What is the Taskeng.exe popup, is it Virus?

Behind the name, Taskeng.exe hides a system file fully known as Task Scheduler Engine. It can be found in all versions of Windows starting from Windows 7. If you have found it in your System32 folder, then there is no need to worry – it is not a virus. The system needs this file to track tasks that the user pre-scheduled to run at a certain time. Many cybercriminals often try to use its file or misuse its name to attack your computer. Should you find this file in any other folder except System32 on your computer, the chances are it is malware. Scan it immediately with any antimalware tool just to be sure. If the Taskeng.exe keep popping up on your screen periodically with no apparent reason, here are out tips that should help you to deal with the annoying problem.

Before we proceed to the solution, we think it would be wise to explain more specific details about this file:

  • If you get the Taskeng.exe pop-up with a black window, it is almost 100% guaranteed to be infected.
  • When you get a standard Windows error message with the name of this file, saying that the operating system fails to find the file, be sure to check you wrote its name without typos. Then let Windows scan for the file again. If it ends the same, then your system is probably hacked by malware.
  • If the operating system reports about the error with this file from the folder C:\Windows\System32, then it could be a minor malfunction with the legit file. This guide will help you to fix the problem.

Taskeng.exe popping up all the time

Here are our recommendations for all Windows users getting this issue:

  1. Install an antivirus/antimalware and run a scan.
  2. Disable your user feed synchronization.
  3. Disable OfficeBackgroundTaskHandlerRegistration
  4. Open Task Scheduler and check all pending tasks.

Method #1: Antivirus Scan

We recommend installing any advanced antimalware app or antivirus to scan your computer for possible traces of malicious code. You won’t be able to fix all the damage done by viruses and malware without a dedicated program. For this purpose, you can use free or trial versions of popular antiviruses such as Kaspersky, Avast, Bitdefender, etc. To be 100% sure that the threat is neutralized, you can also install a free antimalware scanner like Malwarebytes or AdwCleaner. When the dangerous file is found and quarantined, find an online scanner and upload the file to it. For example, you can use VirusTotal.    

Method #2: Disable your user feed synchronization

  • Run Task Scheduler as Administrator and follow the steps below.
  • Right-click on Task Scheduler Library. Select “View,” then “Show hidden files.”
  • Look for the line User_Feed_Synchronization.
  • Right-click User_Feed_Synchronization and disable it from the context menu.

Method #3: Disable OfficeBackgroundTaskHandlerRegistration

This service with a long unpronounceable name can also be found in Task Scheduler. It can be responsible for the popup window appearing now and then. To disable it, you need to run Task Scheduler as Administrator. Now go to Task Scheduler Library>>Microsoft>>Office. Look for OfficeBackgroundTaskHandlerRegistration. Right-click it and disable it. This should block the popup message.

Method #4: disable failing task in your Task Scheduler

Open your Task Scheduler and extend the Task Scheduler (Local) submenu. On the right side, you will see the Actions pane, where you need to click on View and make sure that all hidden tasks are visible. Now in the center pane there you need to check the Task Status and look for tasks that were planned but not executed within the last 24 hours. There should be one (or maybe several) task failing, which results in the popup window you constantly see. Just disable those tasks. If it helps, we recommend troubleshooting failing tasks in order to find why they were not executed.