How to remove ProductiveRotator (Mac OS)

ProductiveRotator is an ad-supported software or Adware that specifically targeting internet browser programs running on Mac OS. This threat possesses an intrusive mechanism to infiltrate the computer and aggressively attack Safari, Google Chrome, or Mozilla Firefox. Like older variants as ChangeParameter, ExpandedCommand, and TypeConsole, ProductiveRotator will surely cause distraction to Mac user’s online searching and browsing activities. Although this program claims that improvement on Mac user’s browsing is its area of expertise, users who install ProductiveRotator did not experience this enhancement. In fact, it is a nuisance to their online activities.

Signs of ProductiveRotator Infection

Once ProductiveRotator is operational on the browser program, Mac user may witness several unusual behaviors such as the following:

  • Excessive pop-ups will show up on the browser program.
  • Online pages keeps on redirected to unfamiliar sites.
  • Homepage will have a new layout and URL.
  • When doing an online search, there will be split-second visible redirects.
  • Additional unknown toolbar may suddenly exist on the browser.
  • Diminishing online browsing performance due to redundant process by ProductiveRotator.

Experiencing the above-mentioned signs are not only annoying. The redirects can divert the browser pages to various dubious sites that can lead to downloading of bogus applications or malware.

ProductiveRotator App

How it infects Mac computer?

Several spread tactics are employed to reach target victims. Hence, the most favored one is through the integration of ProductiveRotator to different software installer like freeware or shareware. Once Mac user executes these type of carriers, there will be a simultaneous setup for ProductiveRotator and once completed, this adware immediately attacks the browser and begin to dominate its operation.

Some Mac user claims that ProductiveRotator’s sudden appearance happens after downloading a software update. It could be that they were tricked to download a bogus software update. In fact, this pop-up software update is the recent trend in spreading malware. These are actually pop-up advertisements that were made to appear as system alert. It prompts web user that obsolete program were identified and downloading the update is crucial. Obviously, downloading such bogus app will pave way for ProductiveRotator to seek refuge on Mac computer.

Procedures to Remove ProductiveRotator from Mac

This area contains comprehensive procedures to help you remove adware and potentially unwanted program from the computer.

Guide on this page are written in a manner that can be easily understand and execute by Mac users.

Quick Fix - Scan the System with Combo Cleaner

Combo Cleaner is a trusted Mac utility application with complete antivirus and optimization features. It is useful in dealing with adware, malware, and PUP's. Moreover, it can get rid of adware like ProductiveRotator. You may need to purchase full version if you require to maximize its premium features.

1. Download the tool from the following page:

2. Double-click the downloaded file and proceed with the installation.

3. In the opened window, drag and drop the Combo Cleaner icon onto your Applications folder icon.

Install Combo Cleaner

4. Open your Launchpad and click on the Combo Cleaner icon.

5. Wait until antivirus downloads its latest virus definition updates and click on "Start Combo Scan" to start removing ProductiveRotator.

Combo Cleaner Scanner

6. Free features of Combo Cleaner include Disk Cleaner, Big Files finder, Duplicate files finder, and Uninstaller. To use antivirus and privacy scanner, users have to upgrade to a premium version.

Proceed with the rest of the removal steps if you are comfortable in manually removing malicious objects associated with the threat.

Step 1 : Delete ProductiveRotator from Mac Applications

1. Go to Finder.

2. On the menu, click Go and then, select Applications from the list to open Applications Folder.

3. Find ProductiveRotator or any unwanted program.

Delete Unwanted App

4. Drag ProductiveRotator to Trash Bin to delete the application from Mac.

5. Right-click on Trash icon and click on Empty Trash.

Step 2 : Remove Browser Extensions that belongs to ProductiveRotator

1. Locate the add-on or extension that is relevant to the adware. To do this, please follow the following depending on affected browser.

Safari - Choose Preferences from the Safari menu, then click the Extensions icon. This will open a window showing all installed extensions.

Chrome - Select Preferences from the Chrome menu, and then click the Extensions link found on the left pane.

Firefox - Choose Add-ons from the Menu. Look at both the Extensions and Plug-ins lists when it opens a new window.

2. Once you have located ProductiveRotator, click on Remove or Uninstall, to get rid of it.

3. Close the browser and proceed to the next steps.

Step 3 : Delete Malicious Files that have installed ProductiveRotator

1. Select and copy the string below to your Clipboard by pressing Command + C on your keyboard.

~/Library/LaunchAgents

2. Go to your Finder. From the menu bar please select Go > Go to Folder...

3. Press Command + V on your keyboard to paste the copied string. Press Return to go to the said folder.

Command + V

4. You will now see a folder named LaunchAgents. Take note of the following files inside the folder:

  • com.ProductiveRotator
  • unknown.download.plist
  • unknown.ltvbit.plist
  • unknown.update.plist

The term unknown is just a representation of the actual malware name. Attackers may masks the actual name with following:

- ExpandedCommand, TypeConsole

If you cannot find the specified file, please look for any unfamiliar or suspicious entries. It may be the one causing ProductiveRotator to be present on your Mac. Arranging all items to see the most latest ones may also help you identify recently installed unfamiliar files. Please press Option + Command + 4 on your keyboard to arrange the application list in chronological order.

Option+Command+4

Important: Take note of all the suspicious files as you may also delete the same item on another folder as we go on.

5. Drag all suspicious files that you may find to Trash.

6. Please restart the computer.

7. Open another folder using the same method as above. Copy and Paste the following string to easily locate the folder.

~/Library/Application Support

8. Look for any suspicious items that are similar to the ones in Step 4. Drag them to the Trash.

9. Repeat the process on the following non-hidden folders (without ~):

/Library/LaunchAgents
/Library/LaunchDaemons
/Library/Application Support

10. Lastly, go to your Finder and open the Applications Folder. Look for subfolders with the following names and drag them to Trash.

- ExpandedCommand, TypeConsole

Optional : For locked files that cannot be removed, do the following:

1. Go to Launchpad, Utilities folder, open Activity Monitor.

2. Select the process you want to quit.

Force Quit Apps

3. Click on Force Quit button.

4. You may now delete or remove locked files that belongs to ProductiveRotator adware.

Step 4 : Double-check with MBAM Tool for Mac

1. Download Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac from this link:

2. Run Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac. It will check for updates and download if most recent version is available. This is necessary in finding recent malware threats including ProductiveRotator.

3. If it prompts to close all running web browser, please do so. Thus, we advise you to PRINT this guide for your reference before going offline.

4. Once it opens the user interface, please click on Scan button to start scanning your Mac computer.

MBAM for Mac

5. After the scan, Malwarebytes Anti-malware for Mac will display a list of identified threats, ProductiveRotator is surely part of it. Be sure to select all items in the list. Then, click Remove button to clean the computer.

Step 5 : Remove ProductiveRotator from Homepage and Search

Safari

- Open your Safari browser.
- Go to Safari Menu located on upper left hand corner, and then select Preferences.
- Under General tab, navigate to Default Search Engine section and select Google or any valid search engine.
- Next, be sure that "New Windows Open With" field is set to Homepage.
- Lastly, remove ProductiveRotator from the Homepage field. Replace it with your preferred URL to be set as your default homepage.

Google Chrome

- Open Chrome browser.
- Type the following on the address bar and press Enter on keyboard : chrome://settings/
- Look for 'On Startup' area.
- Select 'Open a specific page or set of pages'.
- Click on More Actions and select Edit.
- Enter the desired web address as your home page, replacing ProductiveRotator. Click Save.
- To set default search engine, go to Search Engine area.
- Click on 'Manage search engines...' button.
- Go to questionable Search Engine. Click on More Actions and Click 'Remove from list'.
- Go back to Search Engine area and choose valid entry from Search engine used in the address bar.

Mozilla Firefox

- Run Mozilla Firefox browser.
- Type the following on the address bar and hit Enter on keyboard : about:preferences
- On Startup area, select 'Show your home page' under 'When Firefox starts' field.
- Under Home Page field, type the desired URL to replace ProductiveRotator settings.
- To configure default search engine, select Search on left sidebar to display settings.
- Under Default Search Engine list, please select one.
- On the same page, you have an option to Remove unwanted search engine.

Optional : If unable to change browser settings, execute these steps:

Some user complains that there is no way to change browser settings because it is grayed out by ProductiveRotator. In such situation, it is important to check if there is unwanted profile. Please do the following:

1. Quit any running applications and launch System Preferences from your Dock.

2. Under System Preferences, click Profiles.

3. Select ProductiveRotator or any relevant profile from the left pane. See image below.

Remove Profile

4. At the bottom of this window, click minus [-] button to delete the account. Please refer to image above.

5. Close the Profiles window and open the affected browser to change all settings associated with ProductiveRotator.

Protect Mac against ProductiveRotator

Because majority of adware and malware sources are online, it is best to install a security application that guards the internet transmission. Security apps offering this protection is useful in blocking the possible downloading of malicious programs and is also effective in thwarting a visit to questionable websites. Apart from having a decent anti-virus or anti-malware tool, being vigilant while online is another effective way to prevent online threats. Never visit suspicious site and do not download anything that aggressive pop-ups are offering. These are the common origin of online malware attacks. In addition, never open email attachment particularly if unexpected and originating from a  suspicious sender.

Post Last Modified On October 9, 2020

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