Filter web search results in Windows using Safe Search setting

The Search experience inside Windows 8 is truly advanced and gets enhanced with every new version or update. Many of you are using Windows 10/8.1 which is integrated with web search as well. Say, if you’re searching for a file in Windows 8, you are also able to get web results for your search query – although there is a way to disable this search if you don’t want it. Now since the system is synchronized to display web results also, it becomes a matter of concern and we may want to filter the web results. Typically, if you’re using the system in your family, you should set which kind of results to display and which should not.

Filter web search results in Windows 10/8.1

Windows 8.1 allows you to filter search results under three heads, Strict, Moderate and No filter. This article will show you the ways to configure your priority. You can do this in following two ways:

Set The Safe Search Setting Using Local Group Policy Editor

1. In Windows 8.1 Pro & Enterprise Editions, press Windows Key + R combination, type put gpedit.msc in Run dialog box and hit Enter to open the Local Group Policy Editor.

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2. Navigate here:

Computer Configuration -> Administrative Templates -> Windows Components -> Search

SafeSearch setting in Windows 8.13. In the right pane of this location, look for the setting named Set the Safesearch setting for Search which must be showing Not Configured status by default. Double click on the same to get this:

Filter web search results

4. In the above shown window, click Enabled and then for the Default Safe Search Setting drop down menu, pick you choice for filtering the search results among Strict, Moderate and Off. Following is the explanation for different filters:

Strict: Filter out adult text, images, and videos from search results.

Moderate: Filter adult images and videos but not text from search results.

Off: Don’t filter adult content from search results.

Click OK. You may now close the Local Group Policy Editor and reboot to see changes effective.

Set The SafeSearch Setting Using Registry Editor

If your edition of Windows 8 does not have the Group Policy Editor, do the following:

1. Press Windows Key + R combination, type put regedit in Run dialog box and hit Enter to open the Registry Editor.

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2. Navigate here:

HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Windows Search


3. In the right pane of this location, create a new registry DWORD named as ConnectedSearchSafeSearch by doing a right click in blank space and navigating through New -> DWORD Value. Double click on the DWORD to modify its Value data:


4. In the above shown box, put the following Value data corresponding to the filter you’d like to have:

Strict : 1

Moderate : 2

Off : 3

Click OK when you’re done with inputting your choice. You may now close Registry Editor and reboot to observe changes you’ve made so far.

Hope you find the tip useful!

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An Electrical Engineer by profession, Kapil is a Microsoft MVP and a Microsoft Content Creator. Please read the entire post & the comments first & create a system restore point before making any changes to your system.