Release.exe Virus ⛏️ (Coin Miner Trojan) Removal

Written by Robert Bailey
release.exe executable file comes from a malevolent application that can properly be defined as a coin miner trojan. That malware form utilizes your hardware to mine cryptocurrencies, primarily – Monero or DarkCoin1. It makes your computer almost unusable due to high CPU utilization.
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What is release.exe process?

release.exe is a malicious process created by coin miner virus

As I have actually pointed out previously, release.exe is a coin miner trojan. The names of the .exe file may be diverse, however, the impacts are generally the identical. Since coin miners focus on cryptocurrency mining, they utilize all possible hardware capacity of your PC to run this procedure. This virus doesn’t pay attention to the fact that you probably want to use your machine for other activities – it will always consume over 80% of your processor power.

release.exe Windows Process

release.exe – Extremely high CPU and GPU use

Besides CPU usage, some of the coin miners also utilize GPU power for their operations. In that situation, you will probably struggle also to see the mouse cursor moving – GPU is usually used on 100%. It is not as important as CPU for system work, so release.exe coin miner viruses don’t waste time on trifles and use all of it. It often may cause bad consequences.

Shortly about cryptocurrency mining

Crypto mining term means the action of calculating the transaction block hash. That is a basic part of anything based on the blockchain technology. Since this action takes a lot of calculations, a very strong desktop is needed. Exactly, the GPU is better for this purpose, because they have more cores available. Cryptomining farms are usually constructed of dozens of graphic cards to conduct their activity effectively. Such systems are not usable for “general” purposes, like gaming or web browsing. Crooks who gain money via this coin miner use someones’ hardware instead, even if they are used for the regular activity.2

List of the typical coin miner symptoms

  • Your device overheats (system unit/laptop body is very hot)
  • You are not able to open your apps or they are opening for ages
  • Unknown process is running in the background and consumes your PC resources
  • Windows Defender does not respond
  • How dangerous is the release.exe miner?

    Coin miners does not deal damage to your files. However, they make a lot of unpleasant things with the whole system

    Initially, release.exe malware makes your computer overloaded. It is unable to run your applications now, as all CPU power is used by a malware. That malware does not care for your necessities, all it focuses on is generating income on you. Even if you are patient, and you waited until browser is open, you will likely suffer from incredibly slow performance. Pages will open for years, any sort of logins will take about a minute – just a headache for a person who does a job online.

    release.exe Technical Summary.

    File Namerelease.exe
    TypeTrojan Coin Miner
    Detection NameTrojan:Win32/CoinMiner
    Distribution MethodSoftware bundling, Intrusive advertisement, redirects to shady sites etc.
    Similar behaviorTon.exe, Altruistics.exe, Msascui.exe
    RemovalDownload and install GridinSoft Anti-Malware for automatic release.exe removal.

    “Visible” harm is not a solitary unpleasant activity coin miners do to your system. release.exe coin miner additionally deals damage to your operating system. To carry out all malevolent functions properly, it wrecks the security mechanisms of your system. You will likely see your Microsoft Defender disabled – malware halts it to prevent recognition. If you open the HOSTS file, you will likely see a number of new notes – they are added by this coin miner to connect your PC to a malicious cryptomining network. All these changes shall be gone back to the original in the process of PC recovery.

    Hardware effects of coin miner activity

    Besides decreasing your computer’s performance, running at peak level for long times can trigger damage to your device and increase electricity bills. PC elements are designed to easily deal with high load, but they can do so only in case when they are in a good shape.

    Little and covered CPU fan is not very easy to damage. Meanwhile, graphic cards have big and easy-to-access rotors, which can be easily cracked if affected while running, for instance, by the user much earlier before the coin-miner injection. Malfunctioning cooling system, together with the extremely high load caused by release.exe can easily lead to graphic card failure3. Graphic cards are also prone to have increased wearing when used for cryptocurrency mining. It is likely an unwanted situation when your GPU’s performance plunges 20-30% only after several weeks of being exploited in such a way.

    How did I get release.exe coin miner virus?

    Coin miners are spread through different ways, but their main sources are malicious banners and programs from dubious sources

    Coin miners are one of the most prevalent malevolent programs through “severe” malware. Adware sometimes acts as a carrier for release.exe malware injection: it shows you the banners, which contain a link to malware downloading. Yes, this abstract “malware” may belong to any type – another adware, spyware, rogue or backdoor. But the statistics say that about 30% of all viruses spread through the malicious banners are coin miners – and release.exe is right one of them.4

    Unwanted banners adware

    The example of malicious banners you can see in the Internet

    An additional way you could get this thing on your computer is by downloading it from the dubious site as a part of a program. People that spread hacked versions of popular programs (which do not require the license key) have small chances to make money. For this reason, there is a huge lure to add in malware to the final package of the hacked application and acquire a coin for each setup. Prior to blaming these guys for hacking and also malware spreading, ask yourself – is it alright to avoid paying for the program in this manner? It is much cheaper to pay $20-$30 at once than to pay a much greater figure for antivirus program and new parts for your desktop.

    How to remove the release.exe miner from my PC?

    The best way to get rid of this coin miner virus is to use anti-malware software

    Getting rid of such a virus requires making use of special program. Proper antivirus should have high capability at scanning and be lightweight – in order to make no problems with usage also on weak systems. Additionally, it is recommended to have proactive security in your security solution – to stop the virus even before it launches. Microsoft Defender does not have these elements for various factors. That’s why I’d suggest you to use a third-party anti-malware program for that reason. GridinSoft Anti-Malware is a great option that fits each of the mentioned characteristics.5

    Prior to the virus removal, it is important to boot your Windows into Safe Mode with Networking. Since release.exe miner consumes a lot of processor capacity, it is needed to stop it before launching the security program. Otherwise, your scan will last for years, even though the GridinSoft program is pretty lightweight.

    Booting the PC into Safe Mode with Networking

    Press the Start button, then choose Power, and click on Reboot while holding the Shift key on the keyboard.

    Boot into Windows Safe Mode

    Windows will reboot into recovery mode. In that mode, choose Troubleshoot→ Startup Settings→ Safe Mode with Networking. Press the corresponding button on your keyboard to choose that option.

    windows safe mode boot option with command prompt

    When your PC is in Safe Mode, all third-party programs, just like the majority of non-crucial system components, are not launched with the system start. That allows you to clean the PC without dealing with high CPU usage of the coin miner.

    Remove release.exe coin miner virus with GridinSoft Anti-Malware

    Download and install GridinSoft Anti-Malware. You can use this anti-malware program for free during its 6-day trial period. In that term, all functions are available, and it takes no payments to remove malware from your system.

    GridinSoft Anti-Malware free trial

    After activating your free trial, start Full scan. It may last up to 10 minutes. You may use the PC as usual.

    Scanning in GridinSoft Anti-Malware

    When the scan is finished, press the Clean Now button to remove all detected elements from your system. This procedure takes less than a minute.

    GridinSoft Anti-Malware after the scan process

    Now, you are good to go. Reboot your PC into a normal Windows mode and use just as there was nothing malicious.

    Remove release.exe Virus ⛏️ Trojan Coin Miner

    Name: release.exe

    Description: The release.exe is a Trojan Coin Miner that uses the infected computer’s sources to mine electronic money without your authorization. This release.exe will create your CPU to go to very warm temperatures for prolonged periods of time, which could reduce the life of the CPU.

    Operating System: Windows

    Application Category: Trojan

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    References

    1. Read about why Monero and DarkCoin are so popular amongst cybercriminals.
    2. Detailed explanation of how does cryptomining work.
    3. About unwanted effects for GPUs in the process of cryptomining.
    4. Read more about various malware type on GridinSoft Threat Encyclopedia.
    5. Our review on GridinSoft Anti-Malware.

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    About the author

    Robert Bailey

    Security Engineer. Interested in malware, reverse engineering, white ethical hacking. I like coding, travelling and bikes.

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