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What Is WmiPrvSE.exe?
The name stands for Windows Management Instrumentation (WMI).
Howtogeek reports that WmiPrvSE.exe is a normal system process, a part of Microsoft Windows.
It provides the functionality of allowing other apps on your computer to make a query about system information and shouldn’t be removed.
In some cases, however, it may give you all sorts of trouble, crashing your computer if it’s removed, or shooting your CPU usage to the moon if another process in your system is not behaving correctly.
According to Groovypost, it runs on the following operating systems:
– Windows XP
– Windows Vista
– Windows 7
– Windows 8
– Windows 10
It’s also a child of the svchost.exe process.
It could also be hijacked by some form of malware, which is most likely to be the case if your CPU usage is abnormally high (otherwise, it’s a legitimate system file that’s best left alone). Therefore, you should only attempt to remove it if you can determine it’s malware.
Is It Malicious?
When determining whether the file is malicious, Neuber is a great resource.
Here’s what they’re saying about it:
– If you discover that the name of the process is wmiprvsw.exe instead of wmiprvse.exe (note the “w” at the end), you’re dealing with the Sasser worm, so beware!
– A user commented that the process appeared right after installing the SMS 2003 client. Another user added it also appears after installing any of the 3dmark programs. A third user added that it disappears after closing a 3dmark program you’re running.
– Supposedly, a variant of it causes win2k3 services fail to run.
– Sometimes, it comes up with sharing violations.
– Some antivirus programs can detect malware that’s masquerading as it, marking it as W32/Sonebot-B. It places itself in the System32 folder using the name WMIPRVSE.EXE. Allegedly, some antivirus programs also recognize it as Trojan.Gletta.A.
– In case you find more than one of these processes running on your computer, the one with the capital letters is the likely culprit, so you should get rid of it.
4 Fixes For WmiPrvSE.exe CPU Issues
Quick Video Fix
Solution 1: Event Viewer Fix
According to HowToGeek, you’re seeing high CPU usage from this process, it’s probable that another process on your computer is causing it.
If a process is regularly demanding a ton of amount of information from WMI providers, this will cause the WMI Provider Host process to begin using use a great deal of CPU. They say that that other process is actually the problem.
They recommend identifying the specific process by using your computer’s Event Viewer- they have step by step instructions on their page. Check that out first and follow their recommended process for resolving the CPU usage issue.
Solution 2: Stopping WmiPrvSE.exe
- Open up your task manager. This can either be done by pressing the well-known CTRL-ALT-DEL combo (or manually, by right-clicking the taskbar and manually selecting the “Start task manager” option).
- After the Windows Task Manager window appears on the screen, switch to the “Processes” tab.
- Locate the “Wmiprvse.exe” process, right click on it, and select the corresponding option that ends it.
- In case you’re asked to confirm your decision, do so by clicking the OK button.
Solution 3: Halting The Service
- Navigate to the bottom-left corner of the screen and open the START menu.
- In the search bar, type “services.msc” and press ENTER.
- Wait for the Services window to appear.
- Do you see the “Windows Management Instrumentation” service? Double click on it.
- In the properties window, click “Stop”. Click OK as many times as needed to confirm.
If for whatever reasons you weren’t able to resolve the problem this way, move to the next step.
Solution 4: Running an Antivirus Scan
This step is especially beneficial if you’d like to err on the side of caution and ensure that you’re not dealing with a virus.
Of course, this step is completely different for every single antivirus software, so we can’t really write a step by step guide. Your best bet is to go to Youtube and search for something along the lines of “How to scan my pc with [name of your antivirus]” or “[Name of your antivirus] scan guide”, etc.
But generally speaking, here’s the general plan to keep in mind:
- (Optional) Get an antivirus program if you don’t have one already. There are plenty of free options available, most of which can do the job just fine. With regards to the best ones, we can’t really give you a recommendation, since this sort of changes all the time. It’s best to just Google it to get the latest information.
- Update your antivirus software. Most modern variants feature some sort of auto-updating mechanism, so you can skip this step if need be.
- Scan your computer. Here, they usually give you a choice between a quick and a full scan. Select the appropriate one based on how much time you have to spare.
We took a look at a bunch of different forums discussing this file process and the predominant themes involved it crashing, it taking up a lot of CPU resources on Windows 7 and Windows 10 computers.
File.net, a definitive authority in the examination of these file processes, says that it is a software component of Microsoft Windows Management Instrumentation by Microsoft Corporation. It generally sits in the “WBEM” subdirectory of “C:\Windows\System32”.
They also say that you shouldn’t be alarmed if you witness multiple instances of it running simultaneously- If that is occurring, they say that it is a post that is implementing a WMI “provider” routine.
HowToGeek provides a helpful screenshot- the utility’s own Description says that if this “service is stopped, most Windows-based software will not function properly”
Norton & McAfee Issues
Over at File.Net, one user said that it is an integral component of the Windows operating system employed or application installation and management.
He also says that the Norton Antivirus, as well as the McAfee Antivirus utilities, frequently detect it as a malicious virus, commonly compromising the operating system by blocking it.
Another user had a similar problem with his Kaspersky Internet Security utility – after an update in the summer of 2015, and began blocking it. This often seems to occur when his computer was running software that was automatically backing up files to an external USB drive.
Reddit Tech Support
Over on Reddit, one user said that the .exe process was clogging up the broad majority of his CPU.
He was looking for a solution to stop it from doing so. He clarified that he was using a Lenovo laptop running a Windows 7 operating system with two CPU cores. After Googling a bunch of potential fixes, nothing has worked and he decided to turn to the tech support community on Reddit for a viable answer.
He does also add that his friend gave him some software called ComboFix that eliminated the process, decreasing the CPU usage, but every time he restarted his computer the program returned. One of the recommendations came for my user who said that WmiPrvSE.exe “is a host process being called by something else”.
He recommended trying to figure out what is behind it – perhaps also attempting to clear the Prefetch cache. Another user suggested navigating to msconfig, disabling services one by one, rebooting after each, And then spot checking CPU usage.
When you notice that the CPU usage as normalized after having eliminated one of the services, you probably spotted the perpetrator.
Assassin’s Creed CPU Spikes
Another Reddit user posted in the Assassin’s Creed subreddit Saying that he’s having a problem with this .exe spiking is CPU usage 15 to 20% while playing the game.
One person said that the best thing to do would be to run Malwarebytes iPhone he claims to have seen a lot of individuals recording malware it’s used in conjunction with WmiPrvSE.exe.
Ryan is a computer enthusiast who has a knack for fixing difficult and technical software problems. Whether you’re having issues with Windows, Safari, Chrome or even an HP printer, Ryan helps out by figuring out easy solutions to common error codes.