What is CTFMON.exe?
When you run any Microsoft Office XP program, the file Ctfmon.exe runs in the background, even after you exit all Office programs.
Ctfmon.exe is the Microsoft process responsible for activating the Alternative User Input and the Microsoft Office Language Bar. The program also monitors active windows and provides text input support for speech recognition, handwriting recognition, keyboard, translation, and other alternative user input technologies.
Do I need to keep Ctfmon.exe in startup?
If you use any alternative input features such as speech or pens with tablets, or if you use the language bar, you need to keep it enabled. However, if you don’t use any of these features it’s safe to remove it from startup.
How do I remove Ctfmon.exe from startup?
First you will need to disable the alternative user input features in the Control Panel. If these are not disabled then Ctfmon.exe will continue to add itself to startup every time you run Office XP. Click here for more info from Microsoft on how to disable these features. (link to: http://support.microsoft.com/default.aspx?scid=kb;en-us;282599)
Once you have disabled these services you can remove Ctfmon.exe from startup using the default Windows options. The steps for removing programs vary depending on your operating system, click here for more details (link to our article on removing programs from startup)
As this is a program commonly found in Windows it also a program name that is commonly used by virus and spyware vendors to try to disguise their malware. Ways to spot malware versions of the program:
– A program with the same name but not stored in the Windows System folder. For windows XP or Vista the system folder would be: C:\Windows\System32.
– Misspelling of the program name.
More than one copy of this process running at a time