What Is Wininit EXE?

by Nick Davis

Microsoft Vista is the latest version of Microsoft's popular Windows Operating System. There are several "mini programs" within the Vista operating system. The "mini programs" all help the main operating system function. Without the smaller programs, Vista would not operate at all, preventing you from using your computer. Wininit EXE is one of those "mini programs" that helps Vista (and the XP operating system) start up.


Wininit EXE is a core process that is present in each Vista session. Wininit EXE's job is to start some of the main Vista background services (programs) like Service Central Manager (SCM), the Local Security Authority Subsystem (LSASS) and the Local Session Manager (LSM.EXE). Wininit EXE is a critical Windows Vista background program that should never be stopped through the Vista Task Manager system.


Wininit EXE is located within the System32 folder of the main Windows folder found on drive C\:. Wininit EXE has no visible user window, runs completely in the background of Windows and is able to log computer inputs as well as manipulate other programs.

Viruses Masking as Wininit EXE

Viruses and malware sometimes call themselves Wininit EXE and this is very dangerous. These destroying files will prevent Windows Vista from starting, and your computer will be rendered useless. Fake Wininit EXE files hide within the System32 files. There are various security and antivirus programs that can check the Wininit EXE program and destroy viruses hiding as the Windows start-up process.

Wininit EXE Error Example

"Wininit.exe Cannot Be Run from Within Windows." You will receive this message when your system is infected with a virus. Viruses Win32.Weird and Bymer are known Wininit EXE-related viruses.

The Wininit.INI File In Relation to Wininit EXE

The Wininit.ini file is the information file processed by Wininit EXE. This file contains destination paths and filenames for system .dll files and other files that control Windows Vista. If you have problems loading drivers and other Vista core processes, you may have to do a "System Restore" that will return your computer to a previous state with an older copy of Wininit.INI to be processed by Wininit EXE.

About the Author

Nick Davis is a freelance writer specializing in technical, travel and entertainment articles. He holds a bachelor's degree in journalism from the University of Memphis and an associate degree in computer information systems from the State Technical Institute at Memphis. His work has appeared in "Elite Memphis" and "The Daily Helmsman" in Memphis, Tenn. He is currently living in Albuquerque, N.M.

More Articles