QA well-meaning friend installed the VLC video player program on to my Windows 7 laptop because he said it would help me to watch videos. But at the same time, he somehow changed my Internet Explorer’s homepage from Google to something called Snap.Do. My friend has tried to remove Snap.Do, but it keeps coming back and he has sheepishly admitted that he doesn’t know what to do next. How did Snap. Do end up on my computer and how do I get rid of it? I don’t want to embarrass my friend so, if you can help, please change my name. Dinesh Gandhi
ASnap. Do is a ‘browser hijacker’. Essentially, this means that it takes over various parts of your web browser, replacing the existing search engine with its own. It installs itself surreptitiously when you install another program. Even if the program is legitimate (as VLC absolutely is), downloading it from an untrustworthy source could result in the installation of unwanted extras – such as Snap Do. It’s our guess that your friend downloaded VLC from an illegitimate source. The safest place to get it is from www. videolan.org – the developer’s website. While Snap.Do itself isn’t directly harmful to your computer its search results certainly could be, littered as they are with links to dodgy programs and crooked websites. You intuitively know that your PC is better off without Snap.Do and, fortunately, removing it isn’t too tricky.
To begin, click Start followed by Control Panel then click ‘Uninstall a program’ under the Programs heading. Scroll through the list of installed programs to find the Snap.Do entry, click to highlight it, click the Uninstall button then follow the prompts to remove the program, clicking Yes to confirm. Next, you will need to repair the damage Snap.Do has done to your browser. In Internet Explorer, click the cog icon at the top right, then choose ‘Internet options’. Now select the Advanced tab and, in the ‘Reset Internet Explorer settings’ section, click the Reset button. In the dialogue box that appears, tick the ‘Delete personal settings’ box, then click the Reset button. Internet Explorer will spend a few seconds resetting itself – click Close when prompted, then restart the browser.
Snap.Do is now essentially removed from your PC, but if you wish to remove all vestiges, then you’ll need to clear its entries from the Windows Registry. The easiest way to do this is to use a free tool called AdwCleaner, which you can download from www.snipca.com/9075. Double-click the downloaded file to launch the program, then click the Delete button followed by OK and wait for a few minutes while AdwCleaner does its job. Note that AdwCleaner will close all other programs when it runs. Finally, we’d strongly recommend using your existing security software to perform a full malware scan, just in case Snap.Do’s presence has led to a secondary infection.