Set default search engine

Important

Microsoft Search in Bing settings are now available in the Microsoft 365 admin center. Get started by assigning search admins in your admin center.

Configuring the default browser, default search engine, and default homepage will help your users discover Microsoft Search capabilities, encourage more usage, and provide a smoother experience.

To set the default search engine for your organization, follow the steps below.

Internet Explorer

Internet Explorer 11

Users will be able to change the search provider after this policy is set.

1. Configure the local machine that will be used to set the GPO

Paste the following text into a reg(*.reg) file.

Windows Registry Editor Version 5.00

[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes]
"DefaultScope"="{D54CD0C8-C007-4BC4-B2DD-1E4896B8406D}"
[HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes\{D54CD0C8-C007-4BC4-B2DD-1E4896B8406D}]
"Codepage"=dword:0000fde9
"DisplayName"="Microsoft Search in Bing"
"OSDFileURL"="https://www.bing.com/sa/osd/bfb.xml"
"FaviconURL"="https://www.bing.com/sa/simg/bb.ico"
"SuggestionsURL_JSON"="https://business.ing.com/api/v2/browser/suggest?q={searchTerms}&form=BFBSPA"
"ShowSearchSuggestions"=dword:00000001
"URL"="https://www.bing.com/business/search?q={searchTerms}&form=BFBSPR"

Double-click the file created and follow the steps to import the file. A successful import should result in the following dialog:

Registry Editor successful import message

2. Open the Group Policy Management Console (gpmc.msc) and switch to editing an existing policy or creating a new one

  1. Navigate to User Configuration\Policies\Preferences\Windows Settings.

  2. Right-click on Registry\New and select Registry Wizard. From the Registry Browser window, select Local Computer and click Next.

  3. Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\SearchScopes.

  4. From this key, make sure to select DefaultScope.

    Registry Browser with DefaultScope selected

  5. Check all sub keys containing the GUID for Microsoft Search in Bing and every value under the key except any path to user profiles. Scroll down to select other items.

    Registry Browser with additional values selected

  6. Click Finish to complete this configuration.

3. Set up User Preferences to help eliminate a warning the user may get when DefaultScope search is enforced

This warning is by design and alerts users of a program trying to modify their settings.

  1. Within the same GPO, right click on Registry\New and select Registry Wizard.

  2. Navigate to HKEY_CURRENT_USER\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Internet Explorer\User Preferences.

  3. Select the User Preference key.

  4. Click Finish.

  5. Click on the newly created object. On the right-side pane double click on the User Preferences object, change the Action to Delete and Save.

Enforce the resultant GPO by linking it to the appropriate domain.

Microsoft Edge

Windows 10, Version 1703 or later

Users will be able to change the search provider after this policy is set.

For the latest ADMX files for various versions of Windows, see How to create and manage the Central Store for Group Policy Administrative Templates in Windows.

If the setting described in this section cannot be found inside of GPMC, download the appropriate ADMX and copy them to the central store. For more information, see Editing Domain-Based GPOs Using ADMX Files. Central store on the controller is a folder with the following naming convention:

%systemroot%\sysvol\<domain>\policies\PolicyDefinitions

Each domain that your controller handles should get a separate folder. The following command can be used to copy the ADMX file from the command prompt:

Copy <path_to_ADMX.ADMX> %systemroot%\sysvol\<domain>\policies\PolicyDefinitions

  1. Open the Group Policy Management Console (gpmc.msc) and switch to editing an existing policy or creating a new one.

  2. Navigate to <Computer/User Configuration>\Administrative Templates\Windows Components\Microsoft Edge.

  3. Double-click Set default search engine, set to Enabled, and enter https://www.bing.com/sa/osd/bfb.xml

  4. Enforce the resultant GPO by linking it to the appropriate domain.

Google Chrome

Windows XP SP2 or later

Users won't be able to change the search provider after this policy is set.

Chrome comes with its own set of group policy settings which can be downloaded in the form of an ADMX file from Google Chrome Enterprise Help. If operating systems Windows Vista/Server 2008 or later are used to manage GPO's for the domain, the ADMX file provided in this package takes care of Chrome settings on Windows XP SP2 or later.

Copy the template file to a central store for ADMX files on the domain controller. For more information, see Editing Domain-Based GPOs Using ADMX Files. Central store on the controller is a folder with the following naming convention:

%systemroot%\sysvol\<domain>\policies\PolicyDefinitions

Each domain that your controller handles should get a separate folder. The following command can be used to copy the ADMX file from the command prompt:

Copy <path_to_Chrome.ADMX> %systemroot%\sysvol\<domain>\policies\PolicyDefinitions

  1. Open the Group Policy Management Console (gpmc.msc) and switch to editing any existing policy or creating a new one.

  2. Make sure the following folders appear in the Administrative Templates section of both User/Computer Configuration: Google Chrome and Google Chrome - Default Settings.

  • The settings of the first section are fixed and local administrators won't be able to change them in the browser.

  • The settings of the latter section of policies can be changed by users in the browser settings.

  1. Navigate to <Computer/User> Configuration\Administrative Templates\Google Chrome\Default search provider

  2. Double-click Enable the default search provider, and set it to Enabled.

  3. Double-click Default search provider icon, set it to Enabled, and enter https://www.bing.com/sa/simg/bb.ico

  4. Double-click Default search provider instant URL, and enter https://www.bing.com/business/search?q={searchTerms}&amp;form=BFBSPR

  5. Double-click Default search provider name, set it to Enabled, and enter 'Microsoft Search in Bing'

  6. Double-click Default search provider search URL, set it to Enabled, and enter https://www.bing.com/business/search?q={searchTerms}&amp;form=BFBSPR

  7. Double-click Default search provider suggest URL, set it to Enabled, and enter https://business.bing.com/api/v2/browser/suggest?q={searchTerms}&amp;form=BFBSPA

  8. Enforce the resultant GPO by linking it to the appropriate domain.

Setting the default search engine will add the Microsoft Search search suggestions feature in the browser address bar. Currently, this supports bookmarks only. Users will see the top two bookmark suggestions above public web suggestions as they type in the address bar.