This article aims to help users remove Auto Refresh Plus from Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari, as well as their respective system. Symantec has identified Auto Refresh Plus as an adware-class program, making it a prime threat you need to remove immediately, lest you leave your personal files exposed.
If your computer has been infected by Auto Refresh Plus the first thing you need to know is what you are up against. Auto Refresh Plus is a virus-like application of the Adware variety. It exist to generate advertisements and it will populate your browser with them. It will harass you with these Ads every time you start it or load a page or link while working. The Ads in turn could be pop-up windows, banners, at times even entire new pages. Rarely the virus can even turn certain keywords into hyperlinks that will also display a pop-up Ad when hovered over. Often the Ads will be to big even to ignore and you’ll be forced to close every window that opens – an annoying experience.
Your PC is in danger
Adware viruses like Auto Refresh Plus are well known for their ability to serve as “droppers” for other, more dangerous viruses, so ignoring everything shown to you by the virus is of utmost importance. Note that you may even receive fake system messages about non-existing problems with your computer. Things like missing plug-ins, required add-ons, codecs or video players, virus installations or problems with the registry. In addition to those you’ll periodically get offers to download free utility software – anti-virus scanners, registry optimizer or the like. Those programs are NOT real and their installers will either contain a virus or they themselves will be bloatware – that is programs that don’t actually do anything, but try to make you believe there is a problem only they can fix until you pay them.
1: Enter Safe Mode.
2: Remove Auto Refresh Plus from Chrome, Firefox, Internet Explorer and Safari.
3: Remove the virus from browser shortcuts.
4: Uninstall the virus from your AddRemove Programs.
5: Permanently remove Auto Refresh Plus from Task Manager’s processes.
6: Delete the virus from Regedit and Msconfig.
7: Optimize your PC after the removal is done.
Remove Auto Refresh Plus
In order to remove Auto Refresh Plus you need to enter Safe Mode on your computer. This mode prevents all advanced programs to load when you start windows – only the basic functions of the OS are activated. This means that scripts that protect the virus from deletion will not work as well. Using Safe Mode is not strictly necessary for all computers infected by Auto Refresh Plus as some people report being able to remove the virus without using it, but it’s better not to risk everything and use it regardless.
Our first step here is the 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 Users:
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. In the new menu, choose Safe Mode With Networking.
Proceed to Step 2.
For W. 8 and 8.1 Users:
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 new pop-up.
Proceed to Step 2.
For Windows 10 Users:
- Open the Start menu.
- Click the power button icon in the right corner of the new 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.
Windows 10 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).
Continue with Step 2.
Deleting all copies hiding in your internet browsers is up next. To do that you will have to run Step 2 and Step 3 for ALL browsers that are installed on your machine. Note that this includes even those that are not used, but nevertheless an installation of them remains (as in the case of Internet Explorer for people using another browser).
It is possible that Auto Refresh Plus may try to create a message when you try to delete it. The text can vary to make creating examples hard, but in essence the virus will want you to install another virus (again masked as something else) or log-in to an infected site. Deny anything Auto Refresh Plus throws at you and proceed with the deletion.
For Internet Explorer Users:
Open IE, then click —–> Manage Add-ons.
Find Auto Refresh Plus . 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.
Go to STEP 3.
For Mozilla Firefox Users:
Open Firefox, click on (top right) ——-> Add-ons. Hit Extensions next.
Auto Refresh Plus should be somewhere around here – Remove it.
Go to STEP 3.
For Google Chrome Users:
Start Chrome, click —–>More Tools —–> Extensions. There, find the virus and select (Remove).
Click again, and proceed to Settings —> Search, the fourth tab, select Manage Search Engines. Remove anything but the search engines you normally use.
Go to STEP 3.
For Safari Users:
Open Safari, and click Safari —–>Preferences —–> Extensions—–>Uninstall the malware.
Go to STEP 3.
Right click on the browser’s shortcut, then click Properties.
NOTE: We are showing Google Chrome, but the method is the same for all browsers.
Once you’ve reached Properties —–> Shortcut (on the band at the top), then in the Target type field, REMOVE EVERYTHING AFTER .exe.
Continue with STEP 4.
Hold the Windows Key and R together. Write appwiz.cpl in the new field, then click OK.
You are now in the Control Panel. Search around for Auto Refresh Plus 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:
Hold the Windows Key and R again – but this time copy + paste the following and click OK:
A .txt file will open – don’t touch anything there. 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.
Go to STEP 5.
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.
FINAL STEPS, BUT READ THIS FIRST!
Now you will have to work with the Task Manager and also delete some system files. Please be very careful, as doing something wrong can damage your OS or other programs installed significantly. This is not something we recommend beginners to do and if you are worried you could also give the professional Auto Refresh Plus remover we recommend a try. Another solid reason to do this is because it comes with a in-dept scanner that can locate all manner of threats that never make themselves seen as Auto Refresh Plus did. Those are usually also the most dangerous ones, because by the time you realize something is wrong it might be too late to do anything about it.
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.
Move on to STEP 6.
Take a look at the following things:
Type msconfig in the search field and hit enter: you will be transported to a new window.
Go in the Startup tab and Uncheck anything that has “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 the registries manually:
- HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—–Random numbers
HKEY_CURRENT_USER—-Software—Microsoft—Internet Explorer—-Main—- Random
Remember to leave us a comment if you run into any trouble!
Did we help you? Please, consider helping us by spreading the word!
STEP 7 – Optimization
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 – How To Remove Guide’s Optimization Tips.