Cannot get rid of Norton Utilities 16

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Sep 1, 2012

Recently I downloaded and installed Adobe Shockwave Player for testing purposes which I made sure Norton installer was unchecked. However, that didn't matter apparently because now I am receiving constant popups from Norton Utilities 16 notifying me the installation of Norton Utilities 16 has failed and obviously wants me to download their intrusive software. I have tried multiple things to get rid of it, and for some reason it isn't gone.

What I've done:

  • ■ Uninstalled Adobe Shockwave Player.
    ■Checked the registry to ensure there's nothing there regarding Norton or Symantec.
    ■Removed all files/directories associated with Norton and Symantec.
    ■Removed Norton/Symantec from the Windows Task Scheduler.
    ■There's nothing in Add/Uninstall via Control Panel.
    ■Ran Malwarebytes and Avast.
    ■Ran the Norton Utilities Uninstaller from BleepingComputer.
    ■Ran AdwCleaner from BleepingComputer.
    ■Checked msconfig to ensure there's nothing under Services.
    ■Checked Task Manger to ensure there's nothing under Startup
    ■Ran CCleaner to ensure there was nothing left behind.
    ■Checked hidden files and folders.
None of the above steps I've taken has successfully gotten rid of this crap. It's gotten to the point where when this popup appears, it re-adds the directories and files back to my system that I already deleted. It also creates a directory called "NortonWrapper" which disappears once I close the popup window.

I'm not sure what else to do. Any ideas?



I never use Norton, if it's worth anything. I'd suggest trying to backup your critical information and then re-installing your OS seeing how it's not yet gone after you've run a slew of tasks including removing it from the list of installed software.


Sep 17, 2016
Like other Adobe software such as Flash, never download the full installer but always go through the download troubleshooting page to get the non-bundled MSI installers such as here for Shockwave.

And like other Norton products, the installer is quite tenacious and embeds itself deep into many places to resist removal or actually break things if removed. They have a help page for handling just this problem, but it doesn't tell you to first uninstall the offending software that installed it in the first place (Shockwave) or to use the task scheduler entries to find the locations of associated files which aren't removed if you only follow their advice. These are people who cannot believe it is even remotely possible that anyone may not want to install or reinstall their software in the future, so they make it as easy as possible to do so by leaving all the install files on your disk.

Symantec paid $11 million on March 18, 2013, to settle a suit alleging they distributed fake scareware scanner popups that warned people to install Norton right away--to clean "detected" viruses that did not actually exist. There's a company you want in Ring0, isn't it?


Dec 26, 2012
Most of those tenacious type programs have other links in the registry that don't respond to the full name, they won't be found from Norton or Symantec. I personally use Riva Uninstaller, it's an advanced Uninstaller that traces all the links so you can uninstall the orphans too. Standard uninstalls like the basic one in windows, does actually nothing but remove the exe address link, the program is still there, windows just no longer sees it, but it doesn't mess with the registry, so on boot, it's still trying to link something that's not visible, and you get the 'it's not there or not working' pop up.

Using the registry cleaner tool in CCleaner is somewhat similar to RU, but not as invasive or as thorough.
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