"dwm.exe" Process on Windows 7

Q

What is the "dwm.exe" process on windows 7? Is the "dwm.exe" process a virus? Can I terminate the "dwm.exe" process?

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A

"dwm.exe" process represents "Desktop Window Manager" program. "dwm.exe" is responsible for the graphical effects such as live window previews and a glass-like frame around windows (Aero Glass), without draining your CPU. A DWM-capable graphics card is required to enable the 3D effects, as well as Aero Glass.

"dwm.exe" process is normally running under the parent process "svchost" as shown in the process tree below:

Boot
   wininit
      services
         svchost
            dwm

On the Processes tab of "Task Manager", "dwm.exe" process may be listed as:

Image Name                 Memory   Description
--------------------   ----------   -----------
dwm.exe                  40,748 K   Desktop Window Manager

Additional information about "dwm.exe" process:

Command line:
   "C:\windows\system32\Dwm.exe"

Programe file information:
   Name: dwm.exe
   Location: C:\windows\system32\Dwm.exe
   Description: Desktop Window Manager
   Version: 6.1.7600.16385 (win7_rtm.090713-1255)
   Size: 120320 bytes
   Last modified: 7/13/2009 9:39:08 PM
   Company Name: Microsoft Corporation
   
Some data files used:
C:\Windows\System32
C:\Windows\System32\en-US\dwm.exe.mui
C:\Windows\Fonts\StaticCache.dat
C:\Windows\System32\en-US\user32.dll.mui

Some registry keys used:
HKLM\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows NT\CurrentVersion\Image File Execution Options
HKLM\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\Nls\Sorting\Versions
HKLM\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\SESSION MANAGER
HKLM\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\Nls\Locale
HKLM\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\Nls\Locale\Alternate Sorts
HKLM\SYSTEM\ControlSet001\Control\Nls\Language Groups

Some DLL libraries used:
C:\windows\SYSTEM32\ntdll.dll
C:\windows\system32\kernel32.dll
C:\windows\system32\KERNELBASE.dll
C:\windows\system32\GDI32.dll
C:\windows\system32\USER32.dll
C:\windows\system32\LPK.dll
C:\windows\system32\USP10.dll
C:\windows\system32\msvcrt.dll
C:\windows\system32\UxTheme.dll
C:\windows\system32\IMM32.dll

"dwm.exe" process is not a virus. You should not terminate "dwm.exe" process.

 

System Service Processes on Windows 7

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