Qareaste.info “Virus” Removal Chrome/FF/IE


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This page aims to help you remove Qareaste.info “Virus”. Our removal instructions work for Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer, as well as every version of Windows.

Browser Hijackers are irritating pieces of software that are regarded as unwanted by most cyber security experts due to their tendency to conduct aggressive advertising campaigns without really providing the user with anything valuable. The main issues that users tend to face with such applications is different unwanted modifications to their browsers like, for instance, a replaced search engine or a new homepage as well as redirects to sponsored sites and pages or generation of advertising contents on the PC screen. Typically, hijackers could latch onto most of the popular browser like Chrome, Opera, IE, Firefox, Edge and so on.

Below, we will introduce you to one representative of this software group – a browser redirecting application called Qareaste.info “Virus” which is a fairly new browser hijacker. However, since a lot of users have complained about it we have decided to write this article where we explain exactly what this piece of software does, what dangers it might hide and what one can do in order to prevent Qareaste.info “Virus” from getting installed on their computer. Also, if you are one of those users who have already had Qareaste.info installed on their machines and who are currently trying to get rid of it, the removal guide down below will help you with the task of removing the hijacker. Just make sure to closely follow the listed steps and if you need any help remember that you can always write us a comment in the comments section below and we will make sure to get back to you with a relevant reply.

Distribution of hijacker apps

Anything from spam messages to shady online ads and pirated downloads could be used for hijacker distribution. In some cases, there are also official sites for applications like Qareaste.info. However, the most commonly used method seems to be the file-bundling where the unwanted software is bundled with another program’s installer. In such a case, if the user wants to only install the main program without the added hijacker, they’d have to use the Custom setup settings and opt-out of the hijacker’s installation from there. Otherwise, the unwanted application would get installed alongside the main program – the one that the user actually wishes to have on their machine.

Qareaste.info “Virus” Removal

If you have a Windows virus, continue with the guide below.

If you have a Mac virus, please use our How to remove Ads on Mac guide.

If you have an Android virus, please use our Android Malware Removal guide.

If you have an iPhone virus, please use our iPhone Virus Removal guide


Step1

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).

Step2

WARNING! READ CAREFULLY BEFORE PROCEEDING!

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. 

malware-start-taskbar

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
ClamAV
AVG AV
Maldet

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. 

Step3

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

appwiz

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:

msconfig_opt

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

Step4

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.

DNS

Step5

  • 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).

browser-hijacker-taskbar-properties

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

ie9-10_512x512  Remove Qareaste.info 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 Qareaste.info from Firefox:

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

pic 6

Find the adware/malware —> Remove.
chrome-logo-transparent-backgroundRemove Qareaste.info 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.

Step6

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

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!

The browser hijacker software class

In most cases, a page redirecting application like Qareaste.info “Virus” would not threaten the security of your computer. In fact, representatives of this software group mostly function similarly to any regular browser extension in the sense that they get added to the users browser and function from there. However, the issue is that most of the functionality that a hijacker could offer isn’t really in any way helpful for the user. It’s actually quite the opposite – the constant generation of advertisements as well as the unwanted changes made to the browser can really frustrate anyone who needs to use their browser for any extended period of time. After all, it could be super annoying having to deal with constantly appearing ads while at the same time using a browsing program that has been modified in a way that has likely made the program less optimized and pleasant to use. Bear in mind that most changes that hijackers impose on a user’s browser are there in order to push an agenda, namely, the hijacker’s developer’s advertising campaign. For example, if your default search engine has been replaced by the irritating application it is highly likely that the displayed results would be modified in order to promote certain pages instead of showing you the most relevant stuff which is what you’d be actually looking for. Also, as was pointed out above, in most cases there’s hardly any actual use that a regular customer could get from such software. Due to this, it is typically preferable to simply uninstall the hijacker so that it will no longer disturb your regular browsing experience with its imposed changes and with its ads generation.

But isn’t it a virus?

Here, we need to make something clear – browser hijacker applications are typically nothing like actual malware threats (Worms, Trojan Horses, Ransomware, Spyware and so on). A hijacker would normally not contain any harmful or malicious code and although it might be really irritating having such a program on your PC, no direct harm should come to the machine. However, the adverts and the page redirects might actually sometimes be unsafe as they might link to hazardous web addresses that no one who wants to have a safe and virus-free PC should go to. Therefore, if you want to keep your machine clean and protected against viruses like Trojans and Ransomware, we advise you to use our guide and eliminate Qareaste.info “Virus”.

Name Qareaste.info
Type  Browser Hijacker
Danger Level Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)
Symptoms  Most of the time a hijacker will try to change the homepage and the search engine of your browser which is how you can detect its presence.
Distribution Method The most commonly employed method is the file-bundling. Aside from that, spam e-mails and misleading web ads are other popular browser hijacker distribution tools.
Detection Tool We generally recommend SpyHunter or a similar anti-malware program that is updated daily.

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