Malware is any malicious software that is programmed to affect computer operation. For that reason, it is essential to scan your computer for malware programs that may be running on it, before you proceed to troubleshoot your computer for hardware or software problems you may be experiencing like Blue Screen of Death (BSOD) errors, Unrecognized devices, DLL file errors, installation or uninstall problems, unresponsive system, etc.
Use this guide to scan and clean your computer for Malware, before you try to resolve any problem that you face on your computer. For heavy infected computers follow the virus removal steps from this article: Full Malware Scan & Removal Guide to Clean Heavy Infected Computers.
ATTENTION: All the Anti-Malware programs and removal tools that suggested in this guide are totally FREE.
Notice: If you cannot download any of the bellow suggested programs on the infected computer, then you can download them from another clean computer and transfer them (e.g. by using a USB flash disk) on the infected computer.
How to easily check your computer for Viruses, Trojans, Rootkits, etc.) for FREE
Step 1. Start your computer in Safe Mode with Networking.
In order to check your computer for possible Malware programs running on it, it is better to start your computer in Safe mode with network support. Then follow the instructions on the steps below to download and install the suggested malware removal utilities to scan your system for viruses. To start Windows in Safe mode:
Windows 7, Vista & XP users:
- Close all programs and reboot your computer.
- Press the "F8" key as your computer is booting up, before the appearance of the Windows logo.
- When the "Windows Advanced Options Menu" appears on your screen, use your keyboard arrows keys to highlight the “Safe Mode with Networking” option and then press "ENTER".
Windows 10, 8 & 8.1 users:
- Press “Windows” + “R” keys to load the Run dialog box.
- Type “msconfig” and press Enter to open the System Configuration utility.
- Click the Boot tab and check “Safe Boot” & “Network”.
- Click “OK” and restart your computer.
Note: When you finish with the virus scanning and removal procedure, then re-open the 'System Configuration' utility and uncheck the “Safe Boot” setting. Then click OK and restart your computer to boot Windows normally.
Step 2: Remove Adware programs with AdwCleaner.
1. Download and save AdwCleaner utility to your desktop. AdwCleaner is a powerful utility to clean all the Adware, Toolbars, PUP & Hijacker programs from your computer.
2. Close all open programs and Double Click to open ”AdwCleaner” from your desktop.
3. After accepting the “License Agreement”, press the “Scan” button.
4. When the scan is completed, press “Clean” to remove all the unwanted malicious entries.
4. Press “OK” at “AdwCleaner – Information” and press “OK” again to restart your computer.
Step 3: Remove Junkware & Potentially Unwanted Programs (PUP) with JRT.
1. Download and run JRT – Junkware Removal Tool. JRT is a security utility that searches for and removes common adware, toolbars, and potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) from your computer.
2. Press any key to start scanning your computer with “JRT – Junkware Removal Tool”.
3. Be patient until JRT scans and cleans your system.
4. Close JRT log file and and then reboot your computer.
Step 4. Remove Malware with Malwarebytes Free.
Click the link below, to download and install Malwarebytes 3.0 one of the most reliable FREE anti malware programs today in order to clean your computer from remaining malicious threats. If you want to stay constantly protected from viruses and malware threats, existing and future ones, we recommend that you install Malwarebytes 3.0 Premium.
Quick download & Installation instructions:
- After you click the above link, press the FREE DOWNLOAD button to download Malwarebytes 3.0 Premium TRIAL.
* Note: After the 14-day trial period, Malwarebytes reverts to a free version but without real-time protection for ransomware, viruses or malware programs.
- At the installation screens, choose your preferred language, and just press the Next button in all installation screens, to install the product.
When the installation is completed, click Finish.
Scan & Clean your computer with Malwarebytes Anti-Malware 3.0.
1. Launch Malwarebytes Premium Trial and wait until the program updates its antivirus database.
2. When the update process is completed, press the Scan Now button to start scanning your system for malware and unwanted programs.
3. Now wait until Malwarebytes finishes scanning your computer for malware.
4. When the scan has completed, select all detected malware infections (if found) and then press the Quarantine Selected button to remove all threats from your computer.
5. Wait until Malwarebytes removes all infections from your system and then restart your computer (if required from the program) to completely remove all active threats.
Step 5. Scan and Remove Viruses with your Antivirus Program.
Open your Antivirus program and perform a full scan for viruses on your computer. *
* Suggestion: Before scanning your system with your antivirus program, download and run the ESET Online Scanner, (Standalone Virus Removal Utility) to clean your computer from threats.
- Related article: Best Free Antivirus Programs for Home use.