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What’s powershell.exe (Windows PowerShell)? Is it safe or a virus?

PowerShell.exe is a command-line shell and scripting language developed by Microsoft for the Windows OS.

It allows users to automate repetitive tasks, manage system configurations, and access data from different sources using a powerful scripting language. PowerShell.exe can also be used for system administration, as it provides access to system management tools and can be used to manage and automate various aspects of Windows.

(Researched by Carl @ SpyShelter Labs)

Executable Processes List

More about powershell.exe on WINDOWS

Who makes powershell.exe (Windows PowerShell)?

We’ve found Microsoft Windows should be the publisher of powershell.exe.

How do we know? Our SpyShelter cybersecurity labs focuses on monitoring different types of Windows PC executables and their behaviors for our popular SpyShelter Antispyware software. Learn more about us, and how our cybersecurity team studies Windows PC executables/processes.

What does it mean if someone is the publisher of a PC .exe (executable or process)?

The publisher of an executable is the entity responsible for its distribution and authenticity. Most processes/executables on your PC should be signed. The signature on the executable should have been verified through a third party whose job it is to make sure the entity is who it says it is. Find an unsigned executable? You should consider scanning any completely unsigned .exe on your PC.

Is powershell.exe safe or a virus?

Below are 4 simple steps you can take to see if the powershell.exe process is safe or malware.

  1. Scan the executable with Microsoft's built-in tech
  2. Find powershell.exe's publisher
  3. Search the executable's hash with VirusTotal
  4. Monitor the executable's behavior
Last updated: February 9, 2024

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Why should you trust us?

Our team at SpyShelter has been studying Windows PC executables for over 15 years, to help fight against spyware, malware, and other threats. SpyShelter has been featured in publications like The Register, PC Magazine, and many others. Now we’re working to share free, actionable, and easy to understand information about Windows executables (processes) with the world, to help as many people as possible keep their devices safe. Learn more about us on our "About SpyShelter” page.

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