During 2010 the LHC delivered pp collisions with a centre-of-mass energy of 7 TeV. In this paper, the results of comprehensive studies of missing transverse energy as measured by the CMS detector are presented. The results cover the measurements of the scale and resolution for missing transverse energy, and the effects of multiple pp interactions within the same bunch crossings on the scale and resolution. Anomalous measurements of missing transverse energy are studied, and algorithms for their identification are described. The performances of several reconstruction algorithms for calculating missing transverse energy are compared. An algorithm, called missing-transverse-energy significance, which estimates the compatibility of the reconstructed missing transverse energy with zero, is described, and its performance is demonstrated.