Remove MetaSearch
Removal instructions

Severity scale:  
  (18/100)
MetaSearch is also known as MetaSearch hijack, MetaSearch redirect | Type: Browser Hijackers

MetaSearch (also known as MetaSearch Search Engine) is a suspicious search engine, which has been linked to browser hijackers. That's because it works by displaying slightly altered search results and then rerouting its users to predetermined websites. In most of the cases, these domains seek to increase the number of their visitors, page ranks or even sales. Basically, they are connected to this browser hijacker and pay the money for these services. If MetaSearch virus manages to get inside its target PC system, it may not only hijack each of web browsers, including well known Internet Explorer, Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox. It may also try to change your default search engine or the start page without your approval. Once these changes are done, it may start its redirections to quickmetasearch.com, linkshelper.com and similar domains. Of course, you can also find yourself on suspicious websites that may be used for spreading questionable programs. That's why you should be very careful with such search sites. This potentially unwanted program runs on every Windows startup, so the only real method that can be used for disabling it is its removal. For that we recommend SpyHunter.

HOW CAN METASEARCH hijack my computer?

MetaSearch doesn't spread like a virus because it is not a virus. It is just a potentially unwanted program that may be installed either manually or in a bundle with other programs. For avoiding this, you should be very careful when installing freeware on your computer. We highly recommend selecting Custom or Advanced installation method that allows seeing what components (browser add-ons, extensions, plugins, toolbars, etc.) are hiding inside. For getting ability to opt out of them you should select Custom or Advanced installation of the freeware and then uncheck all unfamiliar check marks. If MetaSearch hijacks the system, it may initiate such changes as registry's modification, installation of its files, etc. Once these changes are done, you may start suffering from constant redirections to various domains, including quickmetasearch.com or linkshelper.com. If your Internet Explorer's or other web browser's home page or a default search engine have been replaced by metasearch.com, you should check your computer with the reputable anti-spyware. Otherwise, you may not only be tricked into visiting questionable websites. You may also be tricked into downloading other suspicious programs to your computer. Besides, just like any other suspicious search engine, MetaSearch hijacker may start tracking your browsing sessions and may collect information about search queries, mostly visited websites, data that you enter on each of them and similar details. In addition, it may also copy your PC's IP address, location, etc. 

HOW TO REMOVE METASEARCH VIRUS?

Fortunately, in order to remove MetaSearch hijacker from your computer, you don't have to be a genius. You can do that either with a help of a reputable anti-spyware or with a help ofthis step-by-step guide that is given below. According to our security experts, you should opt for scanning your computer with reputable anti-malware because it will help you to make sure that all suspicious programs, including adwares, browser hijackers and viruses, are gone. 

MetaSearch properties:
• Changes browser settings
• Connects itself to the internet
• Hides from the user
• Stays resident in background

Automatic MetaSearch Removal Guide

You can remove MetaSearch automatically with a help of one of these programs: SpyHunter, STOPzilla, Malwarebytes Anti Malware. We recommend these applications because they can easily delete potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

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By downloading any of provided Anti-spyware software to remove MetaSearch you agree with our Privacy Policy and Agreement of Use.
Download
remover for MetaSearch
Compatible with OS X
Webroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus is recommended remover to uninstall MetaSearch. You should confirm using free trial that it detects current version of parasite.
Not using OS X? Download a remover for Windows.
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remover for MetaSearch Happiness
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Compatible with Microsoft
SpyHunter is recommended remover to uninstall MetaSearch. You should confirm using free trial that it detects current version of parasite.
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What to do if you failed to remove the infection?
If you failed to remove MetaSearch using Webroot SecureAnywhere AntiVirus SpyHunter, read here how to submit a support ticket or submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.

Alternate Software

STOPzilla
We are testing STOPzilla's efficiency at removing MetaSearch (2015-01-12 04:22:02)
Malwarebytes Anti Malware
We are testing Malwarebytes Anti Malware's efficiency at removing MetaSearch (2015-01-12 04:22:02)
XoftSpySE Anti Spyware
We are testing XoftSpySE Anti Spyware's efficiency at removing MetaSearch (2015-01-12 04:22:02)
Emsisoft Anti Malware
Virus Removal Phone Support
1-877-657-9614
Help Line to remove MetaSearch

MetaSearch screenshot

MetaSearch snapshot

MetaSearch manual removal

Kill processes:
uninst.exe
Delete registry values:
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{1B9CB0F8-118B-49C1-956D-B703E976F8E3}
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\CLSID\{B54BFA47-D897-49CA-9657-05EC9F80A32B}
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\STLinks.STLinksCtrl
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\STLinks.STLinksCtrl.1
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\HomePage.HomePageCtrl
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\HomePage.HomePageCtrl.1
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Interface\{73A90743-6A64-425D-B4EA-44D7C839F565}
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\Interface\{F93C87CE-0318-47DA-803A-3BA4C8FC0D62}
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\TypeLib\{D31B7025-CC3A-40EA-B1D5-139EA9B70D00}
HKEY_CLASSES_ROOT\TypeLib\{D77EECF7-095D-4437-A6F7-4E1D4000A8AA}
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Browser Helper Objects
\{1B9CB0F8-118B-49C1-956D-B703E976F8E3}
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\Browser Helper Objects
\{B54BFA47-D897-49CA-9657-05EC9F80A32B}
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\Quick Home Search
HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\LinksHelper
Delete files:
%ProgramFiles%\STHomePage\STHomePage2.dll
%ProgramFiles%\STHomePage\uninst.exe
%ProgramFiles%\STLinks\stiel.dat
%ProgramFiles%\STLinks\STLinks2.dll
%ProgramFiles%\STLinks\uninst.exe
Delete directories:
C:\Program Files\STLinks
C:\Program Files\STHomePage

MetaSearch Removal Process

Step 1

Uninstall MetaSearch and related programs

Windows Mac OS X Step 2
Windows 7 / Vista / XP
  • Click Start Control Panel Programs and Features (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs).
Windows 8
  • If you are Windows 8 user, then right-click in the lower left corner of the screen. Once Quick Access Menu shows up, select Control Panel and Uninstall a Program.
Uninstall MetaSearch and related programs
  • Here, look for MetaSearch or any other recently installed suspicious programs.
  • Uninstall them and click OK to save these changes.
Windows Mac OS X Step 2

If you are using OS X, click Go button at the top left of the screen and select Applications.

Wait until you see Applications folder and look for MetaSearch or any other suspicious programs on it. Now right click on every of such entries and select Move to Trash.

Step 2

Remove MetaSearch from Windows shortcuts

Step 3
  • Right click on the shortcut of Mozilla Firefox and select Properties.
  • Go to Shortcut tab and look at the Target field. Delete malicious URL that is related to your virus.

Repeat steps that are given above with all browsers' shortcuts, including Internet Explorer and Google Chrome. Make sure you check all locations of these shortcuts, including Desktop, Start Menu and taskbar.

Step 3

Remove MetaSearch from each of your web browsers

Internet Explorer Mozilla Firefox Google Chrome Safari Step 4
Remove dangerous add-ons
  • Open Internet Explorer, click on the Gear icon (IE menu) on the top right corner of the browser and choose Manage Add-ons
  • You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for MetaSearch and other suspicious plugins. Disable these entries by clicking Disable:
Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
  • Click on the gear icon (menu) on the top right corner of the browser and select Internet Options. Stay in General tab.
  • Here, remove malicious URL and enter preferable domain name. Click Apply to save changes.
Reset Internet Explorer
  • Click on the gear icon (menu) again and select Internet options. Go to Advanced tab.
  • Here, select Reset.
  • When in the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete MetaSearch removal.
Internet Explorer Mozilla Firefox Google Chrome Safari Step 4
Remove dangerous extensions
  • Open Mozilla Firefox, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Add-ons Extensions.
  • Here, select MetaSearch and other questionable plugins. Click Remove to delete these entries.
Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
  • Click on the menu (top right corner), choose Options General.
  • Here, delete malicious URL and enter preferable website or click Restore to default.
  • Click OK to save these changes.
Reset Mozilla Firefox
  • Click on the Firefox menu on the top left and click on the question mark. Here, choose Troubleshooting Information.
  • Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete MetaSearch removal.
Internet Explorer Mozilla Firefox Google Chrome Safari Step 4
Delete malicious plugins
  • Open Google Chrome, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Tools Extensions.
  • Here, select MetaSearch and other malicious plugins and select trash icon to delete these entries.
Change your homepage and default search engine if it was altered by your virus
  • Click on menu icon and choose Settings.
  • Here, look for the Open a specific page or set of pages under On startup option and click on Set pages.
  • Now you should see another window. Here, delete malicious search sites and enter the one that you want to use as your homepage.
  • Click on menu icon again and choose Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section.
  • When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name.
Reset Google Chrome
  • Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
  • Scroll down to the end of the page and click on Reset browser settings.
  • Click Reset to confirm this action and complete MetaSearch removal.
Internet Explorer Mozilla Firefox Google Chrome Safari Step 4
Remove dangerous plugins
  • Open Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu at the top left of the screen. Once you do this, select Preferences.
  • Here, select Extentions and look for MetaSearch or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them.
Change your homepage if it was altered by virus:
  • Open your Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu section. Here, select Preferences as it was displayed previously and select General.
  • Here, look at the Homepage field. If it was altered by MetaSearch, remove unwanted link and enter the one that you want to use for your searches. Remember to include the "http://" before typing in the address of the page.
Reset Safari
  • Open Safari browser and click on Safari in menu section at the top left of the screen. Here, select Reset Safari....
  • Now you will see a detailed dialog window filled with reset options. All of those options are usually checked, but you can specify which of them you want to reset. Click the Reset button to complete MetaSearch removal process.

Step 4

Complete MetaSearch removal

After uninstalling this potentially unwanted program (PUP) and fixing each of your web browsers, we recommend you to scan your PC system with a reputable anti-spyware. This will help you to get rid of MetaSearch registry traces and will also identify related parasites or possible malware infections on your computer. For that you can use our top-rated malware remover: SpyHunter, STOPzilla or Malwarebytes Anti Malware.

If this free removal guide helped you and you are satisfied with our service, please consider making a donation to keep this service alive. Even a smallest amount will be appreciated.

Geolocation of MetaSearch

Map reveals the prevalence of MetaSearch. Countries and regions that have been affected the most are: United States, Australia, Germany, Netherlands and Canada.

Information added: 01/12/15 01:44; information updated: 01/12/15 01:44

Additional resources

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