You have been infected by Ads by AdFreeApp ? We have prepared Ads by AdFreeApp removal instructions for all versions of Windows.
Having an Adware like Ads by AdFreeApp on your computer is bad both your nervous system and for the machine itself. This menace will keep spawning ads until all traces of it are removed from your Hard Disk – if anything remains then chances are it will greet you again after next system reboot. Reading this article and following the removal guide will remedy the situation. Hopefully, you will also pick up some useful tips on how to recognize Adware and deal with it before it infects your computer.
The ads are not the real danger, it’s what hides behind them
Dealing with the ads every time they pop-up can be a royal pain in the crapper, but at least Ads by AdFreeApp won’t do anything bad to your computer. Trying to interact with them, however, can have disastrous results. Let’s see why:
First the ads are not real, they are made up on your machine and they try to target your hobbies and interests – or whatever the virus thinks them to be from reading your browsing history anyway. They are drawn on your hardware and exist only on your computer. This process will, of course, steal system resources from your machine. If you have an older CPU this may translate into a substantial slowdown.
These ads do have hyperlinks embedded in them and these do lead to very shiny and very fake sites that will try to sell you different things at great discounts. Of course, none will be an actual purchase – if you pay you’ll either buy a file containing another virus or possibly a hacked copy of a legitimate program, which is absolutely worthless.
Ads posing as system messages in Ads by AdFreeApp
Another type of ad will try to make you believe you have some problem with your system and you need to download a file to fix it. Examples:
- That you need to install a missing plug-in, codec or video player before you can see a video.
- That you must update an outdated program you have on your computer – popular and well-known programs like Flash and Java are often used as the bait. A notable thing to mention is that these pop ups are not limited to browsers – they can show up suddenly when you are simply browsing your system folders.
- That you have critical issues, mistakes or viruses and you immediately have to download an utility program to scan and fix the problems.
All files downloaded will be viruses. Actually, these are some of the primary methods Adware employs to bypass security – the user installs the virus believing he’s actually installing the program to fix a problem. You should always be on the look out for similar warnings on sites around the internet. Their purpose absolutely always is to install a virus. Seeing them can be regarded as an excellent tip that a particular site is unsafe and you should get out immediately.
How did I get infected with Ads by AdFreeApp?
We’ve researched this subject far and wide, and we have arrived at the conclusion that there are only 4 known ways that an adware can infect you. These are:
- Spam email- the least effective and used method out there. They can still be dangerous, as there are many users who get confused when a seemingly legitimate institution contacts them by “mistake.” Don’t let yourself be fooled and ignore them.
- Corrupted links – the kind that Ads by AdFreeApp itself will present you with. That effectively means you can get infected when another virus tries to install one of its buddies on your PC, but that’s obvious. The question is – why? The answer is that these things are a marketing campaign conducted by cyber criminals. They just want you to keep viewing advertisements.
- Fake “shell” programs – these are your typical torrent scam. Their names contain keywords for something popular, a book, movie, song, even a crack for a game, people might search on google for. In reality it’s a .exe file that will install a program.
- Ads by AdFreeApp can also can also be disseminated through freely distributed software. In fact that’s the method that most virus creators prefer. The people who make free software need to earn money somehow and this is how – they add adware in their bundles. If you can recall recently installing such a program, it is the likely reason you got infected with Ads by AdFreeApp. Fortunately these are quite easy to spot i f you know what to look for. Either in the terms of agreement, or somewhere along the steps of the setup, you will likely encounter something like this:
Also, ALWAYS choose the Custom Install option – Express will land you with and adware most of the time.
How to Remove Ads by AdFreeApp
Our first step here is a reboot in Windows 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 Users:
Restart your computer. To be sure you don’t miss the window of time when you need to press it, just spam F8 as soon as the PC starts booting. In the new menu, choose Safe Mode With Networking.
Proceed to Step 2.
For Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 Users:
Press the Windows Key and R at the same time. Select the Boot tab in the new window that appears.
Then check the Safe Boot option and click OK. Click Restart in the new pop-up.
Proceed to Step 2.
For OS X Users:
When you Mac is turned off, press the Power Button. After you hear the Startup Sound, immediately press and hold the Shift key until the Apple logo appears.
Proceed to Step 2.
Ads by AdFreeApp has infected ALL of your browsers. Apply the steps separately for each one.
For Internet Explorer Users:
Open IE, then click —–> Manage Add-ons.
Find Ads by AdFreeApp . Disable it.
If your Home Page is different from the usual, click —–> Internet Options>edit the URL box with your preferred search engine, and click Apply.
For Mozilla Firefox Users:
Open Firefox, click on (top right) ——-> Add-ons.
Hit Extensions next.
Ads by AdFreeApp should be somewhere around here – Remove it.
For Google Chrome Users:
Start Chrome, click —–>More Tools —–> Extensions.
In Extensions, find the virus and select .
Click again, and proceed to Settings —> Search (the fourth tab), select Manage Search Engines. Remove anything but the search engines you normally use.
For Safari Users:
Open Safari, and click Safari —–>Preferences —–> Extensions—–>Uninstall the malware.
(Works for Windows XP, Windows 7, Windows 8, Windows 8.1)
You are now in the Control Panel. Search around for Ads by AdFreeApp and anything else suspicious-looking. 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:
This is perhaps the most important and difficult step, so be extremely careful. 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. If the virus returns later on, the reason is that you missed something here.
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.
We’ve had reports that this virus can come back after you uninstall it. This usually takes place on system boot. If this happens, do the following:
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. Alternatively, if you can’t find any this way, look in these directories, and delete the registries manually:
- HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—–Random numbers
HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—Internet Explorer—-Main—- Random
STEP 6 – Optimization
And that’s it. Well done for removing Ads by AdFreeApp. We’ve prepared a short and sweet optimization guide, specifically designed for users who just removed a virus. It is completely free, you do not need to download anything, and it’s not very time consuming. If you are interested, you can check it out here.