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A message from a reader put me on the malware helpermcp alerted, which appears to be affecting some people who have upgraded their Macs to Catalina. Research in various sources shows: The so-called "browser hijacker", which appears under Mac OS X and macOS as "Helpermcp", is not new. Also, there are a few preventable causes of malware infection. The good news is that it's not too dangerous Virus, not a data-stealing Trojan or data-encrypting ransomware. Nevertheless, the program, its effects and last but not least the constant warning of the Mac are annoying!
This message recently reached me from a reader who had updated her Apple Mac to macOS 10.15 Catalina. After the operating system upgrade, the computer kept throwing the warning about Helpermcp:
after installing Catalina, the pop-up “Helpermcp” will damage your computer. We recommend moving the item to the trash.
If you click on “put in the trash”, nothing happens and the window pops up again.
Likewise with “Cancel”.
In addition, the fan turns on continuously and time machine runs continuously.
Is there any way to go back to the previous operating system?
There are several questions here, which I will answer individually and step by step below. If you have any hints on the topic, please leave a comment. If you know someone with the same problem, please forward this post to him or her;)
At first glance, Helpermcp looks like the process of a helpful Mac tool because of the word "Helper" and the abbreviation that follows it. This is definitely not the malware. According to some sources, it seems more like a "browser hijacker". So an extension for the Internet browser, which can independently change the start website, display advertising pop-ups and redirect to certain target pages without being asked. So Helpermcp is a mixture of Adware and annoying scripts.
The annoying software that can lodge in Safari, Chrome and Firefox comes to the Mac due to careless Internet use. Various thoughtless steps in the network can lead to the infection and installation of Helpermcp:
Above all, I find the software "Mac Cleanup Pro", which apparently serves as a system cleanup app, as a trigger in addition to sources of spam in some reports on the problem. But the other names are not exactly trustworthy either. If your Mac is infected with Helpermcp, you (or someone else) may have come across an ad like “Your Mac is running slowly and needs tuning? Try App XYZ! "Clicked and downloaded the supposed helper ...
In the above message from my reader it is already pointed out that the macOS popup with "Helpermcp is damaging your computer. We recommend moving the item to the trash“Nothing brings. No matter what you click, the recycle bin remains empty and the problem persists. Therefore you have to approach the solution yourself. Since I currently cannot (and do not want to) replicate it, I have to resort to general solutions and help from other sources. So the following is a step-by-step guide on how to uninstall Helpermcp that should work.
I know any malware removal guide that a program recommends doesn't look very legitimate itself. Therefore, the mention of “AppCleaner” is simply understood as a well-intentioned reference. This app not only uninstalls programs from the corresponding Applications folder on the Macintosh HD hard drive, but also looks for linked directories, files and folders in order to delete them as well. That's why I recommend AppCleaner to uninstall the above or other questionable programs and their garbage. Details, screenshots and the download can be found here: AppCleaner - My recommendation to delete programs from the Mac.
The procedure is then this:
The name of the malware indicates other places on the Mac hard drive that you should search for malicious programs, scripts, etc. In addition to the unhelpful "helper", it is the addition "mcp" which gives the decisive hint. Because in the library folder you will (probably) find another directory called mcp in the subfolder “Application Support”. And in this folder the triggers of your problem could be hidden. This is how you do it:
I know it's getting complicated. But the intermediate step is necessary ... Now that you have found the mcp folder shown above, you will probably find a file called "helpermcp" which is a package / virtual drive. The intermediate step now consists of the following points:
What did that do? You might ask yourself. Well, deleting the file made sure that the process doesn't restart automatically. The termination of the process ensured that the files in the mcp folder can now be deleted.
In the penultimate step you found the mcp folder, and in the following intermediate step you defused the helpermcp process. The following files can now be deleted without them being automatically recreated or without being prevented from deleting by the ongoing process:
Basically deletes all files that have helpermcp and mcpuninstall in their names. You can find more using the Finder's search function. Then open the recycle bin and permanently delete the files that have been moved there.
As mentioned above, the malware can also nestle in the web browser in the form of add-ons or plugins. In addition to the steps already shown, you should also delete this additional content from Safari, Chrome and Firefox. This is also helpful under macOS Catalina to speed up the system. Some extensions cause a disproportionate system load. Here is the procedure:
For fan and time machine problems (here is my recommendation for the Time Machine volume), which were also addressed in the above readers' message, I would like to refer to this collective article and its comments: macOS Catalina (10.15) Problems and Solutions. For example, Time Machine is In this section addressed.
Problems with the fans and spinning them up are discussed in the comments. Simply use the key combination cmd + F to search for "fan" and to jump between the different mentions of the word. There are already a few causes, solutions and workarounds. Perhaps the problem can also be solved by deleting Helpermcp.
If the only problem in macOS Catalina is the system popup with the warning about Helpermcp, I recommend the procedure described above. Of course there is also one here on the blog Instructions for downgrading from Catalina to Mojave, but this is even more tedious and even less suitable for “beginners” of macOS tinkering than the above instructions for uninstalling Helpermcp.
My recommendation here is to take a little time and gradually practice the steps outlined. A source with pictures / screenshots for individual steps would be PCrisk with this post. BUT ATTENTION: Downloading "Combo Cleaner" is recommended there. DO NOT click on the buttons and DO NOT download the program; you don't want to repeat the "Mac Cleanup Pro" error;)
Jens has been running the blog since 2012. He appears as Sir Apfelot for his readers and helps them with problems of a technical nature. In his free time he drives electric unicycles, takes photos (preferably with his iPhone, of course), climbs around in the Hessian mountains or hikes with the family. His articles deal with Apple products, news from the world of drones or solutions for current bugs.