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How to remove ValidGeneration adware

Also Known As: Ads by ValidGeneration
Type: Mac Virus
Damage level: Medium

What is ValidGeneration?

ValidGeneration is classified as adware and a browser hijacker. This app serves advertisements and promotes z6airr.com and adjustablesample.com (fake search engine addresses) by changing browser settings. Furthermore, it can read sensitive information from browsers.

Generally, users download adware-type apps/browser hijackers inadvertently. Therefore, ValidGeneration and other apps of this type are categorized as potentially unwanted applications (PUAs).

ValidGeneration adware

In most cases, apps such as ValidGeneration serve banners, coupons, pop-up ads, surveys, and other advertisements. These often promote untrusted websites and, in some cases, cause unwanted downloads and installations. Furthermore, ValidGeneration changes browser settings to z6airr.com.com on Safari, and to adjustablesample.com on Chrome.

It assigns one of these addresses (depending on the hijacked browser) as the address of the default search engine, homepage, and new tab. Note that z6airr.com and adjustablesample.com provide results generated by Yahoo (they redirects users to search.yahoo.com).

Typically, users cannot remove the address of the search engine promoted by the installed browser hijacker (in this case, ValidGeneration) as long as the PUA is installed on the browser and/or computer. ValidGeneration can also read sensitive information such as passwords, credit card details, telephone numbers, and some other data such as browsing histories.

This information could be misused for malicious purposes. For example, to steal personal accounts (e.g., email, social media), identities, and make fraudulent purchases and transactions.

Therefore, ValidGeneration users might become victims of identity theft, lose access to various personal accounts, suffer monetary loss, have problems relating to browsing safety and online privacy, and experience other issues.

Threat Summary:
Name Ads by ValidGeneration
Threat Type Adware, Mac malware, Mac virus.
Detection Names Avast (MacOS:AdAgent-L [Adw]), AVG (MacOS:AdAgent-L [Adw]), ESET-NOD32 (Multiple Detections), Kaspersky (Not-a-virus:HEUR:AdWare.OSX.Adload.h), Full List (VirusTotal).
Additional Information This application belongs to the Adload malware family.
Symptoms Your Mac becomes slower than normal, you see unwanted pop-up ads, you are redirected to dubious websites.
Distribution methods Deceptive pop-up ads, free software installers (bundling), fake Flash Player installers, torrent file downloads.
Damage Internet browser tracking (potential privacy issues), display of unwanted ads, redirects to dubious websites, loss of private information.
Malware Removal (Mac)

To eliminate possible malware infections, scan your Mac with legitimate antivirus software. Our security researchers recommend using Combo Cleaner.
▼ Download Combo Cleaner for Mac
To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Combo Cleaner. Limited three days free trial available.

ValidGeneration very similar (or even identical) to a number other apps of this type including, for example, AdjustableProduct, OperativeState, and BoostCoordinator. In most cases, these apps are useless, do not include any features or improve the browsing experience, etc.

They are designed only to help the developers to generate revenue by serving advertisements, gathering user-system information, and promoting fake search engines. Therefore, PUAs such as ValidGeneration should never be downloaded or installed.

How did ValidGeneration install on my computer?

Browser hijackers, adware-type apps, and other types of PUAs are commonly distributed by integrating them into the download and/or installation set-ups of other programs, so that a proportion of users inadvertently download and install them together with their chosen software.

This distribution method is known as "bundling". Offers to download and install additionally-included apps usually appear in "Advanced", "Custom" and other settings of the set-ups (where they can usually be declined).

Many users fail to check and change these settings, thereby granting permission for PUAs to be downloaded and installed by default. In addition, unwanted downloads and installations are sometimes caused by clicking deceptive advertisements capable of executing certain scripts.

How to avoid installation of potentially unwanted applications

Files and programs should be downloaded from official pages and through direct links. Unofficial pages, third party downloaders/installers, Peer-to-Peer networks (e.g., torrent clients, eMule), etc., are often used to distribute potentially unwanted, even malicious applications.

Check all "Advanced", "Custom", and "Manual" settings and decline offers to download or install potentially unwanted apps. Do not click ads that appear on dubious web pages, since they can open untrusted websites or cause unwanted downloads and installations. Remove any suspicious extensions, add-ons and plug-ins installed on the browser.

The same applies to software of this kind that is installed on the operating system. If your computer is already infected with ValidGeneration, we recommend running a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus for macOS to automatically eliminate this adware.

Pop-up window displayed once ValidGeneration installation is complete:

validgenerationa adware pop-up displayed once installation is finished

Z6airr.com provides results generated by Yahoo (GIF):

z6airr.com redirects to search.yahoo.com

Adjustablesample.com provides results generated by Yahoo (GIF):

validgeneration adware search.adjustablesample.com provides its results

ValidGeneration installed on Safari:

validgeneration adware installed on safari

ValidGeneration installation folder:

validgeneration adware contents folder

Instant automatic Mac malware removal: Manual threat removal might be a lengthy and complicated process that requires advanced computer skills. Combo Cleaner is a professional automatic malware removal tool that is recommended to get rid of Mac malware. Download it by clicking the button below:
▼ DOWNLOAD Combo Cleaner for Mac By downloading any software listed on this website you agree to our Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. To use full-featured product, you have to purchase a license for Combo Cleaner. Limited three days free trial available.

Quick menu:

Video showing how to remove ValidGeneration adware using Combo Cleaner:

ValidGeneration adware removal:

Remove ValidGeneration-related potentially unwanted applications from your "Applications" folder:

mac browser hijacker removal from applications folder

Click the Finder icon. In the Finder window, select "Applications". In the applications folder, look for "MPlayerX", "NicePlayer", or other suspicious applications and drag them to the Trash. After removing the potentially unwanted application(s) that cause online ads, scan your Mac for any remaining unwanted components.

Remove ads by validgeneration related files and folders:

Finder go to folder command

Click the Finder icon, from the menu bar. Choose Go, and click Go to Folder...

step1Check for adware-generated files in the /Library/LaunchAgents folder:

removing adware from launch agents folder step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/LaunchAgents

removing adware from launch agents folder step 2
In the “LaunchAgents” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious files and move them to the Trash. Examples of files generated by adware - “installmac.AppRemoval.plist”, “myppes.download.plist”, “mykotlerino.ltvbit.plist”, “kuklorest.update.plist”, etc. Adware commonly installs several files with the same string.

step2Check for adware generated files in the /Library/Application Support folder:

removing adware from application support folder step 1

In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/Application Support

removing adware from application support folder step 2
In the “Application Support” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious folders. For example, “MplayerX” or “NicePlayer”, and move these folders to the Trash.

step3Check for adware-generated files in the ~/Library/LaunchAgents folder:

removing adware from ~launch agents folder step 1


In the Go to Folder bar, type: ~/Library/LaunchAgents

removing adware from ~launch agents folder step 2

In the “LaunchAgents” folder, look for any recently-added suspicious files and move them to the Trash. Examples of files generated by adware - “installmac.AppRemoval.plist”, “myppes.download.plist”, “mykotlerino.ltvbit.plist”, “kuklorest.update.plist”, etc. Adware commonly installs several files with the same string.

step4Check for adware-generated files in the /Library/LaunchDaemons folder:

removing adware from launch daemons folder step 1
In the Go to Folder... bar, type: /Library/LaunchDaemons

removing adware from launch daemons folder step 2
In the “LaunchDaemons” folder, look for recently-added suspicious files. For example “com.aoudad.net-preferences.plist”, “com.myppes.net-preferences.plist”, "com.kuklorest.net-preferences.plist”, “com.avickUpd.plist”, etc., and move them to the Trash.

step 5 Scan your Mac with Combo Cleaner:

If you have followed all the steps in the correct order you Mac should be clean of infections. To be sure your system is not infected run a scan with Combo Cleaner Antivirus. Download it HERE. After downloading the file double click combocleaner.dmg installer, in the opened window drag and drop Combo Cleaner icon on top of the Applications icon. Now open your launchpad and click on the Combo Cleaner icon. Wait until Combo Cleaner updates it's virus definition database and click "Start Combo Scan" button.

scan-with-combo-cleaner-1

Combo Cleaner will scan your Mac for malware infections. If the antivirus scan displays "no threats found" - this means that you can continue with the removal guide, otherwise it's recommended to remove any found infections before continuing.

scan-with-combo-cleaner-2

After removing files and folders generated by the adware, continue to remove rogue extensions from your Internet browsers.

Ads by ValidGeneration removal from Internet browsers:

safari browser iconRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

Remove ads by validgeneration related Safari extensions:

safari browser preferences

Open Safari browser, from the menu bar, select "Safari" and click "Preferences...".

safari extensions window

In the preferences window, select "Extensions" and look for any recently-installed suspicious extensions. When located, click the "Uninstall" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Safari browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Safari.

firefox browser iconRemove malicious plug-ins from Mozilla Firefox:

Remove ads by validgeneration related Mozilla Firefox add-ons:

accessing mozilla firefox add-ons

Open your Mozilla Firefox browser. At the top right corner of the screen, click the "Open Menu" (three horizontal lines) button. From the opened menu, choose "Add-ons".

removing malicious add-ons from mozilla firefox

Choose the "Extensions" tab and look for any recently-installed suspicious add-ons. When located, click the "Remove" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Mozilla Firefox browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Mozilla Firefox.

chrome-browser-iconRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Remove ads by validgeneration related Google Chrome add-ons:

removing malicious google chrome extensions step 1

Open Google Chrome and click the "Chrome menu" (three horizontal lines) button located in the top-right corner of the browser window. From the drop-down menu, choose "More Tools" and select "Extensions".

removing malicious Google Chrome extensions step 2

In the "Extensions" window, look for any recently-installed suspicious add-ons. When located, click the "Trash" button next to it/them. Note that you can safely uninstall all extensions from your Google Chrome browser - none are crucial for normal browser operation.

  • If you continue to have problems with browser redirects and unwanted advertisements - Reset Google Chrome.

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About the author:

Tomas Meskauskas

Tomas Meskauskas - expert security researcher, professional malware analyst.

I am passionate about computer security and technology. I have an experience of over 10 years working in various companies related to computer technical issue solving and Internet security. I have been working as an author and editor for pcrisk.com since 2010. Follow me on Twitter and LinkedIn to stay informed about the latest online security threats. Contact Tomas Meskauskas.

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Removal Instructions in other languages
Malware activity

Global malware activity level today:

Medium threat activity

Increased attack rate of infections detected within the last 24 hours.

QR Code
Ads by ValidGeneration QR code
Scan this QR code to have an easy access removal guide of Ads by ValidGeneration on your mobile device.
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