The amount of times we use Google in a day while providing online tech support to our customers can not be counted on both our hands and feet. Occasionally, when we are in a hurry we use whatever search engine comes up as the default in our browser. We were using a newly updated version of Internet Explorer and typed in “How do I” and we saw the predictive results that Bing gave us. The irony in the picture to the left can not be ignored. The predictive result was “How do I get rid of Bing and get Google back” After a long chuckle we made note of the result and took a screenshot because it was so darn funny. Since we are always looking for good topics to cover on the Boxaid Blog we figured we would answer this question.
Where Did Google Go?
Many people have been using Google as their default search provider in their browser as far back as they can remember. If you are using one of the three most popular web browsers on the planet which are Internet Explorer, Firefox, and Chrome then you can set your default search provider to your favorite search engine and forget about it. This means if you use the search bar in your browser to look for anything it will default to the search engine that you set. Occasionally, you will install a third party piece of software that will change your default search provider to something else which you DO NOT want to use. They do this because they make partner agreements with search providers such as Bing, Yahoo, AOL and of course Google.
They get a tiny little cut of profit for each person they can convert to that search provider. Even worse, if you install a piece of adware or spyware that comes with a game for example you may get a no name search provider that you never heard of like Conduit Search which is a known piece of malware. As long as you don’t have a hijacked browser then its fairly easy to change your default search provider back to Google or whichever search engine you prefer.
Changing Your Search Provider in Chrome
If you are using Chrome, which is the browser we recommend to all our Boxaid customers, then click on the Settings button in the upper right of Chrome and choose Settings. Then in themiddle of the page click the drop down arrow and choose Google or the search provider of your choice. Easy as pie. Now whenever you want to search for something using the omnibox (that’s a fancy way of sayinr the URL/search bar in Chrome) you simply type your keywords and hit Enter and it will always return results from your chosen search provider.
Changing Your Search Provider in Firefox
If you are using Firefox instead of IE or Chrome the concept to change your search engine is very similar. Firefox offers two bars at the top of the browser. One is for your URL and the one on the right is for your searches. Click the tiny icon in the left of the bar to reveal the different search engines. As you can see in the pic, the one at the top is Google which is the default. You can switch search engines on the fly by choosing any provider in the drop down for the immediate search. Once you choose a provider for that search then it will stay that way until you change it to a different one. If you want to add any additional search engines you can also click the “Manage Search Engines” button on the bottom.
Changing Your Search Provider in Internet Explorer
Finally we come to Internet Explorer which is notorious for changing your search provider behind your back. Of course IE want you to use the Microsoft search engine which is Bing. It’s certainly not a bad search engine but the reality is Google provides far more accurate results. In IE click the little gear in the upper right of the browser and choose Manage Add-ons. Then you will get a new window where you need to click Search Providers on the left hand side. Then choose Google if that is what you prefer and then click Set as Default in the bottom right.
That’s it for the major browsers in terms of changing your default search provider. If for some reason making these changes does NOT change your search provider to the one you want then you may have some kind of problem with your browser. Unfortunately, we find that the most common problem is a piece of adware or malware that may have injected itself into your browser that has altered your search provider. This may require a bit more manual work to fix this if this is the case.