If you’ve ever tried to install a third party application on your windows computer then I am sure you have already faced this issue. Some applications while installing on our computer also install some tools or change some browser settings with or without permission.
If you have faced this issue and are totally confused on what to do now, how to solve the problems and bring your PC back to where it was before installing, then you are at the right place. We will be talking about the things these malwares change and tell you where to look and get rid of all these problems.
The first thing which malwares and other application programs can or prefer to change is the homepage in your default browser. First, they detect which is your default browser and then change your homepage to their website in order to get traffic. This is a cheap way to attract traffic to a website and also irritating for users like you and me.
So, in case of any such malware problem first thing you should do, is to check your homepage and change it. You can change your homepage in chrome by going to ‘settings’ after clicking on the menu button on the top right.
The next thing these malwares change is your default search engine. By default your search might be Google (in chrome) or bing (in IE) but these malwares take control of your browser and change your default search engine to some other engines with which they are associated.
So, the next you need to check is your default search engine and change it back to the one you prefer to use. You can change your search engine by going to “settings” after clicking on the menu button in chrome.
Toolbars and Extensions
The third thing these malwares do to irritate us, is to install toolbars and extensions to our web browsers. Even if you go to install Oracle’s Java environment it asks to install the ask.com toolbar, all because tool bars are a great way to increase the usage of a service as the service stays before the eyes of the user full time.
To uninstall a toolbar, head to the control panel and then to programs and features where you can easily find the toolbar and uninstall it as toolbars are mostly installed via the windows installer and can be uninstalled from the control panel only.
When it comes to extensions you have to uninstall them from your browser settings, click on the menu button in chrome and click on tools then on extensions. You will be taken to the extensions with a list of all the extensions active or inactive, just hit the bin button near the extension to delete it.
Website Redirects, though this one is quite rare to happen but when it does it is the most irritating things of all. You try to visit facebook.com and you are taken to some spam website, you try to go to Google and you are taken to some irrelevant search engines.
Malwares accomplish these redirects by editing the hosts.txt file in our windows files. The hosts.txt file is a text file which acts as a directive for browser to visit websites, you can block or redirect websites from the hosts file easily.
You can find your hosts file located in the following directory,
Log in as administrator and change the permissions of the hosts file to make it editable, then open the hosts file using any text editor like notepad and see if you find anything awkward. You will either see the URL of the website you are being redirected to or its IP address, simply delete the line which contains the URL or IP and save the file.
These are the places where malwares affect your PC and if all your efforts of restoring the setting back fails and the setting gets changed automatically after you perform these actions, then there are chances that the malware is doing so. To solve this problem, install an antivirus program like Kaspersky or Norton and scan your PC for viruses.
Trying all of these tips can easily solve all your problems and help you in bringing all your settings back to normal after being affected by a malware.