Play-bar-search.com (Free Guide) - 2021 update

play-bar-search.com Removal Guide

What is play-bar-search.com?

Why the presence Play-bar-search.com hijacker might result in a negative browsing experience

The example of play-bar-search.com ads

If the Play-bar-search.com web address has been showing up on your web browser, it has been hijacked. The app is very similar to play-bar.net and is classified as a potentially unwanted program, which means that it was unlikely to be installed intentionally. Besides, such apps are known to track user data on a regular basis and also insert sponsored search results in order to obtain pay-per-click revenue. In such a way, your browsing experience can be drastically changed – and not in a good way. Thus, we highly recommend you uninstall potentially unwanted programs from your machine.

Name Play-bar-search.com
Type Browser hijacker
Distribution Software bundling, third-party websites
Operation Changes New tab and homepage web address -replaces it with its own; provides an alternative search engine; shows ads and sponsored links in search results; tracks user information
Elimination Uninstall PUPs by following our manual guide or employ antivirus program
Browser fix Don't forget to delete web data and cookies from your browsers – ReimageIntego can help you do that efficiently

All these search engines seek to push PC users into thinking that it is a legitimate and trustworthy search engine that can be used instead of Google, Bing, Yahoo, or another reputable search provider. However, you should not expect trustworthy search results from this questionable search tool which seeks to redirect its users to sponsored domains and earn money.

The app belongs to a well-known developer called Imali Media, which has already launched tends of similar PUPs that have been actively spread in a bundle with freeware and shareware as optional components. Therefore, you should avoid apps by this developer, including:

If you have been bothered by any of these suspicious search engines, you need to remove Play-bar-search.com with its components with ReimageIntego or other reliable security software. Otherwise, you can expect to run into various problems caused by this redirect virus.

Relevant search results and fast surfing are the main promises that are promised by this search engine. Nevertheless, before installing it on your computer, you should know that it has already been labeled as a browser hijacker. As soon as it infiltrates the system, it modifies its settings so that it could start its work as soon as the victim reboots the affected computer.

It starts working by launching its cookies and tracking its victim for some time. According to the developer of this hijacker, it collects only non-personal information. However, it fails to inform what third parties are capable of using it for their own needs. We believe that this is the first reason why you should think about the app's removal.

Secondly, before you let this suspicious search engine stay on your computer, you should know about the redirect issue that it causes right after it collects the needed amount of information about user's search habits. Also, redirect activity is initiated by showing altered search results and filling them with different pop-up ads. If you don't want to end up on a questionable website, make sure that you stay away from this search engine.

Finally, keep in mind that such search engines have been actively used for promoting tech support and similar services that can lead you to money loss and additional problems on your computer. To stay safe, you should avoid Imali Media products.

How does this search engine function

As we have already mentioned, the main reason why its developers seek to initiate redirect is a need to earn money. In most cases, they display altered search results and trick people into visiting third-party websites that are trying to increase their popularity. In exchange for that, these parties pay the money.

The main issue with browser hijack is that you can never know what website you will be redirected to. Also, you may find serious issues while trying to get rid of this search engine. As a rule, changing the browser's settings back to normal brings no results as “browser helper objects” that travel along with this application is used for leading people to inability to reset these settings.

Speaking of further dangers, you should know that the play-bar-search.com virus may also collect IP addresses, visited website URLs, search queries, geographical location, platform type. This ability is not revealed clearly to PC users by its developers.

Unexpected PUP appearance explained

Most frequently, the virus spreads through “bundling ” – a prevalent marketing method. This method relies on freeware, such as PDF creators, photo or audio editing tools, download managers, movie players, etc. Beware that play-bar-search.com virus may be attached to the software you are about to install. The attachment can be hidden behind “Basic” or “Quick” installation options, so you should avoid them.

Being aware of this trick, you should select the Advanced installation option only and uncheck all checkmarks claiming that you want to change your start page or the default search engine. If you need help with play-bar-search.com removal, jump to the next page.

Get rid of play-bar-search.com quickly

To sum up, whether you are an experienced or freshly-made Internet user, you should try to stay away from questionable search engines that are presented as alternatives to the well-known ones (Google, Bing, etc.). In fact, hundreds of websites should be avoided because they are considered suspicious. The most common feature of browser hijackers is the tendency to hijack people's browsers and modify their default settings.

If you have a browser hijacker installed on your system, you have two options to help you get rid of it. The first option leading to the elimination of this PUP is a manual removal method. In this case, you should follow a detailed PUP removal guide which is given below.

However, keep in mind that this process requires time and thoroughness. To prevent problems that may reappear after removing it, we recommend you remove play-bar-search.com with the help of updated anti-spyware. It will detect and remove the hijacker and all possible malware left in your system. Update the software regularly, and you can be sure that your computer stays safe in the future as well.

You may remove virus damage with a help of ReimageIntego. SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner and Malwarebytes are recommended to 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 Compatible with macOS
What to do if failed?
If you failed to fix virus damage using Reimage Intego, submit a question to our support team and provide as much details as possible.
Reimage Intego has a free limited scanner. Reimage Intego offers more through scan when you purchase its full version. When free scanner detects issues, you can fix them using free manual repairs or you can decide to purchase the full version in order to fix them automatically.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Reimage, try running SpyHunter 5.
Alternative Software
Different software has a different purpose. If you didn’t succeed in fixing corrupted files with Intego, try running Combo Cleaner.

Getting rid of play-bar-search.com. Follow these steps

Uninstall from Windows

To remove suspicious apps from the system and avoid their reappearance in the future, make sure you uninstall all Imali Media-related programs. FunTVTab, NewTabTv, and others can re-install this PUP on your computer after some time.

Instructions for Windows 10/8  machines:

  1. Enter Control Panel into Windows search box and hit Enter or click on the search result.
  2. Under Programs, select Uninstall a program. Uninstall from Windows 1
  3. From the list, find the entry of the suspicious program.
  4. Right-click on the application and select Uninstall.
  5. If User Account Control shows up, click Yes.
  6. Wait till uninstallation process is complete and click OK. Uninstall from Windows 2

If you are Windows 7/XP user, proceed with the following instructions:

  1. Click on Windows Start > Control Panel located on the right pane (if you are Windows XP user, click on Add/Remove Programs).
  2. In Control Panel, select Programs > Uninstall a program. Uninstall from Windows 7/XP
  3. Pick the unwanted application by clicking on it once.
  4. At the top, click Uninstall/Change.
  5. In the confirmation prompt, pick Yes.
  6. Click OK once the removal process is finished.

Delete from macOS

Remove items from Applications folder:

  1. From the menu bar, select Go > Applications.
  2. In the Applications folder, look for all related entries.
  3. Click on the app and drag it to Trash (or right-click and pick Move to Trash) Uninstall from Mac 1

To fully remove an unwanted app, you need to access Application Support, LaunchAgents, and LaunchDaemons folders and delete relevant files:

  1. Select Go > Go to Folder.
  2. Enter /Library/Application Support and click Go or press Enter.
  3. In the Application Support folder, look for any dubious entries and then delete them.
  4. Now enter /Library/LaunchAgents and /Library/LaunchDaemons folders the same way and terminate all the related .plist files. Uninstall from Mac 2

Remove from Microsoft Edge

Delete unwanted extensions from MS Edge:

  1. Select Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and pick Extensions.
  2. From the list, pick the extension and click on the Gear icon.
  3. Click on Uninstall at the bottom. Remove extensions from Edge

Clear cookies and other browser data:

  1. Click on the Menu (three horizontal dots at the top-right of the browser window) and select Privacy & security.
  2. Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
  3. Select everything (apart from passwords, although you might want to include Media licenses as well, if applicable) and click on Clear. Clear Edge browsing data

Restore new tab and homepage settings:

  1. Click the menu icon and choose Settings.
  2. Then find On startup section.
  3. Click Disable if you found any suspicious domain.

Reset MS Edge if the above steps did not work:

  1. Press on Ctrl + Shift + Esc to open Task Manager.
  2. Click on More details arrow at the bottom of the window.
  3. Select Details tab.
  4. Now scroll down and locate every entry with Microsoft Edge name in it. Right-click on each of them and select End Task to stop MS Edge from running. Reset MS Edge

If this solution failed to help you, you need to use an advanced Edge reset method. Note that you need to backup your data before proceeding.

  1. Find the following folder on your computer: C:\\Users\\%username%\\AppData\\Local\\Packages\\Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge_8wekyb3d8bbwe.
  2. Press Ctrl + A on your keyboard to select all folders.
  3. Right-click on them and pick Delete Advanced MS Edge reset 1
  4. Now right-click on the Start button and pick Windows PowerShell (Admin).
  5. When the new window opens, copy and paste the following command, and then press Enter:

    Get-AppXPackage -AllUsers -Name Microsoft.MicrosoftEdge | Foreach {Add-AppxPackage -DisableDevelopmentMode -Register “$($_.InstallLocation)\\AppXManifest.xml” -Verbose Advanced MS Edge reset 2

Instructions for Chromium-based Edge

Delete extensions from MS Edge (Chromium):

  1. Open Edge and click select Settings > Extensions.
  2. Delete unwanted extensions by clicking Remove. Remove extensions from Chromium Edge

Clear cache and site data:

  1. Click on Menu and go to Settings.
  2. Select Privacy and services.
  3. Under Clear browsing data, pick Choose what to clear.
  4. Under Time range, pick All time.
  5. Select Clear now. Clear browser data from Chroum Edge

Reset Chromium-based MS Edge:

  1. Click on Menu and select Settings.
  2. On the left side, pick Reset settings.
  3. Select Restore settings to their default values.
  4. Confirm with Reset. Reset Chromium Edge

Remove from Mozilla Firefox (FF)

Remove dangerous extensions:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click on the Menu (three horizontal lines at the top-right of the window).
  2. Select Add-ons.
  3. In here, select unwanted plugin and click Remove. Remove extensions from Firefox

Reset the homepage:

  1. Click three horizontal lines at the top right corner to open the menu.
  2. Choose Options.
  3. Under Home options, enter your preferred site that will open every time you newly open the Mozilla Firefox.

Clear cookies and site data:

  1. Click Menu and pick Options.
  2. Go to Privacy & Security section.
  3. Scroll down to locate Cookies and Site Data.
  4. Click on Clear Data…
  5. Select Cookies and Site Data, as well as Cached Web Content and press Clear. Clear cookies and site data from Firefox

Reset Mozilla Firefox

If clearing the browser as explained above did not help, reset Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Open Mozilla Firefox browser and click the Menu.
  2. Go to Help and then choose Troubleshooting Information. Reset Firefox 1
  3. Under Give Firefox a tune up section, click on Refresh Firefox…
  4. Once the pop-up shows up, confirm the action by pressing on Refresh Firefox. Reset Firefox 2

Remove from Google Chrome

To fix Google Chrome browser, you need to uninstall Imali Media-related add-ons, including FunTVTab, NewTabTv, Secure Finder and others.

Delete malicious extensions from Google Chrome:

  1. Open Google Chrome, click on the Menu (three vertical dots at the top-right corner) and select More tools > Extensions.
  2. In the newly opened window, you will see all the installed extensions. Uninstall all the suspicious plugins that might be related to the unwanted program by clicking Remove. Remove extensions from Chrome

Clear cache and web data from Chrome:

  1. Click on Menu and pick Settings.
  2. Under Privacy and security, select Clear browsing data.
  3. Select Browsing history, Cookies and other site data, as well as Cached images and files.
  4. Click Clear data. Clear cache and web data from Chrome

Change your homepage:

  1. Click menu and choose Settings.
  2. Look for a suspicious site in the On startup section.
  3. Click on Open a specific or set of pages and click on three dots to find the Remove option.

Reset Google Chrome:

If the previous methods did not help you, reset Google Chrome to eliminate all the unwanted components:

  1. Click on Menu and select Settings.
  2. In the Settings, scroll down and click Advanced.
  3. Scroll down and locate Reset and clean up section.
  4. Now click Restore settings to their original defaults.
  5. Confirm with Reset settings. Reset Chrome 2

Delete from Safari

Remove unwanted extensions from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. In the new window, pick Extensions.
  3. Select the unwanted extension and select Uninstall. Remove extensions from Safari

Clear cookies and other website data from Safari:

  1. Click Safari > Clear History…
  2. From the drop-down menu under Clear, pick all history.
  3. Confirm with Clear History. Clear cookies and website data from Safari

Reset Safari if the above-mentioned steps did not help you:

  1. Click Safari > Preferences…
  2. Go to Advanced tab.
  3. Tick the Show Develop menu in menu bar.
  4. From the menu bar, click Develop, and then select Empty Caches. Reset Safari

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 play-bar-search.com 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: ReimageIntego, SpyHunter 5Combo Cleaner or Malwarebytes.

How to prevent from getting browser hijacker

Choose a proper web browser and improve your safety with a VPN tool

Online spying has got momentum in recent years and people are getting more and more interested in how to protect their privacy online. One of the basic means to add a layer of security – choose the most private and secure web browser. Although web browsers can't grant full privacy protection and security, some of them are much better at sandboxing, HTTPS upgrading, active content blocking, tracking blocking, phishing protection, and similar privacy-oriented features. However, if you want true anonymity, we suggest you employ a powerful Private Internet Access VPN – it can encrypt all the traffic that comes and goes out of your computer, preventing tracking completely.

 

Lost your files? Use data recovery software

While some files located on any computer are replaceable or useless, others can be extremely valuable. Family photos, work documents, school projects – these are types of files that we don't want to lose. Unfortunately, there are many ways how unexpected data loss can occur: power cuts, Blue Screen of Death errors, hardware failures, crypto-malware attack, or even accidental deletion.

To ensure that all the files remain intact, you should prepare regular data backups. You can choose cloud-based or physical copies you could restore from later in case of a disaster. If your backups were lost as well or you never bothered to prepare any, Data Recovery Pro can be your only hope to retrieve your invaluable files.

About the author
Gabriel E. Hall
Gabriel E. Hall - Passionate web researcher

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