You might have noticed a process with the name ctfmon.exe when you open the task manager. Maybe you are wondering what it is doing there and if it was malicious or harmful in any way. A quick search on the web revealed that it is a Windows process for advanced text services. You furthermore may have noticed that this process activates itself again even if you use msconfig to disable it from starting with Windows.
Before I'm going to explain how to remove ctfmon.exe I'm going to explain why you should not remove it. You should not remove ctfmon.exe if you use language schemes, translations, East Asian languages, speech or text recognition and other alternative input technologies.
Most users do not need those though and you can free about 8 Megabytes of Ram if you remove the file. To do that you have two possibilities. User who do not want to change settings in the Control Panel could deactivate it by using a software called Ctfmon Remover which removes the process with the click of the mouse button.
To find out if ctfmon.exe is running on your system use Ctrl-Shift-Esc to open the Windows Task Manager. Click on the show processes from all users button if available, and browse the listing of processes to see if the process is listed here. If it is not listed, there is no need to continue reading this article unless you want to enable it again. If it is listed, continue reading the guide below.
The file ctfmon.exe is located in the system32 directory of the Windows folder. If you notice that the process is being loaded from another location, chance is that it is malicious in nature. If that is the case, download a program such as Malwarebytes Anti-Malware Free to scan your system for malicious software.
If you are one of those users who would like to know how to remove ctfmon.exe in Windows manually, you do the following.
The effect is that ctfmon.exe will not be loaded during system startup anymore. You can activate it the same way by unchecking the box which can be useful if you find out that you do need it after all.
Update: The Control Panel layout has changed in newer versions of the Windows operating system. In Windows Vista and newer, you click on Clock, Language and Region, and there on the Change keyboards or other input methods option.
Here you click on change keyboards again which opens yet another menu where you can remove any services that are installed that you may not need.
You may want to check Microsoft's extensive guide on the program which provides you with information on how to turn it off in older versions of the Windows operating system.
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Ghacks is a technology news blog that was founded in 2005 by Martin Brinkmann. It has since then become one of the most popular tech news sites on the Internet with five authors and regular contributions from freelance writers.