What does the ctfmon.exe file do?
The ctfmon.exe process is also known as CTF Loader or, as the case may be, Dummy to replace the annoying CTFMON.EXE and is a part of Microsoft Windows Operating System or, as the case may be, Microsoft Office Professional Edition (Version 2003). This software is produced by Microsoft (www.microsoft.com) or, as the case may be, Shareaza Development Team (www.shareaza.com). An obsolete or defective version of ctfmon.exe can cause problems for your computer that can range from slowness to error messages such as these:
- CTF Loader has stopped working. Windows is checking for a solution to the problem... (Windows 10, 8, 7)
- CTF Loader has stopped working. A problem caused the program to stop working correctly. Windows will close the program and notify you if a solution is available. (Windows 10, 8, 7)
- ctfmon.exe has encountered a problem and needs to close. (Windows XP)
- Access violation at address FFFFFFFF in module ctfmon.exe. Read of address 00000000.
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What you should know about ctfmon.exe CTF Loader
ctfmon.exe is a Windows system file. The file ctfmon.exe is found in the C:\Windows\System32 directory.
Frequently occurring are file sizes such as 15,360 bytes (92% of all these files), 40,448 bytes as well as 31 other variants.
This ctfmon program does not have a visible window, and does not appear on the taskbar. This ctfmon program is initiated as part of Windows start-up (Registry: Run, DEFAULT\Run, MACHINE\Run, User Shell Folders, Userinit, RunOnce). This file has been digitally signed by Microsoft itself to guarantee its authenticity. For this reason, 23% of all experts consider this file to be a possible threat. The probability that it can cause harm is high.
ctfmon.exe is a system file used by Microsoft Windows, and appears in Windows Task Manager as a process named "CTF Loader." However, some viruses or Trojans use the same file name in order to remain undetected (such as Keylogger (PUA) (recognized by Sophos), as well as Artemis!5BCA6FAC194C (recognized by McAfee)).
To be really safe, you should scan your computer with two different anti-virus engines. You can use a free Anti-Malware scanner for this purpose.
Objectionable files with the same file name have the following characteristics:
- A ctfmon.exe file has a 3% certainty of being dangerous if it is found in a subdirectory of C:\Windows. In this case, the file size is usually 8,704 bytes (63% of all these files), 9,728 bytes, 15,360 bytes, 10,752 bytes or, as the case may be, 10,240 bytes. The Windows operating system requires this file. This process does not have a visible window, and does not appear on the taskbar. The file contains Microsoft's digital signature. This confirms its authenticity.
- A ctfmon.exe file has a 72% certainty of being dangerous if it is found in the C:\Windows directory. In this case, the file size is usually 20,062 bytes (22% of all these files), 279,040 bytes as well as 6 other variants. The file does not come from Microsoft and is not part of the operating system. The file can be found in the Windows folder; however, it is not a Windows system file. The application does not appear as a visible window, but only in Task Manager. There is no embedded description in this file. These days, this is rather unusual Ctfmon.exe is capable of hide itself from other programs as well as interpret keystrokes.
- A ctfmon.exe file has a 83% certainty of being dangerous if it is found in a subdirectory of C:\Windows\System32. In this case, the file size is usually 291,908 bytes (50% of all these files), 69,120 bytes or, as the case may be, 15,360 bytes.
- A ctfmon.exe file has a 54% certainty of being dangerous if it is found in a subdirectory of "C:\Program Files". In this case, the file size is usually 53,248 bytes (33% of all these files), 20,480 bytes or, as the case may be, 5,798,912 bytes.
- A ctfmon.exe file has a 100% certainty of being dangerous if it is found in the C:\Windows\System32\drivers directory. In this case, the file size is usually 49,762 bytes (66% of all these files) or, as the case may be, 39,273 bytes.
- A ctfmon.exe file has a 48% certainty of being dangerous if it is found in a subdirectory of "C:\Users\USERNAME". In this case, the file size is usually 20,480 bytes.
- A ctfmon.exe file has a 51% certainty of being dangerous if it is found in in a subdirectory of the "My Documents" folder. In this case, the file size is usually 7,680 bytes (50% of all these files) or, as the case may be, 45,056 bytes.
- A ctfmon.exe file has a 56% certainty of being dangerous if it is found in a subdirectory of "C:\Program Files\Public Documents". In this case, the file size is usually 368,640 bytes.
If you see this file on your hard drive or in Windows Task Manager, please make sure that it is not a malicious variant. It's a fact that many trojans try to cloak their true identity by calling themselves ctfmon.exe. With the above information or by using tools like Security Task Manager you can determine if, in your case, the file is an undesirable variant.
What do other computer users say about ctfmon?
|Ctfmon.exe activates the Microsoft Office Language Bar and the Alternative User Input Text Input Processor. |
|it was a virus on my machine. I found it outside the windows/system32 folder |
|Unless you use the language bar, get rid of it. Even when located in the proper folder, it causes internet connectivity problems. The Microsoft site details their preferred "blanking" procedure. However, I removed it outright and experienced NO instability (unless the absence of the language bar can be considered instability). This immediately cleared up numerous connectivity problems. Microsoft's attitude is wholly unacceptable: having garbageware running all the time just "because" is piss-poor practice, as well as being highly suspicious. Somebody should have a look under the hood to see what this piece of crap is really doing. Since it runs even when nothing related to the language bar is concerned, it has more than one purpose, and one that Microsoft doesn't want to give up - or reveal to the public. (further information...) |
Summary: 167 users judge ctfmon.exe to be an essential file that should not be touched. 22 users consider it harmless. However, 73 users consider this to be a suspicious process and would like to get rid of it. For this reason, 94 users have already deleted ctfmon.exe. source: file.net
How to uninstall the program or Microsoft Office Professional Edition
To remove CTF Loader from your computer, please follow the manual instructions below or use an automatic uninstaller product.
- Click the Windows Start Button. In Windows 8, look for Control Panel.
- Click Control Panel.
- Click Uninstall a program.
- Look for the program or Microsoft Office Professional Edition in the list of available programs.
- Click Uninstall.
How to tell if ctfmon.exe (CTF Loader) was uninstalled cleanly
After uninstalling, restart your computer. Then start Windows Explorer and see if there is still a folder with the name of the software under C:\Program Files. Be sure to check the Registry as well for remnants of CTF Loader. To do this, start "Regedit", then look under "HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE" > "Software" for CTF Loader or the name of the producer. Always keep in mind that only a computer professional should ever directly delete entries in the Windows Registry.
What to do if a program does not uninstall
The easiest way to remove any kind of software cleanly and accurately is to use an uninstaller tool. Because the uninstaller automatically creates a backup, there is no risk of anything going wrong.
Last but not least
If Windows not working quite right for you, or if startup is taking a long time, or ctfmon.exe is causing problems for you, a good Windows diagnostic tool may very well help. This is especially effective when it comes to older computers that have accumulated vast quantities of "garbage data" as the result of many software installs and uninstalls.