This page aims to help you remove Ads by Serpens. These removal instructions work for Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari, as well as every version of Windows.
Ads by Serpens was released in one of the latest waves of Adware threats. It is easily recognizable by the large amount of pop-ups and banners containing Ads that it will inject into the internet browsers of infected computers. Cyber-ware security experts agree that this type of malicious application is not among the most dangerous ones, but nevertheless it should not be underestimated. Remove it as soon as you can (probably by the time you are done reading this article). If you have downloaded and installed any programs, toolbars or other software via a link or site provided by any Ad from the virus you should immediately uninstall it as well. We’ll explain why below.
|Name||Ads by Serpens|
|Danger Level||Medium (Known to spread bloatware and adware on infected computers)|
|Symptoms||Prompts to download different software, unwanted Ads, tabs with Ads opening on their own, general slowdown of the computer.|
|Distribution Method||Online Ads or via software bundles.|
1: Enter Safe Mode.
2: Remove Ads by Serpens from Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari.
3: Remove attachments to browser shortcuts.
4: Uninstall the virus from your Add/Remove Programs.
5: Permanently delete the threat from Task Manager’s processes.
6: Uninstall the virus from Regedit and Msconfig.
The main danger from applications such as Ads by Serpens does not come from themselves. Rather they are dangerous because they can help other vicious types of malware to get inside your computer. The main function of Adware is to generate money for whoever created it by showing Ads on the affected computers. The creator then gets a modest payment for each click on an Ad or a larger one if anything is purchased from such an Ad – largely as an affiliate. The problem is that developers of Adware rarely execute any kind of control over the quality of the Ads displayed. Because of this they are very often used to spread viruses, trojan horses, other Adware and even spy programs. Because of this all Ads from Ads by Serpens should be ignore and any software downloads immediately aborted.
Methods of spreading used by Ads by Serpens
There are a couple of known tricks used to distribute malicious applications such as Ads by Serpens. By far and large the most popular ones are:
- As email attachments. These can be made to look convincing, especially if the sender of the spam did not use Google Translate to translate the scam message from Chinese. The most successful ones pose as work-related Emails and files. They’ll always end in .exe and that’s the best indication to look if you are unsure. Invoice.exe is most definitely a virus.
- As part of a software bundle. A software bundle is essentially a program installer that contains more then one program inside of it. Using the Default installation option will install the main program and all extras as allowed “by default”. Rarely the extras contain anything useful – most of the time things like Ads by Serpens are lurking inside. To avoid getting infected like this always select the Advanced installation option for any installer and then remove the checks from all boxes that will install unwanted additional software on your PC.
- Fake Ads, torrents and online storage sites. These are a breeding ground for all kinds of viruses and getting an Adware like Ads by Serpens should be considered lucky. The Ads on these sites almost always lead to viruses and bloatware. They also usually contain multiple download buttons of which only one is real. If you click on the fake one you’ll be prompted to download some file that shares a name with the file you searched for. Inside, however, will be hidden a virus.
It’s also worth nothing that all internet browsers are equally vulnerable to Ads by Serpens once it is installed on your computer. The instructions for its removal from Firefox, Chrome and IE differ, but we’ll go into this detail in the removal guide itself that starts below.
Ads by Serpens Removal
The first thing to do is a reboot in Safe Mode. If you already know how to do it, just skip this and proceed to Step 2. If you do not know how to do it, continue reading:
For Windows 98, XP, Millenium and 7:
Restart your computer. To be sure you don’t miss the time when you need to press it, just spam F8 as soon as the PC starts booting. Then choose Safe Mode With Networking.
For W8 and 8.1:
Click the Start button, then Control Panel —> System and Security —> Administrative Tools —> System Configuration.
Then check the Safe Boot option and click OK. Click Restart in the pop-up.
- Open the Start menu.
- Click the power button icon in the right corner of the Start menu to show the power options menu.
- Press and hold down the SHIFT key on the keyboard and click the Restart option while still holding down the SHIFT key.
W10 will perform the reboot. Next do the following:
Click the Troubleshoot icon, then Advanced options —> Startup Settings. Click Restart.
After the reboot click on Enter Safe Mode With Networking (Fifth Option).
All of your internet browsers likely contain Ads by Serpens as an attached add-on. To get rid of it check out the instructions found in Step 2 and Step 3 below. Make sure you clean all of your internet browsers – even those that you may not be using regularly. Unless all copies of the Adware or deleted it may come to haunt you again at a later point.
Also please be wary of any confirmation messages created as you remove Ads by Serpens. They will most likely contain some kind of catch that will try to make you install other software or visit a certain site via the help of some incentive. Avoid either option as nothing good will come out of them.
Remove the Malware from Internet Explorer:
Open IE, then click —–> Manage Add-ons.
Find the malware. Remove it by pressing Disable.
If your Home Page is different from the usual, click —–> Internet Options>edit the URL box with your preferred search engine, and click Apply.
Remove Ads by Serpens from Firefox:
Open Firefox, click on (top right) ——-> Add-ons. Hit Extensions next.
The problem should be lurking somewhere around here – Remove it.
Remove Ads by Serpens from Chrome:
Start Chrome, click —–>More Tools —–> Extensions. There, find the malware and select (Remove).
Click again, and proceed to Settings —> Search, the fourth tab, select Manage Search Engines. Remove everything but the search engines you normally use.
Remove the malware from Safari:
Open Safari, and click Safari —–>Preferences —–> Extensions—–>Uninstall the malware.
Right click on the browser’s shortcut, then click Properties.
NOTE: We are showing Google Chrome, but the method is the same for Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer, Safari, and Microsoft Edge.
Once you’ve reached Properties —–> Shortcut (on the band at the top), then in the Target type field, REMOVE EVERYTHING AFTER .exe.
Hold the Start Key and R together. Write appwiz.cpl in the field, then click OK.
You are now in the Control Panel. Search around for the virus and suspicious-looking programs. Uninstall it/them. Also, be extremely careful. Viruses often spend one last ditch effort to trick you into installing more of their kind. If you see a screen like this when you click Uninstall, choose NO:
Hold the Start Key and R again – but this time copy + paste the following and click OK:
A .txt file will open – don’t type or change it. If you are hacked and someone has access to your PC, there will be a bunch of other IPs connected to you at the bottom. This is what a hosts file looks like:
If there are a bunch of strange IPs connecting to you below “Localhost” you may be hacked, and it’s best to ask us in the comments for directions.
Open the Task Manager by right clicking on the Taskbar and choosing Start Task Manager.
Once it opens, choose the Processes Tab. Look at all of the processes in front of you and try to determine which ones are a virus. Google them or ask us in the comments and we will provide the best assistance we can.
A BIG WARNING! PLEASE READ BEFORE PROCEEDING!
The final part of the guide is up next and it is a bit more trickier then the rest. You’ll have to hunt down any remaining processes of Ads by Serpens and delete the related system files in order to ensure that no trace remains of it. Please be careful and double check any file before deleting it. If you make a mistake some of your programs could become corrupted! If you are not feeling comfortable knowing this you can instead opt to use the professional anti-malware remover we recommend. It’s a solid piece of software and the excellent scan tool will ensure that no other viruses remain hidden on your PC
Right click on each of the virus processes separately and select Open File Location. Also, End the process after you open the folder. Just to make sure we don’t delete any programs you mistakenly took for a virus, copy the folders somewhere, then delete the directories you were sent to.
Take a look at the following things:
Type msconfig in the search field and hit enter: you will be transported to a Pop Up window.
Go in the Startup tab and Uncheck entries that have “Unknown” as Manufacturer.
Type Regedit in the windows search field and press Enter.
Once inside, press CTRL and F together and type the virus’s Name. Right click and delete any entries you find with a similar name. If you can’t find them this way, look in these directories, and delete/uninstall the registries manually:
- HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—–Random Directory. It could be any one of them – ask us if you can’t discern which ones are malicious, but bear in mind they are always different.
HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—Internet Explorer—-Main—- Random
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