments. 3 users think sihost.exe is essential for Windows or an installed application. One user thinks it's neither essential nor dangerous. One user thinks sihost.exe is dangerous and recommends removing it. One user is not sure about it.

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Best practices for resolving sihost issues

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

sihost.exe [all]