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Clear browser, change search engine, remove Yahoo

Sometimes it happens. You’re supposed to install a program or do an update, but you’re in too much of a hurry and miss reading the fine print.

If you are unlucky, it means that your browser will be completely changed. Instead of your usual start page, something completely different is displayed and when you do a search, your usual search engine is not used.

Your browser has simply been “occupied” and you cannot go through the Control Panel to remove the program causing it.

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Want to earn money

Unfortunately, this is a common problem, and even reputable companies are involved. When you install different kinds of freeware, it often happens that they take control of your browser. The most common example is the Java plug-in. When you install or update it, Yahoo takes over your browser unless you clear a small check box at the beginning of the installation.

The explanation is, of course, economic. If your usual home page and search engine are replaced with Yahoo’s, they earn money as you are exposed to their advertising. Yahoo is therefore prepared to pay the software manufacturers who ship with a program that changes your browser.

This kind of annoyance should not be confused with viruses and trojans. The Yahoo extension does nothing harmful to the computer, and you get a clear warning. In other words, the best thing you can do is to be careful when installing programs and to uncheck any warning boxes. Taking an extra minute to read through the instructions will save you a lot of time in the end.

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However, should you forget this, it’s still relatively easy to reset the browser and eject the occupants.

The free program that helps you

Sometimes it is not possible to reset the browser yourself. Some “occupiers” have gotten deeper into the system, and prevent you from deleting it yourself.
If you have been affected by such a program, security company Symantec’s free tool Norton Power Eraser can come in handy. Here’s how to use it.

Norton Power Eraser
Fault-finder. Norton Power Eraser helps you get rid of more unwanted programs.

1. Surf to Norton website and click on Download. Save the program on the Desktop.

2. Double-click the program and follow the instructions to install.

3. When the program opens, click on Search for risks. Follow the instructions and the program will scan your computer and offer you to clean it.

Step by Step: Reset Google Chrome

1. Fix the right start page
Click on the settings icon, which you can find at the top right, and select Settings. Under On startup, change your home page. click Group of pages and let the mouse rest on top of the page you want to delete. Click the cross to delete.


2. Change search engine
Click on the settings icon and select Settings. Under Search, you decide which search engine should be used when you do a search from the address field. click Manage search engines, let the mouse rest over the one you want to remove and click the cross.

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3. Remove extensions
Sometimes a Chrome extension takes control of your home page and search engine. You delete it by clicking on the settings icon and selecting Settings, Extensions. Locate the extensionclick the trash can on the right and select Remove.

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Step by Step: Reset Microsoft Edge/Internet Explorer

1. Fix the right start page
Click the settings icon on the right and select Settings. During Open with you can change the start page. In Internet Explorer, select instead Internet Options, General, Home. click Remove to delete the suggested option.

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2. Change search engine
Choose Settings, Show advanced settings. Browse to Search in the address bar, choose Changehighlight the search engine and Remove. In Internet Explorer, click Tool. Choose Manage extensions and click on Search Providers. Highlight and select Remove.

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3. Remove extensions
Edge does not support any add-ons. In Internet Exporer, however, you clear them by clicking on Tool and choose Manage extensions. click Choose toolbars and extensionshighlight what you want to delete and select Disable, Disable.

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Step by Step: Reset Mozilla Firefox

1. Fix the right start page
Choose Tool and thereafter Settings. Then click on the option Generally (first page that pops up) and make sure the option When Firefox starts: show the start page is selected in the drop-down list. In the box below, fill in your desired start page.


2. Change search engine
Choose Tool and then Settings. Then click through to the option search and make sure that the desired search engine is visible in the field Default search engine.


3. Remove extensions
If your browser has been hijacked by an add-on, you also need to uninstall the add-on. You do this by first clicking on Tool and then on Addition. Then locate the extension under the tab Addition and click on Remove.

Level of difficulty: Simple
Time: 10 minutes

This is what you need:

  • Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Windows Edge or Internet Explorer.

This is what you will learn:

  • Therefore, your browser is hijacked.
  • How to restore the start page and the search engine.
  • How to get rid of annoying extensions.

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