How to Disable Web Search in Windows 11

Have you ever typed something into your Windows 11 search bar and find yourself getting results from the web too? That’s Windows 11 Search the Web feature in action. It’s a helpful tool for finding things online, but it doesn’t fit well to everyone. In can you want to turn off this Search the Web feature on your Windows 11, then this tutorial should guide in the best manner.

There are many people worry about privacy. Web search can send your searches to Microsoft’s servers. Others find it slows down their computer. And for some, it’s just a distraction.

If you’re one of those people, you might want to turn off web search in Windows 11. Fortunately, here are a few easy ways to do that. In this guide, we’ll walk you through each method step-by-step. You’ll learn how to disable web search using tools already on your computer or even try third-party software made for this purpose.

Disable web search in Windows 11
Learn how to disable web search in Windows 11

Whether you’re looking for a better privacy, or want a faster PC, or just prefer to keep your searches limited to the files stored on your computer, this guide should help you.. By the end, you’ll know exactly how to make Windows 11 search work the way you want. When it comes to turning off web search in Windows 11, you have a couple of options.

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What are available methods to turn off web search in Windows 11?

Method 1: Local Group Policy Editor

This is a tool mainly for people who manage lots of computers. It’s like a control panel for changing how Windows works. If you have Windows 11 Pro or a more advanced version, you can use it. We’ll give you easy-to-follow steps to disable web search with the Group Policy Editor.

Method 2: Registry Editor

This is a more powerful tool, kind of like going under the hood of your computer. It lets you change lots of settings, but it’s important to be careful. One wrong move could cause problems. We’ll show you how to safely use the Registry Editor to turn off web search, but it’s best if you’re comfortable with computers.

Don’t worry if these sound a bit techy. We’ll break down each option so it’s easy to understand, even if you’re not a computer whiz.


1. Disable Web Search in Windows 11 using Group Policy Editor (Gpedit.msc)

You need to follow the below steps:

  1. Open Run: Press the Windows key + R at the same time. A small window will pop up.
  2. Type and Enter: In the Run window, type “gpedit.msc” (without the quotes) and hit Enter. This will open the Group Policy Editor.
  3. Navigate: On the left side, you’ll see folders. Follow this path: “User Configuration” -> “Administrative Templates” -> “Windows Components” -> “File Explorer.”
  4. Find the Setting: In the File Explorer folder, look for a setting named “Turn off display of recent search entries in the File Explorer search box.” Double-click on it.
  5. Enable and Apply: A new window will appear. Choose “Enabled” and click “Apply,” then “OK.”
  6. Restart: Restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

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Disable Web Search in Windows 11 using Registry Editor (Regedit)

You need to follow the below steps:

  1. Open Run: Press the Windows key + R at the same time.
  2. Type and Enter: In the Run window, type “regedit” (without the quotes) and hit Enter. This will open the Registry Editor.
  3. Navigate: On the left side, you’ll see folders. Carefully follow this path: “HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer.”
  4. Create a New Key (if needed): If you don’t see a folder named “Explorer” in the Windows folder, right-click on “Windows” and choose “New” -> “Key.” Name the new key “Explorer.”
  5. Create a New Value: Right-click on the “Explorer” key and choose “New” -> “DWORD (32-bit) Value.” Name the new value “DisableSearchBoxSuggestions.”
  6. Edit the Value: Double-click on “DisableSearchBoxSuggestions” and set the “Value data” to 1. Click “OK.”
  7. Restart: Close the Registry Editor and restart your computer for the changes to take effect.

Remember, be very careful when using the Registry Editor. Changing the wrong thing can cause problems with your computer.

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Additional Methods to disable Web Search in Windows 11

While the Group Policy Editor and Registry Editor are the main ways to disable web search, there are a few other tricks you can try:

1. Turn Off Bing in the Search Bar

Even if you disable web search, you might still see Bing suggestions in the search bar. Here’s how to turn them off:

  • Open Settings: Click on the Start button and then the gear icon to open Windows Settings.
  • Go to Privacy & Security: In Settings, click on “Privacy & Security.”
  • Find Search Permissions: Scroll down and click on “Search Permissions.”
  • Turn Off Cloud Content Search: Look for the option “Cloud Content Search” and turn it off.

2. Use Third-Party Tools

If you want more control over your search experience, you can try third-party software. Some popular options include:

  • Search Deflector: This tool redirects your web searches to your preferred search engine instead of Bing.
  • Winaero Tweaker: This software has a whole bunch of customization options for Windows, including disabling web search.

Keep in mind that third-party tools might have their own quirks and settings to learn.


Even though disabling web search is pretty straightforward, you might run into a few hiccups along the way. Here are some common issues and how to fix them:

1. Changes Aren’t Taking Effect

  • Restart: The most basic fix is to restart your computer. Sometimes, Windows needs a fresh start for changes to kick in.
  • Check Settings: Double-check that you followed the steps correctly. Make sure the settings in the Group Policy Editor or Registry Editor are exactly as we described.
  • Group Policy Update: If you used the Group Policy Editor, try running “gpupdate /force” in the Run window (Windows key + R). This forces Windows to refresh the Group Policy settings.

2. Web Search Still Shows Up

  • Bing Integration: Remember that turning off web search might not completely remove Bing from the search bar. Try disabling Bing in the search settings as we explained earlier.
  • Third-Party Software: If you’re using any third-party search tools or customization software, they could be interfering. Try disabling or uninstalling them temporarily to see if that fixes the problem.

3. Registry Editor Errors

  • Backup: Before making any changes in the Registry Editor, always create a backup of your registry. This way, you can restore it if something goes wrong.
  • Double-Check: Be absolutely sure you’re editing the correct values in the right location. One wrong move can cause problems.
  • Seek Help: If you’re not comfortable with the Registry Editor, don’t hesitate to ask for help from someone who is.

If you’re still having trouble, a quick online search might turn up solutions specific to your situation. Just search for something like “Windows 11 web search not disabling” and see what others have found. Also, you can visit the official help page here.

Deciding whether to disable web search in Windows 11 is a personal choice. It depends on what you value most in your computing experience. Let’s weigh the pros and cons to help you make an informed decision:

The drawbacks of disabling web search in Windows 11:

  • Privacy: Without web search, your search terms won’t be sent to Microsoft. This can be a big plus if you’re concerned about your online privacy.
  • Performance: Some users find that turning off web search makes their computer feel snappier. This is because Windows doesn’t have to fetch results from the internet.
  • Focus: If you mainly use the search bar to find files on your computer, web search can be distracting. Disabling it helps you stay focused on local results.

Cons of Disabling Web Search:

  • Convenience: Web search can be handy for quick access to information online. Disabling it means you’ll have to open your browser separately for web searches.
  • Fewer Results: You might miss out on some relevant results that would have shown up in web search.
  • Limited Functionality: Some apps and features in Windows might rely on web search. Turning it off could affect their functionality.

Ultimately, the best way to decide is to try disabling web search and see if you like it. If you change your mind, you can always enable it again later.

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In conclusion:

Hopefully this article should have helped you turn on off web search feature on your Windows 11 PC. Whether you have privacy concerns, or seek for a better performance, or simply prefer a more focused search experience, now you know how to get it!

Remember, there’s no one-size-fits-all answer. Experiment with different methods, see what works best for you, and don’t be afraid to change things back if you change your mind. Your computer should work for you, not the other way around.

So go ahead, take charge of your Windows 11 experience. Customize it, optimize it, and make it truly your own. Happy searching!

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