Modern Setup Host In Windows 10: How To Identify Whether Its Safe Or A Virus?

One of the major issues of tech-dependent individuals is a super-slow computer. Do you do the Task Manager check if your PC is performing more poorly than usual? After all, this tool allows you to view those items that are the reason for your slowing down your computer. Perhaps, you will see the Modern Setup Host reason behind high CPU usage.

It is quite natural to want to learn about this program which is eating up your disk space. If this is the case with you, then you will be glad you found this informative yet interesting post. In this article, we are going to discuss everything you need to know about Modern Setup Host in Windows 10

What is Modern Setup Host in Windows 10?

When you take a look inside the C:$Windows.BTSources folder, you can see the Modern Setup Host executable file on the system. This program is self-extracting archive and installer. During certain circumstances, it will show up on your PC if it runs the Windows beta system version or Windows Technical Preview. This program runs in the background when your system detects or installs the updates. It also plays a major role in running the setup file for upgrading a system to Windows 10.

Just like the rest of the Windows components, this programme also has its fair share of issues. Here are the most commonly reported problems that users have shared are:

  • Modern Setup Host causing high CPU usage on the computer
  • Modern Setup Host has stopped working on the system 

It has been observed in most cases that the program has something to do with Windows Update issues. In this article, we have shared the most effective ways to deal with this issue. 

Is Modern Setup Host safe?

Most of the users ask whether the modern setup host in windows is safe? You might have seen setuphost.exe running in Task Manager and wondered what it is. Generally, this file is not a virus and is harmless. However, there’s a possibility that malicious players often disguise their software as legitimate files or processes. So, SetupHost.exe process that you see may or may not be a virus. 

Thankfully, you have different methods to determine the authenticity of this file. Firstly, you are not to download the SetupHost.exe file from a third-party website because it is a preinstalled software and windows installs it automatically while running updates. Files that you obtain from these third-party web browsers are likely to be malicious.

Malicious versions of the SetupHost.exe file can lead to issues on your computer, of which the most commonly reported is high CPU usage. In the below section, we will show you some factors through which you can determine whether your copy of Modern Setup Host is safe.

How can you check to know if SetupHost.exe is safe or a virus?

1. Check the file’s location

The legitimate SetupHost.exe file resides in the $Windows.~BT/Sources folder of your system. It means that you need to navigate the File Explorer to  Local Disk (C:) > $WINDOWS.~BT > Sources to find the file.

Press the Windows key and search for setup host to determine the location of your copy of the SetupHost.exe file. Then Right-click on the SetupHost.exe from the search results and choose the Open file location option from the context menu.

Now you need to check the directory that opens up as the file’s location. If this folder is not authentic it will show anything other than the $Windows.~BT/Sources folder.

2. Check the file’s copyright and signature

Since this program is developed and distributed by Microsoft, there exists another way of verifying the legitimacy of the file on your computer. You need to press the Windows key and search for the setup host. Right-click on the SetupHost.exe from the search results and then select Open file location.

Next, you need to right-click on the SetupHost.exe file and select Properties from the context menu. Switch to the Details tab available at the top of the SetupHost Properties window and scroll down to Copyright. In this window, the legitimate file should show the copyright of the Microsoft Corporation. If you see a different corporation, delete the file because it contains a virus.

3. Check when it runs

Modern Setup Host in windows 10 concerns itself with Windows updates only. When you are not installing any updates, the process should never run on the system. This in itself is another method to tell if the file is malicious or not.

Firstly, you need to confirm that no updates are ongoing, then press the CTRL + SHIFT + ESC simultaneously on your keyboard to open Task Manager. If you see the SetupHost.exe process running when you’re not running any Windows update, it’s probably a virus and you have to let it go.

3 Ways to Fix Modern Setup Host Issues

The Windows 10 operating system has an inbuilt tool which diagnoses and automatically troubleshoots issues preventing your computer from installing updates. This tool could also help fix the problem causing the Modern Setup Host to malfunction.

1. Run Windows Update Troubleshooter On The System

  • Firstly open the windows settings and click on Updates & Security.
  • Click on the Troubleshoot available on the right sidebar.
  • Now choose Windows Update and click on the Run the troubleshooter option.

If the Windows Update troubleshooter finds any fault that prevents your computer from installing an update, click on Apply the fix to resolve the issue immediately.

2. Delete the SoftwareDistribution Folder

The important files needed to install new updates on the computer are stored in the SoftwareDistribution. You might face difficulties installing windows update if this folder contains corrupt or conflicting temporary files. Moreover, that could also cause the modern setup host in windows process to linger in the background, driving up the CPU usage.

To fix this problem, delete the entire content of the SoftwareDistribution folder and restart your system. You need not worry about breaking anything on your device. Windows will redownload the necessary files on the computer.

Follow the steps mentioned below to delete the content of the SoftwareDistribution folder.

  1. Firstly, you need to launch the Windows Run prompt using the “Windows + R” keyboard shortcut.
  2. Next, type software distribution into the dialogue box and then click on OK.
  3. Now you need to select all the content of the SoftwareDistribution folder and delete them. It’s Better to back up the content in another folder on your computer.

3. Disable Background Apps

When unnecessary apps are running in the background, they takeover CPU resources from vital the system activities. You should disable as many unnecessary background apps as you can as it should reduce your computer’s CPU load and hasten up the Windows Update process.

  • Open the Windows Settings menu and then select Privacy.
  • Now Scroll down to the App permissions section on the right sidebar and then select Background apps.
  • Now you need to look through the background applications and toggle off apps that you rarely use.

In order to solve Modern Setup Host issues on your computer, you need to follow the methods given above. 


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