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medwards

www.websearch.com returns as default search engine

5 posts in this topic

Greetings -

 

Machine is running XP Home with all critical updates installed and current.

 

Took a peek at the FAQ. Ran Ad-Aware, Spybot (both of which we use regularly) and CWshredder (new to me).

 

The user somehow navigated to a www.websearch.com toolbar install, and said OK to the install without thinking at the time. It was later removed via add/remove software control panel.

 

However, misstyped URLs still default to websearch.com. The user is used to them going to google - as set via the google toolbar.

 

After running Ad-aware, Spybot, and others - rebooted and reinstalled the google toolbar. Also tried setting serch engine back to defaul, selecting Google toolbar options to use google as default search engine, and searching the registry for websearch.com - which did find entries. Tried modifying them to google.

 

In all cases, the browser (IE 6.0) still defaults to websearch.com, although in a few cases it got a normal 404 type page, but went back after shutting down and re-launching browser.

 

I'm assuming some sort of dll or exe file is activly re-setting this.

 

Here's my hijackthis log for this machine.

 

Logfile of HijackThis v1.97.7

Scan saved at 2:21:32 PM, on 5/28/2004

Platform: Windows XP SP1 (WinNT 5.01.2600)

MSIE: Internet Explorer v6.00 SP1 (6.00.2800.1106)

 

Running processes:

C:\WINDOWS\System32\smss.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\winlogon.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\services.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\lsass.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\svchost.exe

C:\WINDOWS\System32\svchost.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\spoolsv.exe

C:\Program Files\Canon\VDC\AuVdc.exe

C:\PROGRA~1\SYMANT~1\SYMANT~1\DefWatch.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\cba\pds.exe

C:\PROGRA~1\SYMANT~1\SYMANT~1\Rtvscan.exe

C:\Program Files\Common files\WinTools\WToolsS.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\cba\xfr.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\MsgSys.EXE

C:\WINDOWS\Explorer.EXE

C:\Program Files\QuickTime\qttask.exe

C:\PROGRA~1\eCopy\Desktop\PCLprint\mrmlnc32.exe

C:\Program Files\Real\RealPlayer\RealPlay.exe

C:\PROGRA~1\SYMANT~1\SYMANT~1\vptray.exe

C:\Program Files\Winamp3\winampa.exe

C:\Program Files\Common files\WinTools\WToolsA.exe

C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 5.0\Distillr\AcroTray.exe

C:\Program Files\ACT\SideACT.exe

C:\Program Files\WinZip\WZQKPICK.EXE

C:\Program Files\Common files\WinTools\WSup.exe

C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\iexplore.exe

C:\Documents and Settings\ROHARA\Local Settings\Temporary Internet Files\Content.IE5\TZV75L82\HijackThis[1].exe

 

R1 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Search Bar = http://www.websearch.com/ie.aspx?tb_id=50038

R0 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Start Page = http://www.lexis.com/research

R1 - HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Default_Page_URL = http://www.emachines.com

R0 - HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search,CustomizeSearch =

R0 - HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search,SearchAssistant = http://www.websearch.com/ie.aspx?tb_id=50038

R0 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar,LinksFolderName =

R1 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Connection Wizard,Shellnext = http://pralerts.zonelabs.com/pralerts/pran...CL=en&LICFLAG=1 (obfuscated)

R1 - HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,SearchAssistant = http://www.websearch.com/ie.aspx?tb_id=50038

R3 - URLSearchHook: (no name) - {87766247-311C-43B4-8499-3D5FEC94A183} - C:\PROGRA~1\COMMON~1\WinTools\WToolsB.dll

O2 - BHO: (no name) - {06849E9F-C8D7-4D59-B87D-784B7D6BE0B3} - C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 5.0\Acrobat\ActiveX\AcroIEHelper.ocx

O2 - BHO: (no name) - {87766247-311C-43B4-8499-3D5FEC94A183} - C:\PROGRA~1\COMMON~1\WinTools\WToolsB.dll

O2 - BHO: (no name) - {AA58ED58-01DD-4d91-8333-CF10577473F7} - c:\program files\google\googletoolbar1.dll

O3 - Toolbar: &Radio - {8E718888-423F-11D2-876E-00A0C9082467} - C:\WINDOWS\System32\msdxm.ocx

O3 - Toolbar: &Google - {2318C2B1-4965-11d4-9B18-009027A5CD4F} - c:\program files\google\googletoolbar1.dll

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [QuickTime Task] "C:\Program Files\QuickTime\qttask.exe" -atboottime

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [eCopy Desktop Printer Service] C:\PROGRA~1\eCopy\Desktop\PCLprint\mrmlnc32.exe

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [RealTray] C:\Program Files\Real\RealPlayer\RealPlay.exe SYSTEMBOOTHIDEPLAYER

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [vptray] C:\PROGRA~1\SYMANT~1\SYMANT~1\vptray.exe

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [WinampAgent] "C:\Program Files\Winamp3\winampa.exe"

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [WinTools] C:\Program Files\Common files\WinTools\WToolsA.exe

O4 - Global Startup: Acrobat Assistant.lnk = C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 5.0\Distillr\AcroTray.exe

O4 - Global Startup: Microsoft Office.lnk = C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office10\OSA.EXE

O4 - Global Startup: SideACT!.lnk = C:\Program Files\ACT\SideACT.exe

O4 - Global Startup: WinZip Quick Pick.lnk = C:\Program Files\WinZip\WZQKPICK.EXE

O8 - Extra context menu item: &Google Search - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmsearch.html

O8 - Extra context menu item: Backward &Links - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmbacklinks.html

O8 - Extra context menu item: Cac&hed Snapshot of Page - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmcache.html

O8 - Extra context menu item: E&xport to Microsoft Excel - res://C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\Office10\EXCEL.EXE/3000

O8 - Extra context menu item: Si&milar Pages - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmsimilar.html

O8 - Extra context menu item: Translate into English - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmtrans.html

O9 - Extra button: ICQ (HKLM)

O9 - Extra 'Tools' menuitem: ICQ (HKLM)

O9 - Extra button: AIM (HKLM)

O9 - Extra button: Real.com (HKLM)

O9 - Extra button: Messenger (HKLM)

O9 - Extra 'Tools' menuitem: Messenger (HKLM)

O12 - Plugin for .spop: C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\Plugins\NPDocBox.dll

O14 - IERESET.INF: START_PAGE_URL=http://www.emachines.com

O16 - DPF: {166B1BCA-3F9C-11CF-8075-444553540000} (Shockwave ActiveX Control) - http://fpdownload.macromedia.com/pub/shock...ector/swdir.cab

O16 - DPF: {26BFFB87-5B07-4611-82BB-AF3947013FDD} (DAPCtl Class) - http://www.lexis.com/dl/IEDAP.cab

O16 - DPF: {3E68E405-C6DE-49FF-83AE-41EE9F4C36CE} (Office Update Installation Engine) - http://office.microsoft.com/officeupdate/content/opuc.cab

O16 - DPF: {597C45C2-2D39-11D5-8D53-0050048383FE} (OPUCatalog Class) - http://office.microsoft.com/productupdates/content/opuc.cab

O16 - DPF: {9F1C11AA-197B-4942-BA54-47A8489BB47F} (Update Class) - http://v4.windowsupdate.microsoft.com/CAB/...7461.7155092593

O16 - DPF: {D27CDB6E-AE6D-11CF-96B8-444553540000} (Shockwave Flash Object) - http://fpdownload.macromedia.com/pub/shock...ash/swflash.cab

O17 - HKLM\System\CCS\Services\Tcpip\..\{D93A9336-40F5-4F86-B225-9154845030B0}: Domain = seattle.digital-legal.com

 

 

 

Thanks in advance for any info you can supply. In the list, Wintools (wintoolsA & wintoolsB) are ones that I don't recognize.

Edited by medwards

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Hi,

Important! Create a folder via Windows Explorer for HijackThis, then move the file (HijackThis.exe) to that folder. This way any backups created are saved in a legit folder.

 

1) Restart in Safe Mode (see "How To:" below)

2) Enable Hidden Files (see "How To:" below)

 

Locate and delete the following:

 

C:\Program Files\Common Files\WinTools <--this folder

 

While still in Safe Mode:

Close all open windows, rescan with HijackThis and "Fix checked" the following:

 

R1 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Search Bar = http://www.websearch.com/ie.aspx?tb_id=50038

R0 - HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search,CustomizeSearch =

R0 - HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Search,SearchAssistant = http://www.websearch.com/ie.aspx?tb_id=50038

R0 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Toolbar,LinksFolderName =

R1 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Connection Wizard,Shellnext = http://pralerts.zonelabs.com/pralerts/pran...CL=en&LICFLAG=1 (obfuscated)

R1 - HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,SearchAssistant = http://www.websearch.com/ie.aspx?tb_id=50038

R3 - URLSearchHook: (no name) - {87766247-311C-43B4-8499-3D5FEC94A183} - C:\PROGRA~1\COMMON~1\WinTools\WToolsB.dll

O2 - BHO: (no name) - {87766247-311C-43B4-8499-3D5FEC94A183} - C:\PROGRA~1\COMMON~1\WinTools\WToolsB.dll

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [WinTools] C:\Program Files\Common files\WinTools\WToolsA.exe

 

Restart normally and then ...

 

Reconfigure Ad-Aware for Full Scan:

Please update the reference file following the instructions here:

http://www.lavahelp.com/howto/updref/index.html

 

Launch the program, and click on the Gear at the top of the start screen.

 

Click the "Scanning" button.

Under Drives & Folders, select "Scan within Archives".

Click "Click here to select Drives + folders" and select your installed hard drives.

 

Under Memory & Registry, select all options.

Click the "Advanced" button.

Under "Log-file detail", select all options.

Click the "Tweaks" button.

 

Under "Scanning Engine", select the following:

"Include additional Ad-aware settings in logfile" and

"Unload recognized processes during scanning."

Under "Cleaning Engine", select the following:

"Let Windows remove files in use after reboot."

Click on 'Proceed' to save these Preferences.

Please make sure that you activate IN-DEPTH scanning before you proceed.

 

After the above post a fresh log ...

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Ahh, just saw this. Thought I had configured it to email me when I got a reply. Will attempt above and report in a day or so (not at the users machine today).

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Success, thanks for the clear step-by-step instructions. :cool:

 

Some notes:

 

When booting into safe mode, I first logged in as the Admin account on the machine - complained that the files were "in use", as they were in the users directory. Switching to the Users account solved this, I'm sure taking the appropriate permissions on the files would have as well.

 

The Ad-aware info was very nice - was unaware of some of the default states on it's configuration. Thanks.

 

Deleting the files returned IE to using the default MS search, then re-establishing Google as the default search worked peachy. Many thanks.

 

The Ad-aware scan just picked up some normal Tracking Company cookies (which I deleted). Nothing else.

 

The user did file a complaint with FTC about these folks - their Tech Support responded with a fix tool that didn't do the job.

 

Here's the post deletion / re-boot log as requested.

 

Logfile of HijackThis v1.97.7

Scan saved at 11:11:20 AM, on 6/3/2004

Platform: Windows XP SP1 (WinNT 5.01.2600)

MSIE: Internet Explorer v6.00 SP1 (6.00.2800.1106)

 

Running processes:

C:\WINDOWS\System32\smss.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\winlogon.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\services.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\lsass.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\svchost.exe

C:\WINDOWS\System32\svchost.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\spoolsv.exe

C:\Program Files\Canon\VDC\AuVdc.exe

C:\PROGRA~1\SYMANT~1\SYMANT~1\DefWatch.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\cba\pds.exe

C:\PROGRA~1\SYMANT~1\SYMANT~1\Rtvscan.exe

C:\WINDOWS\system32\cba\xfr.exe

C:\WINDOWS\Explorer.EXE

C:\WINDOWS\system32\MsgSys.EXE

C:\Program Files\QuickTime\qttask.exe

C:\PROGRA~1\eCopy\Desktop\PCLprint\mrmlnc32.exe

C:\Program Files\Real\RealPlayer\RealPlay.exe

C:\PROGRA~1\SYMANT~1\SYMANT~1\vptray.exe

C:\Program Files\Winamp3\winampa.exe

C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 5.0\Distillr\AcroTray.exe

C:\Program Files\ACT\SideACT.exe

C:\Program Files\WinZip\WZQKPICK.EXE

C:\Documents and Settings\ROHARA\Desktop\HijackThis\HijackThis.exe

 

R0 - HKCU\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Start Page = http://www.lexis.com/research

R1 - HKLM\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\Main,Default_Page_URL = http://www.emachines.com

O2 - BHO: (no name) - {06849E9F-C8D7-4D59-B87D-784B7D6BE0B3} - C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 5.0\Acrobat\ActiveX\AcroIEHelper.ocx

O2 - BHO: (no name) - {AA58ED58-01DD-4d91-8333-CF10577473F7} - c:\program files\google\googletoolbar1.dll

O3 - Toolbar: &Radio - {8E718888-423F-11D2-876E-00A0C9082467} - C:\WINDOWS\System32\msdxm.ocx

O3 - Toolbar: &Google - {2318C2B1-4965-11d4-9B18-009027A5CD4F} - c:\program files\google\googletoolbar1.dll

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [QuickTime Task] "C:\Program Files\QuickTime\qttask.exe" -atboottime

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [eCopy Desktop Printer Service] C:\PROGRA~1\eCopy\Desktop\PCLprint\mrmlnc32.exe

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [RealTray] C:\Program Files\Real\RealPlayer\RealPlay.exe SYSTEMBOOTHIDEPLAYER

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [vptray] C:\PROGRA~1\SYMANT~1\SYMANT~1\vptray.exe

O4 - HKLM\..\Run: [WinampAgent] "C:\Program Files\Winamp3\winampa.exe"

O4 - Global Startup: Acrobat Assistant.lnk = C:\Program Files\Adobe\Acrobat 5.0\Distillr\AcroTray.exe

O4 - Global Startup: Microsoft Office.lnk = C:\Program Files\Microsoft Office\Office10\OSA.EXE

O4 - Global Startup: SideACT!.lnk = C:\Program Files\ACT\SideACT.exe

O4 - Global Startup: WinZip Quick Pick.lnk = C:\Program Files\WinZip\WZQKPICK.EXE

O8 - Extra context menu item: &Google Search - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmsearch.html

O8 - Extra context menu item: Backward &Links - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmbacklinks.html

O8 - Extra context menu item: Cac&hed Snapshot of Page - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmcache.html

O8 - Extra context menu item: E&xport to Microsoft Excel - res://C:\PROGRA~1\MICROS~2\Office10\EXCEL.EXE/3000

O8 - Extra context menu item: Si&milar Pages - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmsimilar.html

O8 - Extra context menu item: Translate into English - res://C:\Program Files\Google\GoogleToolbar1.dll/cmtrans.html

O9 - Extra button: ICQ (HKLM)

O9 - Extra 'Tools' menuitem: ICQ (HKLM)

O9 - Extra button: AIM (HKLM)

O9 - Extra button: Real.com (HKLM)

O9 - Extra button: Messenger (HKLM)

O9 - Extra 'Tools' menuitem: Messenger (HKLM)

O12 - Plugin for .spop: C:\Program Files\Internet Explorer\Plugins\NPDocBox.dll

O14 - IERESET.INF: START_PAGE_URL=http://www.emachines.com

O16 - DPF: {166B1BCA-3F9C-11CF-8075-444553540000} (Shockwave ActiveX Control) - http://fpdownload.macromedia.com/pub/shock...ector/swdir.cab

O16 - DPF: {26BFFB87-5B07-4611-82BB-AF3947013FDD} (DAPCtl Class) - http://www.lexis.com/dl/IEDAP.cab

O16 - DPF: {3E68E405-C6DE-49FF-83AE-41EE9F4C36CE} (Office Update Installation Engine) - http://office.microsoft.com/officeupdate/content/opuc.cab

O16 - DPF: {597C45C2-2D39-11D5-8D53-0050048383FE} (OPUCatalog Class) - http://office.microsoft.com/productupdates/content/opuc.cab

O16 - DPF: {9F1C11AA-197B-4942-BA54-47A8489BB47F} (Update Class) - http://v4.windowsupdate.microsoft.com/CAB/...7461.7155092593

O16 - DPF: {D27CDB6E-AE6D-11CF-96B8-444553540000} (Shockwave Flash Object) - http://fpdownload.macromedia.com/pub/shock...ash/swflash.cab

O17 - HKLM\System\CCS\Services\Tcpip\..\{D93A9336-40F5-4F86-B225-9154845030B0}: Domain = seattle.digital-legal.com

Edited by medwards

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