Setting Google as default search provider in unattend.xml

Setting Google as default search provider in unattend.xml


When deploying Windows I sometimes need to change the default search provider to Google for all deployed computers.

While this can be done in many ways I prefer to use unattend.xml because users can then change it if they want. An alternative could be to use GPP but it will then have an impact on login time.

So by adding this to unattend.xml

     <component name=”Microsoft-Windows-IE-InternetExplorer” processorArchitecture=”amd64″ publicKeyToken=”31bf3856ad364e35″ language=”neutral” versionScope=”nonSxS” xmlns:wcm=”” xmlns:xsi=”“>
                <Scope wcm:action=”add”>

Shown here in the Windows System Image Manager.


You can then control the default search engine in Internet Explorer 9.

The values to use in the different settings can be found by adding Google search on a client and then look in the registry

HKEY_CURRENT_USERSoftwareMicrosoftInternet ExplorerSearchScopes


Even though ShowSearchSuggestions has the value of true, suggestions does not work for me.

The users will be prompted to turn on suggestions.


So in order to avoid this I set this registry value HKCUSOFTWAREMicrosoftInternet ExplorerSearchScopesShowSearchSuggestionsInAddressGlobal to the value 1 (dword).

This is also deployed by my MDT or SCCM task sequence and loaded in the default profile so all new users will receive this setting by default, see for more information on how to do this for all users.

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Modern Workplace consultant and a Microsoft MVP in Enterprise Mobility.
Modern Workplace consultant and a Microsoft MVP in Windows and Devices for IT.

Infrastructure architect consultant with focus on Endpoint Management and Microsoft Sentinel.

Infrastructure architect with focus on Modern Workplace and Microsoft 365 security.

Passionate IT professional with 20+ experience in IT architecture, consulting, and design. 

Cloud & security specialist with focus on Microsoft backend products and cloud technologies.

Infrastructure architect with focus on design, implementation, migration and consolidation.

Infrastructure consultant with focus on cloud solutions in Office365 and Azure.

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