Article ID: 282599 - View products that this article applies to.
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Summary

When you run a Microsoft Office XP program, the file Ctfmon.exe (Ctfmon) runs in the background, even after you quit all Office programs.

This article answers some of the frequently asked questions about the Microsoft Text Services Ctfmon.exe file, which is loaded after installing Office XP Alternative User Input features. This article answers the following questions:
  • What is the Ctfmon.exe (ctfmon) file?
  • What does the Ctfmon.exe file do?
  • Can I remove the Ctfmon.exe file?
  • Why won't Ctfmon.exe go away when I remove it from MSConfig?
  • When I uninstall the alternative input items from Office XP, Ctfmon.exe still loads. What else do I need to do to keep it from running?
  • What amount of system resources is used when Ctfmon.exe is running?
  • Can I load Ctfmon.exe on demand instead of all the time?
  • Will I break something if I click End Task on the Ctfmon.exe process?
  • Does Ctfmon.exe work the same on all operating systems?

More information

What Is the Ctfmon.exe (Ctfmon.exe) File?

Ctfmon.exe activates the Alternative User Input Text Input Processor (TIP) and the Microsoft Office Language Bar.

What Does the Ctfmon.exe File Do?

Ctfmon.exe monitors the active windows and provides text input service support for speech recognition, handwriting recognition, keyboard, translation, and other alternative user input technologies.

Can I Remove the Ctfmon.exe File?

Removing the Ctfmon.exe might cause problematic behavior in your Office XP programs, so removing it is not recommended. To prevent Ctfmon.exe from running, follow these steps.

Step 1: Uninstall Alternative User Input

To uninstall the alternative user input feature, set the installation state to Not Available in Office XP Setup.

Microsoft Windows Millennium Edition (Me), Microsoft Windows 98, or Microsoft Windows NT 4.0:
  1. Quit all Office programs.
  2. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
  3. In Control Panel, double-click Add/Remove Programs.
  4. On the Install/Uninstall tab, click to select Microsoft Office XP product, where Office XP product is the name of the specific Office product being used. If you are using a standalone version of one of the Office programs, click to select the appropriate product in the list. Click Add/Remove.
  5. In the Maintenance Mode Options dialog box, select Add or Remove Features, and then click Next. This displays the Choose installation options for all Office applications and tools dialog box.
  6. Click the plus sign (+) next to Office Shared Features to expand it.
  7. Click the icon next to Alternative User Input, and then select Not Available.
  8. Click Update.
NOTE: If you have multiple Office XP products installed, for example, Office XP Professional and Publisher 2002, you must repeat the preceding steps for each installed product.

Microsoft Windows 2000 and Microsoft Windows XP:
  1. Quit all Office programs.
  2. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel. NOTE: In Windows XP, click Start and then click Control Panel.

  3. In Control Panel, double-click Add/Remove Programs.NOTE: In Windows XP, click Add or Remove Programs.

  4. In the Currently installed programs list, click to select Microsoft Office XP product, where Office XP product is the name of the specific Office product being used. If you are using a standalone version of one of the Office programs, click to select the appropriate product in the list. Click Change.
  5. In the Maintenance Mode Options dialog box, select Add or Remove Features, and then click Next. This displays the Choose installation options for all Office applications and tools dialog box.
  6. Click the plus sign (+) next to Office Shared Features to expand it.
  7. Click the icon next to Alternative User Input, and then select Not Available.
  8. Click Update.
NOTE: If you have multiple Office XP products installed, for example, Office XP Professional and Publisher 2002, you must repeat the preceding steps for each installed product.

Step 2: Remove Alternative User Input Services from Text Services

  1. Click Start, point to Settings, and then click Control Panel.
  2. In the Control Panel, double-click Text Services.NOTE: In Windows XP, click Date, Time, Language, and Regional Options, and then click Regional and Language Options. On the Languages tab, click Details.

  3. Under Installed Services, select each input item that is listed, and then click Remove to remove the item. All items must be removed, one by one, except the following input service:
English (United States)- default Keyboard United States 101

Step 3: Run Regsvr32 /U on the Msimtf.dll and Msctf.dll Files

  1. Click Start and then click Run.
  2. In the Run dialog box, type the following command:
    Regsvr32.exe /u msimtf.dll
  3. Click OK.
  4. Repeat steps 1 through 3 for the Msctf.dll file.
For additional information about how to remove CTFMon.exe, click the article number below to view the article in the Microsoft Knowledge Base:
313176 Programs May Start, Quit, Lose, and Gain Focus Randomly

Why Will Ctfmon.exe Not Go Away When I Remove It from MSConfig?

Removing Ctfmon.exe from MSConfig does not disable Ctfmon.exe. For more information about disabling Ctfmon.exe, refer to the "Can I remove the Ctfmon.exe file?" section earlier in this article.

When I Remove the Alternative Input Features from Office XP, Ctfmon.exe Still Loads. What Else Must I Do to Keep It from Running?

Unlike the Alternative User Input features, Ctfmon.exe is a system component that cannot be uninstalled. For more information about disabling Ctfmon.exe, refer to the "Can I remove the Ctfmon.exe file?" section earlier in this article.

What Amount of System Resources Is Used When Ctfmon.exe Is Running?

Ctfmon.exe uses little of the system resources if Advanced Text Services are not running. Advanced Text Services are those input technologies (speech recognition, handwriting recognition, and Input Method Editors) that are being controlled by Ctfmon.exe via a TIP.

Can I Load Ctfmon.exe on Demand Instead of All the Time?

The Alternative User Input system is not designed to be loaded and unloaded on demand.

Can I Click "End Task" in the Task Manager Dialog Box or "End Task" in the Close Program Dialog Box for the Ctfmon.exe Process?

No. It is not recommended that you manually close the Ctfmon.exe process. It is recommended that you use the steps in the "Can I remove the Ctfmon.exe file?" section if you want to stop the Ctfmon.exe process.

Does Ctfmon.exe Work the Same in All Operating Systems?

Generally, yes. Ctfmon.exe performs the same tasks on different Microsoft Windows operating systems.

Additional Information

Ctfmon.exe is the file that is responsible for controlling the Alternative User Input technologies. It starts the Language Bar component (in the Systray) and remains running in the background even after you quit an Office XP program. It also starts each time Windows is started and remains in the background, regardless of whether an Office XP program is started.

Ctfmon.exe is designed to continue to run in the background during Windows sessions after the Office XP Alternative User Input components are installed.

Properties

Article ID: 282599 - Last Review: July 12, 2013 - Revision: 7.2
Applies to
  • Microsoft Access 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Excel 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Outlook 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft PowerPoint 2002 Standard Edition
  • Microsoft Word 2002
Keywords: 
kbFAQ kbhowto KB282599

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