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Clearing Previous Google Searches

written by: •edited by: Lamar Stonecypher•updated: 2/14/2010

Do you want to keep your Google search information private? Or, are you just tired of seeing Google's suggestions based on your previous searches? It is possible to clear this data - read on to find out how.

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    Stored Google Search Information

    Autofilling Google Searches When you start typing a query in the search box on the Google home page, the field will offer suggestions beginning with the letters you have already typed. These suggestions are based, in part, on previous Google search information stored in your web browser. While this feature can be quite useful if you perform similar searches on a regular basis, it can also be a bit of a pain – especially if you don't want others who use the same computer to know what you've been looking for on the Internet.

    The method used to clear previous Google search information is dependent on the browser you use. We'll take a look at how to do this for several common browsers: Internet Explorer 8, Firefox, Chrome, and Safari.

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    Internet Explorer 8

    1. Select Internet Options from the Tools menu as shown in the screen shot below. (Click any image for a larger view.)

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    2. On the General tab, click on the Delete button under Browsing history.

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    3. Make sure there is a check in the box next to Form data.

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    4. Click on the Delete button. A progress window may appear while the information is being purged, depending upon how much data needs to be deleted. When it closes (or if one does not appear), click on OK to exit the Internet Options window and return to Internet Explorer 8.

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    5. If you also have the Google toolbar installed, you'll want to check to make sure search history is cleared in that tool as well. To do so, click on the down arrow to open the Google search drop down box. Then, click the Clear History link.

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    1. From the Tools menu, select Clear Recent History.

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    2. In the Clear All History window that appears, click on the arrow next to Details to show all options.

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    3. Use the Time range to clear drop down box to select the time period you want to delete. Make sure there is a check in the box next to Form & Search History.

    4. Click the Clear Now button to delete the information.

    5. If you have the Google toolbar installed, use the same process described in Step 5 in the previous section to clear previous Google searches from that tool.

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    1. From the Tools menu (the icon shaped like a wrench), select Clear browsing data.

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    2. Check the box next to Clear saved form data.

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    3. Click on the Clear Browsing Data button to delete the previous Google search information.

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    1. From the Safari Settings menu (the icon shaped like a gear), select Preferences.

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    2. Click on AutoFill to open that Preferences tab.

    3. Click on the Edit button next to Other forms.

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    4. Select from the list in the second window that appears on your screen. Click Remove and then Done.

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    For more details on deleting other types of browsing history, see Deleting Internet History – More Than Just a Privacy Concern.

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