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What is mrt.exe?
MRT stands for Microsoft Removal Tool. Though Microsoft refers to it as the Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool.
According to File.net, it’s a Microsoft Windows software component. The mrt.exe file is actually a main executable employed to run the Microsoft Removal Tool.
While not a core Windows process, File.net says that you should only remove it if it’s causing problems. It was first released in 2005 for the Microsoft Windows operating system- this free tool is primarily used for infection scanning.
According to File.net, when you enable Windows Automatic Updates the Microsoft Removal Tool will be downloaded and will run on the second Tuesday of every month.
They say that it’s a supplementary anti-virus utility– it shouldn’t replace a dedicated anti-virus like Norton or AVG, but it is usually a lightweight tool that doesn’t cause users many problems.
Different Than An Anti-Virus?
The Malicious Software Removal Tool isn’t going to substitute for an antivirus software program, according to Microsoft.
It’s purely a post-infection removal tool. Consequently, Microsoft highly recommends that you install and employ an up-to-date anti-virus program like AVG or Norton. The Malicious Software Removal Tool is different from an antivirus product in three important ways:
- The tool gets rid of only specific prevalent malware. This specific malicious software is a modest subset of all the malware that exists on the internet today.
- The tool eliminates malware from a computer that’s already infected. Antivirus software stops malware from running on a personal computer. It is considerably more advantageous to stop malware from operating on a computer than to eliminate it after an infection has occurred.
- The tool concentrates on the detection and elimination of active malicious software. Active malware is malicious software that’s presently running on the PC. The Windows utility can’t eliminate malware that isn’t running. However, an anti-virus service is capable of doing this task- there are a bunch of free options on the market including Norton and AVG.
What Is MRT.Exe And Why Is It Causing High CPU Load?
The video below provides a solid explanation of the MRT.exe file and also investigates concerns around it creating a high CPU load:
The video creator says that, indeed, you can safely delete MRT.exe.
But he cautions that it will jeopardize your computer’s security- and should only be done if you’ve run into specific troubles with the program.
Is Mrt.exe a dangerous virus/malware/spyware file?
MRT.exe will be found in C:Windows\system32. If it’s not there, search your whole computer drive, making certain to check the search options to “search system folders, ” “search hidden files and folders,” as well as “search subfolders.”
If you discover MRT.exe somewhere outside of C:\Windows\system32, it likely is malware disguised as the actual Malicious Software Removal Tool, according to Microsoft support.Where ever you discover it, delete it. You can always get a hold of the up-to-date version of MRT here.
Checking Its Log
Click on Start > Select Run and then type the following string in the Run box and then click OK%systemroot%\debugA Windows Explorer dialog box will open and you ought to a file named mrt.log. You could very well see an additional file named mrt.log.old, that is last month’s log file.
Open up mrt.log with Notepad. You ought to observe something similar to the following:
Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool v3.19, May 2011
Results Summary:—————-No infection found.Microsoft Windows Malicious Software Removal Tool Finished On Wed May 11 01:57:25 2011Return code: 0 (0x0)
As we’ve seen, unless this file is located outside of your core system folders, this Windows utility is harmless.
If it’s hogging resources- watch the video above to fix it. It’s likely just a temporary surge- but if it isn’t, there are ways to disable this Windows utility.