Stop & Delete Spyware With Malwarebytes for Windows

Jimmy Rogers 08-01-2009

By now, the threat of spyware has become as prevalent as that of viruses. Consequently, there are a ton of spyware removal programs The Complete Malware Removal Guide Malware is everywhere these days, and eradicating malware from your system is a lengthy process, requiring guidance. If you think your computer is infected, this is the guide you need. Read More out there. Why should you choose one program to delete spyware over the other? Well there are a few reasons, but generally it comes down to features and greater protection. If a spyware scanner has some unique features, like advanced registry options, then that’s a good reason to use it. Also, some scanners don’t have a lot of options, but have a good library of threats to protect against.


Malwarebytes’ Anti-Malware is a good example of the latter. It may not be as feature-laden as Spybot Search and Destroy, which has a ridiculous number of tools, but it is a very lightweight alternative with good spyware coverage.

Until recently, my only two programs to delete spyware were Spybot S&D, as I mentioned before, and Spyware Blaster, which is a preventative blacklist. Now I’m considering adding Malwarebytes to my list. The install is very quick because there really aren’t a lot of bells and whistles on the program. While some might see this as a downside, when installing spyware protection on a new machine or on the machine of a less-techy person, Malwarebytes is quick and non-confusing.

After install, check to see that the updates are as recent as possible.  This is done on the “Update” tab.  It should automatically update upon install, which is another nicety for a quick start, but I’d double-check. Once you’re all updated, try scanning. A short scan will target common hot-spots and a full scan will cover everything but take a long time. Here’s a scan I ran recently:

clean spyware

The scanner will show what area is being scanned, how many objects have been scanned, and how many have come up as problems.  The time on this scan is relatively short, but you may want to use it during a period of inactivity, as your system will slow dramatically during the scan.  Here are the results of that scan:


malwarebytes - how to remove spyware

After being scanned by Spybot S&D, Malwarebytes found a number of nasty little files lurking.  Most of these were in the registry or in infected program files. This shows the value of having mulitple spyware libraries from which to run scans. Also, if you already have Spybot S&D or something similar, there is no reason to have duplicate tools.

The program does have a few more options open to you. You can restrict what is scanned and you can also add a contextual right-click option to scan individual files.

This second option is handy for anytime you have to download a file that you think is suspect. Most virus-scanners also have this capability, but this will check for malware as well.


Malwarebytes has two extra tools on board.  The first is a set of bug-reporters and false positive flaggers that will help make the network more efficient in hunting out spyware.

Also, there is a program for deleting locked files.  This can be handy when you need to delete a file that is either in use (which is generally unadvisable) or simply corrupted and difficult to delete by normal means.

clean spyware

Good luck managing your spyware and remember that having multiple programs installed is the best way to eliminate the need for frustrating repairs and reformatting.


Related topics: Anti-Malware, Spyware.

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  1. Iman Diaz
    October 16, 2009 at 5:05 pm

    I would Agree!

  2. Malware
    October 16, 2009 at 10:58 am

    Who needs the feature-laden functionality of Spybot- Search and Destroy other than people who actually enjoy searching for different types of spyware? I would rather have the software do the thinking for me. Malwarebytes' Anti-Malware also defends against more programs than Spybot anyway, so the choice is obvious.

  3. Iman Diaz
    September 14, 2009 at 10:40 pm

    I have been a computer tech for over 8 years and seen the rise and fall of many programs on the market. I find that ad-aware used to be good, but when I compare the results of malwarebytes against the rest, they don't stand a chance.

    Its possible that its the best fit for my clients, but hands down they are GOOD! There facebook Fan page is 4000 strong!

  4. T. Rom
    July 29, 2009 at 5:01 am

    Ahh, you can keep this trash. I tried this out a couple of months ago and it missed a lot of things that Ad-Aware caught. And, when I tested it against a few very nasty trojans, it broke. I just laughed and sent it to the trash bin, where it belongs. Don't even bother.

  5. Marty
    January 19, 2009 at 9:35 pm

    This program just saved me again! really good piece of software, can't recommend it highly enough

  6. Timothy
    January 18, 2009 at 9:04 am

    Seems like a pretty strong software. I'm glad this was brought to my attention. Thanks for the post.

  7. venkat
    January 10, 2009 at 6:14 am

    Malwarebytes is my favorite it indeed removes trojans and spyware very easily

  8. Pierre O.
    January 10, 2009 at 1:11 am

    I found Malwarebytes when searching for a solution
    being infected with spyware of wich I don't remember the name.
    Did a great job, free, fast and efficient.
    Since then, I use the protection that automatically loads with windows and never got infected again.
    The only downside is that you have to manually look for updates. I imagine that one is not protected as much as he would think if the program has not been updated recently. A little surprising for such a good program.

    Still ... my preferred

    Pierre O.

  9. Chris
    January 9, 2009 at 12:22 pm

    I did the same thing. I used Malwarebytes to get rid of that. My mom bought it for $30 USD...

    January 9, 2009 at 1:30 am

    Certainly, this app save my PC. I try with others, but they didn´t wor; this app did the work.


  11. Jimmy Rogers
    January 8, 2009 at 9:50 pm

    Glad to see we found such a popular and useful piece of software. I'd actually never heard of it, but I guess I am just behind the times...I remember when everybody used to use Ad-aware like it was gold!

  12. T.J. Mininday
    January 8, 2009 at 8:31 pm

    MalwareBytes is great. However it should not be used alone. I would use it along Super AntiSpyware. I HATE how bloated Spybot has become. The scans take WAAAAY to long and the default uninstall leaves junk on your machine.

    • Nicbot
      January 9, 2009 at 1:12 pm

      Agreed. It's always good to have a few cleaners handy. This along with SAS and a few other specific tools works great for me in most all situations.

      I haven't used Spybot for years. I totally agree that it's just too bloated now.

      ...And obviously this does NOT replace any good antivirus app.

  13. Nicbot
    January 8, 2009 at 7:16 pm

    I've been using this for a while now to rescue many clients machines and it works great for spyware removal. As Derek said, it kills flavors of XPAntivirus200* like nobody's business...among many others.

    This as well as SuperAntiSpyware are both must haves imo. I tend to like the in depth options of SAS over MAM, but both are great weapons against Malware/Spyware.

    Put both on a thumb drive now!

  14. Derek
    January 8, 2009 at 6:33 pm

    I've used this and recommended it to people to get rid of that nasty "XPAntivirus2008/9". Works great.

  15. imdragon
    January 8, 2009 at 5:55 pm

    This is an awesome tool to clean out your computer of infections.

  16. fullbug
    January 8, 2009 at 5:22 pm

    What took you so long to find this program?
    Its perfect when you suspect something has invaded your computer, in fact i would recommend using this right after a SAS scan after you suspect you have a trojan, this program is A+1 in my book....

  17. Isaacson
    January 8, 2009 at 4:53 pm

    beware the very powerful 'fileASSASSIN' tool in the 'more tools' area. It can permanently delete dll files and otherwise screw up your machine in ways that are not repairable.

  18. Lawk Salih
    January 8, 2009 at 4:52 pm

    Has anyone tried this tool before?

    • Nicbot
      January 8, 2009 at 7:21 pm

      Yes. The Quick Scan is just about all you need. Make sure you let it update it's database first though...It does it upon initial install by default.

      If you don't want to let the infected computer connect to the internet you can put MAM along with the database on a thumb drive before hand.

      The stand alone DB can be downloaded here:


      • crammer
        April 19, 2009 at 1:07 pm

        database at gt500 is out of date - v1954 whereas current (by automatic update, as of 2009-04-19 1400 EDT) is v2009. any idea where/how to get the *actual* current db to do a manual update?