What are Potentially Unwanted Programs?
Potentially Unwanted Programs, or PUPs as you may also see them called, are software programs that are downloaded onto your PC when you're installing another program. This is exactly the case with User Extensions PUP. But how does that happen? Surely you're in full control of all your faculties and know just what it is you are downloading? Well unfortunately, even the most eagle eyed amongst us can get caught out by a PUP. And that is because whenever you download something, there is the chance that you are also downloading something in conjunction with it. Something that you didn't even realize existed.
Why is User Extensions 'potentially unwanted'?
As you may have gleaned from its name, a PUP is probably something you don't really want on your device. PUPs are most often in the guise of search engine providers or browser extensions and their job is to redirect your internet searches to websites of their programmers own choice. For the most part, User Extensions program is not normally dangerous or malicious – it's not after your data, bank account details or identity. But that's not to say that it is completely whiter than white either.
What if I am happy with my current search engine provider?
Tough luck. We are probably all perfectly happy with our choice of search engine, tool bar or home page but that doesn't stop a Potentially Unwanted Program like User Extensions from sneaking its way onto your computer and changing it. To be honest, the tools we already have work just fine and chances are something that has been designed by a bedroom programmer is rarely going to beat Google's browser for functionality.
How will a PUP install itself on my computer?
As I said, this potentially unwanted program comes packaged with other programs. So what does that mean for you as an end user? It means that when you are downloading, upgrading or installing software, you need to be a lot more careful. Take this for example: you download an upgrade of Program A. Unbeknown to you it is packaged with User Extensions. As soon as you have installed your upgrade, you notice that you also have this persistent and annoying C:\Program Files (x86)\User Extensions\Client.exe pop-up error message on your computer.
How do I stop this from happening?
Luckily, it's not rocket science. You just need to stay alert when you're installing programs or downloading files. It might not be fun, but it is well worth your time to take a few moments longer to actually read the End User License Agreement for mention of add-ons. Also check the tick boxes as these may have been pre-checked for you. Stay vigilant and you should be able to stop malware from sneaking its way onto your machine.
If the User Extensions\Client.exe startup error message appears on your computer, please follow the steps in the removal guide below. If you have any questions, please leave a comment below. Good luck and be safe online!
Written by Michael Kaur, http://deletemalware.blogspot.com
User Extensions\Client.exe Error Removal Guide:
1. First of all, download recommended anti-malware software and run a full system scan. It will detect and remove this infection from your computer. You may then follow the manual removal instructions below to remove the leftover traces of this malware. Hopefully you won't have to do that.
2. Download Autoruns for Windows and save it to your Desktop.
3. Launch autoruns.exe program (Vista/Windows 7/8 users right-click and select Run As Administrator).
4. Confirm that the "Everything" tab is selected. Then in the top menu, click Entry → Find... and type the file name client.exe, then click Find Next. Alternatively, you can scroll through the list and look for any entry related to client.exe.
5. If a line with client.exe is found, confirm that the "Image Path" shows C:\Program Files (x86)\User Extensions\ and then right-click on the entry and choose delete. They are usually yellow highlighted.
6. Close Autoruns and restart your computer when done.
7. Scan your computer with anti-malware software.