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Removing  wowexec.exe

Posted on 2005-04-25
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Last Modified: 2010-05-19
I have a Windows 2000 SP4 PC that has a process running called _wowexec.exe. There is a space in front of the "w" and I'm not sure if this is a valid process or not?I have seen this process before associated with 16 bit programs, but never with the preceding space.  If this is not a valid process I would like to know how to get rid of it? I have run the folowing programs: Spy Sweper, SAV 9.0.1.1000, spybot , and adaware.
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Question by:Notageek69
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by:mikeleebrla
ID: 13861612
is there a space in front of wowexec.exe or is there and underscore. you say space, but then you displayed an underscore???

If you have the underscore (which i think you do) then it is indeed spyware. did you run updated versions spybot and adaware? they should have picked it up.  Hijackthis should pick it up.

http://www.techzonez.com/forums/showthread.php?t=14910
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Expert Comment

by:mikeleebrla
ID: 13861637
if you dont know where/how do run hijackthis, here it is:

Download HijackThis from here, run it and Save the LOG file:
http://tools.radiosplace.com/HijackThis.exe

Then Post that log at this site >> http://www.hijackthis.de/index.php?langselect=english
and it will automatically analyze it for u,,, Fix the entries which it labels as Nasty :)
To Fix, check the lines and click on Fix Checked !!
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by:ajsaasta
ID: 13862187
hmmm....

check this link: http://www.liutilities.com/products/wintaskspro/processlibrary/wowexec/

"wowexec.exe is a part the operating system, and supports the use of 16-bit procseses.This program is important for the stable and secure running of your computer and should not be terminated."

I've seen (if I remeber right) the same process run on my PC, with name " wowexec.exe" (notice the space) and if i remeber right, the process is just under "NTVDM.exe" on Task Manager's Process List like:

...
NTVDM.exe
 wowexec.exe
...

Which means just that your PC is running some 16bit applications (with wowexec.exe) that run _inside_ NT's 16bit Virtual Machine (NTVDM.exe).
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by:r-k
ID: 13862214
Yes, a space in front of wowexec.exe is quite normal. Normally you'd see something like this:

:
ntvdm.exe
 wowexec.exe
 app16bit.exe
:

where app16bit.exe is the 16-bit app that needs wowexec.exe
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Accepted Solution

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mikeleebrla earned 2000 total points
ID: 13866402
wowexec.exe is part of the OS, _wowexec.exe however is malicious spyware.  Come on guys, that is the oldest trick in the book. (making a malicious filename similar the a valid filename so you won't think it's malicious.  Since he put _wowexec.exe in the question we will have to assume that the file name does in fact have an underscore infront of it, which means it is malicious.
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Author Comment

by:Notageek69
ID: 13866711
After further investigation there were actually two processes running. There was a wowexec.exe with a preceding space that seemed to be valid, and an _wowexec.exe that was also running. I ran avast as was suggested. It did not pick this up, but picked up a couple of other things that it removed. So, I went into the registry did a search and deleted all values containing the _wowexec.exe and also did the same thing on the hard drive. It's gone. Thanks for all of your help. I apologize for not doing my homework on wowexec. I am familiar with liiutilities and should have looked there first.  
Thanks Again!
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by:Wayne Barron
ID: 15722995
No comment has been added to this question in more than 21 days, so it is now classified as abandoned..
I will leave the following recommendation for this question in the Cleanup topic area:
[Accept: mikeleebrla]

Any objections should be posted here in the next 4 days. After that time, the question will be closed.

Carrzkiss
EE Cleanup Volunteer
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