How to deactivate search highlights on Windows 10 and 11

Search highlights in windows 10 and 11

Annoyed by the content suggestions in the Windows Start menu? Read here how to deactivate the so-called search highlights (“search highlights”).

Since the Microsoft released search highlights for Windows 11 and Windows 10 in 2022, enthusiasm among users has been limited. In addition to the equally unpopular Bing search and the “Recommended” area for files, the content suggestions for the Internet take up a lot of space in the start menu and distract from the core functions of the operating system. Technoeager reveals how to deactivate the search highlights.

Disable search highlights

To hide Search Highlights, you can simply turn off Bing Search in the Start menu. If you want Windows Search to continue to show Internet finds in addition to local files and programs, follow these steps instead:

This is how it works in Windows 11

  1. From the Start menu, click Settings.
  2. Click Privacy and Security.
  3. Click Search Permissions.
  4. Under More Settings, set the Show Search Highlights switch to Off to disable the feature.

This is how it works in Windows 10

  1. Right-click on an empty space on the taskbar.
  2. In the menu that appears, click Search.
  3. Uncheck the box next to Show search highlights by clicking on it.

After the next Windows restart, the content suggestions disappeared.

Search highlights: What is it actually?

The search highlights are a kind of discovery function for Windows search. They enrich the search results in the Windows Start menu with daily changing content. This can be regional information such as holidays or historical events on the respective day. In addition to current search trends, Microsoft also displays links to its reward program “Rewards” and to its AI assistant Copilot (formerly Bing Chat). To see online recommendations, simply click in the search field. By clicking on a suggestion, you open the corresponding website in the browser. In corporate or school versions of Windows, the “Search Highlights” also provide important information, shared files, contacts or organizational charts from the company or educational institution and should therefore not be deactivated.

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