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Babylon Toolbar Is Malware And Your Uninstaller! Is Disappointing

Babylon Toolbar is malware. It has hijacked home page and default search engine on some of my browsers. I am pretty unhappy about this : I was having a problem with Firefox. I brought it up and it gave the message you sometimes see that it's having problems bringing up your tabs and asking if you want to start all over instead. This time the box you click on to Restore the tabs was dead, not able to be clicked on, which I haven't encountered before. I had seen a notice of a Firefox update hover on the lower right hand corner of my screen for a second or two. So I decided to go To CNET Tech Tracker and update Firefox. When I did the Firefox update, it didn't restore or offer to restore my tabs like it is set to do. All I see is http://search.babylon.com/. I blame the Babylon toolbar for losing my tabs. However, maybe clicking out Firefox before I updated is to blame.

I got Babylon Toolbar this time from Your Uninstaller! which I downloaded the other day. I am not pleased with Your Uninstaller for giving me this malware. Also I was very disappointed to see that the list of my programs on Your Uninstaller! was hardly any more complete than the list on Windows Add and Remove Programs. It did NOT list Babylon Toolbar. That's lousy--foist Babylon Toolbar on me and don't give me the opportunity to get rid of it. It also didn't list the Search Settings malware from Spigot that comes on every time I turn on my computer, and which I've long wanted to be rid of. Nor did it list the obsolete version of Smart Defrag that I haven't been able to get off my computer. On top of that, I found out it's only a 21-day trial. Don't worry, guys, I won't be paying for it.

Any suggestions on how to get my Firefox tabs back are welcome. The Firefox history is not going to be much help. Google Chrome and its kin have great history features, but Firefox's history is not very good.

UPDATE. See the comment thread for good pages to go to for dealing with Babylon Toolbar infestation.
conceptualclarity conceptualclarity 51-55, M 28 Responses Feb 12, 2012

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Another page devoted to Babylon cleanup :

http://www.raymond.cc/blog/babylon-toolbar-adware-info-complete-removal/

By the way, this story has become one of my most viewed stories, despite its being in this struggling, underpopulated group. I believe the reason is because it's turning up in online searches for Babylon Toollbar. So I'm attracting outsiders to EP, and probably some of them have joined. How about giving me 50 or 60 tokens, eh, EP?

That kind of behabior should be criminal, Babylon is playing with people. I guess one thing for sure we all can do, is telling others about this headacke, a bad reputation is devastating.

I wonder whether you kept back-ups of your files before installing your malware.<br />
If so, I would count it a blessing.<br />
I'm not an expert, but I suspect your best bet would be to wipe your hard disk clean with the best available virtual acid.<br />
Then re-install clean software, and finally reintroduce your old files.<br />
I use Ubuntu which is freeware written in Linux. So far, I've found that it works well in almost all applications, except that the Gimp or image manipulator is clumsy.<br />
Ubuntu interfaces smoothly with Firefox and Google.<br />
Because Lynux is a difficult language for most hackers, it gives freedom from worms, viruses and trojans.<br />
Choosing the right settings, it will also freeze out spam.

@conceptualclarity: The desc<x>ription page for each extension (including Nuke Anything Enhanced) explains what it does, often with images & examples & reviews from other users.<br />
<br />
I won't make the case for using my custom sc<x>ripts. The basic idea was to reformat EP's long & narrow multiple column layout into a more readable wide-screen single column layout.<br />
<br />
They <u>used to</u> delete stupid stuff from the header & footer on each EP page and expand the middle column to use the full width of the screen. A few items I liked in the first or third columns were moved into the middle column, and I rearranged/simplified things in that column so the info I used the most was organized better. They also change all of the text boxes to use a decent number of columns & rows instead of the tiny ones EP forces on everyone else.<br />
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That worked great for about two years! Now the sc<x>ripts are partially broken (I still use some of them anyway, they work well enough for my purposes) because EP has seriously screwed up their codeba<x>se and changed how everything works. For a while it looked like EP was about to ban me from the site so I wasn't willing to invest the time to fix them. Maybe someday I will.<br />
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p.s.: I also had sc<x>ripts that archived all of my Inbox & Sent Folder messages, created a databa<x>se of all of my experiences & friends, tracked all of my comments on all stories (both mine & other people's) and alerted me when ANY new comments were posted to those stories (not just comments on my stories, or comments on my comments).<br />
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None of that works anymore because EP's new pages are so badly arranged & interlinked that those tasks are difficult to program. The list pages with multiple sets of numbered page links are particularly confusing for a simple parser to handle. And they keep messing with pages (mainly by removing useful information that used to be there). I hate the way it works now.

Where are the description pages for those extensions?

Thanks.

W#hat does Nuke Anything Enhanced do?<br />
<br />
Would you be willing to make the case for me for using your custom sc<x>ripts for EP?

@conceptualclarity: Yes, go grab them all. Each one is explained further on its download page. Nosc<x>ript is the one that blocks ads (and sc<x>ripts, and other CPU &/ memory wasters).<br />
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You'll need Greasemonkey if you want to use my custom sc<x>ripts on EP. If not you can skip that one.<br />
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Stylish doesn't do much on EP (but it may in the future) -- it is useful on many other sites. It's worth getting just for cleaning up Wikipedia!

Thank you for your reply. In it and in the April 16 reply you've listed a number of extensions. I can't see myself just going and grabbing them all. Can you go through them and fill me in on their pros and cons?<br />
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From what I've heard previously of Nosc<x>ript, I think it's a bad idea for EP.

Observations on my WinXP-SP3 1GB RAM computer: With FlashPla<x>yer running Firefox 11 gradually slows down and uses more memory. After about five to twelve hours it begins page swapping. With FlashPla<x>yer disabled (or only enabled when needed) Firefox can run for weeks without problems. I currently have about 500 tabs, although most are backgrounded until I click on them.

So I could reasonably expect better speed in general if I disable FP or use one of the 3 extensions you mention above?

I just noticed this : you're on 1 GB RAM? Wow! I'm miserable at 2 GB!

I'm also interested in what I think you mentioned about ad-blocking plug-ins. I've got to do something to speed up my computer. I'm fed up.

I use the following extensions to fine-tune what each website is allowed to do on my computer. (Some of these are advanced skills. Start with the defaults for an overall performance boost. NoScript is a bit tricky to get working on EP, ask for help with what you need to put on the whitelist if you need it. Be aware that EP's blog posting code contains XSS security errors that are detected &amp; blocked by NoScript -- do an "Unsafe Reload" to upload anyway. EPSupport refuses to fix these vulnerabilities.)
¶ absolute load control
¶ BetterPrivacy
¶ Ghostery
¶ Greasemonkey
¶ NoScript
¶ Nuke Anything Enhanced
¶ RAMBack
¶ RefreshBlocker
¶ Remove It Permanently
¶ Stylish
¶ TACO with Abine

1 More Response

Why do you disable FlashPla<x>yer, Chrissy? Does your browser run faster without it? <br />
<br />
I know I need to do something different. I have a Mozilla browser, CometBird, and with less than 45 tabs up it is running horribly slow. I'm puzzled, because a few nights ago I had more tabs than now, and it was running well.

@ mollermole : Apparently Babylon Toolbar has some legitimate functions as a translation tool: I don't exactly understand that. But my search said it was on my computer for several years in connection with word processing programs and it wasn't giving me any trouble as far as I know..As a browser add-on, it is absolutely malware.<br />
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Bad news is Babylon Toolbar is bundled with the Flash Pla<x>yer update I got today. I posted on Q&A about this at <br />
<br />
EP Linkyer-Update-Is-Nasty-Malware-Very-Difficult-To-Get-Rid-Of/844676<br />
<br />
Well, EP won't let me link to my question. The title is "Did you know Babylon Toolbar, bundled with the new Flash Pla<x>yer update, is nasty malware very difficult to get rid of"

NewChrissy, Lots of people tell me CCleaner is great. What do you think about it?<br />
<br />
Since I updated Flash Pla<x>yer and ran into more Babylon Toolbar problems, I am having problems with my Mozilla browser CometBird. When it brings up the Session Restore for my tabs, most of the time it won't work. It may bring up the Restore and New session buttons with only the New Session button lit up to allow me to choose it. More often, it lets me click on Restore, but then it will just freeze instead of restoring my tabs. I look at Task Manager and it shows the Mem Usage stuck at the same integer.

I used CCleaner without having it as well figured out as I needed, and the darn thing wiped out my history from most of my browsers. After babylon had wiped out my tabs. I was royally p*ssed off.

@ NewChrissy : It was saying that just about this particular version. I allowed CometBird to disable it, and so far I don't seem to be having any problems from that.<br />
<br />
How do you disable Flash Pla<x>yer? I've never tried that.

In Firefox you can disable/enable Flash Player on the Tools ==&gt; Add-ons ==&gt; Plugins page. I use the following extensions to make using Flash easier: Flashblock, FlashResizer, FlashToggle

Do you need all three? If not, which is the best?

I'm not a tech person by any means, but it would seem all the very bright and engaged people out there would have crushed this horrible thing, Babyalon. How is they can do this??

Is the browser saying that about every recent version of Java or just that particular one? You can download the latest version of Java and uninstall the old before installing the new one. I routinely leave Flash disabled and only turn it on when a page asks for it. You could do the same thing with Java -- most pages/sites don't need it and will load without it (but any portions of the page that require Java won't be operational).

I'm on a new browser now, CometBird, Firefox-ba<x>sed. I have lots of tabs up as usual. Today it gave me a message that Java(TM) Platform SE 7 U1 10.1.0.8 is "known to cause stabilty or security problems" and it wants to disable it. I did a little searching and haven't found anything bad about it so far.<br />
<br />
Can you shed any light on it?

Surprised you don't have a forum suggestion for me.

You could find an IT Director and use flirting & sexual innuendo to get him to submit a help ticket to his research staff -- but maybe that only works for me. (Tee hee.)

I contacted a local computer savvy friend and he also didn't know what to do with the search results for "Babylon" which show what folders it is "in." So I need to go to a computer forum. The Squirrel a while back recommended VB Forum. What do you think about that, and do you have other suggestions?

I'm embarrassed to report that the answer to what to do was right-click, which gave a delete option. However, one exercise of that option deleted two files when I only clicked on one, and at the next reboot, one sixth of my programs were gone. Using System Restore fixed that.

Thanks. Any advice on the first paragraph, how to proceed now that I've identified the folders where Babylon Toolbar is?

I don't have any advice for you about that. I used to have "too many tabs" problems with Firefox but not in the recent versions. Before I could only have about thirty tabs but at the moment I have several hundred tabs and Firefox is automatically aging/managing/reloading all of them without any trouble while staying fast. It's possible that TabGroups Manager is responsible for some of that, I'm not sure. The trouble just went away one day with one of the updates.

My "Babylon" search turned up 32 files. Only two have this year as "Date Modified.' The great majority are DIC Files in OpenOffice.org and appear to me to be a legitimate manifestation of what Babylon is supposed to be about--translation capability. The one most certainly malign is a 3 KB xm<x>l document in C:Program FilesMozilla Firefoxsearchplugins, the only one left dated to when I installed Your Unistaller! Also there is a 610 KB DIC File in C:Program FilesMozilla Firefoxdictionaries from almost two weeks earlier. There are also similar-sized DIC files in 3 of my other browsers' dictionaries, one dated to 2009, way before I had that browser. Also a 59 KB xm<x>l Document in SlimBrowserdata. Now that I've got these addresses, how do I go about zapping Babylon out of those folders?<br />
<br />
I have another question. Lunascape browser, my default for the moment, has been having these periods where a box appears on the upper left corner : "Deleting," showing a folder spitting out files to the right where they evaporate. It will say something like "2 minutes" or "40 seconds" but go on vastly longer than that. The browser becomes pretty much unusable while that is going. I once let it run while I was away for many hours and was shocked that it still wasn't finished when I returned. It's only been appearing during the last week. I've got too many tabs up as usual, but that excess didn't begin this week. Do you know what this is all about?

That's how Firefox saves/restores your session of open tabs & etc.. I routinely archive the *.js files in my profile directory along with my other daily backups. By "active filename" I was referring to the current / most recent sessionstore.js file. I don't mess with it often enough to tell you what to do off the top of my head, Google whatever detailed instructions you need.

Thanks for that information. I will reopen Firefox when I've done all I can to root out Babylon. Right now I'm running Search on it, and it's taking forever. It showed me Babylon installation was on my desktop (which I'm not in the habit of utilizing) so I got rid of that.<br />
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What are the "active filename" and "Session Saver"?

Read <i>http://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/Safe%20Mode</i><br />
If you're not seeing the "options" and "safe mode" choices in the right-click menu, try holding down the shift button while starting Firefox.<br />
Type this into the Firefox address bar: "about:support", then click on the "Open Containing Folder" button to find your profile folder.<br />
And look at the "related bugs" section of recent crash reports under "about:crashes".<br />
You can also try "about:sessionrestore" but it doesn't do anything useful for me.

Thank you.<br />
<br />
When I right-click on Firefox on my Dell, it doesn't give me "options" or anything else that would seem to lead to "safe mode."<br />
<br />
I don't understand any of your middle paragraph. Do I have a "profile directory" on Firefox? Where do I go to find it? What is the "active filename"? Is Session Saver something that has already been at work for me?<br />
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Babylon is far too much a sneaky malware to show up in the Add-Ons menu. I checked.<br />
<br />
Thanks for joining the group, according to its activity log. For some reason your avatar is not showing and it says still just one member.

When Firefox won't start properly you can right-click on the Firefox icon in the "start" menu to get to "options" and "safe mode".<br />
<br />
Your profile directory has multiple backups of your tab sessions. You can save them somewhere else and then start copying older sessions to the active filename until you find one that works. Look up the procedure online because I don't remember the details. I now use the "TabGroups Manager" extension instead of Session Saver.<br />
<br />
Babylon Toolbar and other problem extensions can be individually disabled or removed in the Tools ==> Add-ons menu.

I did run Spybot and it has presumably removed Babylon Toolbar. I can't imagine why Spigot's Search Settings is not marked as malware. I copied Spybot's report to my clipboard and I finally have the file identities of Search Settings and the old Smart Defag.