How to Remove an Extra Search Bar From Browsers

What Is This Extra Search Bar?

UPDATED: If you want to remove a search bar called Secure Search, please read this article

How to  get rid of a second search bar

Have a second search bar appeared in your browser overnight? You might think it is a new feature for the browser but in reality this toolbar is a third-party app that got installed on your computer. Now, toolbars like this might be actually useful for some people, but if the toolbar got installed without your knowledge or consent, you’d better delete it from your PC. Most toolbars that got installed this way also generate advertisements in browser windows and spy on your Internet activity. You can follow the instructions on this page to get rid of the extra search bar in your browsers.

Why Did the Extra Search Bar Appear on my Browser?

Apps like this are called potentially unwanted programs (PUPs) and are often added as extras into installers of free software that you can download from the Internet. When you install an app from a freeware site, you might notice several “recommended” programs that will get installed unless you clear the checkboxes beside them. If you don’t actually pay attention though, or if some method to hide the installation of extra programs is implemented (for example, when you are urged to select “Express” installation instead of a “Custom” one and so let the installer install everything without asking for your approval), then the PUPs end up getting installed alongside your desired software.

How to Remove an Extra Search Bar

The easiest method to get rid of a second search bar is to run an anti-malware program capable of detecting PUPs in general and this toolbar in particular. You may try Norton Security, a good multiplatform antivirus that can remove malware and protect your computer and other devices in the future.

Download Norton Security

Other software that may be able to get rid of an extra search bar:
WiperSoft (Windows)

If you are a user of Mac OS X, you can also try Combo Cleaner.

You can also try to remove Extra search bar by hand using the following instructions.

Remove an App Responsible for Second Search Bar From Programs and Features:

Go to Programs and Features, uninstall any suspicious programs, programs you don’t remember installing, or programs you installed just before new search bar appeared in your browser. When you are not sure if a program is safe, look for the answer on the Internet.

Windows XP:

  1. Click Start.
  2. In the Start menu select Settings => Control Panel.
  3. Find and click Add or Remove Programs.
  4. Click on the offending program.
  5. Click Remove.

Windows Vista:

  1. Click Start.
  2. In the Start menu select Control Panel.
  3. Find and click Uninstall a program.
  4. Click on the offending program.
  5. Click Uninstall.

Windows 7:

  1. Click Start.
  2. In the Start menu select Control Panel.
  3. Find and select Programs and Features or Uninstall a program.
  4. Click on the offending program.
  5. Click Uninstall.

Windows 8 / Windows 8.1:

  1. Press and hold Windows key Windows key and hit X key.
  2. Select Programs and Features from the menu.
  3. Click on the offending program.
  4. Click Uninstall.

Windows 10:

  1. Press and hold Windows key Windows key and hit X key.
  2. Select Programs and Features from the menu.
  3. Click on the offending program.
  4. Click Uninstall.

Remove Second Search Bar From Browsers:

To get rid of Extra search bar, disable or delete any extension that you haven’t installed yourself. If the problem persists, reset browser settings.

Remove Extra search bar extension from Google Chrome:

  1. Click menu button Menu button.
  2. Select More toolsExtensions.
  3. To remove an extension, click on a trashcan to the right of it.
  4. Click Remove in the dialog box.
Reset Google Chrome Settings:

Note: This will disable your extensions and themes, clear cookies and site data, as well as change content settings, start page, new tab page and search engine to default.

  1. Open a new tab.
  2. Copy and paste into the address bar: chrome://settings/resetProfileSettings
  3. Press Enter.
  4. In the dialog box click Reset.

Remove Extra search bar extension from Mozilla Firefox:

  1. Click on menu button Menu button and select Add-ons.
  2. Go to Extensions tab.
  3. To uninstall an add-on, click on Remove button next to it.
    Note: If the extension is impossible to delete, click on Menu button => Help button => Restart with Add-ons Disabled…. In the dialog boxes click Restart => Start in Safe Mode. Restart Firefox in normal mode after you are finished.
Reset Mozilla Firefox Settings:

Note: Your add-ons, themes, added search engines and download history, among other things, will get deleted.

  1. Click on menu button Menu button.
  2. Click on help button Help button and select Troubleshooting Information.
  3. Click Refresh Firefox… in the top-right corner.
  4. In the dialog box click Refresh Firefox.

Remove Extra search bar add-on from Internet Explorer:

  1. Click Tools button Tools button in the top-right corner.
  2. Select Manage add-ons.
  3. In the drop-down menu under Show: select All add-ons.
  4. To delete an add-on, double-click it, in the new window click Remove.
Reset Internet Explorer Settings:

Note: This will remove most of your saved browser data, including extensions, passwords and the majority of browser settings.

  1. Click Tools button Tools button in the top-right corner.
  2. Select Internet options.
  3. Go to Advanced tab.
  4. Click Reset… button.
  5. Put checkmark in Delete personal settings checkbox.
  6. Click Reset.

Remove Extra search bar extension from Opera:

  1. Press Ctrl +Shift + E keys to open extensions manager.
  2. To remove the extension, click on the x button next to it.
  3. Click OK when asked to confirm.
Reset Opera Settings:

Note: This will delete all saved data including bookmarks and passwords and return the browser to freshly installed state.

  1. Exit Opera browser.
  2. Open File Explorer.
  3. Go to C:\Users\username\AppData\Roaming\Opera\Opera, where username is the name of your Windows account.
  4. Find and delete Operapref.ini file.

How to Prevent Your Browsers Getting an Extra Search Bar and Protect Your PC From Other PUPs:

  • Get a powerful anti-malware software, capable of detecting and eliminating PUPs. Having several on-demand scanners would be a good idea too.
  • Keep Windows firewall enabled or get a third-party one.
  • Keep your OS, browsers and security utilities updated. Malware creators find new browser and OS vulnerabilities to exploit all the time. Software writers, in turn, release patches and updates to get rid of the known vulnerabilities and lesser the chance of malware penetration. Antivirus program’s signature databases get updated every day and even more often to include new virus signatures.
  • Adjust your browsers’ settings to block pop-ups and to load plug-ins only when clicked.
  • Download and use Adblock, Adblock Plus, uBlock or one of the similar trustworthy extensions for blocking third-party advertisements on web-sites.
  • Don’t just click on any link you see while browsing the web. That applies particularly to links in comments, on forums, or in instant messengers. Pretty often these are spam links. Sometimes they are used for increasing the traffic to websites, but often enough they will land you on pages that will try to execute a malicious code and infect your computer. Links from your friends are suspect too: the person who shares a cute video might not know that the page contains threatening script.
  • Don’t download software from unverified web-sites. You can easily download a trojan (malware that pretends to be a useful application); or some unwanted programs could get installed along with the app.
  • When installing freeware or shareware, be sensible and don’t rush through the process. Choose Custom or Advanced installation mode, look for checkboxes that ask for your permission to install third-party apps and uncheck them, read End User Licence Agreement to make sure nothing else is going to get installed. You can make exceptions for the apps you know and trust, of course. If declining from installing unwanted programs is not possible, we advise you to cancel the installation completely.

2 thoughts on “How to Remove an Extra Search Bar From Browsers

  1. Reply
    Potato - February 2, 2017

    Ugh it won’t work :/

  2. Reply
    Mary - February 8, 2019

    I have this search bar that keeps appearing on my phone that I didn’t download & (it’s not not in my apps section) so I can’t get it off my phone. It appeared out of nowhere, & it interrupts all my programs, right in the middle of watching you tube it interups my videos & appears at the top of my phone

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