How to remove Mystart Search Virus (June 2017 Update)

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


This page aims to help you remove the Mystart Search Virus. Our removal instructions work for Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer, as well as every version of Windows.

There are many programs which are capable of imposing certain modifications (such as homepage or search engine replacements or new toolbars installation) to your default browser and use it to display hundreds of nagging ads and pop-ups. These programs are usually classified as browser hijackers and one of them is Mystart Search Virus. If this application has recently caused your Chrome, Firefox or Explorer to become unresponsive to your searches and to redirect you to various sites full of nagging ads, pop-ups and banners, on this page, we are going to show you how to effectively remove it. Some people have recently asked us if Mystart Search Virus is some kind of a virus and can it be dangerous for their computers. Fortunately, this is not the case and even if this program may cause some irritation, it definitely cannot be as malicious as a Ransomware, a Trojan horse or some other virus-like infection. In the next lines, we will explain you what exactly can a browser hijacker do and what are the potential issues you may face if you don’t uninstall it from your system. You can also read about how to effectively prevent such software from invading your browser in the future, so stay with us until the end as there is a lot to learn.

What is a browser hijacker?

It is not a secret that the web space is the perfect place to advertise. With more and more businesses, switching from traditional to digital marketing, they desperately try to promote their products and services as much as possible, and one of the most commonly used and aggressive tools for that in that is the browser hijacker. Mystart Search Virus is a typical representative, which is developed and programmed to serve the advertising needs of the online industry by hijacking the users’ browsers and making them display certain promotional sites, ads, and offers. Its hijacking activity may also be related to some sudden page redirects, installation of some new toolbars, search engines or homepages. The reason for this invasion in your normal browsing settings is usually the strive of the hijacker owners to drag traffic and clicks to the sponsored web pages and ads and earn from Pay-Per-Click campaigns.  This way, they can gain some revenues to support their businesses. However, the advertising materials that the users frequently get exposed to, may be quite aggressive, difficult to close or remove, and may cause some serious browsing-related disturbance and irritation.

What are the usual browser hijacker sources?

Driven by the desire for more profits, the developers of browser hijackers often distribute them along with some other attractive and mostly free software, by placing them inside the installer. This way, if the users download and install the free software installer through the Standard/Automatic option, they will automatically install the bundled browser hijacker as well.  Such packages (aka bundles) can mostly be found in open source platforms, direct free download links, online installation managers, spam messages, torrents, emails with attachments, etc. In order to prevent the installation of the potentially unwanted programs they may contain, we strongly advise our users to always read the EULA and use only the Custom/Advanced installation option when they have to run the installers.

Mystart Search Virus is not a virus, but this is what it could do:

As we already said above, neither Mystart Search Virus nor any other program from the browser hijacker family can be seen as a serious threat to your computer. Basically, this type of software does not contain malicious scripts, unlike the Ransomware, the Trojans, and the other nasty viruses. That’s why the security experts don’t see a real reason for the users to get panicked if a program of this type takes over their browser. In most of the cases, the browser hijacker can easily be uninstalled from the system without any harmful or destructive consequences and in the removal guide below you will find the exact instructions for that.

While operating, however, a piece like Mystart Search Virus may cause some irritation of the following type:

  • Your homepage or search engine may be replaced by some strange unfamiliar ones.
  • Practically any browser, Chrome, Firefox, IE, Edge or some other, can become unresponsive to your searches, and get busy in displaying hundreds of unwanted advertisements.
  • The browser overall performance may get slow. It may take it ages to load the pages you want and you may suddenly get redirected to some other sponsored sites.
  • Some traffic data about your recent online activity may be collected and transmitted to the developers or third parties for the purposes of marketing.
  • In some rare cases, the hijacker may indirectly expose you to a harmful ad, a misleading link or compromised web page if a hacker secretly loads some malicious payload inside the ads that get displayed. This may lead to the infection with some nasty virus or some other computer threat.

SUMMARY:

Name Mystart Search
Type Browser Hijacker
Danger Level Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)
Symptoms  Homepage or search engine replacements or new toolbars installation, aggressive ads generation.
Distribution Method Open source platforms, direct free download links, online installation managers, spam messages, torrents, emails with attachments, etc.
Detection Tool We generally recommend SpyHunter or a similar anti-malware program that is updated daily.

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.

Mystart Search Virus 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.


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!

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. If you want a fast safe solution, we recommend SpyHunter. 

>> Click to Download Spyhunter. If you don't want this software, continue with the guide below.

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

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 Mystart Search Virus 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 Mystart Search Virus from Firefox:

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

pic 6

Find the adware/malware —> Remove.
chrome-logo-transparent-backgroundRemove Mystart Search Virus 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

WARNING!
To remove parasite, you may have to meddle with system files and registries. Making a mistake and deleting the wrong thing may damage your system.
Avoid this by using SpyHunter - a professional Parasite removal tool.

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

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!