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rundll32.exe

Posted on 2004-04-03
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Last Modified: 2012-05-04
I had this problem with rundll32.exe, where everytime i logged off or shut down the computer, it would say that runndll32.exe wasn't resoponding and that i should end the program to shut down.  I tried many ways to correct this, including getting a new copy of the rundll32.exe from the windowsxp cd, but it still had that same problem.
I saw something on the microsoft knowlegde base, (for another problem) right here http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?id=170086, and it said that the only needed entry in the ....Run part of the registry is something w/systray.  I did not have this entry in mine, i don't know hwy, but i did  have this entry about running RUNDLL32.exe, so since that's not needed according to microsoft, i deleted it.

now rundll32.exe doesn't have the problem anymore and it doesn't run either.

so what exactly does rundll32 do and how come this solved the problem?  also, what is the systray thing that should be there that i don't have?

thanks
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Question by:djiangr
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by:guidway
ID: 10748301
here's info about it. I'm not sure why deleting it worked though. I thought windows required it to run unless it is using rundll completely now.

rundll32 - rundll32.exe - Process Information
Process File: rundll32 or rundll32.exe
Process Name: Rundll32
Description: Microsoft "Run a DLL as an App". RUNDLL32 is the Microsoft Windows program that loads DLLs into memory so that they can be used by specific programs or by Windows.
Company: Microsoft Corp.
System Process: Yes
Security Risk ( Virus/Trojan/Worm/Adware/Spyware ): No
Common Errors: N/A


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by:guidway
ID: 10748311
Here's systray:

Process File: systray or systray.exe
Process Name: System Tray Services
Description: Background application that runs the Windows system tray, which provides space to display the clock time and icons installed by other applications.
Company: Microsoft Corp.
System Process: Yes
Security Risk ( Virus/Trojan/Worm/Adware/Spyware ): No
Common Errors: N/A
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by:shahrial
ID: 10748360
rundll32.exe is a WinTasks Process Library program.

Description: Microsoft "Run a DLL as an App". RUNDLL32 is the Microsoft Windows program that loads DLLs into memory so that they can be used by specific programs or by Windows.

systray.exe is a WinTasks Process Library program.

Description: Background application that runs the Windows system tray, which provides space to display the clock time and icons installed by other applications.

Diagnosis:
rundll32 may previously load and application which had been removed...therefore what happened is that is is supposed to load something that is no longer available. So it generated an error.
Hope that explains it.

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Author Comment

by:djiangr
ID: 10748485
on my other computer, i don't have rundll32.exe in the "run" part of the Local machine" in the registry, nor do i have systray.  i thought that rundll32 is needed, so how come it's not in there.  this is strange
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by:Da-Bu
Da-Bu earned 20 total points
ID: 10748658
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by:gonzal13
ID: 10748832
I also eliminated it in msconfig and everything works fine.


Gonzal13(Joe)
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by:shahrial
shahrial earned 20 total points
ID: 10749710
rundll32.exe is not required to be loaded on startup unless there a specific program that requires it.

Run a registry cleaner software to totally remove redundant entries (left behind by applications).
Hope this explains it, further.
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by:gonzal13
ID: 10752695
Try System Mechanic. It has  30 day free trial:

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gonzal13(Joe)
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rgblois earned 60 total points
ID: 10766955
Rundll32.exe is a Windows program that is needed to load many of the Control Panel applets.  Device Manager, Network settings, display settings, etc., will not load without it.  There are also other items that use this as well, but I am not sure what they are off the top of my head.  Usually, programs are stored with the extension .exe, which indicates to Windows that it is an executable file, i.e. a program.

Some of the applets included with Windows, however, have the extension .dll, which is a Dynamic Link Library, which is usually used to hold code that can be used by many programs, instead of each program duplicating the code.  This is what rundll32.exe is used for.  It runs code in some of these .dll files, like many of those found in Control Panel.  This does not work with all .dll files.

However, this file is loaded when you attempt to load one of the applets, or other programs with the .dll extension, etc.  It does not need to be in startup for any reason.  

There are viruses that mask themselves as rundll32.exe, however.  Sircam, a relatively recent (and annoying) worm renames and moves your current rundll32.exe file, and puts in it's own infected version.  

There are other viruses and worms, as well, that deal with the rundll32.exe file.  You can find out more about them, and see if any apply to you, by going to the following web site: http://www.sarc.com, clicking on Search, and entering rundll32.exe in the search box.  Put a check in the following boxes:

Viruses, Trojan horses, Worms and Macros

and

Vulnerabilities and Exploits

The web site is the Symanted Antivirus Research Center (SARC), and will give you a lot of info on the various viruses, worms, trojans, etc, as well as detailed instructions on how to remove them, and some even include free tools that will remove them for you.

I do not know if you have a virus, but it is worth looking into.  With rundll32.exe being in startup, it is a possibility.

Please let me know if any of this helps you.

Robert
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Author Comment

by:djiangr
ID: 10787131
wow, thanks, i think it probably was a virus
i got another rundll32.exe from the windows cd and deleted the entry in the registry, as i said before
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