What Is COM Surrogate And How to Fix It (Causes And Solution)

This tutorial explains What is COM Surrogate error, its types, causes, etc. Learn effective methods to get rid of COM Surrogate errors:

There are various processes and files that run in the background and make it easier for the system to function efficiently. But very few of us know about such programs and their uses and how these benefit our system processing.

In this article, we will discuss one such file known as COM surrogate or dllhost.exe. We will also learn various methods on how to get rid of it.

What Is COM Surrogate

What is COM Surrogate and How to Fix It

Component Object Model (COM) is a method or technique used by Windows to develop extensions that can help the system run quickly. It manages all the DLL files, and it is beneficial in providing extensions for the simplified work.

The most basic example of the tasks performed by COM surrogate is that when a user opens a folder, it generates the thumbnails for various types of files in the folder. Also, it makes it easier for the user to list the files and differentiate them.

Besides this, it is also responsible for hosting all the DLL files, and therefore, it is known as DLLhost.exe. It is one of the critical components behind the working of Windows.

Is COM Surrogate A Virus

It is one of the primary files of the system, and it manages the working of the system and makes sure that all the extensions for the software are generated, and the software works smoothly. It is not a virus, but people with malicious intentions design the virus to look like a COM surrogate and thus can harm the system.

Causes Of The Error

Various causes can be responsible for this error, and some of them are mentioned below:

  • Outdated Software: When the software is not updated to its latest version, it sometimes creates invalid COM objects that do not get validated on the system, and therefore this error occurs.
  • Outdated Codecs: There is a possibility that explorer might not have been able to load the extension thumbnails in the system, which could be due to outdated codecs.
  • Malware: The infected files are one of the primary reasons responsible for various errors to be accountable for this error.

COM Surrogate Error Types

There are various types that users can face. We list some of these errors below:

  1. COM Surrogate high CPU, disk usage
  2. COM Surrogate stopped working
  3. COM Surrogate keeps crashing, opening
  4. COM Surrogate always running
  5. COM Surrogate taking memory
  6. COM Surrogate is not responding, freeze
  7. COM Surrogate virus

Suggested Read => Fix For WSAPPX High Disk & CPU Usage Issue

Harms Caused By COM Surrogate Virus

It is a harmful virus as it tries to disrupt the working of the system, allowing the user’s sensitive data to become vulnerable. It is a Trojan virus. The person with malicious intentions basically installed these types to monitor the activities of the user and to also steal sensitive data.

This virus is linked to the file named “Dllhost.exe” and the pop-up for this error states “COM surrogate has stopped working”. It can harm your data in various ways and some ways are mentioned below:

  1. This virus can allow hackers to access your PC remotely and make it easier for them to monitor your actions and cause harm to your data.
  2.  This virus can also plant a backdoor in your system for the hacker, and could allow the hacker to easily infiltrate your system bypassing the security firewall through the backdoor planted by the virus.
  3. This virus works like a key logger. Every time you press a key on the keyboard, then its record is made in the logbook and this allows the hackers to get logs of your credentials, which might include bank passwords and other login credentials.

How To Identify And Remove COM Surrogates

The people with malicious intentions try to replicate the COM surrogate file and cause harm to the system. Still, this fake file can be easily identified and removed by following the steps mentioned below:

Warning:- Do not try removing the COM surrogate file manually as it might harm the system.

#1) Make a right-click on the taskbar and click on “Task Manager” as displayed in the below image.

Task Manager

#2) Now, a dialog box will open as presented in the below image. Make a click on “Processes” and then further locate “COM Surrogate”. Right-click on it, and click on “Open file location”.

Open File location

#3) If the directory path matches the one shown in the image below, then it is the actual COM surrogate file, or else it’s a replica.

actual COM surrogate file

If the file is a replica, do not directly delete the file and rather scan the folder with Antivirus. When the process is completed, then delete the file. When you restart the system, run an antivirus scan to remove every trace of the virus.

How To Fix COM Surrogate Errors

There are numerous ways to fix this error, and we listed some of them below:

Method 1: Reset Internet Explorer

#1) Press Windows +R from the keyboard. Type “inetcpl.cpl,” and click on “OK”.


#2) A dialog box will open as displayed in the below image. Click on “Advanced” and further click on “Reset”.


Now restart your system and all the system files will get back to their original configurations, which will help to fix COM surrogate error.

Method 2: Rollback Display Driver

You can also fix the COM surrogate error by rolling back the driver to the previous version. Follow the steps listed below to roll back the driver:

#1) Press Windows + R from the keyboard and search for “hdwwiz.cpl” as you can see in the image below. Then click on “OK”.

Windows + R

#2) Make a right-click on the Display adapter and click on “Properties” as depicted in the below image.

click on “Properties,”

#3) Now, a dialog box will open as presented in the image below. Make a click on “Roll Back Driver” as presented in the image below.

Roll Back Driver

After performing the above steps, the driver will be rolled back to the previous version and then you need to restart the system.

Method 3: Re-register DLLs

#1) Search for Command Prompt in the Windows search bar and make right-click on “Run as Administrator” as you can see in the image below.

Run as Administrator

#2) A black screen will appear. Type “regsvr32 vbscript.dll” and press Enter. Similarly, type “regsvr32 jscript.dll” and press Enter.

regsvr32 vbscript.dll

Now restart your system as by re-registering DLLs the system configuration and DLL files issues will be resolved and thus it will resolve the error as it is also known as DLLHost.exe.

Method 4: Update Antivirus

Antivirus is one of the essential software presents on the system, as it helps in avoiding any harmful files that could harm the system. So it would help if you will keep your antivirus updated to the latest version to detect all the dangerous and infected files in the system.

Prevent Further Entry Of COM Surrogate Virus: Steps

The following things should be kept in mind to avoid being re-infected by COM surrogate virus:

  1. Do not download files from insecure sites.
  2. Use the best antivirus software to make your system secure.
  3. Keep your system up to date and keep all your drivers updated.
  4. Keep your codec updated.
  5. Prefer using VPN.
  6. Make a regular antivirus scan of the system.

Frequently Asked Questions

Q #1) Is COM surrogate a virus?

Answer: No, it is not a virus, but people with malicious intentions replicate it and infect the other files present in the system.

Q #2) What is a COM surrogate?

Answer: It is a program that generates extensions for software, which makes it easier for the software to run on the system.

Q #3) Can I kill the COM surrogate?

Answer: Yes, you can remove or stop it from the Task Manager, but it will harm the working of your system and can even result in Windows getting corrupted.

Q #4) What is the COM surrogate process?

Answer: The process is a sacrificial process in which this program generates the extensions for the software and makes it easier for the software to function.

Q #5) Why do I have two COM surrogates?

Answer: People with malicious intentions replicate COM surrogates and try to harm the system. If there are two files on your system, then one is the infected file.

Q #6) Is Windows Defender any good?

Answer: The Windows Defender is a good security program, but it isn’t strong enough against various viruses and malicious files.

Q #17) Should I delete the COM Surrogate process?

Answer: No, you should not delete the process because it is one of the vital processes of the system, and if it is deleted, it can result in Windows getting corrupted in the system.


The COM surrogate process is one of the crucial processes of the system, and people with malicious intentions might try to disrupt the working of the system by using the replica of dllhost.exe. Therefore, getting rid of the file will be the only available solution.

In this article, we discussed the COM surrogate process, and also learned how to find the virus and remove it from the system.