Removing Unwanted Browser Toolbars
Browser toolbars are both a great thing and a terrible thing. Add-on toolbars have been around for years, however, in the last couple of years they've really become a growing concern for everyone. Regrettably, a lot of free software downloads now comes with more unwanted add-ons and browser toolbars, but why? There are exceptional free software downloads available out there for all of us to utilize, but unfortunately we have seen an increase in unwanted bundle software, attempting to cling to up-and-up freeware. At PC-FIF, we are especially upset about his shift. As such, we will provide detailed guides to removing them completely.
These toolbars are at minimum quite irritating, if not flat-out dangerous because they do all kinds of things to your browser:
- Track your browsing activities and searches
- Display annoying ads and manipulate your search results
- Change your homepage and your search engine without your permission
- Take up a lot of (vertical) space inside the browser
- Slow down your browser and degrade your browsing experience
- Fight against each other and make normal add-on handling difficult or impossible
- Become difficult or even impossible for the average user to fully uninstall
Remove Unwanted Toolbars (Internet Explorer)
Internet Explorer and Windows Vista include several layers of defense to prevent unwanted software from modifying the Internet Explorer configuration. If an unwanted toolbar does appear in Internet Explorer, you can disable it using the Add-on Manager. Sometimes, however, the problem may be more persistent. If the problem persists, start Internet Explorer in No Add-ons mode and then use the Add-on Manager to disable all add-ons that you have not intentionally installed.
- Open the Start menu and point to All Programs.
- Point to Accessories, click System Tools, and then click Internet Explorer (No Add-ons).
- Note the Information bar display in your browser that indicates add-ons are disabled.
Fix Unwanted Changes to Settings (Internet Explorer)
If the home page or other settings have changed, you can reset all browser settings except for Favorites, Feed, Internet Connection Settings, Group Policy Settings, and Content Advisor Settings by following these steps:
- Close all windows except for one Internet Explorer window.
- Click Tools and then click Internet Options.
- In the Internet Options dialog box, click the Advanced tab.
- Click Reset.
- In the warning box that appears, click Reset.
- Click Close and then click OK twice. Restart Internet Explorer.
To prevent unwanted changes in the future, ensure that you have all Microsoft Security Updates installed and are using anti-malware software, such as Microsoft Forefront or Windows Defender.