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What’s ShellExperienceHost.exe (Windows Shell Experience Host)? Is it safe or a virus?

Do you enjoy collecting sea shells on the sea shore? How is your shell experience going today? OK, so I work at SpyShelter's cybersecurity lab and I should be much more serious about this... because finding a random and strangely named process on your Windows PC is no joke!

Fortunately, Windows Shell Experience Host (ShellExperienceHost.exe) is a completely safe process that I've found running on all the PCs at our cybersecurity lab here in Austin, Texas. As long as this process is signed by Microsoft you should be good to go!

The ShellExperienceHost.exe is a core process of the Windows Shell Experience Host, which is responsible for managing the graphical user interface elements such as the Start menu, taskbar, and action center in Windows 10. This process helps to provide a seamless and responsive user interface experience by handling tasks such as rendering live tiles, managing notifications, and implementing visual effects.

It also plays a crucial role in supporting the Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps and providing a modern and consistent user interface across different devices.

We at SpyShelter hope you have a really great "Shell Experience" today, and we're not talking about sea shells. Just make sure this popular .exe is signed, which can be done from the Windows Task Manager or our free SpyShelter Antispyware app.

(Researched by Jon @ SpyShelter Labs)

Executable Processes List

More about ShellExperienceHost.exe on WINDOWS

Who makes ShellExperienceHost.exe (Windows Shell Experience Host)?

We’ve found Microsoft Windows should be the publisher of ShellExperienceHost.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 ShellExperienceHost.exe safe or a virus?

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

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