PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore

PUADlmanager Win32/Installcore Detection Analysis & Removal
PUADlmanager Win32/Installcore is capable of installing unwanted programs and slowing down the system.

PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore is a detection that Microsoft Defender antivirus uses to detect potentially unwanted programs (PUА). It is a malware that poses a serious threat to Windows users. Unlike simple unwanted programs, InstallCore combines the functions of a downloader and installer, automatically distributing many unwanted applications and potentially dangerous programs to infected devices.

Win32/InstallCore may not look like a serious threat, but the effects of its activity are not pleasant either. Unwanted programs, adware, junk apps – this PUA is not picky about things it spreads. It is a serious threat to users that requires attention and removal.

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What is PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore?

PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore is the name for the detection of a program that packages additional software with the main one. It is not a stand-alone program, but rather an application on top of the program installer. Once you launch such infused installer, InstallCore is up, too, ready to perform its dirty deeds.

PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore detection

The prefix “PUADlmanager” (PUA Downloading Manager) says clearly about this property. The thing InstallCore tries to accomplish is downloading and installing things in the background, without user’s permission. This way, ones who spread the program try to monetize their effort. Typically, those apps are unwanted programs of some sort and adware.

Things like Win32/InstallCore are often spread embedded into pirated software. Some of the freeware program may contain this, too, particularly ones from platforms like Softonic, Download.com and FileHippo.

Is InstallCore a False Positive?

As far as I recon, false positives of PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore can occur in several cases. One of the users on the Information Security Stack Exchange forum noted that it can be related to security signature updates or in case of installing third-party software. This is not always a threat, but rather belongs to the “gray” category, as it is not as dangerous as malware.

Another example of a false positive was discussed on the JDownloader Community forum, where Microsoft Defender mistakenly detected malware in the JDownloader.exe file. In this case, the JDownloader developers reported the false positive and asked users to report it as well, confirming that JDownloader does not contain malware. There was also a discussion on the Microsoft forum about a false positive on the Five Nights at Freddy’s game installer.

User complaint
User complaint about false positive results

Antivirus programs regularly update their malware signature databases. Sometimes, new signatures can mistakenly classify safe files or programs as malicious. However, users may not pay attention to additional programs that are offered for installation along with the main software. If such additional software falls into the PUA/PUP category, Microsoft Defender will detect it as such.

How does PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore affect my computer?

As I wrote above, the danger of PUADlmanager is that it downloads and installs numerous unwanted programs without users’ concent and knowledge. Most of them may have unpredictable consequences for the computer and user data. To test the thing, I’ve found several examples of apps that Microsoft Defender detected as Win32/InstallCore.

In one instance, the app had no real functionality, being just a shell with an attractive interface. It was advertised as software to help download files, particularly from torrents, but didn’t really provide any real features. This became clear when I discovered that despite promises of advanced features for an additional fee, the program actually provided no utility and could perform suspicious activities on my PC.

However, uselessness is not the only issue here. As soon as I pressed the “Install” button, numerous other programs started to appear. Driver updaters, “free” VPNs, system tuners – plenty of them. Their sheer volume made the virtual machine I was running the test on exceptionally slow.

PUADlmanager:Win32/InstallCore effects
Desktop after the InstallCore activity

One more thing that was definitely an effect of InstallCore activity is advertisements flooding the websites. It looks like aside from the unwanted programs, this PUA also brought an adware of some sort. Irrelevant advertisements both in the browser and system tray kept popping up until the malware removal.

Adware effects
Advertisements on every page

On top of that, the browser started opening the pages which demand installing some questionable browser plugins. Among other things, I’ve noticed a well-known plugin, called Dragon Angel. This thing works as a browser hijacker, and is usually promoted in this exact way. Though, it may be a lesser evil here, as browser plugins can also work as infostealers and crypto hijackers.

Malicious ad screenshot
Malicious ad distributing Dragon Angel extension

Overall, PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore is not a severe threat by any measures. But the effects of its activity are nowhere near pleasant, too: they make the system hard to use, distract you with ads, and potentially compromise the computer for further infections. This should be removed as soon as possible.

How to remove PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore from PC?

To prevent PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore, it is recommended to use a reliable antivirus software capable of detecting and removing all malware components. GridinSoft Anti-Malware offers an effective solution to detect and eliminate this kind of threats, providing comprehensive system protection.

Manual removal of InstallCore and related unwanted programs is possible, but it requires some knowledge and can be a time-consuming process. To prevent infection, it is important to avoid downloading programs from unverified sources, do not open suspicious email attachments.

PUADlmanager Win32/InstallCore

By Stephanie Adlam

I write about how to make your Internet browsing comfortable and safe. The modern digital world is worth being a part of, and I want to show you how to do it properly.

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