Article ID: 282599 - View products that this article applies to.
This article was previously published under Q282599
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.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 InputTo 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:
Microsoft Windows 2000 and Microsoft Windows XP:
Step 2: Remove Alternative User Input Services from Text Services
English (United States)- default Keyboard United States 101
Step 3: Run Regsvr32 /U on the Msimtf.dll and Msctf.dll Files
(https://support.microsoft.com/kb/313176/EN-US/ )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 InformationCtfmon.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.
Article ID: 282599 - Last Review: July 12, 2013 - Revision: 7.2