PCActivator removal instructions
What is PCActivator?
Developers promote PCActivator (or PC Activator) as a program that enhances computer's speed and improves its performance by fixing errors, faulty registry entries, issues related to system crashes and so on. Nevertheless, PCActivator is categorized as a potentially unwanted application (PUA). That is because its developers distribute it using a deceptive marketing method called "bundling" (it is included in other software's setups). Typically, people do not download and install apps of this type intentionally.
PCActivator allows its users to scan their computers for various issues and then to review them. However, in order to fix them users are encouraged to register the program. In other words, to purchase a full version. Note, there are many PUAs that deliver fake results. They provide their users with non-existent issues and encourage to fix them by registering/purchasing the program. Simply said, they are designed to trick people into thinking that there are plenty of issues on their computers and the tool that found/detected these issues can fix them. It is unknown whether PCActivator is one of these apps, however, quite a lot of apps that are promoted using deceptive methods are. It is worth mentioning that developers often bundle more than one app, which means that PCActivator could get installed together with some browser hijacker or/and adware-type app or other PUAs. Most apps of this type are designed to collect various information about user's browsing habits and to deliver various ads. They gather data such as IP addresses, geolocations, URLs of visited websites, entered search queries and other similar data. Some of the them might be designed to gather not only the mentioned data, but personal, sensitive information too. Besides, their developers share it with third parties (potentially cyber criminals) who misuse it to generate revenue. Additionally, these PUAs display ads that conceal underlying content of visited websites. It could be various coupons, banners, surveys, pop-up ads and so on. By clicking these ads users risk to be redirected to untrustworthy websites or to cause unwanted downloads/installations. If there are any apps of this type installed, they should be removed as soon as possible. In some cases people who use them experience various problems, for example, issues with privacy, browsing safety, or even end up having their identities stolen.
|Name||PCActivator potentially unwanted application|
|Threat Type||PUP (potentially unwanted program), PUA (potentially unwanted application)|
|Supposed Functionality||System optimization, performance increase.|
|Detection Names (PC-Activator-Setup-1_1106.exe)||Avast (Other:PUP-gen [PUP]), ESET-NOD32 (a variant of MSIL/SafeBytes.C potentially unwanted), Kaspersky (Hoax.Win32.DeceptPCClean.aco), McAfee (Artemis!36958597BD66), Full List Of Detections (VirusTotal)|
|Symptoms||A program that you don't recall installing suddenly appeared on your computer. New application is performing computer scans and displays warning messages about found issues. Asks for payment in order to eliminate the supposedly found errors.|
|Distribution Methods||Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake flash player installers.|
|Damage||Monetary loss (unnecessary purchase of fake software), unwanted warning pop-ups, slow computer performance.|
To eliminate PCActivator potentially unwanted application our malware researchers recommend scanning your computer with Spyhunter.
PCActivator is just one of the many apps that are promoted using the aforementioned method, a couple examples of other apps are Dr. Wolf Internet Security, DriverAgent and Qbit PC Speedup. It is known that apps that are categorized as potentially unwanted tend to be useless. In other words, they do not provide their users with the features/tools that their developers offer while promoting them. Besides, there are many cases where they get installed together with other unwanted apps.
How did potentially unwanted applications install on my computer?
Some potentially unwanted programs can be downloaded from their websites, however, in most cases people download/install them through clicked intrusive ads that we mentioned above or together with some other software. As we mentioned above, to trick people into downloading and installing PUAs, developers use a deceptive marketing method called "bundling". It means that they hide them in "Custom", "Advanced" and other similar parts of other software's download/installation setups. Generally speaking, information about additionally included (bundled) PUAs is not being disclosed properly. There are many users who do not check the mentioned settings, they leave them unchanged. By doing so they give them permissions to be downloaded and/or installed together with the desired programs.
How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications?
In order to avoid downloads and installations of various PUAs, we recommend to download, install various software and browse the web with care. Download all programs from official and trustworthy websites. Other sources such as third party downloaders, torrent clients, eMule or other Peer-to-Peer networks are often used to promote various unwanted apps. Therefore, these sources should not be trusted. Always check all available "Advanced", "Custom" and other similar settings of any download or installation setup and deselect additionally included (unwanted) apps. Avoid clicking on various intrusive ads, they might cause redirects to untrustworthy websites like gambling, pornography, adult dating and other unreliable pages. If intrusive ads are a common problem (or redirects to questionable pages happen often), then we recommend to check the default web browser and see if there are any unwanted/suspicious extensions, add-ons or plug-ins installed on it. Check the list installed programs on your computer as well and uninstall all unwanted or suspicious apps/programs as soon as possible. If your computer is already infected with PUAs, we recommend running a scan with Spyhunter for Windows to automatically eliminate them.
PCActivator installation setup:
Screenshot of PCActivator application:
Appearance of PCActivator (GIF):
Instant automatic removal of PCActivator potentially unwanted application:
Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Spyhunter is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of PCActivator potentially unwanted application. Download it by clicking the button below:
- What is PCActivator?
- STEP 1. Uninstall deceptive applications using Control Panel.
- STEP 2. Remove malicious plug-ins from Internet Explorer.
- STEP 3. Remove rogue extensions from Google Chrome.
- STEP 4. Remove potentially unwanted plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox.
- STEP 5. Remove rogue extensions from Safari.
- STEP 6. Remove rogue plug-ins from Microsoft Edge.
Removal of potentially unwanted applications:
Windows 7 users:
Click Start (Windows Logo at the bottom left corner of your desktop), choose Control Panel. Locate Programs and click Uninstall a program.
Windows XP users:
Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.
Windows 10 and Windows 8 users:
Right-click in the lower left corner of the screen, in the Quick Access Menu select Control Panel. In the opened window choose Programs and Features.
Mac OSX users:
Click Finder, in the opened screen select Applications. Drag the app from the Applications folder to the Trash (located in your Dock), then right click the Trash icon and select Empty Trash.
In the uninstall programs window, look for "PCActivator" and other suspicious/recently-installed applications, select these entries and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".
After uninstalling the potentially unwanted application, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. To scan your computer, use recommended malware removal software.
Remove rogue extensions from Internet browsers:
At the time of research PCActivator did not install any unwanted browser extensions. However note that some unwanted applications can be installed together with adware and browser hijackers. If you see unwanted ads or get unwanted redirects when browsing the Internet continue with the removal guide below.
Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:
Remove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:
Click the "gear" icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer), select "Manage Add-ons". Look for any recently-installed suspicious browser extensions, select these entries and click "Remove".
If you continue to have problems with removal of the pcactivator potentially unwanted application, reset your Internet Explorer settings to default.
Windows XP users: Click Start, click Run, in the opened window type inetcpl.cpl In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.
Windows Vista and Windows 7 users: Click the Windows logo, in the start search box type inetcpl.cpl and click enter. In the opened window click the Advanced tab, then click Reset.
Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.
In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.
Click the Reset button.
Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:
Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome), select "More tools" and click "Extensions". Locate all recently-installed suspicious browser add-ons and remove them.
If you continue to have problems with removal of the pcactivator potentially unwanted application, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select Settings. Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the Advanced… link.
After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset (Restore settings to their original defaults) button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.
Remove malicious plugins from Mozilla Firefox:
Click the Firefox menu (at the top right corner of the main window), select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions", in the opened window remove all recently-installed suspicious browser plug-ins.
Computer users who have problems with pcactivator potentially unwanted application removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.
Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, in the opened menu, click Help.
Select Troubleshooting Information.
In the opened window, click the Refresh Firefox button.
In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Refresh Firefox button.
Remove malicious extensions from Safari:
Make sure your Safari browser is active, click Safari menu, and select Preferences....
In the opened window click Extensions, locate any recently installed suspicious extension, select it and click Uninstall.
Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...
In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.
Remove malicious add-ons from Microsoft Edge:
Click the three horizontal dots icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), select "Extensions". Look for any recently-installed suspicious extensions, right click your mouse on these entries and click "Uninstall".
Click the three horizontal dots icon (at the top right corner of Microsoft Edge), and select Settings.
In the opened tab, click the "Choose what to clear" button.
Click Show more and select everything, and then click the "Clear" button.
- If this didn't help, please follow these alternative instructions explaining how to reset Microsoft Edge browser.
Commonly, adware or potentially unwanted applications infiltrate Internet browsers through free software downloads. Note that the safest source for downloading free software is via developers' websites only. To avoid installation of adware, be very attentive when downloading and installing free software. When installing previously-downloaded free programs, choose the custom or advanced installation options – this step will reveal any potentially unwanted applications listed for installation together with your chosen free program.
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove pcactivator potentially unwanted application from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.
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