Search Donkey Adware

Also Known As: Search Donkey Virus
Type: Adware
Distribution: Low
Damage level: Medium

Search Donkey removal guide

What is Search Donkey?

Search Donkey (SearchDonkey) is a browser add-on created by WebAppTech Coding LLC. This plug-in enhances Internet users' browsing experience by displaying quick search links relating to user-selected text. When users of this add-on select text within a website, Search Donkey displays a small pop-up containing quick search links from Google, AOL, Wikipedia, Facebook, Twitter, etc. Whilst such added functionality may seem useful, Search Donkey is categorized as a potentially unwanted program (PUP) or adware, since it adds little value, tracks users' Internet browsing habits, displays intrusive ads, and greatly diminishes Internet browser performance (for Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Mozilla FireFox).

Search Donkey Adware homepage

Many Internet users refer to this add-on as the Search Donkey virus; such negative associations are made, since this browser extension commonly installs on users' systems without their consent via a deceptive a software distribution method called 'bundling'. In most cases, Search Donkey installs on Internet browsers together with free software downloaded from the Internet. To avoid unwilling installation, be attentive when dealing with freeware, since not inspecting each installation step can lead to inadvertent installation of additional unwanted browser add-ons and toolbars. These cause diminished browser performance, privacy, and redirect issues. While search donkey is not a computer virus, it is an unwanted browser add-on, and thus it is recommended that this adware is removed from your computer.

The Search Donkey add-on tracks IP addresses, unique identifier numbers, operating systems, browsers and other installed software information, web-page URLs visited, and search queries entered. Furthermore, this plug-in displays various unwanted ads: in-text, interstitial, pop-up ads, etc. This adware is similar in behavior to Yontoo and "Ads not by this site". The best way to avoid installation of such adware is to express caution when downloading and installing free software. Today, the majority of popular freeware download websites use 'download clients' and 'installers' offering installation of additional programs together with the free software downloaded from these sites. When downloading free software, decline any promoted software, and when installing freeware, choose the 'Custom' or 'Advanced' installation options and opt-out of any additional software. To eliminate Search Donkey from your system, use the removal guide provided.

Quick menu:

Search Donkey removal:

Windows 7 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 7

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:

Accessing Add or Remove Programs in Windows XP

Click Start, choose Settings and click Control Panel. Locate and click Add or Remove Programs.

Windows 10 and Windows 8 users:

Accessing Programs and Features (uninstall) in Windows 8

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:

Uninstall app in OSX (Mac)

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.

Search Donkey uninstall

In the uninstall programs window, look for "SearchDonkey", select this entry and click "Uninstall" or "Remove".

After uninstalling Search Donkey, scan your computer for any remaining unwanted components or possible malware infections. Recommended malware removal software.


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Remove Search Donkey from Internet browsers:

Video showing how to remove potentially unwanted browser add-ons:

Internet Explorer logoRemove malicious add-ons from Internet Explorer:

Search Donkey removal from Internet Explorer

Click on the "gear" icon Internet Explorer options icon (at the top right corner of Internet Explorer) select "Manage Add-ons". Look for "SearchDonkey" and disable it.

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the search donkey virus, 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.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows XP

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.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 7

Windows 8 users: Open Internet Explorer and click the gear icon. Select Internet Options.

Reseting Internet Explorer settings to default in Windows 8 - accessing

In the opened window, select the Advanced tab.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - Internet options advanced tab

Click the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - click the Reset button in the Internet options advanced tab

Confirm that you wish to reset Internet Explorer settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Internet Explorer settings to default on Windows 8 - confirm settings reset to default by clicking the reset button

Google Chrome logoRemove malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

Search Donkey removal from Google Chrome

Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome options icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) select "Tools" and click on "Extensions".  Locate: "SearchDonkey", select it and click on the trash can icon.

If SearchDonkey extension is greyed-out and you cannot remove it ("This extension is managed and cannot be removed of disabled"), follow this removal guide - how to remove a managed Google Chrome extension?

Optional method:

If you continue to have problems with removal of the search donkey virus, reset your Google Chrome browser settings. Click the Chrome menu icon Google Chrome options icon (at the top right corner of Google Chrome) and select Tools. From the opened menu, select Extensions. In the opened window, select Settings (at the left corner of the screen). Scroll down to the bottom of the screen. Click the Show advanced settings… link.

Resetting Google Chrome setting to default - accessing settings

After scrolling to the bottom of the screen, click the Reset browser settings button.

Resetting Google Chrome settings to default - advanced settings

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Google Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Google Chrome settings to default - confirm that you want to reset Chrome settings to default by clicking the Reset button

Mozilla Firefox logoRemove malicious plugins from Mozilla Firefox:

Search Donkey removal from Mozilla Firefox

Click on the Firefox menu firefox menu icon (at the top right corner of the main window) select "Add-ons". Click on "Extensions" and disable this add-on: "SearchDonkey".

Optional method:

Computer users who have problems with search donkey virus removal can reset their Mozilla Firefox settings.

Open Mozilla Firefox, at the top right corner of the main window, click the Firefox menu, firefox menu icon in the opened menu, click the Open Help Menu icon, firefox help menu

Resettings Mozilla Firefox settings to default - accessing settings window

Select Troubleshooting Information.

Resetting Mozilla Firefox settings to default - accessing

In the opened window, click the Reset Firefox button.

Resetting Mozilla Firefox settings to default - clicking the

In the opened window, confirm that you wish to reset Mozilla Firefox settings to default by clicking the Reset button.

Resetting Mozilla Firefox settings to default - confirming settings reset

safari browser logoRemove malicious extensions from Safari:

removing adware from safari step 1 - accessing preferences

Make sure your Safari browser is active, click Safari menu, and select Preferences....

removing adware from safari step 2 - removing extensions

In the opened window click Extensions, locate any recently installed suspicious extension, select it and click Uninstall.

Optional method:

Make sure your Safari browser is active and click on Safari menu. From the drop down menu select Clear History and Website Data...

resetting safari step 1

In the opened window select all history and click the Clear History button.

resetting safari step 2

Summary:

declining installation of adware while downloading free software sampleMost commonly adware or potentially unwanted applications infiltrate user's Internet browsers through free software downloads. Notice that the safest source for downloading free software is it's developers website. To avoid installation of adware be very attentive when downloading and installing free software. When installing the already downloaded free program choose custom or advanced installation options – this step will reveal all of the potentially unwanted applications that are being installed together with your chosen free program.

Removal assistance:
If you are experiencing problems while trying to remove search donkey virus from your computer, please ask for assistance in our malware support forum.

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