How to Get Rid of Viruses in Memory


Many malware infections rely heavily on memory-resident viruses. Such infections prevent removal of the virus's core files, blocking removal of the virus itself. However, a simple command can be used to disable the virus's protection mechanism, leaving the virus open for removal via anti-malware and anti-virus scanners.

Things You'll Need

  • Task manager
  • Anti-virus and anti-malware program
  • Log on to your PC, if necessary.

  • Press "Win" (the key with the Windows logo) and "R" at the same time to bring up the "Run" box.

  • Type "taskkill.exe /t /f /im explorer.exe" (without quotes) in the "Run" box. Press "Enter." (This will make everything except your background disappear.)

  • Press "Ctrl," "Shift" and "Esc" at the same time to open the task manager. Click the "Applications" tab if it's not activated by default. Click on the "New Task..." button.

  • Type "explorer.exe" in the text field (without quotes) and press "Enter." This brings the taskbar and icons back up. The virus's active protections are temporarily disabled. Run a program to scan for and remove any viruses and malware before rebooting. This will remove the virus entirely.

Tips & Warnings

  • Rebooting or shutting down before scanning for and removing virus files will cause the infection to become active again. If this occurs, repeat all of the steps.

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  • Photo Credit computer virus image by Marina Bartel from
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