How to Get Rid of Viruses in Memory

By Dalton McVey

Memory-resident viruses can prevent the removal of the virus's core files.
i computer virus image by Marina Bartel from

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.

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.