What Is InstallShield in Windows and Do You Need It in Startup?

By Nick Davis

InstallShield is a free program that speeds up software updates and downloads.
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InstallShield is a utility that automatically searches for software updates and performs the updates without any user interaction. The utility eliminates the hassle of manually updating your computer's programs. InstallShield works as a background process on your computer and launches automatically at startup. The utility is optional and you can disable it from starting automatically if desired.


InstallShield is not a virus or malware. The utility is a valid program that works in the Windows environment including Windows 8 and other versions of the Windows operating system. InstallShield doesn't require the installation of any additional plug-ins or add-ons. Your computer's virus scanner won't flag or quarantine InstallShield nor will it prevent the utility from working properly.


InstallShield's filename is Isuspm.exe and resides in the following directory path: C:\Program Files\Common Files\InstallShield\UpdateService. When listed within Task Manager, the utility is listed as "ISUSPM Startup." Like other Task Manager processes, you can stop InstallShield from running by right-clicking on the taskbar and clicking "Task Manager," and then clicking on the "ISUSPM Startup" entry. Click the "End Task" button to stop InstallShield from running.

Disabling at Startup

To disable InstallShield at Windows startup, launch Task Manager and click the "Startup" tab. Scroll down the list of startup programs and click on "InstallShield." Click the "Disable" button to prevent the utility from launching again the next time you restart or power on your computer. Disabling InstallShield speeds up your computer's startup process and overall speed. If you ever want to enable InstallShield again, repeat the steps but click the "Enable" button.

Manually Updating

Once you disable InstallShield, you must manually open each program on your computer and click "Help," "About" or a similar-worded button on the program's toolbar, and then click "Update" to manually update the program's files and features. Some programs don't contain an update feature though. Consult the programs' documentation on searching for, downloading and installing updates for programs that don't contain update features.