Windows 10 update finally lets you disable Bing for good

Windows 10 update
(Image credit: Anton Watman / Shutterstock)

Microsoft has delivered a new Windows 10 update that allows users to disable the integrated Bing search feature by tweaking the registry settings.

Also owned by Microsoft, the Bing search engine is built into the Windows 10 search facility by default. Whenever a user enters a search query, they are met with a combination of local results (i.e. files on their hard drive) and web results generated by Bing.

While the feature provides quick access to a search engine, disabling Bing (and thereby eliminating web pages from the search results) can improve the speed and quality of local searches dramatically - so it’s an important option to have.

Windows 10 update

To disable Bing in Windows 10, users can no longer utilize the now-defunct “BingSearchEnabled” registry value, which was retired with the May 2020 edition.

Introduced with the latest Windows 10 update, the new “DisableSearchBoxSuggestions” value serves an almost identical purpose, but also eliminates ads from search results.

To deactivate Bing, navigate to the following location in the native Registry Editor: Computer\HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Explorer. In the event the Explorer folder does not exist, one will need to be created.

Right clicking inside the Explorer folder will bring up an option to create a new DWORD (32-bit) Value, which should be named “DisableSearchBoxSuggestions” and the value then set to “1”.

Exiting the Registry Editor and restarting Windows will finalize the change (which can be reversed at a later date by deleting the same registry value).

Windows 10 users should note that caution is always required when altering the registry, which can cause serious problems when edited incorrectly. For this reason, a registry backup should always be created before any changes are made.

Via Windows Latest

Joel Khalili
News and Features Editor

Joel Khalili is the News and Features Editor at TechRadar Pro, covering cybersecurity, data privacy, cloud, AI, blockchain, internet infrastructure, 5G, data storage and computing. He's responsible for curating our news content, as well as commissioning and producing features on the technologies that are transforming the way the world does business.