Pup.optional.conduit Removal (Chrome/FF/ IE) April 2019 Update

Parasite may reinstall itself multiple times if you don't delete its core files. We recommend downloading SpyHunter to scan for malicious programs installed with it. This may save you hours and cut down your time to about 15 minutes. 

Download SpyHunter Anti-Malware

More information on SpyHunter, steps to uninstallEULAThreat Assessment Criteria, and Privacy Policy.

This page aims to help you remove Pup.optional.conduit. Our removal instructions work for Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer, as well as every version of Windows.

PUPs can genuinely be a real pain in the neck. And to those who’ve landed one for the first time, they can also appear quite threatening and bothersome. In fact, it’s not uncommon for users to mistake hijackers for viruses. A specific example, Pup.optional.conduit, is actually dubbed a virus online and you’d be sure to get some false impressions after only a few minutes spent on dubious forums and sites with advice on how have it removed. And it’s hard to blame users for jumping to conclusions like that when all of a sudden their favorite Chrome, Firefox or other popular browser greets them with a new homepage and/or default search engine, on top of the numerous page redirects that it begins to initiate on its own. Adding to that unpleasant impression can be a new toolbar that was never there before, as well as an array of online ads like popups and banners. However, here on this page we’ll tell you exactly why Pup.optional.conduit is not a virus and how you can successfully rid yourself of its presence and unwanted effects on your browsing experience. We have attached a removal guide to this article, designed to help those of you in need of some useful instructions.

What makes PUPs different from malware? Are they still dangerous?

The first and main difference between programs like Pup.optional.conduit and, say, a Trojan horse or ransomware virus is the fact that they do not have the capabilities to inflict any harm on your computer. They can’t copy or delete files and they also can’t self-replicate. Furthermore, a PUP wants you to notice it, whereas malware prefers a more silent approach and works undercover. But just because they don’t qualify as viruses doesn’t mean you can lower your guard just yet. It just so happens, that software of this type is often categorized as potentially unwanted and that’s sort of a middle sector between malicious programs and genuinely useful ones. But why is that? Well, hijackers possess a number of rather questionable qualities that prevent anyone from treating them as legit software that’s there to serve the regular user.

Pup.optional.conduit Removal

If you are a Windows user, continue with the guide below.

If you are a Mac user, please use our How to remove Ads on Mac guide.

If you are an Android user, please use our Android Malware Removal guide.


Some of the steps will likely require you to exit the page. Bookmark it for later reference.

Reboot in Safe Mode (use this guide if you don’t know how to do it).



We get asked this a lot, so we are putting it here: Removing parasite manually may take hours and damage your system in the process. We recommend downloading SpyHunter to see if it can detect parasite files for you.

Press CTRL + SHIFT + ESC at the same time and go to the Processes Tab (the “Details” Tab on Win 8 and 10). Try to determine which processes are dangerous. 


Right click on each of them and select Open File Location. Then scan the files with our free online virus scanner:

Drag and Drop Files Here to Scan
Maximum file size: 128MB.

This scanner is free and will always remain free for our website's users. You can find its full-page version at: https://howtoremove.guide/online-virus-scanner/

Scan Results

Virus Scanner Result

After you open their folder, end the processes that are infected, then delete their folders. 

Note: If you are sure something is part of the infection – delete it, even if the scanner doesn’t flag it. No anti-virus program can detect all infections. 


Hold together the Start Key and R. Type appwiz.cpl –> OK.


You are now in the Control Panel. Look for suspicious entries. Uninstall it/them.

Type msconfig in the search field and hit enter. A window will pop-up:


Startup —> Uncheck entries that have “Unknown” as Manufacturer or otherwise look suspicious.


Hold the Start Key and R –  copy + paste the following and click OK:

notepad %windir%/system32/Drivers/etc/hosts

A new file will open. If you are hacked, there will be a bunch of other IPs connected to you at the bottom. Look at the image below:

hosts_opt (1)

If there are suspicious IPs below “Localhost” – write to us in the comments.

Open the start menu and search for Network Connections (On Windows 10 you just write it after clicking the Windows button), press enter.

  1. Right-click on the Network Adapter you are using —> Properties —> Internet Protocol Version 4 (ICP/IP), click  Properties.
  2. The DNS line should be set to Obtain DNS server automatically. If it is not, set it yourself.
  3. Click on Advanced —> the DNS tab. Remove everything here (if there is something) —> OK.



  • After you complete this step, the threat will be gone from your browsers. Finish the next step as well or it may reappear on a system reboot.

Right click on the browser’s shortcut —> Properties.

NOTE: We are showing Google Chrome, but you can do this for Firefox and IE (or Edge).


Properties —–> Shortcut. In Target, remove everything after .exe.

ie9-10_512x512  Remove Pup.optional.conduit from Internet Explorer:

Open IE, click  IE GEAR —–> Manage Add-ons.

pic 3

Find the threat —> Disable. Go to IE GEAR —–> Internet Options —> change the URL to whatever you use (if hijacked) —> Apply.

firefox-512 Remove Pup.optional.conduit from Firefox:

Open Firefoxclick  mozilla menu  ——-> Add-ons —-> Extensions.

pic 6

Find the adware/malware —> Remove.
chrome-logo-transparent-backgroundRemove Pup.optional.conduit from Chrome:

Close Chrome. Navigate to:

 C:/Users/!!!!USER NAME!!!!/AppData/Local/Google/Chrome/User Data. There is a Folder called “Default” inside:

Rename the Folder to Backup Default

Rename it to Backup Default. Restart Chrome.


To remove parasite on your own, you may have to meddle with system files and registries. If you were to do this, you need to be extremely careful, because you may damage your system.

If you want to avoid the risk, we recommend downloading SpyHunter
a professional malware removal tool.

More information on SpyHunter, steps to uninstallEULAThreat Assessment Criteria, and Privacy Policy.

Type Regedit in the windows search field and press Enter.

Inside, press CTRL and F together and type the threat’s Name. Right click and delete any entries you find with a similar name. If they don’t show up this way, go manually to these directories and delete/uninstall them:

  • HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—–Random Directory. It could be any one of them – ask us if you can’t discern which ones are malicious.
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—-Windows—CurrentVersion—Run– Random
    HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—Internet Explorer—-Main—- Random

As a matter of fact, PUPs serve only one master and that’s their developers. The developers, in turn, create software like Pup.optional.conduit for the purpose of promoting and advertising a whole range of different products and services. Based on the amount of ads showcasing these that have been seen or clicked on by users, the developers earn revenue in accordance with popular remuneration models like Pay Per Click or Pay Per View. So with this in mind, it’s obvious that their first and only interest would be to get you, the user, to interact with as many of these as possible and nothing else is of real importance.

So for the purpose of generating higher profits, software of this type is often set to collect browsing or traffic data. This includes information regarding your online search queries, the websites you visit and the frequency with which you visit them, as well as social media activity and similar. This information is used to optimize the flow of ads, but isn’t something that most users necessarily knowingly agreed to. In addition, Pup.optional.conduit and other programs like it are known to leave a trail of unwanted side effects, such as PC sluggishness, caused by the consumption of resources their background activity requires. Besides that, it wouldn’t be farfetched to say that this kind of software can also leave you exposed to external threats such as viruses. The constant page redirects to various web locations could potentially lead you to insecure or compromised websites, for example.

So, the best thing you can do for yourself and for the wellbeing of your system at this point would be to simply delete Pup.optional.conduit and have it over with. You can do that with the help of the instructions in the removal guide below, or if you’d rather prefer to have it done automatically, you can also use our professional removal tool. It will scan your system for all the unwanted components and delete them permanently for you. Once that’s done, you can return to your regular browsing, without being bothered by ads, altered browser settings, etc.



Name Pup.optional.conduit
Type PUP
Danger Level Low
Symptoms Usually the first symptoms include changes to the browser’s appearance, such as a new homepage, search engine or toolbar
Distribution Method Typically with the help of program bundles that are mainly distributed on various file-sharing platforms
Detection Tool

Keep in mind, SpyHunter’s malware detection tool is free. To remove the infection, you’ll need to purchase the full version. More information about SpyHunter and steps to uninstall.

If the guide doesn’t help, download the anti-virus program we recommended or try our free online virus scanner. Also, you can always ask us in the comments for help!

Leave a Comment