Most antivirus programs identify aow.dll as malware—e.g. Avast identifies it as Win32:OnLineGames-DEV, and Kaspersky identifies it as Trojan-PSW.Win32.OnLineGames.phr.
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The process appears to belong to software AGEIA PhysX by unknown.
Description: Aow.dll is not essential for Windows and will often cause problems. Aow.dll is located in a subfolder of the user's profile folder.
Known file sizes on Windows 10/8/7/XP are 17,120 bytes (60% of all occurrences) or 16,608 bytes.
This is a special .dll file (Dynamic Link Library), which starts automatically when programs are launched. So it can monitor or manipulate all of your program starts. There is no description of the program. The program is not visible. There is no detailed description of this service. Aow.dll is not a Windows core file. It monitors program starts. aow.dll appears to be a compressed file. Therefore the technical security rating is 89% dangerous.
Recommended: Identify aow.dll related errors
Important: You should check the aow.dll 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: ASecurity Task Manager examines the active aow process on your computer and clearly tells you what it is doing. Malwarebytes' well-known Banti-malware tool tells you if the aow.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 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.