You may be familiar with Google Chrome, but there is another Google-related browser that you may not have heard of: Chromium. Chromium is an open source alternative to Chrome that uses most of the code. The Chromium browser engine is also used in other well-known browsers such as Microsoft Edge
Unfortunately, the Chromium browser was used for malicious reasons. If you don’t download it from the Chromium project website, you may find that it is associated with malware and other dangerous content, so it cannot be removed. If you want to remove it, here’s how to remove Chromium.
How to uninstall Chromium using Windows Settings
If you’ve installed Chromium yourself (using the software installer), you shouldn’t have much trouble uninstalling it using the Windows settings menu.
- To get started, right-click the Windows Start menu and select Settings.
- In Windows Preferences, click Applications> Applications & Features. Search for Chromium.
- Click the Chromium entry, then click Remove> Remove to uninstall the browser.
- In the Remove Chromium window, select the Also remove browsing data check box to ensure that all personal data is removed when you uninstall your browser. Click “Remove” to start the removal process.
The removal process will only take a few seconds. Once completed, the Chromium entry should be removed from the list of apps and features and should be completely removed at this point.
Uninstall Chromium manually using Windows File Explorer
While Chromium can be installed, it can also come as a ZIP file or be included in other software. This means that it may not show up in Windows settings for automatic Chromium removal.
This is most likely to happen if Chromium was included as part of adware or malware package. First, you need to locate the Chromium installation folder using Windows Explorer, and then delete it (and other remnants) manually.
- To do this, open Windows Explorer and use the search bar to enter Chromium.exe or Chrome.exe. Your computer will search for the Chromium browser executable file (and the Chromium installation directory). You can tell the difference between the Google Chrome and Chromium executables by looking at the logo color: Chromium uses a completely blue logo, while Chrome uses red, yellow, and green.
- The search may take some time. Once Windows Explorer has found the file you want, right-click on the entry in the search results and click Open File Location.
- The Chromium executable folder will open. You can use the URL bar at the top to navigate one or two folders up until you see the main Chromium folder. Right-click it, and then click Remove to remove it from your computer.
- If you are unable to delete the Chromium folder, it may be because the software itself is still open. Right click on the taskbar and click on Task Manager to fix this issue.
- In the Task Manager window, find the Chromium process. Right-click the entry, then click End Task to force it to close. Repeat the above steps to delete the Chromium folder after closing Chromium.
- Once uninstalled, you will need to permanently delete the Chromium folder by emptying the Trash. Find the trash can icon on your desktop, then right-click> Empty Trash to completely delete it.
Use a third-party removal program to remove Chromium
Removing Chromium manually is one way to combat the fraudulent installation of this open source browser, but if you’re having difficulty, you can use third-party software instead.
For example, you can use the open source Bulk Crap Uninstaller to remove Chromium from your computer. This will help you find software that you might not otherwise be able to uninstall (like Chromium).
- First, download and install Bulk Crap Uninstaller. When you first start it, it will scan your files and Windows registry entries to find installed software on your computer. In the Welcome to BCUninstaller introductory window, select your language and click Continue to continue.
- Confirm program settings at each step. For example, if you want to highlight certified installers (with associated software certificates), select the Highlight certified uninstaller programs check box before clicking Continue.
- After confirming the settings, click the “Complete setup” button.
- A list of installed software will appear in the Bulk Crap Uninstaller main application list. You can scroll manually or use the search bar in the upper left corner to search for Chromium.
- Bulk Crap Uninstaller should narrow down your list so that only the Chromium entry is displayed. If you trust the included Chromium uninstaller, right-click and click Uninstall. Otherwise, right-click and click Manual Uninstall to have Bulk Crap Uninstaller uninstall it for you. This is probably the best option if you suspect Chromium was installed with malware.
- If you choose the “Remove manually” option, the Chromium removal process will begin. A list of potentially leftover folders, files, and Windows registry entries will first appear in the Remove Leftovers window.
- If the program is sure that these entries are safe to delete, it will automatically select them, giving them a reliability rating of “Very Good” or “Good”. For other entries (marked as “Doubtful”), it is not known if it is safe to delete them, but you can still select them by checking the box next to the entry. If you want to continue, click the “Delete Selected” button.
- Bulk Crap Uninstaller will attempt to remove detected files, folders, and Windows registry entries. If Chromium is still running, it will ask you to force close it – to do this, click “Kill everyone”.
- Click OK in the End Running Processes Data Loss Alert window to end running Chromium processes.
- Bulk Crap Uninstaller will ask you if you want to back up the Windows Registry first, allowing you to undo any changes if invalid entries are deleted. Click Create to do this, or Don’t Create to proceed without creating a backup.
- From now on, Bulk Crap Uninstaller will start uninstalling Chromium, updating the software list after the process is complete. At this point, the Chromium entry will be removed from the list of installed software, allowing you to confirm that the software has been removed.
After removing Chromium, you can run a malware scan with Windows Security or your own antivirus or anti-malware vendor to ensure that all related malware has been completely removed.
Remove unwanted programs in Windows 10
Once you know how to uninstall Chromium, you don’t need to panic if the browser reappears. In many cases, uninstalling it from the Windows settings menu is sufficient, but you may need to use antivirus software or a third-party uninstaller like Bulk Crap Uninstaller to fix the problem for you.
If you’re using Windows security, you can set up a scan schedule to automatically protect yourself from malware. If that doesn’t work and you can’t get rid of the malicious software, you might have to think about restarting Windows to start from scratch again – just be careful about which apps you download in the future.