Severity scale:  
  (12/100)

PDF King. How to remove? (Uninstall guide)

removal by Linas Kiguolis - - | Type: Adware

PDF King is a potentially unwanted application for Mac that is spread with the help of software bundling

PDF King
PDF King is a potentially unwanted program that was created by Tabatoo Ltd

PDF King is a file converter and a browser hijacker[1] offered for macOS users. Unfortunately, just as many other programs of this type, its adverse effects on the system outshines the positives, and users end up with cluttered computers and slow browsers that continually display pop-up ads, banners, deals, coupons, sponsored links, and similar content. PDF King is available as a standalone app from the official website, as well as a browser extension for Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, and other browsers. However, that is not the method that is mostly used for its propagation, as software bundling is the primary one. Created by Tabatoo Ltd., this app is something you would not want to keep on your macOS, especially when it gets installed with other software.

Summary:

Name PDF King
Type PUP/browser hijacker
Developer Tabatoo Ltd
Operating system macOS
Web browsers Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Safari, etc.
Symptoms Sponsored links ins search results, altered browser settings, redirects
Elimination Use out instructions below this article
Optimization Run a scan using Reimage – this computer repair software can repair the damage done by the PUP

As soon as the PDF King app or the browser plugin is installed, it modifies web browser settings, setting new tab address and homepage to search.gilpierro.com, or a similar one. Upon using this search engine, users are redirected to search.yahoo.com – a trusted search engine by Yahoo. However, because users are redirected several times when searching, they can notice the sponsored links on the top of the search results, which would usually not be there if using Yahoo directly.

And that is precisely how PDF King authors earn money. They rely on users clicking on these links so that sponsored websites would get more traffic, increasing the search rank significantly within the search engine. Nevertheless, the sites that users could be led to might be dangerous, and malware infections or stolen personal data could become a reality. In order to void that in the future, users should take care of prompt PDF King removal.

The sites that users are redirected to by PDF King app might be injected with malicious JavaScript[2] or make users believe that their machine is infected with viruses and they need to buy bogus software in order to fix it (phishing, technical support scams).

For that reason, this app might be called PDF King virus. While it is not malware, deceptive apps that seek revenue often forget the safety and well-being of its end users, leaving them with overwhelmed computers and at risk of being infected with malicious software.

To remove PDF King from macOS, you should check out instructions below. After that, we suggest you reset your browsers and scan your device with Reimage – it will be able to restore your Mac to normal.

PDF King browser hijacker
PDF King is a browser hijacker that redirects users to sponsored sites and disturbs browsing sessions with advertisements

Software bundling is legitimate but unfair software distribution method that tricks many users

Potentially unwanted applications usually get installed together with other software that was downloaded from the internet. Unfortunately, many regular users are not aware that software is bundled, especially free one. While initial installers of some apps might be free of optional components, certain third-party sites might add additional programs in order to profit from installations made.

To avoid potentially unwanted programs like adware, browser hijackers, and other bloatware, experts[3] recommend the following:

  • Avoid third-party installers and sites – pick official sources instead;
  • Always read through ToS and Privacy Policy, or at least the most important parts of it;
  • Never skip steps by clicking the “Next” button without looking;
  • Select Advanced or Custom installation mode when prompted. Recommended or Quick settings are often the mode where all the additional programs are hidden;
  • Uncheck all apps like PDF creators, media players, installation managers, and similar useless software

Remove PDF King and other useless apps from your Mac computer

Effective marketing campaigns are welcomed when done correctly. End users enjoy quality products they wanted, and the advertising companies manage to earn profits – everybody wins, right? Unfortunately, that is a scenario that happens rarely, as greed for money corrupts many individuals around the world, and user experience does not matter. Therefore, apps like PDF King should not be considered useful and eliminated as soon as possible.

To remove  PDF King virus, users should check our guide below. While uninstallation of the app might seem simple, there still might be traces that are left even after PDF King removal. Therefore, we advise you to reset each of the installed browsers and then scan your computer with repair software that can get rid of the annoying PUP's leftovers.

You can remove virus damage automatically with a help of one of these programs: Reimage, Malwarebytes MalwarebytesCombo Cleaner, Plumbytes Anti-MalwareMalwarebytes Malwarebytes. We recommend these applications because they detect potentially unwanted programs and viruses with all their files and registry entries that are related to them.

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Compatible with Microsoft Windows Supported versions Compatible with OS X Supported versions
What to do if failed?
If you failed to remove virus damage using Reimage, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage is recommended to remove virus damage. Free scanner allows you to check whether your PC is infected or not. If you need to remove malware, you have to purchase the licensed version of Reimage malware removal tool.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Malwarebytes.
Alternative Software
Different security software includes different virus database. If you didn’t succeed in finding malware with Reimage, try running alternative scan with Combo Cleaner.

To remove PDF King, follow these steps:

Mac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Remove PDF King from Mac OS X system

To remove PDF King from Mac, use the following instructions:

  1. If you are using OS X, click Go button at the top left of the screen and select Applications. Cick 'Go' and select 'Applications'
  2. Wait until you see Applications folder and look for PDF King or any other suspicious programs on it. Now right click on every of such entries and select Move to Trash. Click on every malicious entry and select 'Move to Trash'
Mac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Delete PDF King from Internet Explorer (IE)

  1. 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. Click on menu icon and select 'Manage add-ons'
  2. You will see a Manage Add-ons window. Here, look for PDF King and other suspicious plugins. Disable these entries by clicking Disable: Right click on each of malicious entries and select 'Disable'
  3. 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.
  4. Here, remove malicious URL and enter preferable domain name. Click Apply to save changes. Delete malicious URL, enter your desired domain name and click 'Apply' to save changes
  5. Reset Internet Explorer
    Click on the gear icon (menu) again and select Internet options. Go to Advanced tab.
  6. Here, select Reset.
  7. When in the new window, check Delete personal settings and select Reset again to complete PDF King removal. Go to 'Advanced' tab and click on 'Reset' button. Now select 'Delete personal settings' and click on 'Reset' button again
Mac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Eliminate PDF King from Microsoft Edge

Reset Microsoft Edge settings (Method 1):

  1. Launch Microsoft Edge app and click More (three dots at the top right corner of the screen).
  2. Click Settings to open more options.
  3. Once Settings window shows up, click Choose what to clear button under Clear browsing data option. Go to Settings and select 'Choose what to clear'
  4. Here, select all what you want to remove and click Clear. Select 'Clear' button
  5. Now you should right-click on the Start button (Windows logo). Here, select Task Manager. Open the start menu and select 'Task Manager'
  6. When in Processes tab, search for Microsoft Edge.
  7. Right-click on it and choose Go to details option. If can’t see Go to details option, click More details and repeat previous steps. Right-click 'Microsoft Edge' and select 'Go to details' Select 'More details' if 'Go to details' option fails to show up
  8. When Details tab shows up, find every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right click on each of them and select End Task to end these entries. Find Microsoft Edge entries and select 'End Task'

Resetting Microsoft Edge browser (Method 2):

If Method 1 failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method.

  1. Note: you need to backup your data before using this method.
  2. Find this folder on your computer: C:\Users\%username%\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  3. Select every entry which is saved on it and right click with your mouse. Then Delete option. Go to Microsoft Edge folder on your computer, right-click every entry and click 'Delete'
  4. Click the Start button (Windows logo) and type in window power in Search my stuff line.
  5. Right-click the Windows PowerShell entry and choose Run as administrator. Find Windows PowerShell, right-click it and select 'Run as administrator'
  6. Once Administrator: Windows PowerShell window shows up, paste this command line after PS C:\WINDOWS\system32> and press Enter:
    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register $($_.InstallLocation)\AppXManifest.xml -Verbose}
    Copy and paste a required command and press 'Enter'

Once these steps are finished, PDF King should be removed from your Microsoft Edge browser.

Mac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Erase PDF King from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

You need to refresh Firefox after the elimination of the PUP:

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Mozilla Firefox, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Add-ons Extensions. Click on menu icon and select 'Add-ons'
  2. Here, select PDF King and other questionable plugins. Click Remove to delete these entries. Select 'Extensions' and look for malicious entries. Click 'Remove' to get rid of each of them
  3. Reset Mozilla Firefox
    Click on the Firefox menu on the top left and click on the question mark. Here, choose Troubleshooting Information. Click on menu icon and then on '?'. Select 'Troubleshooting Information'
  4. Now you will see Reset Firefox to its default state message with Reset Firefox button. Click this button for several times and complete PDF King removal. Click on 'Reset Firefox' button for a couple of times
Mac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Uninstall PDF King from Google Chrome

Reset Google Chrome by using this guide:

  1. Delete malicious plugins
    Open Google Chrome, click on the menu icon (top right corner) and select Tools Extensions. Click on menu icon. Select 'Tools' and 'Extensions'
  2. Here, select PDF King and other malicious plugins and select trash icon to delete these entries. Look for malicious entries and delete each of them by clicking on the Trash bin icon
  3. Click on menu icon again and choose Settings Manage Search engines under the Search section. When in 'Settings', select 'Manage search engines...'
  4. When in Search Engines..., remove malicious search sites. You should leave only Google or your preferred domain name. Click 'X' to remove malicious URLs
  5. Reset Google Chrome
    Click on menu icon on the top right of your Google Chrome and select Settings.
  6. Scroll down to the end of the page and click on Reset browser settings. When in 'Settings', scroll down to 'Reset browser settings' button and click on it
  7. Click Reset to confirm this action and complete PDF King removal. Click on 'Reset' button to complete your removal
Mac OS XInternet ExplorerMicrosoft EdgeFirefoxGoogle ChromeSafari

Get rid of PDF King from Safari

  1. Remove dangerous extensions
    Open Safari web browser and click on Safari in menu at the top left of the screen. Once you do this, select Preferences. Click on 'Safari' and select 'Preferences'
  2. Here, select Extensions and look for PDF King or other suspicious entries. Click on the Uninstall button to get rid each of them. Go to 'Extensions' and uninstall malicious add-ons
  3. Reset Safari
    Open Safari browser and click on Safari in menu section at the top left of the screen. Here, select Reset Safari.... Click on 'Safari' and select 'Reset Safari...'
  4. 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 PDF King removal process. Select all options and click on 'Reset' button

About the author

Linas Kiguolis
Linas Kiguolis - Expert in social media

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References