Browser redirects making me crazy
January 11, 2004 8:49 PM   Subscribe

I'm about to lose my mind here. I seem to have some sort of auto forward going on in my browser (IE). Every time I hit what I assume is a website that's either down or just gone or whathaveyou I get forwarded to a search engine page with "helpful" results for the URL I was trying to get to. How the hell can I get rid of it? [more inside]

I've run adAware, SpyBot and just went hunting through my program folder for suspicious files, but it doesn't seem to help. At first it was some random search engine page I'd never heard of, and I thought I'd gotten ride of it, but now I'm hitting a lycos search results page. Is there some setting in Explorer that I may have accidentally turned on? This is a fairly recent phenomenon, and never happened before the last month.
posted by aclevername to Computers & Internet (6 answers total)
Do you have the latest definition files for adAware & SpyBot? When you download the installers, they aren't always bundled with the latest and greatest.
posted by machaus at 9:04 PM on January 11, 2004

It would seem that you've contracted a case of BHO's. As the person who administers a small computer lab, I have run across them quite a lot; they seem to come bundled with Free Surfer MK, KaZaA and some game downloads that high school students are fond of. I combat them with Hijack This but please read the directions very carefully before proceeding.
posted by Lynsey at 9:08 PM on January 11, 2004

I had the same thing last week, and a month before that, and then just before that on my brother's computer. Every time, running a combination of AdAware and Spybot fixed it, so all I can say is make sure you've got the latest definition files and try again.

My friend who is in the room suggests CW Shredder, which he says worked for him when he his browser was hijacked by CoolWebSearch, but the program says it does a bunch of other hijackers that AdAware and Spybot miss, so maybe try that.
posted by Hildago at 9:19 PM on January 11, 2004

Before we go all conspiracy theory here, try going to Tools > Internet Options > Advanced and shutting off "Friendly Error Pages" or whatever it's called under "Browsing".
posted by yerfatma at 4:13 AM on January 12, 2004

Yerfatma, it's not a conspiracy. It was an intentional act by a stupid company. I had it myself and it was a pain to get rid of.
posted by konolia at 4:37 AM on January 12, 2004

Response by poster: Thanks guys, I managed to get rid of it (or them, more accurately) after I checked for the updated definitions for Spybot. I didn't even think that such a function existed within the program (just assumed it came with all the information it had available).
posted by aclevername at 5:41 AM on January 12, 2004

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