|WinPatrol: Active Tasks
The Active Tasks list will display all the programs that are currently running on your computer system. This list allows you to check if any programs you might not be aware of are currently running without your permission.
Keep in mind that the first time you view the list of Active Tasks you may encounter programs that are completely legitimate but are not normally visible to you the user.
Managing Active Tasks
WinPatrol provides additional information on Active Tasks, including the company that created the program as well as the program version. Most legitimate program files will usually include copyright and company information that can be displayed by WinPatrol, but not always. When it does exist, this information will help you decide if the program is a valid program or not and whether you want to Remove or Disable it (see below).
As it is often difficult to tell just from a file name or company name whether a program is legitimate, you can click the Free Info... button to review a list of common, well-known malicious programs on the WinPatrol web site. PLUS members can click the PLUS Info... button to search the online WinPatrol database for more information on the specific program itself.
Programs may start or stop after WinPatrol displays the list of Active Tasks. In case the list of active programs changes while you're reviewing the list, use the Refresh button to replenish
the list with what is known to be currently active.
If you see a suspicious program use this button to stop this program and remove it from memory. Note that the Kill Task function does not delete the program file from your hard drive; it merely halts the program in memory.
This button will create a
complete report of the current Active Tasks list and all the information
available on each task. This report can be useful for future reference and
for spotting changes over a period of time in the programs that normally
run on your PC.
Dealing with Stubborn Tasks
Sometimes malicious programs come in pairs or groups that protect each other to prevent you from removing them. In such cases, you will want to find all the suspicious tasks on the Active Tasks list and use the Kill Task feature to shut down each one before removing the suspicious entry from the Startup Programs list.
- First, close down all the applications that you
- Click the Active Tasks tab to check what
programs are still listed.
- You may see multiple suspicious programs. Some
may have what look to be randomly created filenames.
- Hold down the CTRL key to select several tasks at once
and click on each suspicious task.
- Click on the Kill Task button.
Once the programs are no longer active you should be able to remove them from the Startup Programs list to prevent them from re-starting later.
"Delete File on Reboot"
If after trying to remove a suspicious or dangerous program you find it still will not go away, right-click on the name of the program Module and select "Delete File on Reboot." This action will not take place until the next time you boot, but the file will be deleted before Windows starts and any other programs that may attempt to prevent its deletion.
There is no way to recover the file
once it is deleted, so use this feature only when you are absolutely sure
you want to remove the file.
More WinPatrol Features