Irritating changes in the browser and the sudden replacement of its starting page, toolbar buttons, or search engine service is a commonly encountered issue, and although it isn’t the sing of some serious malware infection such as an attack by a Trojan Horse virus or a Ransomware cryptovirus, this annoyance should still not go unaddressed, or else your system may become more vulnerable to actual threats.
The typical cause of all these changes in the browser is a hijacker app that has gotten installed in the browser without the user’s knowledge. A browser hijacker is typically a tool of online advertisement used to promote some site, an online service, an Internet store, or something else. It can get added to Chrome, Edge, Safari, Firefox, or any other popular browser, flooding it with ads, page-redirects, and pop-ups, and altering its settings. Total Recipe Search Toolbar is a page that many users have recently gotten as their homepage without having done anything to make that change. The most likely reason behind this is a recently released hijacker that is aimed at promoting the Total Recipe Search page, and swarming the users’ screens with different forms of ads. Though the presence of the hijacker in the browser will typically not harm anything in the system, the random redirects and the ceaseless generation of ads may potentially land the user on unreliable web locations.
How can one handle the Total Recipe Search Toolbar?
Typically, a simple uninstallation of the invasive app wouldn’t be an option since you will likely not find it in your Control, or in any of your folders. Furthermore, it may not even be listed in the extensions manager of your browser. So, how can you remove it then? Well, there is no short answer to this question, and the long answer you will find in the removal guide posted at the bottom of this page. There, you will find detailed instructions on exactly how you can find the hijacker-related data, and remove it in order to get rid of the pesky app, which will also enable you to remove the changes that it has made in your browser. Once the hijacker is gone, you will no longer get redirected to the Total Recipe Search page, and you will be able to bring back your preferred homepage.
How hijackers get distributed, and how you can avoid them
A hijacker would normally be included in a software bundle – an installation package that contains several programs. Usually, there’s one main program in the package, and some added bonus apps – the hijacker would usually be included in the package/bundle as such a bonus app. Another option is that there’s an optional clause in the installer that directly allows the change of your homepage to Total Recipe Search or the replacement of your search engine. In either case, the bonus apps or the Total Recipe Search homepage clause should be optional – you just need to find them in the installer and uncheck them before installing the main program. Usually, the optional clauses are hidden under the Advanced/Custom setup menu, so make sure to use that menu when installing new software instead of going for the Default setup configuration.
|Name||Total Recipe Search|
|Danger Level||Medium (nowhere near threats like Ransomware, but still a security risk)|
|Symptoms||A Browser Hijacker in your computer may change the default homepage and search engine of the browser without your permission.|
|Distribution Method||Hijackers typically get bundled with the installers of other software and that’s how they get inside users’ computers.|
Total Recipe Search Toolbar Removal
The following guide is only for windows users, it will help our readers get rid of the unpleasant Total Recipe Search software. Follow the instructions and complete each step for best results. If you have any questions, feel free to ask them using our comment section down below.
Preparation: Entering Safe Mode and Revealing Hidden Files and Folders
Before you proceed with the actual removal instructions, you will need to take two extra steps in order to ensure that the guide has maximum effect.
For best results, we advise our readers to boot into Safe Mode prior to attempting to remove Total Recipe Search. If you do not know how to do that, here is a separate How to Enter Safe Mode guide.
Also, in order to be able to see any potentially undesirable files, you should reveal any hidden files and folders on your PC – here is how to do that.
Removing Total Recipe Search From Windows
Step 1: Checking the Task Manager
Before we start deleting files related to Total Recipe Search we want to make sure that all services related to the viruses are killed before we proceed.
Open your Task Manager by using the Ctrl + Shift + Esc keys and go to the Processes tab. Look for any suspicious processes. For example, any unfamiliar process that uses high amounts of RAM and/or CPU. If you aren’t sure if a certain process comes from malware, tell us in the comments.
Right-click on any process that you consider shady and select Open File Location. Delete anything from the file location of the process.
Step 2: Disabling Startup programs
Use the Winkey + R keyboard combination to open the Run search bar and type msconfig. Hit Enter and in the newly opened window, go to the Startup tab. There, look for suspicious entries with unknown manufacturer or ones that have the name Total Recipe Search on them. Right-click on those, and select disable.
Step 3: Uninstalling unwanted programs
Go to Start Menu > Control Panel > Uninstall a Program. Click on Installed On to sort the entries by date from most recent to oldest and look through the programs that come at the top of the list. Right-click on any entries that appear shady and unwanted and then select Uninstall to remove them from your PC. If you see the name Total Recipe Search in the list of programs, be sure to remove the software without hesitation.
Step 4: Checking for shady IP’s
Open your Start Menu and copy-paste notepad %windir%/system32/Drivers/etc/hosts in the search bar. In the notepad file, look below Localhost and see if there are any IP addresses there. If there are some, send them to us in the comments and we will tell you if you should take any action. [add_forth_banner]
Step 5: Cleaning-up the browsers
You will also have to uninstall any undesirable browser extensions from your browser programs. Here’s how to do that for some of the more popular browsers:
Getting rid of Total Recipe Search from Chrome
Open Chrome and open its main menu. Go to More Tools > Extensions. Look through the list of extensions and uninstall any that you think could be suspicious. To remove them – click on the trash can icon next to each extension.
You can also use a specialized Chrome CleanUp tool if you cannot manually remove a certain extension. Here is an article where you can learn more about the CleanUp tool.
Removing Total Recipe Search From Firefox
Open Firefox and go to its Menu. Select the Add-ons button.From the left panel, select Extensions and take a look at the different entries. Remove any of the that might be unwanted.
Removing Total Recipe Search From Windows Internet Explorer
Once you open your IE browser, click on the Tools button at the top-right corner of the program and from the drop-down menu select Manage Add-ons. Check each one of the four different groups of add-ons and search for anything that seems undesirable. If you find anything, click on it and them select Remove.
Removing Total Recipe Search From Windows Edge
Open the main menu of Microsoft Edge and go to Extensions. Find the extensions that you believe could be unwanted and right-click on them. Then, select Uninstall.
Step 6: Checking the Registry Editor
Open the Run search bar again and type regedit in it. Hit Enter and once the Registry Editor opens press Ctrl + F. In the search field type Total Recipe Search and click on Find Next. Tell us in the comments if any results came up when you searched for Total Recipe Search in your PC’s Registry.
Step 7: Deleting recent entries
For this step, you will have to open your Start Menu and copy-paste the following lines, one by one:
Hit Enter after each one to open a file directory. In the directories, delete the most recent entries that you find there. In the Temp folder, delete all files.
Step 8: System Restore
In order to be fully sure that the unwanted software has been removed from your machine, you can also try using a Restore Point to roll back your system its last stable configuration. However, in order to do that, you would have to previously had had a restore point created. On most systems, such points get created automatically but this isn’t always the case.
- If you want to learn how to configure System Restore and how to manually create Restore Points, follow this link.
- Open your Start Menu and type System Restore.
- Click on the first result – a setup wizard should open.
- Read the brief description of the process and select Next.
- Now, choose a restore from the presented list. You can also check the Show more restore points option in order to reveal any other restore points that might be saved on your PC.
- Click on Scan for affected programs to see what programs will get deleted or restored after you use the Restore Point. (optional)
- Click on next and take and then select Finish.
- A warning window will appear telling you that once the process starts, it shouldn’t be interrupted. Select Yes and be patient as this might take some time. Do not do anything on your PC throughout the duration of the process.
Step 9: Windows Refresh/Reset
Use this method only if nothing else has worked so far as it is a last resort option. If you do not know how to do it, this separate guide will give you the information that you need.