Saturday, 14 September 2013

How To Remove the Stubborn "Registry Helper" Scareware

If you have tried removing the Registry Helper with the usual programs and features uninstall utility and was not successful then read on the rest of this post. I had the same problem and accidentally stumbled upon a solution within one of the files of the the program itself.

I was surprised this morning that my laptop screen greeted me with a not so good news. A program called registry helper is splashing a bad news that it has detected threats (Pic. 1) in my device. I was surprised, not because of the "detected" threats but the presence of the said program. I know that it is just one of the scarewares out there that mimics legitimate scanners but always shows scary results and asks you at the end to download another software to remove the threats. But do not fall for it because your laptop is fine and the program it wants you to download will only makes matters worst. 

Pic 1

Can't Remove it the Usual Way

I tried to remove it through programs and features (control panel, program and features) by highlighting the program and clicking uninstall. I thought it is gone but when I restarted my computer, the scary message still pops up. I checked the startup items (start, type msconfig, start up), and the registry helper is still on the list. I unticked it and restarted my computer. The message is gone but I am sure that the program or other parts of the program are still installed in my laptop.

I turned to google and followed a link that gave me these steps but did not worked for me. 

1. Click “Ctrl+Alt+Del” to open Windows Task Manager, and then stop all registry helper processes. 

Which registry helper processes? I do not know! It doesn't show me which processes.

2. Click “Start” button and select “Run”. Type “regedit” into the box and click “OK”. Delete the following file:

“HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\Software\Registry Helper.” Right-click this registry key and select “Delete.”

I could not see this value myself inside Software folder.

3. Navigate to directory %PROGRAM_FILES%\Registry Helper\ and delete the infected files manually.

"If you don’t have sufficient expertise in dealing with computer files, this may cause damage to your computer. So please be prudent during the whole removal process. Otherwise, why not use a virus removal tool to help you remove virus and optimize computer system automatically."

Although the warning is scary, I tried to do this. But every time I try it says that it is being used by another program, so I could not delete it.

I was stuck for a while on thinking of how to remove it. The name of the program is no longer listed at programs and features, because of the first uninstall attempt. But it is still in my system as it is still showing at the start up. 

Whilst inspecting the elements of the program, I came across it's un installation process (computer, system C:, program files(x86), Registry Helper, Help folder) that came with the package. It is just a matter of double clicking ! 

Pic 2

But how can I do that when it is no longer showing in the list of programs?

This might sound crazy but in order for the program to be on the list again is to download and install  it the second time from!

Uninstalling Registry Helper

After installing it, the program's name is back on the list. The software comes with two more additional programs, the computer updater and disk cleaner. I know that they come with it because the installation time of the three softwares are at the same time.

Pic 3

To uninstall, just double click it! A dialogue pops up saying to close the program (this dialogue did not showed up using programs and features to uninstall). 

Pic 4

Whilst uninstalling, a dialogue shows and asking if I want to keep the settings of registry helper. I did chose No.

Pic 5

Once uninstalled, I also uninstalled computer updater and disk cleaner!

Pic 6

The scary pop up stopped showing after the restart!

Related Post

How not to get infected with scarewares

Friday, 13 September 2013

The Top 2 Most Annoying Internet Problem

Internet is already an integral part of everyday living. It keeps us entertained, makes our lives easier, more fun and more productive. However, there are major frustrations that we stumble upon as we surf the web. And here are the top two that really annoying .

No  internet connection

This is the most dismal thing that can happen to web surfers like you and me. This problem can be an ISP problem, router problem or the internet device itself.

Device Troubleshooting

To roll out if the internet device is the problem, click the wifi connection icon(1) at the right bottom part of the screen. It should be connected to your router and should detect other wireless gateways(2) nearby. If it can not detect any and you are sure the router is working well, then there's a high possibility that the internet device has the problem.

Solution for this is to try to turn on and off the wifi button(a physical switch might be located at the top or the bottom of the laptop, depending on the model or embedded at one of the F keys.

Next thing to do is to see if you have an internet gateway by going to the command console. Click Start(3),  type cmd (4)at the search box, then press enter. At the console, type in ipconfig(4) then enter.

If the wireless connection is not established then the media state is disconnected(5).  The default gateway and other values(6) are shown when there is a connection. If the media state is disconnected, try other internet devices if they can connect to the router, if not, suspect the router.

If you established that the router is working and the wi-fi of your device is not, you can still connect using a wired connection via the ethernet port with an RJ45 cable(A) or install a new wi-fi USB receiver(B).

Router troubleshooting

Take note of the colours of the router. They should be green or blue, rather than red or amber. Red or amber colours could mean that there is a problem with the router or data signal. If red light shows at the power button(7), it's time to buy a new one. If the DSL(8) button is on the red, there is a problem with the data being transmitted from your ISP. It might be a problem from your ISP or your hardware peripherals like the filter or the telephone wire. If this is the case, try to unplug and plug the wire connections from the router to the filter, and from the filter to the telephone socket. Make sure as well that the length of the wire from the router to the telephone socket is not too long. Too much length can drop data signals. Restart your router by unplugging the mains power. If the colour of the DSL button remains amber or red, then it is about time to call your ISP. The lights of the wi-fi(9) and ethernet (10) has nothing to do with the DSL signal.

Slow internet connection

Imagine a webpage taking forever loading. This is worst than no signal at all. And most of the time, the problem originates from the ISP, and there's nothing you can do about it but to call the company. But before you call them make sure that you have an additional evidence to show that you have a slow connection. You can check your speed when you notice a slow loading of pages at

note: you do not need to click (12) before you test, just click (11) straight away.

According to the test, I only manage to have 2.25MBPS from the "upto 6MBPS" that my phone line can handle and as advertised by my ISP, not even the half of it. And sometimes my connection just drops down to an annoying dial up speed like 250kbps! Although it says unlimited in the contract, there's a small print that says "subject to fair usage". What I suspect is that they throttle the speed they are providing me as I usually notice a drop after I download movies! "Subject to fair usage" statement should be specifically defined.

Another cause of slow connection is the number of users. As the four of us are dividing just 2.25MBPS, we expect that we can not stream at the same time four different  movies without interruption or problems.

The solution to this is to change to a higher speed plan or upgrade to fibre optics, threaten the company you are leaving them or maybe just ask for a discount!

Other cause is black spots at a certain part of the house. The solution to this is to determine which part of the house seems the signal drops and avoid that spot whilst on the internet. Another solution is to get the latest high gain router.

Sunday, 8 September 2013

5 Practical Points to Extend Smartphone's Battery

Have you been charging your smartphone more often recently? A friend of mine says her phone has been fully charged at the start of the day but need to charge it again in the afternoon. It seems that the phone just can't get enough of the mains supply and seems like her charger and phone are inseparable. I admit that I have frustrations as well in terms of power specially when I am on call. What worries me is that I might be getting called back to the lab when the phone is just dead! This makes me thinking of buying another battery perhaps. But what if the phone in question has its embedded battery? Maybe buying another unit is the answer. But before I spend anything, here are my observations why my phone battery is draining fast.

1. Low network signal.

I always get this when I am inside my workplace, and this gets worse when I move into inner corridors. Low signal (zero to one bar) strains the phone to continue looking for a better network signal and in the process draining the battery. Putting away my phone inside my locker whilst on also worsens the problem.

My simple solution to this is to put it into flight mode. This is simply because I am not expecting any personal calls during work and do not usually surf the web. However, if I am expecting a call, I usually divert it to my work phone's number and put the trigger as "when it is not available".

To do this, if you are on android, tap phone(1), then the left hand soft key button, call settings(2), call forwarding(3), voice call(4), forward when unreachable(5), then type in the phone number(6). Be sure to enable (7) before you exit.

For iPhone, go to settings, phone, call forwarding(tap on), then type your chosen phone number

iPhone users need to remember to turn off forwarding as there is not much option to choose from not like android that it can receive calls again when flight mode is off.

2. Mind the screen brightness and time out

According to the battery use application in my phone, the screen drinks the most power juice(1) , so most  self helps recommend turning the screen down or putting it into auto mode. But for myself, I find this very frustrating, as I can not see anything in a bright room or when outdoors. And also the fact that my vision needs a better lighting to understand what I am looking at. Outdoors is worst when you are at auto mode, you can not see a thing.

What I recommend is to set the screen setting to a comfortable level according to the user. To know what is comfortable level at every occasion is to set the screen brightness whilst outdoors! In fact when I do this, the maximum setting(2) is my comfortable level! 

Another self help tip is to limit the screen time out into the minimum, perhaps 15 seconds. With this setting, I am also frustrated.  Before I can read a line, the screen becomes black! I am more comfortable in setting it the longest and have set it up to 10 minutes, which is enough for me to read a mile long article without being frustrated.

To compensate for the lavish settings, my simple solution is to mind the power button. I just turn the screen off manually by a simple short touch (not too long that shuts down the phone) at the power button! Like driving a car, auto cars tend to use more gas than manual.

3. Mind your voice calls

This happened to me on several occasion. I called my home number but forgot to end the call. The difference in calling a landline is the call does not terminate automatically when the landline end ends the call. This means, the mobile phone is still connected. It is not only that the battery is being drained, but your calling allowance as well. So be sure to always press the end button when calling a landline. 

There's no problem in calling mobiles as the call is terminated automatically when the other end ends the call.

4. Mind connectivity buttons

These are the major culprits that most of the time I overlook. The wifi, bluetooth, and data buttons. Be sure to manually turn them off when you are out of coverage and not using the internet. Because just like low network signals, the radio buttons of these connectivity interfaces are more active in trying to scan and connect to an available network when there is low to no signal is detected. 

Practical rule for this is, if you are not using it (GPS included) or NOT able to use it (when at off coverage area), turn it off. Being on whilst not using them is pointless. 

5. Mind your browsing habits

I notice this to friends who has battery problems. They are most of the time online. This means the screen is on most of the time plus the phone's processor and ram to run the program. If you are like them and can't help being online, then you need to be aware that loading a page, listening to music, streaming you tube movies and looking at FB pictures use power. Battery power might be easily depleted according to how much you are doing online. So if you are a heavy user, turning the screen brigthness down might extend the battery life.

As much as possible, open only one window or tab at a time, and avoid multi tasking. You can also set your social network(1) and other applications like emails(2) that updates it's contents over the internet into manual mode. This means disabling the sync button. Do this by going into settings, then accounts, and tap the application (4) to change the settings . Live widgets (3)are cool but sometimes it is better to avoid using them when battery is the worry.

So is it just our smartphone habits that are keeping our phones to the charger? Or it might be time to buy a new battery or perhaps a new unit? 


Popular Posts