Removing Vongo Crapware from a Computer

Vongo

Vongo acts just like malware

What’s crapware?  They are junk programs that manufacturers include in your computer as a value add for purchasing their product.  Value add my arse!  These crapware are generally trial ware and are typically products you don’t prefer anyway.

Once such crapware is Vongo.  Vongo has long since closed business since 2008; it was an on-demand video service, and it keeps installing itself on one of our old Compaq Presario V6000 laptop, which is still running Windows XP by the way.

First I did what most users would do, just uninstall it from the Add/Remove programs section of the Windows Control Panel.  That didn’t work because after I reboot and login as one of the users, the Vongo install process begins again.

Next, I checked all places where programs put themselves in at startup:

  1. The Windows startup folder (c:\Documents and Settings\All Users\Start Menu\Programs\Startup)
  2. In the registry at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run (or RunOnce, RunOnceEx, Setup)
  3. In the registry at HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SYSTEM\CurrentControlSet\Services

I actually just ran MSCONFIG.exe (System Configuration Utility) from Windows RUN prompt and looked for anything that seemed associated with Vongo.

I could not find anything that looked like they were associated with Vongo (i.e. I looked for any program that had the term Vongo in it).

So I did a search from the root of drive C for anything with the term “Vongo” on it.  I found and deleted all files, shortcuts and folders with Vongo name on it.  After deleting all these files, I restarted the machine and Vongo would continue to install itself.  It was worse than malware.  No wonder the service didn’t last long!

On startup I did notice this file ISUSPM.exe.  This file didn’t look like anything related to Vongo, but as soon as I used task manager to terminate it, the installation of Vongo stopped.

After this, I rebooted the computer and went into Safe Mode (you can do this by pressing the F8 key just before Windows starts.  I then ran MSCONFIG.exe and checked if this file is invoked in MSCONFIG; I found it in the Startup tab, and I disabled it (i.e. I unchecked it).  Next, I searched for all file instances of ISUSPM.exe and anything that remotely looks like it in drive C.  I found and deleted them.

After doing another reboot and logging into one of the accounts, Vongo no longer tries to install itself.  It’s gone!

I finally got rid of Vongo!  Good riddance!!!

 


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