Is the Windows 10 Upgrade Notification Malware?

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Is the Windows 10 Upgrade Notification Malware?

Like This Blog 12 Mike Danseglio
Added by June 3, 2015

If you’re running Windows Vista, 7, 8, or 8.1 you have most likely started to see a strange icon in your system tray. It looks like a little white Windows flag as shown in Figure 1.


Figure 1. Get Windows 10.

The hover text says Get Windows 10. When you right-click it you get the context menu shown in Figure 2.


Figure 2. Is this malware?

The options on the context menu include:

  • Get Windows 10
  • Reserve your free upgrade
  • Go to Windows Update
  • Get to know Windows 10

If you primary-click on the icon you see a screen like Figure 3 that explains how the free upgrade works.


So is this malware?

Nope, this isn’t malware. This is Microsoft announcing that Windows 10 is available beginning July 29th and that they want you to upgrade to Windows 10. It’s a real Microsoft announcement, not an adware application or some type of malware.

How can I be sure? The executable that launches both the tray icon and the windowed application is GWXUX.exe. That file was installed in a recent Windows Update for Windows Vista and later and is digitally signed by Microsoft Corporation. So it’s authentic, it comes from Redmond, and is not doing anything else to your system.


Mike Danseglio -CISSP / MCSE / CEH
Interface Technical Training – Technical Director and Instructor


For more Windows 10 articles, see the following posts from Interface Technical Training:

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  1. Avatar Holly Meredith

    I have had a notification in the bottom right corner of my screen, regardless of what I am doing, that reads “Spyware and unwanted software protection” and has a red “X” icon that is non-functional. I cannot get rid of it. Can anyone advise? It is actually blocking some actions so they are unable to be accessed.

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  3. Avatar Gerald Scott

    Actually it is malware as it was not installed by me or anyone on my technical team. There is no obvious way to dismiss it other than clicking to close it all the time.

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