Process Hacker (a useful replacement for Windows Task Manager) is a Windows operating system open source tool that allows you to take a closer look at what is going on within your browser and active programs. This might involve identifying and blocking rogue toolbars or pop-ups.
As we know stopping badware (not necessarily adware) from running and being difficult to remove from your computer and or browser can be quite a challenge. Not all ‘adware’ is suspicious/malicious and or slows down your PC. It’s worth remembering this when using Process Hacker.
Download and install Process Hacker http://processhacker.sourceforge.net/ Here is how you can identify and stop nagware and badware on your computer using Process Hacker:
- Open Process Hacker and load the default Processes tab
- Scroll down to ‘explorer.exe’ and identify the browser you are using (i.e. chrome.exe)
- Chrome.exe (example) is running – look for ‘child’ processes that stem from it
- Most of the chrome.exe processes will be yellow, which means that they are safe
- Some chrome.exe processes might be red, which indicates suspicious activity
- Red processes are stopped and removed automatically (actually hidden from view)*
- To view hidden processes on 32-bit Windows systems only Click > Tools > Hidden Processes**
- Next, review your browser’s active programe files and Registry entries
- Right click the parent processes i.e. chrome.exe and click > Properties > Modules
- If you spot a child process that is the name of the badware you want to block, you can Terminate the entire tree or just the process
- Unsure about a process – just right click a parent or child press > Search Online
*You also have the option to ‘Suspend’ a parent or child process.
**You will need full administrator privileges on your computer. Right click Process Hacker in your Start menu and click ‘Run as Administrator’. You will need to do this before you can open ‘Hidden Processes’. You can also do this from within the application – Click ‘Hacker’ on the toolbar > Run as Administrator.
NOTE: The hidden processes feature is not available on 64-bit Windows.