PDFFreeSearch is a deceiving search application that categorically marked as a browser hijacker. Some computer users mistakenly claimed that it is a form of malware infection. This is due to the manner when gaining access to the computer, and the way it behave while running on the system. It is true that it has similar intrusive traits as computer viruses. Hence, computer security experts are tagging PDFFreeSearch as a potentially unwanted program (PUP) and not a virus.
Installation of PDFFreeSearch
PDFFreeSearch can be added to the browser though you did not install it intentionally. It commonly sneaks into the computer with the help of third party programs. Note that this scheme is the typical reason why most computer users acquired PDFFreeSearch and other unwanted application without their knowledge. Once active inside the computer, the unknown application can do so many things that will negative affect how web users interact online.
Changes to browser’s home page, new tab, and search engine are the primary sign that a browser redirect adware is attacking your computer. Some issues associated with this dubious search tools are an intrusion of online privacy, showing the vast amount of online advertisements, and sluggish system performance.
Getting rid of PDFFreeSearch
Dealing with PDFFreeSearch hijacker is not just distressing experience, but it is also risky. The presence of this devious search application may pose additional computer threats. We have to remind you that while you are using this unknown search tool, it may attract and invite unwanted items, suspicious codes, and other harmful items as WebSearchPDF, TopAdblockSearch, and WebCouponSearch.
Therefore, immediately after you detect PDFFreeSearch, you must remove it right away. This is the best thing to do to guard your protect from further disaster, and severe issues that this adware may dump into your computer. Full procedure is outlined below. Just make sure to execute all the steps and do not forget to scan the computer with suggested anti-virus and anti- malware tools.
PDFFreeSearch Removal Procedure
Below is a systematic instruction that is very useful in getting rid of the potentially unwanted program (PUP) from compromised Windows computer. Aside from removing the malicious browser extension, this guide is also helpful in deleting browser hijacker and pop-ups.
In order to totally eliminate the threat, it is vital to follow the process in exact manner.
Quick Fix - Scan the PC with Combo Cleaner for Windows
Combo Cleaner is a trusted PC security and optimization tool equipped with powerful virus and malware detection engine. This program can get rid of browser hijacker like PDFFreeSearch through this procedure.
1. Download the application from the following page:
2. Save the file to your preferred location.
3. Double-click the downloaded file CCSetup.exe and install with the default settings.
4. At the end of the setup process, click Finish to run Combo Cleaner.
5. The tool will update the signature file, please wait for this process to complete.
6. To begin checking for threats like PDFFreeSearch, click on the Start Scan button. Wait for this scan to finish.
7. At the end of the scan process, click on Remove all threats to delete PDFFreeSearch hijacker including all malicious objects from the computer.
Free features of Combo Cleaner for Windows includes Disk Cleaner, Big Files finder, Duplicate files finder, and Uninstaller. To use antivirus, privacy scanner, and to delete identified threats, users have to upgrade to a premium version.
Please continue with the succeeding removal procedures if your are comfortable to manually get rid of the threat and malicious items linked with it.
Step 1 : Delete PDFFreeSearch Browser Extension
Most adware and unwanted programs are using a program called browser extension to be able to take over the settings of internet applications. Therefore, we highly recommend to check and remove the extension that is closely related to PDFFreeSearch.
Remove PDFFreeSearch Extension from Google Chrome
1. Open Google Chrome browser.
2. Type chrome://extensions/ in the address bar and press Enter on keyboard.
3. Find PDFFreeSearch or relevant entry and remove it from Google Chrome browser.
Uninstall PDFFreeSearch Extension from Mozilla Firefox
1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser.
2. Type about:addons in the address bar and press Enter on keyboard.
3. Choose Extensions on sidebar menu.
4. Look for object that is pertaining to PDFFreeSearch and remove it from the browser.
After deleting the malicious browser extension, it is expected that PDFFreeSearch is also gone from the homepage.
Remove PDFFreeSearch Add-ons from Internet Explorer and Edge Browser
1. Open Internet Explorer program.
2. Go to top Menu and click Tools. Then, select Manage Add-ons from the drop-down list.
3. Look for and Remove or Disable entries of PDFFreeSearch from Toolbars and Extension. Additionally, delete unwanted entry from Search Providers section.
4. Close the window and restart Internet Explorer.
If PDFFreeSearch is still present on the IE browser and there are still unwanted homepage and pop-ups, another option is to remove the adware from Windows Control Panel.
5. Press Windows Key + R and then, type appwiz.cpl command.
6. Program and Features window will open. Arrange the list in chronological manner with recently installed applications on top. To do this, click on 'Installed On' column.
7. Select PDFFreeSearch or recently installed unwanted entry. Then, click on Uninstall to remove it from Windows system.
Step 2 : Scan the computer with Sophos Antivirus
To remove PDFFreeSearch automatically, scanning the computer with this powerful anti-virus tool is recommended. This scanner does not just uncover known threats like viruses or malware, it is also effective in discovering browser hijacker like PDFFreeSearch that slows down online browsing activities.
1. Download Sophos Virus Removal Tool from the link below. Save the file on your computer where you can easily access it.
2. Once the download completes, browse the location of the file. Double-click to run the program and begin the install process.
3. On first windows of installation wizard, click Next to continue. Then, it will display the program’s License Agreement. You need to Accept the terms in order to proceed. If Windows prompts for User Account Control, please click Yes to proceed.
4. On succeeding windows, click Next or Continue to carry on with the installation. After completing the installation process, Launch Sophos Virus Removal Tool.
5. Internet connection is required when running this scanner in order to download important updates. Make sure that everything is up-to-date to effectively remove malicious program like PDFFreeSearch.
6. Click the button to carry out the Scan. This will check the system for presence of malicious objects, malware, and viruses. The tool reveals items that were found linked to PDFFreeSearch and other suspicious entities. Be sure to remove all identified threats.
The above procedures should have totally eliminated the PDFFreeSearch browser hijacker. However, if you found that there are still remnants of the threat, please proceed to manual removal of associated objects as outlined below.
Step 3 : Scan and Delete Adware with AdwCleaner
In addition to the procedure, we suggest scanning the computer with AdwCleaner tool. Possibly, there are some traces of PDFFreeSearch on the browser that was not deleted during the preceding steps. This tool will scan the computer and check for presence of malicious applications as well as invalid browser entries that produces hijacking, redirects, and pop-ups.
1. Follow the link below to download the tool called AdwCleaner.
2. When the download has completed, please close all running programs on the computer especially browsers affected by PDFFreeSearch.
3. Browse the location of the downloaded file and double-click on adwcleaner_Ver.exe to start running the tool. Then, click on Scan button.
4. AdwCleaner searches the computer for malicious programs, extensions, plug-ins, adware, and any items that may be associated to PDFFreeSearch. It will also check for suspicious entries on browser settings that is associated with the hijacker.
5. Clean or Remove all suspicious and harmful items identified after the thorough scan.
6. After the cleanup procedure, rebooting the computer is required to finalize the removal of detected threats.
Check if your internet browser application is no longer being bothered by PDFFreeSearch. If the browser hijacker still persists, please continue with the steps below to reset internet programs to default settings.
Optional : Reset Internet Browser Program
Cleaning your internet browser from clutter and unwanted add-on/extension is a must when dealing with PDFFreeSearch. The procedure below discuss on resetting various browsers to its default state.
Restore Google Chrome to Default Settings
Resetting Google Chrome to default settings is helpful in deleting hard-to-remove extension such as from PDFFreeSearch. This method is highly advisable to perform if you have difficulty in removing unwanted extension.
1. Open Google Chrome Internet browser.
2. On the address bar, type chrome://settings/reset and press Enter key.
3. Under Reset and clean up section, choose Restore settings to their original defaults.
4. Click Reset settings button to clear all entries of PDFFreeSearch.
5. Close the existing tab and restart Google Chrome. That should have removed PDFFreeSearch extension and associated objects.
Reset Mozilla Firefox to Default
This section describes how to remove unwanted extension from Firefox that may be related to PDFFreeSearch. This process can fix many browser issues by restoring Firefox to factory settings without affecting your essential information (bookmarks, browsing history, passwords, and Internet cookies) on the browser. If you desire to remove only specific extension, please see manual removal of add-on from Firefox.
1. Input the string about:support on Firefox web address and press Enter on keyboard.
2. You will now see the Troubleshooting Information page of Mozilla Firefox.
3. You will notice a section on upper-right corner of the screen stating Give Firefox a tune up. Click the Refresh Firefox button.
4. If confirmation window appears, click Refresh Firefox to continue.
5. Firefox browser will close and start the resetting process. When done, it will display a list of restored data. PDFFreeSearch should be gone by now. Click Finish to open a fresh version of Firefox.
Restore Internet Explorer to Default Settings
1. Open Internet Explorer and navigate to top menu. Click Tools, and then Internet Options.
2. Select Advanced tab on Internet Options window.
3. On lower part of the window, under Reset Internet Explorer Settings area, click the Reset button. Please see image for reference. Your data like favorites, bookmark, and history will remain in the browser. However, this process may delete add-ons by PDFFreeSearch and other unknown objects. If you prefer to carry out the procedure manually, please add-on removal from Internet Explorer.