can’t change ie8 default search provider

// April 15th, 2010 // Internet Explorer

IE8 in some situation disallows changing the default search provider. This can happen on workgroups and domains even if the “restrict changing search provider” gpo is not configured.

  • Make sure IE 8 is closed then navigate to registry key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders
  • Add a new “Expandable String value” inside the above mentioned key with a value name of “AppData” and a value data of “%USERPROFILE%\Application Data”.
  • Reopen IE 8 and see if you still get the error message.
  1. e sure IE 8 is closed then navigate to registry key: HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Explorer\User Shell Folders
  2. Add a new “Expandable String value” inside the above mentioned key with a value name of “AppData” and a value data of “%USERPROFILE%\Application Data”.
  3. Reopen IE 8 and see if you still get the error message.

4 Responses to “can’t change ie8 default search provider”

  1. Gregg Eshelman says:

    Tried that, doesn’t work in Windows 7 Home Premium. A key alomst identical to that already exists. There’s several other “fixes” for this bug that also don’t work or are impossible to do in Home versions of XP, Vista and 7 due to utilities like the Group Policy Editor they don’t have.

    What it needs is a brute force fix program that runs on any version of Windows able to run IE7 or IE8 to restore the search provider settings to their defaults. NEXT, Microsoft needs to produce updates for IE8 AND IE7 to FIX THE BUG.

  2. Keith Clark says:

    When i open IE8 a window comes in, that say’s your IE8 (default search provider) has been corrupted, how do i get rid of it.

    I have Windows XP pro IE8.

  3. SunmanX says:

    The simple solution that worked for me was to close IE, go to Control Panel/Internet Options, click the Advanced tab, and reset EVERYTHING, including personal settings. Then open IE and walk through the IE8 setup again. Might not work for everyone.
    Thanks for pointing me to this, Isaac Grover! Too bad Microsoft doesn’t suggest this fix.

    None of the suggested fixes, including Kirb’s original post nor registry edits nor clearing out files manually worked for me, but the steps described above appears to have done the trick. I’m running IE8 under Windows 7 Professional x64.

  4. SunmanX says:

    Another possible solution:

    Experienced same problem.

    I tried the above method – did not work. Then did the following: (Run regedit and go to)KEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Google – and deleted the Google Registry entry and problem disappeared. It appears that the Google entry in the Registry was causing the problem.

    Forgot to mention that the problem occurred after I used the Norton 360 Registry Cleanup Utility. Should have avoided running the Norton Registry Cleanup.

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to post a comment.