Windows Defender says "Potentially unwanted app found"


GracieAllen

Active member
Local time
3:44 AM
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OS
Windows 11 Pro
Windows 11 Pro. All up to date as of this morning.

Windows Defender is complaining about this:

1701562722948.png
I've tried to put it in Quarantine and I've tried to Remove it. Doesn't go away. I've looked at a couple dozen things on the internet that all say they KNOW how to get rid of AskToolbar, but they all say go to the Programs and Features in Control Panel and uninstall it.

There's NOTHING in Programs and Features. I had Agent Ransack do a search for "asktoolbar" and there's nothing on the drive. I had it search the WHOLE system for SBSE___.Q7Z and there's nothing ANYWHERE. Malwarebytes doesn't care about it. Ccleaner doesn't find it or get rid of it.

The FOLDER on the "R" drive where the SBSE file is supposed to be doesn't even exist.

HOW do I uninstall it or quarantine it or remove it or whatever I have to do to make Windows Defender stop whining about it?
 
Windows Build/Version
Version 21H2 (OS Build 22000.2538)

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    i9-12900 overclocked just a touch
    Motherboard
    MSI Tomahawk
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVidia 4060 Ti
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell 3818 & Dell 2407 on the desktop, Dell 2405 on the laptop, Dell 3014 in the RV for traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB SSD for O/S, 4TB for non-image stuff, 8TB SSD for images, 10TB spinning platters for backups.
    PSU
    EVGA 850 silver
    Case
    Phantek
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless M575 trackball
    Internet Speed
    Varies between 20 and 400 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Plain ordinary PC.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell 7740 Precision
    CPU
    I9-9880
    Motherboard
    Dell
    Memory
    64GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Quadro RTX 3000
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17" 4K and Dell 2405 as needed. Dell 3014 in RV when traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160, 2560x1600 with connected to 3014
    Hard Drives
    Nothing spinning, 4, 1TB NVME SSD internal.
    PSU
    Dell 240W
    Mouse
    Logitech M570 wireless trackball
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    Depends on how fast the hotspot is wherever I am.
    Browser
    firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender...
    Other Info
    Just an ordinary laptop for doing image processing and presentation.
I've found most times that rather than try to get rid of an identified program it's necessary to get rid of the file it is in. The extension of the file identified, Q7Z, suggests it's a compressed file.

Current version of Win11:
1701565718764.png
Version 21H2 has already reached End of Life:
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win11 Pro RTM
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Vostro 3400
    CPU
    Intel Core i5 11th Gen. 2.40GHz
    Memory
    12GB
    Hard Drives
    256GB SSD NVMe
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro RTM x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Vostro 5890
    CPU
    Intel Core i5 10th Gen. 2.90GHz
    Memory
    16GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Onboard, no VGA, using a DisplayPort-to-VGA adapter
    Monitor(s) Displays
    24" Dell
    Hard Drives
    512GB SSD NVMe, 2TB WDC HDD
    Browser
    Firefox, Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender/Microsoft Security
If you can't find the Q7Z file on your drive, there may be a registry entry pointing to a non-existent file. Search your registry for AskToolBar.
If it finds an entry, delete it but continue searching the registry until the end because there may be more than one entry relating to AskToolBar.

Not likely since it's pointing to a file, but, for grins and giggles, check all your browser extensions as well.

AdwCleaner might help, too. AdwCleaner 2023 - Free Adware Cleaner & Removal Tool | Malwarebytes
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3155
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Optiplex 7080
    CPU
    i9-10900 10 core 20 threads
    Motherboard
    DELL 0J37VM
    Memory
    32 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    none-Intel UHD Graphics 630
    Sound Card
    Integrated Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Benq 27
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1tb Solidigm m.2 +256gb ssd+512 gb usb m.2 sata
    PSU
    500w
    Case
    MT
    Cooling
    Dell Premium
    Keyboard
    Logitech wired
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    so slow I'm too embarrassed to tell
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender+MWB Premium
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro 22H2 19045.3930
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Optiplex 9020
    CPU
    i7-4770
    Memory
    24 gb
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Benq 27
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    256 gb Toshiba BG4 M.2 NVE SSB and 1 tb hdd
    PSU
    500w
    Case
    MT
    Cooling
    Dell factory
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless
    Keyboard
    Logitech wired
    Internet Speed
    still not telling
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender+MWB Premium
  • Like
Reactions: WAI
I just had a bunch of updates Windows wanted to install this morning. I THOUGHT it was odd that it wanted to put 21H2 on again, but that's what it installed. I have no idea where 23h2 is or why windows update isn't installing it. 23H2 has only been out for a little while as far as I know, so maybe my Windows Update isn't picking it up yet.

I looked at doing it manually, but it wants 22H2 installed first, THEN 23H2... And as usual with Windows, ANY time you touch anything in there, THREE things can happen, and two of them are bad!

Maybe I'll see if Windows figures things out in a week or 2, and if it doesn't I'll try to brute force the thing.

Anyhow, nothing for asktoolbar in the registry.

Nothing found by the current version of adwcleaner.

When I ran Agent Ransack, one of the searches was for ANYTHING with Q7Z. Nothing anywhere.

This thing is still sitting here, like a t*rd in a punch bowl.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    i9-12900 overclocked just a touch
    Motherboard
    MSI Tomahawk
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVidia 4060 Ti
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell 3818 & Dell 2407 on the desktop, Dell 2405 on the laptop, Dell 3014 in the RV for traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB SSD for O/S, 4TB for non-image stuff, 8TB SSD for images, 10TB spinning platters for backups.
    PSU
    EVGA 850 silver
    Case
    Phantek
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless M575 trackball
    Internet Speed
    Varies between 20 and 400 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Plain ordinary PC.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell 7740 Precision
    CPU
    I9-9880
    Motherboard
    Dell
    Memory
    64GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Quadro RTX 3000
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17" 4K and Dell 2405 as needed. Dell 3014 in RV when traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160, 2560x1600 with connected to 3014
    Hard Drives
    Nothing spinning, 4, 1TB NVME SSD internal.
    PSU
    Dell 240W
    Mouse
    Logitech M570 wireless trackball
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    Depends on how fast the hotspot is wherever I am.
    Browser
    firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender...
    Other Info
    Just an ordinary laptop for doing image processing and presentation.
Check your browser extensions. The Ask Toolbar "program" usually installs as an extension to your browser and comes bundled with many not so reputable programs. Or even reputable programs where the author has decided that he/she can make a little bit of money distributing that questionable piece of software along with his/her app. Lots of developers bundle garbage with their apps, and there is usually a screen asking if you want to install the Ask Toolbar, but it's an opt-out scenario. If you miss the screen or don't unclick the box, it installs this garbage.

I had missed the box unclick when I was installing some app or other last year. The Ask Toolbar attached itself to my browser (Firefox). It was pretty easy to get rid of. You just uninstall the browser extension and then go into your extensions/plugins folder and delete everything that says "Ask".

It worked for me. I hope it works for you.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Win 11 Pro 23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Self build
    CPU
    Ryzen 5800X
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte x570 Aorus Elite Wifi
    Memory
    32 GB GSkill Trident Neo with pretty LED lights
    Graphics Card(s)
    ASUS TUF GAMING RTX 3070 Ti
    Sound Card
    On board Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    2 x Samsung 32 inch curved - one 4K, one 1080p
    Screen Resolution
    4K, 1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    1 TB Samsung 980 Pro Nvme, 1 TB Samsung 970 EVO Nvme, 2 x Samsung 970 2TB SSD SATA
    PSU
    EVGA 1000Q
    Case
    Rosewill something or other
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15. A whole schwak of Noctua case fans. $$$
    Keyboard
    Logitech G815
    Mouse
    Logitech G502 Hero
    Internet Speed
    700 up, 600 down
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    MalwareBytes
I looked at doing it manually, but it wants 22H2 installed first, THEN 23H2... And as usual with Windows, ANY time you touch anything in there, THREE things can happen, and two of them are bad!
As for that, I recall seeing somewhere that getting 22H2 is necessary for getting 23H2.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win11 Pro RTM
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Vostro 3400
    CPU
    Intel Core i5 11th Gen. 2.40GHz
    Memory
    12GB
    Hard Drives
    256GB SSD NVMe
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro RTM x64
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Vostro 5890
    CPU
    Intel Core i5 10th Gen. 2.90GHz
    Memory
    16GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Onboard, no VGA, using a DisplayPort-to-VGA adapter
    Monitor(s) Displays
    24" Dell
    Hard Drives
    512GB SSD NVMe, 2TB WDC HDD
    Browser
    Firefox, Edge
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender/Microsoft Security
Just checked all the browsers. No unrecognized extensions in any of them. Definitely nothing for AskToolbar.

As for 23h2...... As always, it's going to be bizarre and messy if Windows Update doesn't find it.

I looked at putting 22h2 on, and instead they have a BAT file to run to RESET Windows update in the hope that it will decide 22H2 needs to be installed. Ran it, it didn't fail, so I presume it worked.

Checked for updates and it churned for an inordinately long time, then told me everything was current.

In theory, I can download 22H2 and install it, so I may give that a try.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    i9-12900 overclocked just a touch
    Motherboard
    MSI Tomahawk
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVidia 4060 Ti
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell 3818 & Dell 2407 on the desktop, Dell 2405 on the laptop, Dell 3014 in the RV for traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB SSD for O/S, 4TB for non-image stuff, 8TB SSD for images, 10TB spinning platters for backups.
    PSU
    EVGA 850 silver
    Case
    Phantek
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless M575 trackball
    Internet Speed
    Varies between 20 and 400 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Plain ordinary PC.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell 7740 Precision
    CPU
    I9-9880
    Motherboard
    Dell
    Memory
    64GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Quadro RTX 3000
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17" 4K and Dell 2405 as needed. Dell 3014 in RV when traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160, 2560x1600 with connected to 3014
    Hard Drives
    Nothing spinning, 4, 1TB NVME SSD internal.
    PSU
    Dell 240W
    Mouse
    Logitech M570 wireless trackball
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    Depends on how fast the hotspot is wherever I am.
    Browser
    firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender...
    Other Info
    Just an ordinary laptop for doing image processing and presentation.
1) get revo uninstaller portable and see if that toolbar shows up in there. If not you can install it and have revo uninstall it and delete all leftovers.

2) if you’re going to download and install a new build, just get the 23h2 iso and it’ll gather all required updates during upgrade, so you don’t have to waste time updating twice.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
OK, it's now on 23H2, and as expected, it was the standard royal pain in the *SS....... Downloading the ISO wasn't a problem, but, after going through all the preliminary stuff, the popup would just DISAPPEAR. No error, no notice, no install, just gone......... So after wasting a couple hours trying that (it's not very quick checking for updates or whatever it's doing when nothing is going on and the software doesn't provide any information), then spending a couple MORE hours looking for somebody who could tell me WHY it didn't install, I finally found a topic that explained all the gyrations needed to get this thing from 21H2 to 23H2. Overall, it was pretty much the standard Windows 20 minute job that took half a day and 5 or 6 failures.

I THINK I may know where the AskToolbar thing CAME from. The domestic associate has a laptop. Every night a backup runs and copies information across the network to a hard drive on MY desktop system. And at 1 a.m. MY system does a backup to a hard drive.

The "potential problem" SAYS it's on MY hard drive. I suspect it came from HER system, which I'll have to go fix. But, that DOESN'T tell me why Windows Defender is having a hissy fit about something that doesn't appear to exist...

I installed Revo portable... What am I supposed to be seeing? 'Cause if it's "AskToolbar", Revo doesn't see it either. Is Revo supposed to be able to find the Q7Z file and get rid of it?
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    i9-12900 overclocked just a touch
    Motherboard
    MSI Tomahawk
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVidia 4060 Ti
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell 3818 & Dell 2407 on the desktop, Dell 2405 on the laptop, Dell 3014 in the RV for traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB SSD for O/S, 4TB for non-image stuff, 8TB SSD for images, 10TB spinning platters for backups.
    PSU
    EVGA 850 silver
    Case
    Phantek
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless M575 trackball
    Internet Speed
    Varies between 20 and 400 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Plain ordinary PC.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell 7740 Precision
    CPU
    I9-9880
    Motherboard
    Dell
    Memory
    64GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Quadro RTX 3000
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17" 4K and Dell 2405 as needed. Dell 3014 in RV when traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160, 2560x1600 with connected to 3014
    Hard Drives
    Nothing spinning, 4, 1TB NVME SSD internal.
    PSU
    Dell 240W
    Mouse
    Logitech M570 wireless trackball
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    Depends on how fast the hotspot is wherever I am.
    Browser
    firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender...
    Other Info
    Just an ordinary laptop for doing image processing and presentation.
Ahh so this is on a network with other PCs? Run revo on hers and see what shows.

You can run Hunter mode on revo to choose the target to uninstall (has a crosshair instead of a mouse pointer, but if the file doesn’t exist you can’t target it).
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
Is Revo supposed to be able to find the Q7Z file and get rid of it?



Well you could try a search for... *.Q7Z

The * is a wild card. That search term will find any file on your computer with a .Q7Z file extension.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Win 11 Home ♦♦♦22631.3155 ♦♦♦♦♦♦♦23H2
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® [May 2020]
    CPU
    AMD Ryzen 7 3700X
    Motherboard
    Asus Pro WS X570-ACE (BIOS 4702)
    Memory
    G.Skill (F4-3200C14D-16GTZKW)
    Graphics Card(s)
    EVGA RTX 2070 (08G-P4-2171-KR)
    Sound Card
    Realtek ALC1220P / ALC S1220A
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell U3011 30"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1600
    Hard Drives
    2x Samsung 860 EVO 500GB,
    WD 4TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    WD 8TB Black FZBX - SATA III,
    DRW-24B1ST CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling 750W Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Cooler Master ATCS 840 Tower
    Cooling
    CM Hyper 212 EVO (push/pull)
    Keyboard
    Ducky DK9008 Shine II Blue LED
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-100
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox (latest)
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Internet Security
    Other Info
    Speakers: Klipsch Pro Media 2.1
  • Operating System
    Windows XP Pro 32bit w/SP3
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Built by Ghot® (not in use)
    CPU
    AMD Athlon 64 X2 5000+ (OC'd @ 3.2Ghz)
    Motherboard
    ASUS M2N32-SLI Deluxe Wireless Edition
    Memory
    TWIN2X2048-6400C4DHX (2 x 1GB, DDR2 800)
    Graphics card(s)
    EVGA 256-P2-N758-TR GeForce 8600GT SSC
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    ViewSonic G90FB Black 19" Professional (CRT)
    Screen Resolution
    up to 2048 x 1536
    Hard Drives
    WD 36GB 10,000rpm Raptor SATA
    Seagate 80GB 7200rpm SATA
    Lite-On LTR-52246S CD/RW
    Lite-On LH-18A1P CD/DVD Burner
    PSU
    PC Power & Cooling Silencer 750 Quad EPS12V
    Case
    Generic Beige case, 80mm fans
    Cooling
    ZALMAN 9500A 92mm CPU Cooler
    Mouse
    Logitech Optical M-BT96a
    Keyboard
    Logitech Classic Keybooard 200
    Internet Speed
    300/300
    Browser
    Firefox 3.x ??
    Antivirus
    Symantec (Norton)
    Other Info
    Still assembled, still runs. Haven't turned it on for 13 years?

    http://www.xtremesystems.org/forums/showthread.php?183088-5000-B-E-on-M2N32-SLI-Dlx-Overclocked&p=2891724#post2891724
This is, like so many things, if you word it right.
From a command prompt:

C:\Windows\System32> dir /a/s "C:\*.Q7Z"

I just ran that command and it worked just fine, however I do not have that file on my C: drive.

Merry Christmas mates!
TM :cool:
PS: Search has very seldom ever worked for me, so I like to use DOS at an elevated command prompt when doing searches, or when deleting certain files, or group of files.
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Win-11/Pro/64, Optimum 11 V3, 23H2 22631.3085
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Made w/Gigabyte mobo/DX-10
    CPU
    AMD FX 6350 Six Core
    Motherboard
    Gigabyte, DX-10, GA-78LMT-USB3
    Memory
    Crucial, 16 GB
    Graphics Card(s)
    Onboard, ATI Radeon HD 3000; NVIDEA GeForce 210, 1GB DDR3 Ram.
    Sound Card
    Onboard
    Monitor(s) Displays
    24" Acer
    Screen Resolution
    1280x800
    Hard Drives
    Crucial SSD 500GB, SanDisk 126GB SSD, Toshiba 1TB HD
    PSU
    EVGA 500 W.
    Case
    Pac Man, Mid Tower
    Cooling
    AMD/OEM
    Keyboard
    101 key, Backlit/ Mechanical Switches/
    Mouse
    Logitech USB Wireless M310
    Internet Speed
    Hughes Net speed varies with the weather
    Browser
    Firefox 64x
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender, Super Anti Spyware
    Other Info
    Given to me as DEAD, and irreparable.
    Rebuilt with Gigabyte mobo, AMD cpu, 16GB ram and 500GB Crucial SSD.
This is, like so many things, if you word it right.
From a command prompt:

C:\Windows\System32> dir /a/s "C:\*.Q7Z"

I just ran that command and it worked just fine, however I do not have that file on my C: drive.

Merry Christmas mates!
TM :cool:
PS: Search has very seldom ever worked for me, so I like to use DOS at an elevated command prompt when doing searches, or when deleting certain files, or group of files.
good point! Microsoft search is meh. i use wox + everything. fast access and deep searches
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
I am an ardent fan of Everything by voidtools. It is an incredible search engine that I have used for years. I wouldn't be without it. It is freeware.

voidtools

Have a great day.

Regards,
Phil
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro Version 23H2 (Build 22631.3155)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS8930 SE
    CPU
    Intel i7-9700K 4700 MHz
    Motherboard
    Dell XPS 8930
    Memory
    32 GB (4 x 8GB SK Hynix DDR4 @1333 MHz) (2666 MHz)
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 (6 GB) GDDR6 300 MHz
    Sound Card
    None
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell UltraSharp U2518D 25"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    NVMe Intel 1024 TB
    Seagate 2 TB, SATA-III
    PSU
    850 W Gold Standard
    Case
    Dell XPS 8930 Base (Special Edition)
    Cooling
    Air
    Keyboard
    Dell 0G4D2W
    Mouse
    Dell MOCZUL
    Internet Speed
    Download 553 Mbps, Upload 686 Mbps
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Total Security, plus Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    BIOS Version 1.1.31
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro Version 23H2 (Build 22631.3155)
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    CPU
    i7-9750H 4.5 GHz
    Motherboard
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    Memory
    16 GB (2 x 8GB @ 1333 MHz) DDR4-2666 MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce 1650 4 GB GDDR5
    Sound Card
    None
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell XPS 15 7590, 15.6" InfinityEdge Anti-Glare, Non-Touch
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    512 GB M.2 PCle NVMe SK Hynix
    PSU
    130W Power Adapter
    Case
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    Cooling
    Air
    Mouse
    Logitech M510
    Keyboard
    Laptop
    Internet Speed
    Download: 400 Mbps, Upload: 203 Mbps
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Total Security, plus Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    BIOS Version 1.25.0
I hate to break up the fun of this side trip into the land of "here's the best search tool" :-), but way back before I even posted the question, I ran searches through the whole system, including the current backup disk for the file. It didn't get found. BUT, just in case the DOS search IS better than Windows (which I agree it sometimes is), I checked both the "C" and "R" partitions (R being where Windows Defender SAYS it is):

C:\Windows\System32>dir /a/s "R:\*.Q7Z"
Volume in drive R is Pats Backup
Volume Serial Number is C1AF-E680
File Not Found

C:\Windows\System32>dir /a/s "c:\*.Q7Z"
Volume in drive C is System
Volume Serial Number is 58C1-2379
File Not Found
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    i9-12900 overclocked just a touch
    Motherboard
    MSI Tomahawk
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVidia 4060 Ti
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell 3818 & Dell 2407 on the desktop, Dell 2405 on the laptop, Dell 3014 in the RV for traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB SSD for O/S, 4TB for non-image stuff, 8TB SSD for images, 10TB spinning platters for backups.
    PSU
    EVGA 850 silver
    Case
    Phantek
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless M575 trackball
    Internet Speed
    Varies between 20 and 400 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Plain ordinary PC.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell 7740 Precision
    CPU
    I9-9880
    Motherboard
    Dell
    Memory
    64GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Quadro RTX 3000
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17" 4K and Dell 2405 as needed. Dell 3014 in RV when traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160, 2560x1600 with connected to 3014
    Hard Drives
    Nothing spinning, 4, 1TB NVME SSD internal.
    PSU
    Dell 240W
    Mouse
    Logitech M570 wireless trackball
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    Depends on how fast the hotspot is wherever I am.
    Browser
    firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender...
    Other Info
    Just an ordinary laptop for doing image processing and presentation.
@GracieAllen ,

I am sorry to have offended you by suggesting an outstanding search tool. You were complaining that you could not find the file that Windows Defender was complaining about.

This could also be a false positive by Windows Security, but I would bet against that. The warning does not tell you that it found that the Ask Toolbar was installed on your computer, only that it found its installer and stopped the installation. It is telling you the installer's path and the file name it is in, which is a compressed file containing one or more files.

If you don't want to try Everything, that is your choice. I am out of here.

Have a great day.

Regards,
Phil
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro Version 23H2 (Build 22631.3155)
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS8930 SE
    CPU
    Intel i7-9700K 4700 MHz
    Motherboard
    Dell XPS 8930
    Memory
    32 GB (4 x 8GB SK Hynix DDR4 @1333 MHz) (2666 MHz)
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce RTX 2060 (6 GB) GDDR6 300 MHz
    Sound Card
    None
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell UltraSharp U2518D 25"
    Screen Resolution
    2560 x 1440
    Hard Drives
    NVMe Intel 1024 TB
    Seagate 2 TB, SATA-III
    PSU
    850 W Gold Standard
    Case
    Dell XPS 8930 Base (Special Edition)
    Cooling
    Air
    Keyboard
    Dell 0G4D2W
    Mouse
    Dell MOCZUL
    Internet Speed
    Download 553 Mbps, Upload 686 Mbps
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Total Security, plus Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    BIOS Version 1.1.31
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro Version 23H2 (Build 22631.3155)
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    CPU
    i7-9750H 4.5 GHz
    Motherboard
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    Memory
    16 GB (2 x 8GB @ 1333 MHz) DDR4-2666 MHz
    Graphics card(s)
    NVIDIA GeForce 1650 4 GB GDDR5
    Sound Card
    None
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell XPS 15 7590, 15.6" InfinityEdge Anti-Glare, Non-Touch
    Screen Resolution
    1920 x 1080
    Hard Drives
    512 GB M.2 PCle NVMe SK Hynix
    PSU
    130W Power Adapter
    Case
    Dell XPS 15 7590
    Cooling
    Air
    Mouse
    Logitech M510
    Keyboard
    Laptop
    Internet Speed
    Download: 400 Mbps, Upload: 203 Mbps
    Browser
    Google Chrome
    Antivirus
    Bitdefender Total Security, plus Malwarebytes Premium
    Other Info
    BIOS Version 1.25.0
I'm not offended - I was laughing!

My question now is - if NOTHING has found a file or Asktoolbar anywhere on this system, WHY is Windows Defender continuing to whine? And more importantly, HOW do I make it STOP whining? 'Cause if nothing can find a file, and it's not doing anything,
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    i9-12900 overclocked just a touch
    Motherboard
    MSI Tomahawk
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVidia 4060 Ti
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell 3818 & Dell 2407 on the desktop, Dell 2405 on the laptop, Dell 3014 in the RV for traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB SSD for O/S, 4TB for non-image stuff, 8TB SSD for images, 10TB spinning platters for backups.
    PSU
    EVGA 850 silver
    Case
    Phantek
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless M575 trackball
    Internet Speed
    Varies between 20 and 400 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Plain ordinary PC.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell 7740 Precision
    CPU
    I9-9880
    Motherboard
    Dell
    Memory
    64GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Quadro RTX 3000
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17" 4K and Dell 2405 as needed. Dell 3014 in RV when traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160, 2560x1600 with connected to 3014
    Hard Drives
    Nothing spinning, 4, 1TB NVME SSD internal.
    PSU
    Dell 240W
    Mouse
    Logitech M570 wireless trackball
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    Depends on how fast the hotspot is wherever I am.
    Browser
    firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender...
    Other Info
    Just an ordinary laptop for doing image processing and presentation.
I got the Microsoft Safety Scanner (MSERT) and ran that overnight on the entire system. Prior to going to bed it had been through around 750,000 files (about 25% of the system) and said 40 were "infected". This morning when it was done it only reported 1 problem file, and said it had been removed. It WASN'T the file reported by Windows Defender, which WD is still complaining about.

I'm thinking at this point that it's not a real thing and Windows Defender is going too complain about it permanently.
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Home Built
    CPU
    i9-12900 overclocked just a touch
    Motherboard
    MSI Tomahawk
    Memory
    64 GB DDR4
    Graphics Card(s)
    NVidia 4060 Ti
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Dell 3818 & Dell 2407 on the desktop, Dell 2405 on the laptop, Dell 3014 in the RV for traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x1600
    Hard Drives
    1TB SSD for O/S, 4TB for non-image stuff, 8TB SSD for images, 10TB spinning platters for backups.
    PSU
    EVGA 850 silver
    Case
    Phantek
    Cooling
    Noctua NH-D15
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless M575 trackball
    Internet Speed
    Varies between 20 and 400 Mbps
    Browser
    Firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender
    Other Info
    Plain ordinary PC.
  • Operating System
    Windows 11 Pro
    Computer type
    Laptop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell 7740 Precision
    CPU
    I9-9880
    Motherboard
    Dell
    Memory
    64GB
    Graphics card(s)
    Nvidia Quadro RTX 3000
    Monitor(s) Displays
    17" 4K and Dell 2405 as needed. Dell 3014 in RV when traveling.
    Screen Resolution
    3840x2160, 2560x1600 with connected to 3014
    Hard Drives
    Nothing spinning, 4, 1TB NVME SSD internal.
    PSU
    Dell 240W
    Mouse
    Logitech M570 wireless trackball
    Keyboard
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    Depends on how fast the hotspot is wherever I am.
    Browser
    firefox, Chrome
    Antivirus
    Windows Defender...
    Other Info
    Just an ordinary laptop for doing image processing and presentation.
Try this. You would have to reset any exclusions afterwards. Reset Windows Security app in Windows 11 Tutorial

If it still squawks, you can always exclude the entire R:\Images folder.
Settings>Privacy & Security>Windows Security>Open Windows security>Virus & Threat Protection>Virus & Threat Protection Settings>Manage Settings>scroll down to Exclusions>add exclusion>folder
 

My Computers

System One System Two

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro 23H2 22631.3155
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Optiplex 7080
    CPU
    i9-10900 10 core 20 threads
    Motherboard
    DELL 0J37VM
    Memory
    32 gb
    Graphics Card(s)
    none-Intel UHD Graphics 630
    Sound Card
    Integrated Realtek
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Benq 27
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    1tb Solidigm m.2 +256gb ssd+512 gb usb m.2 sata
    PSU
    500w
    Case
    MT
    Cooling
    Dell Premium
    Keyboard
    Logitech wired
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless
    Internet Speed
    so slow I'm too embarrassed to tell
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender+MWB Premium
  • Operating System
    Windows 10 Pro 22H2 19045.3930
    Computer type
    PC/Desktop
    Manufacturer/Model
    Dell Optiplex 9020
    CPU
    i7-4770
    Memory
    24 gb
    Monitor(s) Displays
    Benq 27
    Screen Resolution
    2560x1440
    Hard Drives
    256 gb Toshiba BG4 M.2 NVE SSB and 1 tb hdd
    PSU
    500w
    Case
    MT
    Cooling
    Dell factory
    Mouse
    Logitech wireless
    Keyboard
    Logitech wired
    Internet Speed
    still not telling
    Browser
    Firefox
    Antivirus
    Defender+MWB Premium
It’s complaining because there is a trace of it somewhere.

1) show hidden files, to include system protected and browse for it again.

2) if you use a better av, such as Webroot, it will quarantine it and you can choose right there to delete it or allow it. (Yes, I’m sure many others will have input about many other av)
 

My Computer

System One

  • OS
    Windows 11 Pro

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