Windows Win16 Application Launcher

wowexec.exe. What is it?

Wowexec.exe is Windows Win16 Application Launcher.

This file is part of Microsoft® Windows(TM) Operating System. Wowexec.exe is developed by Microsoft Corporation. It’s a system and hidden file. Wowexec.exe is usually located in the %SYSTEM% sub-folder and its usual size is 10,368 bytes.

Wowexec.exe is used to launch 16-bit applications on Windows NT and newer versions of Windows. Wowexec.exe is launched by the ntvdm.exe process (Windows NT Virtual DOS Machine) to run 16-bit DOS applications on 32-bit operating systems (Windows 2000, NT, XP and onwards). The wowexec.exe process executes as soon as a 16-bit application is run. When the application is closed, wowexec.exe continues to run in the background, which can give an impression of an infection.

Important: viruses and malware often mask themselves as wowexec.exe. Scan your computer with Auslogics Antivirus to make sure it's not infected.


The wowexec.exe process is safe and disabling it can be dangerous because programs on your computer need it to work correctly.


Author: Microsoft CorporationPart Of: Microsoft® Windows(TM) Operating SystemCommon path(s): subfolder %SYSTEM%
subfolder %WINDOWS%
subfolder %SYSTEM%


Malware risk: Scan your PC for viruses and Trojans
Some viruses infect computers while disguised in the form of legitimate files, like wowexec.exe. Run an antivirus scan to ensure your PC is clean and safe.
Registry Errors: Free scan (run Registry Cleaner)Uninstallation: N/A Uninstall (run Unistall Manager)Disk & Memory Usage: N/A Free scan (run Task Manager)

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