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Windows 7: malicious? "Host process for windows tasks" in notification area icons

25 Jan 2015   #1
Keyes

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 
malicious? "Host process for windows tasks" in notification area icons

When I view my notification area icons, I see an entry for "host process for windows tasks". I believe it is related to either rundll32 or task host, both of which are all in their legitimate folders.

is there any reason why this would be here? It is set to show only notifications. What notifications would taskhost make?


My System SpecsSystem Spec
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25 Jan 2015   #2
Keyes

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

http://i.stack.imgur.com/uYs6M.png

Here is an image of what im looking at.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
25 Jan 2015   #3
Ranger4

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit sp1
 
 

Read through these 2 website for information on "host process for Windows tasks". It seems that it is part of the Windows OS. Also mentioned is making sure your anti virus is up to date & running & you have checked for malware other possible infections.

What is "host process for windows tasks" and why does it show - Microsoft Community

taskhost.exe Windows process - What is it?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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26 Jan 2015   #4
Keyes

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

I understand taskhost is a legitimate file, but what causes it to appear in the notification area icons? Currently I dont see an icon, but I see it under the custmise button in the image I posted
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Jan 2015   #5
Keyes

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

So does anyone have any idea? I really need help with this.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Jan 2015   #6
Callender

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 
Reset notification area?

Quote   Quote: Originally Posted by Keyes View Post
So does anyone have any idea? I really need help with this.
It will probably disappear if you reset the notification area. It's probably an old item if you don't see the active icon in your system tray.

What I usually do is kill Explorer using task manager then File > New Task > Run

type ie4uinit.exe -ClearIconCache and press enter.

File > New Task > Run

type explorer.exe then press enter

Exit Task Manager

Right click a blank part of your Desktop and choose "Refresh"

That rebuilds the icon cache (it's the best and most reliable method for me)

Following that I proceed to run the batch file in Brink's tutorial to reset the notification area:

Notification Area Icons - Reset

Then after the reboot re-customise by right clicking Start > Properties > Taskbar > "Notification Area > Customize"

In theory you won't see "Host process for windows tasks" in the list.

Edit: Reading your post on another forum it would appear that you reset the notification area already. Are you saying that it still shows up? And if so have you plugged in any external devices?
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Jan 2015   #7
Keyes

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

Yes, I deleted two registry keys.


HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Classes\Local Settings\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\TrayNotify


Iconstream and pasticonstreams and reset explorer via task manager.


Its gone, but I want to find the origin. I did a system restore so I could get it back to investigate. Is it malicious? I dont see why host process for windows tasks would be there. I have my headphones, keyboard, mouse and installed a new gpu few weeks ago.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Jan 2015   #8
Callender

Microsoft Windows 7 Home Premium 64-bit 7601 Multiprocessor Free Service Pack 1
 
 
taskhost.exe

Well this is a tough one. Apparently it can relate to plugging external drives into USB 3 ports - at least according to a little research but yes it can also be malware related. The best information that I can find suggests searching your windows partition for "taskhost.exe"

It should show up in "C:\Windows\System32\taskhost.exe" - that's normal.

If it shows up in:

%Windir% - copy and paste into explorer address bar. If it shows up here then it's suspect.

As for tracking down possible malware I'm pretty confident with my own machine but not so confident providing advice to others. Personally I'd keep an eye on connections and look for anything dodgy.

This utility does that:

CrowdInspect

If you choose "Run as Admin" when running the executable then toggle "Show full path" and "Live/ History" and see if anything suspicious shows up. If it does - ask about it in the System Security section.
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Alternatively you can leave this running overnight:

ThreatCheck

There's more info on both utilities here and they can both pick up suspicious activity that your AV might miss. Note: suspicious does not always mean malicious.

ThreatCheck released

Note: If using ThreatCheck - use a disposable email address if you wish to avoid marketing emails from the company. They don't flood you with emails but you can expect one or two!

If anything suspicious shows up - again the advice is to post it in the System Security section.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
26 Jan 2015   #9
Keyes

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

Well actually I have been connecting and reconnecting various devices into my usb 3.0 ports lately, and only used began to use them in the last week. I keep my system secure, infact I rarely use an internet browser other than youtube, and when it comes to downloading, I usually just get sysinternal tools, like autoruns and tcpvew. I don't see anything lately that I have done that would cause a malicious action, but it seems odd.


I can give a go at messing around with usb 3.0 ports and see if it makes the icon active. Also, a full mbam scan is clean.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
27 Jan 2015   #10
Keyes

Windows 7 Home Premium 64 bit
 
 

I have 4 taskhost.exe files.

1 in system32, and 3 in winsxs, which I believe are all legit. As I said, mbam detects no bad network activity and the scans are clean.
My System SpecsSystem Spec
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