84,488,480 programs installed

Should I remove hosts2?

What percent of users and experts removed it?
74% remove it26% keep it
Overall Sentiment
What do people think about it?
(click star to rate)
How common is it?
Global Rank #19,853
United States Rank #26,808
Reach 0.0111%
Lifespan of installation (until removal)
< 6.82 days
201.21 days >
Average installed length: 105.72 days


VersionDistribution 100.00%


What is hosts2?

hosts2 is a web browser extension that changes the browsers search and home pages as well as delivers. In order to provide search advertising revenue, the software is designed not only to modify the search provider but to protect it so that it remains the default browser search engine. It is typically installed via a bundled offer within a third-party software distribution.

What the toolbar does:
- Change of the default search engine, including the Browser's built-in search box, and address bar.
- Change of the default Home Page and/or New Tabs, and protect your search settings.
- Addition of alternative error page functionality, such as “Page Not Found”.


It adds a Browser Helper Object (BHO) to Internet Explorer. The main program executable is hosts2-bg.exe. Typically most users end up uninstalling this just after a few days. The software installer includes 9 files and is usually about 4.51 MB (4,725,717 bytes).

The program is built using the Crossrider framework, a cross browser monetization platform used to deploy a toolbar and extension for modern web browsers with monetization features including browser search and homepage redirection, contextual coupons and in-line text advertising. Crossrider extensions include background processes to monitor, update and automatically download new features/code without direct user interaction.
  • Possible malware installed by this program
  • Loads into the web browser
  • Built on the Crossrider toolbar platform and potentially unwanted
  • May inject ads in the web browser
  • 'Offers' to modify the browser's home and search pages by default
  • Hijacks the web browser's home page
  • Hijacks the browser's default search provider
  • The wisdom of the crowd agrees, you should remove it!
Warning, multiple anti-virus scanners have detected possible malware in hosts2.
hosts2-bg.exe (7d1e4528b3a1a268ff37441f530d53b4) has been flagged by the following 21 scanners:
Anti-Virus softwareVersionDetection
Lavasoft Ad-Aware 1104 Adware.Generic.587936
Antiy-AVL AdWare/Win32.Lyckriks
Baidu-International AdWare.Win32.Lyckriks.Autt
Bitdefender Adware.Generic.587936
Dr.Web Trojan.Crossrider.1
Emsisoft Anti-Malware Adware.Generic.587936
ESET-NOD32 8.9271 a variant of Win32/Toolbar.CrossRider.H
G Data 14.1.22 Adware.Generic.587936
K7 AntiVirus 13.175.10794 Trojan
K7GW 13.175.10794 Trojan ( 0048c1901 )
Kaspersky not-a-virus:AdWare.Win32.Lyckriks
Kingsoft AntiVirus 331020.49267 Win32.Troj.Lyckriks.cw.(kcloud)
McAfee 5600.7238 Artemis!7D1E4528B3A1
McAfee-GW-Edition 7.7238 Artemis!7D1E4528B3A1
MicroWorld-eScan Adware.Generic.587936
NANO AntiVirus Trojan.Win32.Crossrider.cgsiwh
nProtect Trojan-Clicker/W32.Lyckriks.896000
Sophos 4.96 Generic PUA PE
TrendMicro-HouseCall 7.2.26 TROJ_GEN.R0CBH07A514
Vba32 AntiVirus AdWare.Lyckriks
VIPRE Antivirus 25262 Crossrider (fs)
hosts2-bho.dll (db0912b64a992eef01cd74da81d0af18) has been flagged by the following 4 scanners:
Anti-Virus softwareSoftware versionDetection
Dr.Web Trojan.Crossrider.1
Symantec 20131.1.0.101 WS.Reputation.1
TrendMicro-HouseCall 9.700.0.1001 TROJ_GEN.R0C9H01H813
VIPRE Antivirus 21334 Crossrider (fs)
       View all 25 all detections
Bundled relationships

Program detailsProgram details

Installation folder: C:\Program Files\hosts2
Uninstaller: C:\Program Files\hosts2\Uninstall.exe /fromcontrolpanel=1
Estimated size: 4.51 MB

Program filesFiles installed by hosts2

Program executable:hosts2-bg.exe (Malware detected)
hosts2 exe
Path:C:\Program Files\hosts2\hosts2-bg.exe
Additional files:
  • (Malware detected) hosts2-bho.dll - hosts2 (hosts2 BHO)
  • hosts2-buttonutil.exe - hosts2 exe
  • hosts2-buttonutil64.exe
  • hosts2-codedownloader.exe
  • Uninstall.exe - hosts2 Installer
  • hosts2-buttonutil.dll
  • hosts2-buttonutil64.dll
  • hosts2-helper.exe

Program behaviorsBehaviors exhibited

Autoplay Handler
  • hosts2-bg.exe is registered as an AutoPlay event handler named 'iTunesShowSongsOnArrival' with the ProgID of 'iTunes.ShowSongsOnCD' and the action verb 'showsongs.
Internet Explorer BHO
  • hosts2-bho.dll is installed in Internet Explorer as a BHO (Browser Helper Object) under the name 'hosts2' with the class of {11111111-1111-1111-1111-110311691128} (CrossriderApp0036928).

How do I remove hosts2?

You can uninstall hosts2 from your computer by using the Add/Remove Program feature in the Window's Control Panel.
  1. On the Start menu (for Windows 8, right-click the screen's bottom-left corner), click Control Panel, and then, under Programs, do one of the following:
    • Windows Vista/7/8/10: Click Uninstall a Program.
    • Windows XP: Click Add or Remove Programs.
  2. When you find the program hosts2, click it, and then do one of the following:
    • Windows Vista/7/8/10: Click Uninstall.
    • Windows XP: Click the Remove or Change/Remove tab (to the right of the program).
  3. Follow the prompts. A progress bar shows you how long it will take to remove hosts2.
  4. If for some reason uninstallation fails, please install Microsoft's uninstall fixer utility which will help fix problems with programs that can't be uninstalled at support.microsoft.com.

How do I reset my web browser?

If your web browser homepage and search settings have been modfied by hosts2 you can restore them to their previous default settings.
Microsoft Internet Explorer
Mozilla Firefox
Google Chrome

Uninstall it 74%
Keep it 26%
PC installation base

Windows OS versionsWindows

Which Windows OS versions does it run on?
Windows 7 65.30%
Windows 10 24.20%
Windows XP 8.22%
Windows Vista 2.28%
Which OS releases does it run on?
Windows 7 Ultimate 26.61%
Windows 7 Home Premium 21.10%
Windows 7 Professional 12.84%
Microsoft Windows XP 8.26%
Windows 8 Pro 4.59%
Windows 8 4.13%

Distribution by countryGeography

26.01% of installs come from the United States
Which countries install it?
  United States 26.01%
  MA 12.56%
  Israel 7.62%
  Sweden 6.73%
  DZ 5.83%
  Saudi Arabia 3.59%
  TN 2.69%
  LY 1.79%
  SY 1.79%
  Australia 1.35%
  Canada 1.35%
  DK 1.35%
  Jordan 1.35%
  Malaysia 1.35%

OEM distributionPC manufacturers

What PC manufacturers (OEMs) have it installed?
Hewlett-Packard 33.76%
Dell 14.65%
Acer 14.01%
ASUS 12.10%
Toshiba 7.64%
Samsung 4.46%
Lenovo 3.18%
Intel 1.91%
Sony 1.27%
Common models
HP Pavilion g6 Notebook P... 5.65%
HP Pavilion dv7 Notebook ... 3.23%
HP Pavilion dv6 Notebook ... 3.23%
HP 2000 Notebook PC 2.42%
HP Pavilion dv5 Notebook ... 2.42%
Dell Inspiron N5110 2.42%


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