This page aims to help you remove HohoSearch. These HohoSearch How-to removal instructions work for Chrome, Firefox and Internet Explorer, as well as every version of Windows.
What is HohoSearch? Is it a virus?
Before you dive heads first into the removal instructions below, we’d like to take a moment of your time to explain the concept behind HohoSearch and what does Browser Redirect refer to. Firstly, this is not considered as a ‘virus’ by most security experts, because it differs from the standard definition of a virus. While a virus can severely alter your operating system and/or Personal Computer, Browser redirects are most commonly linked to Adware which is mostly known as a PUP (potentially unwanted program). Which is to say, it’s much less dangerous than a virus, but shouldn’t be neglected either.
The only main similarity between a virus and adware is the way they attack your PC. They usually invade your system from software you download that can be considered suspicious, or from email attachments. Additionally, they can also either hide in optional downloads hidden deep within the advanced settings of installers or even be the program itself that you are installing. Software download platforms are notorious for having adware as optional downloads inside the installers of their programs. Be extra careful when installing and always inspect every single step of the installation process, especially the advanced settings. Uncheck any boxes that you aren’t sure what they do.
Whichever way HohoSearch infiltrated your PC, it often displays similar behavior and symptoms to others of its type. It’s differences from viruses are outlined in the next section. Read below to find out how you can identify it and what it does. It’s important to know what you’re up against.
Common symptoms you could be experiencing
HohoSearch is primarily intended to flood your favorite browser with obnoxious ads that are often very obstructive and annoying. They can block the content on the page you are viewing by using pop-up ads that are basically big windows that get “in your face” front and center on the page. They also employ banners on the side of the web pages, or in-text hyperlinks. The banners can vary in size, but they tend to occupy the sides of the page. In-text ads are basically links to other locations on the net hidden within the text of a web page. Sometimes a window can pop up when you hover over the hyperlink.
HohoSearch also uses various, but often similar, ways to gather your private information and send it back to its creator. Things such as your browsing habits, websites and webpages you visit, IPs, search queries and any other browser related information are all part of the information most Adware gather. After that, they use it to personalize the ads they show you to shape them to your liking. They may seem alluring at first, but should always be ignored, because you have no benefit from clicking on them.
Not only that, but the creators of this HohoSearch can also utilize their piece of software to generate revenue. One such method are the ads themselves. They earn money every time you click on them. This is called pay-per-click and is a very popular way for companies to pay a given website for allowing them to place ads on it. Unfortunately, this also applies to the developers of adware and is often the main reason why these people bother with programming this software in the first place.
Recommended practices with HohoSearch
Generally, you should always avoid any interaction with these ads. Not only will they lead you to locations/websites on the net that are potentially dangerous, but they can introduce more Adware into your PC by asking you to download a program that will only harm you more. Any promises they may give you on the other end of the ad links should always be ignored because they are nothing more but empty promises. Always ignore any and all ads coming from the Adware. Usually you can differentiate them from normal advertisements, because they tend to stand out or seem misplaced from the rest of the web page.
If you are currently experiencing similar symptoms on browsers such as Chrome or Firefox, we highly recommend you follow the removal instructions outlined below. Uninstalling HohoSearch yourself can be rather difficult, the best and safest way to remove adware is to use our recommended tool.
HohoSearch Removal Instructions
Many types of malware will restrict your access to their core files. It is highly recommended that you reboot your PC in safe mode before attempting to use this guide.
- To enable Safe Mode reboot you PC, then hit F8 repeatedly. When the corresponding menu opens please select Safe Mode with Networking.
WARNING! If you are using Windows 8,0 or later and/or your operating system is installed on a fast SSD drive this may fail to work. In this case click here to see how to start your PC in Safe Mode.
#1: Uninstall the malicious program from your control panel
Enter control panel to look for any suspicious programs, which may have installed on your PC. To do that:
- Navigate to your Desktop
- Press simultaneously the Win button together with the R button (Win+R)
- In the Run window that just opened type appwiz.cpl
- Go through the list of programs and find HohoSearch or anything else that may seem suspicious. Right-click on it and choose the uninstallation option
WARNING! Carefully read any confirmation messages that may be created in the process. Sometimes you may get offers to download more Adware applications and this can be linked to either the Yes or the No answer depending on the wording!
Go through the list of programs again and check online for any potentially unwanted programs. We have an article that covers this awesome free software that makes sure that your computer is free from bloatware and programs that you don’t need.
#2: Remove HohoSearch From Chrome
Now we’ll remove the extensions that the malware has attached to your browser.
- Open your Google Chrome browser.
- Type chrome://extensions/ in the URL address bar and press Enter.
- Click on “Developer Mode” on the top right and look for the extension installed by HohoSearch and anything that might be related to it. Copy their IDs (the string of letters), then remove them by clicking on the trash bin icon.
- Type Regedit in the Windows Start Menu and press Enter. Go in : HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Google\Chrome\Extensions and delete the entries corresponding to the suspicious IDs you recorded.
#3: Remove HohoSearch From Firefox
- Open Mozilla Firefox browser.
- Type “about:support” in the URL address bar and press Enter.
- Click on the “Refresh Firefox” button on the right and confirm.
#4 Remove HohoSearch From Internet Explorer
- Open your Internet Explorer internet browser.
- Click on the Gear icon on the up right, then on manage add-ons.
- Go through the list disable any suspicious extensions.
#5 Remove any leftover parasitic processes
From the task manager:
- Use Ctrl + Shift + Esc and open the Task manager, then click on the Processes
- Go through the list of processes and look for unknown or otherwise suspicious entries.
- If you see anything suspicious right click on the process and shoes Open File Location, then terminate the process and delete any files you find in the directory.
WARNING! If the directory you open from this menu has no files inside of it it’s probably because the malware has hidden them. You need to reveal hidden files and folders in order to be able to see them. Click here if you don’t know how to do that.
From the start menu:
- Press simultaneously the Win button together with the R button (Win+R)
- In the Run window that just opened type msconfig
- Click on the Startup tab.
This menu controls which programs are loaded when windows starts after a reboot. Disable anything that seems suspicious. Optionally you can also disable any program that you don’t need and also has a high impact on your startup time.
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