This wikiHow teaches you how to remove the Bing search engine from your Windows computer and from your web browsers. Bing is a common alternative to Google, but many types of malware and questionable software programs set Bing as your default search engine and make it impossible for you to change the search engine using your browser's settings. You can solve this problem by removing the program or virus in question and resetting your browser settings to their normal settings. Unfortunately, there is no way to disable Bing in Cortana.
Part 1 of 6: Using Windows Defender
Step 1. Open Start
Click the Windows logo in the lower left corner of the screen.
Step 2. Open Windows Defender
Type windows defender in the Start menu, then click Windows Defender Security Center at the top of the Start screen.
Step 3. Click on Virus & Threat Protection
This tab is located in the top left corner of the window.
- If you don't see this tab, click first ☰ in the top left corner of the window.
Step #4. Click Scan Now
It's a gray button in the middle of the page. Clicking it will allow Windows Defender to scan your computer for malware.
Step 5. Make sure the full scan is running
Windows Defender will usually take about 10 minutes for the scan, during which the program will remove any malicious software it finds.
If you are asked to confirm the removal of programs and files, follow the prompts or instructions on the screen
Step 6. Run an advanced scan
If Windows Defender did not find any viruses, it may be necessary to perform a deeper scan. You can do this with the 'Advanced scan' option:
- click on the link Run a new advanced scan under the button Scan now.
- Put a check in the 'Full scan' box.
- click on Scan now.
- Follow the prompts or instructions on the screen.
Part 2 of 6: Uninstalling Bing apps
Step 1. Understand how this section works
Bing is not usually a program in itself, but some software can download additional programs and toolbars that change your browser settings after installation. These programs can set Bing as your browser's homepage and/or default search engine, and even if you adjust the settings yourself, they will often set them back on Bing.
- You can usually solve this problem by removing all programs, apps, and toolbars that you installed just before you started seeing Bing in your browser.
- If you've only seen Bing in your browser for a short time, then the problem is probably caused by a program you just installed.
Step 2. Open Start
Click the Windows logo in the lower left corner of the taskbar or press the Windows key ⊞ Win to open the Start menu.
Step 3. Open Settings
Click the gear icon on the left side of the Start menu. The Settings window will now open.
Step #4. Click on Apps
This option is located in the Settings window. By clicking on it you will see a list of all the apps installed on your computer.
Step 5. Sort the programs by date
Click the item next to the "Sort by" heading (usually Name) and then click Installation date in the drop-down menu that appears. The apps that were most recently installed will now be at the top of the menu.
You can skip this step if the problem with Bing has not started recently
Step 6. Look for suspicious programs
There are no specific criteria to consider when searching, but keep an eye out for toolbars and programs you don't remember installing. The following programs are also known to install Bing:
- Bing Bar
- Bing Protect
- Search Module
- Search Protect
Step 7. Select a program
Click on a program you want to remove. You should see the program name expand.
Step 8. Click on Uninstall
This button is located under the program name.
Step 9. Click Uninstall when prompted
This will confirm your choice and the uninstall process of the selected program will begin. Once the program has been officially removed, you can try changing your browser's default search engine to see if the program was the culprit.
- You may have to go through a wizard to uninstall the program, depending on the program in question.
- If you are unable to change your browser's default search engine, you may need to remove another program or change your browser's shortcut.
Part 3 of 6: Customizing your browser shortcut
Step 1. Find your browser shortcut
Look for the shortcut on your desktop. If your browser shortcut isn't on your desktop, you don't need to go through the steps in this section.
This section does not apply to Microsoft Edge, as it is not possible to customize the shortcut properties for Edge
Step #2. Right click on the shortcut
You will now see a drop-down menu.
- If you don't have a right mouse button on your mouse, click on the right side of your mouse or click the mouse with two fingers at the same time.
- If your computer has a trackpad instead of a mouse, tap your trackpad with two fingers or press the bottom right corner of your trackpad.
Step #3. Click Properties
You will find this option at the bottom of the drop-down menu. The Properties window for your browser shortcut will now open.
Step #4. Click on Shortcut tab
You'll find this at the top of the Properties window.
Step 5. Check out the "Target" text box
This text box is located in the center of the window. You should see a line of text in this text box that ends with.exe", but there should be no text after the closing quote.
In order to see the extra text, you may need to click once on the 'Target' text box to place your mouse cursor in it and then press the right arrow on your keyboard to scroll right
Step 6. Remove everything that comes after the '.exe' section
If you see additional URLs or commands after the "exe" text in the "Target" text box, select that extra text and delete it. This also applies to any text with a dash (such as '--') followed by keywords.
Step 7. Click OK
You will find this at the bottom of the window. By clicking this button, your changes will be saved and you will exit the 'Properties' window. The shortcut should no longer open a particular program or website.
Step 8. Repeat this process for all other web browsers on your computer
Even if you don't use the other browsers very often, check their shortcuts for extra URLs and commands that can ignore the home page of a web browser like Internet Explorer or Firefox.
It is not possible to customize the shortcut properties for Edge
Part 4 of 6: Cleaning Google Chrome
Step 1. Open
The icon of the app is a red, yellow, green and blue sphere.
Step 2. Click on ⋮
You'll find this option in the top-right corner of the Chrome window. Clicking on it will bring up a drop-down menu.
Step #3. Click on Settings
You can find this at the bottom of the drop-down menu. The Settings page opens in a new tab.
Step #4. Scroll down and click on Advanced ▼
You will find this option at the very bottom of the page. By clicking on it, even more options will appear at the bottom of the page.
Step 5. Scroll down to the "Reset and Clean" section
This section is located at the bottom of the Settings page.
Step 6. Click on Clean Computer
This option can be found at the very bottom of the Settings page.
Step 7. Click SEARCH
This is a blue link on the right side of the page. Google Chrome will start looking for programs that interfere with your computer's operation.
Step 8. Click Uninstall when prompted
You'll see this option if Google Chrome finds malicious software and toolbars on your computer.
Step 9. Change Chrome's homepage
Once you've removed the programs that harmed Google Chrome (if any) you can try changing your homepage to something other than Bing.
Step 10. Return Chrome to its default settings
You may need to do this to revert all settings changed by the malware:
- click on ⋮.
- click on Institutions.
- click on Advanced.
- Scroll down and click Reset settings.
- click on RESET when requested.
Part 5 of 6: Cleaning Firefox
Step 1. Open Firefox
The Firefox app icon looks like an orange fox wrapped around a blue sphere.
Step 2. Click on ☰
This option is located in the top right corner of the Firefox window. Clicking on it will bring up a drop-down menu.
Step 3. Click Help
You will find this option at the bottom of the menu.
Step 4. Click Troubleshooting Information
This is the option in the middle of the drop-down menu.
Step 5. Click Refresh Firefox…
You'll find this option in the upper-right corner of the troubleshooting information page.
Step 6. Click Refresh Firefox when prompted
Doing this "freshes" Firefox, which means it removes all installed add-ons (whether you installed them yourself or not) and returns Firefox to its default settings.
- If the problem persists, repeat the process but choose Restart with add-ons disabled. If this solves the problem, you will need to remove all add-ons from Firefox.
Step 7. Think about changing the Firefox homepage
You may need to do this to prevent Bing from becoming your homepage even after removing problematic add-ons:
- click on ☰.
- click on Options (pc) or Preferences (Mac).
- Enter the address of a website in the "Home" text box or click Reset to defaults.
Part 6 of 6: Cleaning Internet Explorer
Step 1. Open Internet Explorer
The app's icon looks like a blue "e" with a yellow ring around it.
Step #2. Click on the gear icon
This is located in the top right corner of the browser window. Clicking on it will bring up a drop-down menu.
Step #3. Click on Internet Options
This option can be found in the drop-down menu. Clicking on it will bring up a pop-up window.
Step 4. Choose the Advanced tab
This is located at the top of the pop-up window.
Step 5. Click Reset…
This option can be found in the lower right corner of the window.
Step 6. Click Reset when prompted
Step 7. Choose Close and click OK.
This saves your changes and closes the Internet Options window.
Step 8. Restart your computer
This will implement the changes and restore the default settings.