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mobsync.exe - Microsoft Synchronization Manager

The mobsync.exe, or Microsoft Synchronization Manager, process is used to synchronize offline pages from within Internet Explorer. It will synchronize offline copies of web pages with the "online" versions on the web. If you use the "view pages offline" feature of Internet Explorer, you should leave this process running to keep your offline content up to date.

Effectively, this process runs in the background and consumes some amount of system resources, including network bandwidth, as it rotates through the user's list of offline pages tagged for synchronization. It periodically compares the offline and online copies, downloading new versions when they become available.

One defect in this process may cause it to be erroneously identified as a virus or spyware application on Windows 2000 systems. According to a Microsoft support document, the synchronization process can run continuously for non-Administrator users. The document states that "if a group policy is used to assign a desktop item (by URL), Mobsync.exe runs repeatedly when a non-administrative user logs on, endlessly synchronizing the Web page for offline use." Such activity can appear suspicious since the network is being utilized. Disabling this process on your PC will cause the offline sync functions to fail. Pages will no longer be synchronized to ensure the offline and online copies match. This also applies to calendars and email folders that are tagged for synchronization. Reports noted on other sites state that some users disable the mobsync.exe process when it causes problems with other Windows components or external applications.

No reports have been noted in which malware attempts to masquerade as mobsync.exe, but this situation could change at any time. The legitimate copy of mobsync.exe can be found in the c:\windows\system32 directory.

As always, if you suspect a malware infestation you should download and run a current copy of an antivirus/malware scanner in order to isolate and remove the offending application. Be sure to obtain the most recent definition files, since these are critical to the removal of current malware variants.

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